The Caligula Effect 2 has loads of cool ideas, but it's undeniably rough around the edges. The visuals and character models are basic, animations can be awkward, and the environmental design comes off as uninspired. At least the user interface looks lovely.
Demon Slayer: The Hinokami Chronicles is carried by its fantastic presentation, which expertly captures the look and feel of the anime. Bombastic boss fights and some stunning cutscenes are enough to sell the otherwise short-lived story mode, but outside of that, this is a rather barebones package. Battles can be flashy and fun, but the combat system doesn't have the necessary depth to hook anyone who isn't a Demon Slayer super fan. If this is just the first step in a new series from CyberConnect2, then it's a solid debut that'll no doubt form the basis for a much meatier sequel.
A weaker overall story and some serious pacing issues prevent Lost Judgment from reaching the excellence of its predecessor, but this is still a fantastic character-driven detective drama. Crunching combat and a frankly ridiculous amount of impressively in-depth side content make this one of the most robust Yakuza-style offerings ever - and that's more than enough to outweigh the game's often obvious flaws.
With its heavy Fantasy Life vibes, there's a lot to like about Kitaria Fables. While the grind won't be for everyone, it's an accessible game that can eat up 20 to 30 hours of your time quite easily, thanks to its enticing mix of fighting, crafting, and farming.
Meanwhile, if you're just here to relax and create detailed island dioramas, Sandbox Mode is the way to go. Here, you can build to your heart's content without having to worry about score modifiers, switching islands at will. And it helps that Islanders is very aesthetically pleasing; there's real satisfaction to be found in the simplistic art style as you decorate each landscape.
Ghost of Tsushima: Director's Cut amplifies an already excellent open world game. The Iki Island expansion is worth the price of admission alone, providing another chunk of stunning Japanese landscape for Jin to explore, while also digging into the protagonist's past. A fantastic range of story missions and side quests make for a memorable offshore excursion, and put alongside the main campaign, Ghost of Tsushima now stands as a PS4 and PS5 must-buy.
A small range of unlockable augments do make things a touch more bearable, but Evan can barely activate a single skill before his implants start overheating and you're forced to stop what you're doing. We think Foreclosed is meant to be played like a run-and-gun, ability-popping shooter — but the execution misses the mark almost completely.
Assassin's Creed Valhalla: The Siege of Paris is another great expansion that fans of the base game won't want to miss. However, unlike Wrath of the Druids, the second DLC's strength is rooted in its adaptation of the old Assassin's Creed formula. Black box assassination missions are the stars of the show, where stealth and deception are brought back into fashion. What's more, the story's darker tone makes for some memorable moments.