It’s odd to say, but I felt sad playing Reload. Not for anything occurring within it. Rather, it reminded me that I had fallen out of love with Atlus. If anything, it’s fitting that Persona 3 Reload helped me realize that. Much of it is about learning to move on, and I’m going to do just that.
Rogue Trader is gargantuan and annoying on occasion, but haunting and wonderful through and through. It captures what makes Warhammer 40,000 so captivating and horrifying through its presentation, setting the mood in a way that keeps me enthralled through the worst of it. If Owlcat is anything, it’s a studio that creates RPG diamonds. It hasn’t made one without rough edges just yet, though I hope it eventually perfects its craft.
All I can say after finishing Ghostrunner 2 is that I want more. Considering that was my reaction at the end of the original Ghostrunner, I can say One More Level created a solid follow-up. Both titles might have had “meh” narratives, but the core gameplay is so fantastic I honestly didn’t care while I was playing. At its best, Ghostrunner 2 is the first game but better, and at its worst, it’s just a little less polished than its predecessor.
Even if there are a few rough spots, Afterimage is a magical Metroidvania that shines. Most of the issues require a little patching but the core remains engaging. The combat works because the enemy variety compliments Renee's moves, and overcoming previously difficult bosses is intensely satisfying. Platforming has a few quirks, but using enemies as impromptu platforms to find secrets or barely making a jump is exhilarating. Even the story, which doesn't start out with alot to set it apart, blossoms thanks to a spectacular world and interesting themes. This title is an absolute gem for Metroidvania fans.
Even with the brief runtime, Road 96: Mile 0 ends just as the narrative becomes interesting, making it difficult to care about what does occur. These are issues that could have been potentially fixed with slight tweaks to the story, but there is enough that works to inspire some curiosity as to how the overall narrative can be expanded in a theoretical sequel. There are reasons to go back and do multiple playthroughs if one wishes to see all potential outcomes, but that can only be recommended for someone who already has an attachment to the characters and would like to spend more time with them.
If Mask of the Lunar Eclipse has the same success found with Maiden of Black Water's port to modern platforms, then remasters of other Fatal Frame games or even a new game would have a better chance of being released. There is a lot of potential for renewed interest in the franchise, and despite gripes to be had with Mask of the Lunar Eclipse's remaster, the game itself still holds up as a solid horror game.