Quantifying the nuance of Cities: Skylines II isn’t easy. As I dig deeper into its complicated systems, more and more exciting features are still coming into focus. The sequel is ambitious and wants players to juggle hundreds of considerations as they build towards Elysium, and it delivers in that aspect. Yet, unfortunately, the game’s consistent technical problems tend to mire that calculated success.
Even with its twisted takes on nostalgic ride designs and copious whimsical fanfare, I was left feeling deflated by Park Beyond's business-oriented objectives and lack of investment in unbridled player creativity. For a game that endeavors to push the limits of your imagination, it's a little too concerned with whether you’re tall enough to ride.
Lego 2K Drive builds an incredibly inviting world where speed and silliness reign supreme as you race and morph across its delightfully destructible setting. Despite some frustrating mission design and a smattering of bugs, Lego 2K Drive quickly won me over with its absurd narrative full of irreverent dialogue and moreish open-world challenges. If only the specter of microtransactions didn’t loom so large in this kid-friendly game, it would make for an even smoother ride.
Minecraft Legends battles to blend its open-world adventuring with the intricacies of real-time strategy, a war that sometimes detracts from the overall fun you can have. Even so, its gorgeous environments and clever world-building inspire familiar creativity that makes up for its growing pains. Where other strategy games feature more profound complexity, Minecraft Legends has heart, and it’s hard to resist its charm. Mojang’s first expedition into this genre occasionally holds your hand too tight. But when its grip loosens, there’s a vibrant world of combat challenges to discover, ultimately making it an enticing endeavor.