The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles is, well, great Ace Attorney. The typical gameplay is embellished with some interesting new wrinkles, but it's the cast of characters and compelling narrative that make this a worthy spin-off. The story told across the pair of games is intriguing, you'll grow to love most of the characters, and there are some cracking, memorable cases to solve. This duo of games isn't doing much to push the franchise forward, but it's a very worthwhile adventure nonetheless. A great place to start for newcomers and a fascinating alternate story for fans, should you give this a shot? The answer is elementary.
With a bunch of smart additions, F1 2021 is a cracking simulator for both die-hard fans and newcomers. The Braking Point story mode doesn't have a particularly compelling narrative, but it's a brilliant gateway into the motorsport and a primer for the wider game. Two Player Career, the Expert driving style, Real Season Start, and more make this the most customisable and accessible iteration yet, allowing you to play how you like across the game's excellent career options. Of course, the driving itself seals the deal, and it's a winner on that front. This is a no-brainer for F1 fans, but it's also a fantastic entry for newbie drivers to start with.
Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection brings a trio of Ryu Hayabusa's adventures to modern systems, and that in itself is worth celebrating. The quality of the individual games does vary a fair bit, though, with Sigma 2 the best of the bunch. However, bringing them together is highly skill-based combat that rewards real mastery, and it remains pretty unique among modern action titles. While not without their flaws, there's still plenty to love about these PS3-era slash-'em-ups
It packs quite a lot in to its short runtime, with plenty of variety making for a unique set of levels. The game does struggle with frame rate here and there, especially playing as the agent, but it generally looks and sounds good, and the Hint system is a nice touch if you need a pointer or two. Despite some small setbacks, Operation: Tango is well worth a try if you're after a co-op kick.
You can float about and gather materials as you please, which is pleasant, but the game doesn't quite have enough to hold your interest. Sadly, the story aspect falls a bit flat — the main thread is interesting but the writing isn't particularly engaging, and any cutscenes lack impact. Overall, the game is a tranquil journey through a unique world, but it doesn't quite have the narrative pull or gameplay bite that it needs.
Knockout City is a brilliant multiplayer brawler. Its well-balanced, skill-based gameplay is a joy, providing players with surprising depth just beneath the surface. While the number of maps and modes on day one is fairly small, the fun factor means this doesn't really matter, and updates will bring extra content to the game post-launch anyway. With a ton of customisation options, rewarding progression, and constantly engaging matches, this is knockout by name, knockout by nature.
The RPG elements mean you'll nearly always be making some forward momentum. Finding treasure, sinking ships, and completing missions rewards you with XP, and you can upgrade and customise various parts of your boat to ensure your vessel is ship-shape. What's more, each town has its own side missions to tackle, and a market where you can trade goods in a shifting economy. These parts of the game are its strengths, but working through somewhat confusing menus and engaging in predictable battles take the wind out of its sails.
Wreckfest just fully embraces what it is, and you have to respect it. Bugbear's brash, fender-bending racer has been unleashed on PlayStation 5 as part of May's PlayStation Plus lineup, and it's still very much the chaotic, crash-happy, Destruction Derby-esque experience people love. In the jump to new hardware, the game definitely benefits in a few areas, though some enhancements are better than others.
Housemarque has delivered the PS5 promise with Returnal. All the console's bells and whistles enhance the experience, making this a real showpiece for the hardware. But more than that, the game is a force to be reckoned with; the breathless combat, super slick gameplay, and the subtle but unsettling story combine for an experience of surprising scale. Rogue-lite aspects mean it won't gel with everyone, but for those looking for a challenging, addictive arcade shooter, this comes highly recommended.