Push Square's Reviews
Other additions only superficially extend longevity, including a bookcase collection of your progress, and aesthetically upgrading Hebe's House, although Hidden Art scrolls give each of the four characters individualised special moves. Ultimately, Ufouria: The Saga 2 provides no reason to return as compelling as searching for hidden background bubbles to free residents in Klonoa: Door to Phantomile.
At its best, Expeditions offers more of the absorbing, slow, and high-risk driving that made MudRunner and SnowRunner such cult successes. It's a clever formula that now has slightly more user-friendly packaging, making it easier than ever to get into. There are still wrinkles, in particular with visual performance, and there's no doubt that this remains a niche that not all petrolheads will love, but if you're on the lookout for something a bit more zen, it's another great entry in the series.
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons Remake is a solid retread that occasionally gets in its own way. The graphical and musical overhauls are spectacular, and the emotional heft of the story is intact, but the industry has left the title behind in a lot of ways. The control scheme is still pretty unique, and a rousing success in single-player, but the co-op mode comes with an asterisk. While it's a welcome accessibility inclusion, it fundamentally alters the experience, and not really for the better. Throw in some technical woes and you're left with a remake that doesn't quite feel up to snuff in a modern setting. However, the core game was incredible for its time, and ultimately remains a moving tale in this refreshed version.
We were largely enthralled during our dozen or so hours with Pentiment. The mystery at the heart of the narrative remains compelling throughout, but it was the smaller moments that warmed our hearts; breaking bread with friends, sharing in their joy and heartbreak, watching lives play out, and generations pass, in a world on the cusp of dramatic change.
So, Penny's Big Breakaway is a flawed gem in the end. Once you're comfortable with the controls, the fundamental gameplay works very nicely indeed, and there are some fantastic levels (especially in the latter half) which really accentuate this game's unique ideas. It's a shame it's launched with some unusual bugs, as they take the shine off of an imaginative 3D platformer with lots of potential. Hopefully, after a few updates, this promising debut from Evening Star will please the crowds with a tighter performance.
If you can push through the tedium of its open world busywork and padded storytelling, there's a great sequel at the heart of Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth. It retains all of Remake's most important strengths, but builds on an already brilliant combat system, and excels at showcasing an iconic RPG setting. If you enjoyed Remake and you have fond memories of the PS1 original, you'll likely love every minute of Rebirth's memorable, character-focused adventure.
Skull and Bones delivers boatloads of explosive tactical action, with players playing the part of pirates in an impressive oceanic world. Its 17th-century naval battles are best-in-class, with developer Ubisoft Singapore building a firm foundation for future voyages. But with no real story to speak of and little in the way of variation, repetition inevitably sets in. While not the spiritual successor to Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag as some might have been hoping for, Skull and Bones is never-the-less an incredibly unique, reactive game well worth checking out.
Between the main game, seeded runs, and a Challenge mode to really test your skills, there's endless fun to be drawn from Balatro. With so many variables to experiment with, sleek presentation, and hypnotically addictive gameplay, this is easily among the best deckbuilders, and possibly among the best roguelikes, we've played yet.
Pacific Drive is an ambitious and rewarding debut from Ironwood Studios. It's an unusual combination of factors that all coalesce; roguelike exploration, deep and challenging survival mechanics, an interesting narrative to follow, and a central vehicle that brings everything together. Fiddly controls and complex UI mean it's not free from annoyances, but the pleasure found in incrementally upgrading the car and throwing it into the unknown trumps the setbacks. It might be an arduous journey at times, but it's definitely worth the trip.
The "little" in the title also summarises the game's length. As with most games like this, you'll likely finish it in three to four hours, which for some is a perfect length considering how long it takes to finish other games being released these days. Nevertheless, the experience itself is charming, with a lovely soundtrack, and interesting puzzles to solve. If you're after another cosy game to play, then you will likely enjoy yourself.
PlateUp! is a thoroughly enjoyable, addictive, and oddly calming experience. The background music is strangely soothing, and the repetitive nature of the tasks is comforting. Where others in a similar genre cause arguments, PlateUp! has the true spirit of collaboration.
Arzette is a tough game to criticise, because in many respects it has accomplished its mission. The commitment to the bit is admirable, and anyone who gets a kick out of those old CD-i titles will have a good time with this. However, if you're not in on the joke, this is harder to recommend; old fashioned design and uninteresting combat might be part of the brief, but they don't make for an exciting time in 2024. If you're willing to accept this game's warts-and-all approach, though, there's lots to like.
Helldivers 2 is a riotous affair, offering up best-in-class gunplay, a truly epic and often cinematic experience, mixed in with one of the best co-op gameplay romps currently available. Its present matchmaking issues hold it back from true glory, but when it works it really works, forcing you to feel a sense of patriotism for Super Earth as the score swells and bullets fly. Helldivers 2 is a hell of a lot of fun, and is the best laugh you and your mates will have on PS5.
Tomb Raider 1-3 Remastered Starring Lara Croft is a lovingly crafted compilation which may set a new standard for PS1 re-releases moving forward. Based on the original source code, this trilogy flawlessly reframes three iconic PS1 puzzle platformers as you remember them – warts and all. While you will need patience to navigate this trilogy of globe-trotting escapades, the upgraded art style sticks closely to Core Design's intended vision and it's a genuine pleasure to experience these 90s classics on all-new hardware. It's comprehensive, too, with each game's expansion pack included – and an enormous list of Trophies to unlock.
Ultros boasts a visual identity that deserves real recognition, a stunning vision of alien colour with design ideas that live long in the memory. Its platforming and combat can't quite match that vigorous success, sadly. Still, if you're on the hunt for a unique-looking Metroidvania game that comes bursting with ideas and a modest 10-hour runtime with the option of more if you love it, few games can match it for style.
Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden sees developer DON'T NOD reach a new development peak, as it marries an excellent narrative with engaging and enjoyable gameplay. Poor enemy variety and technical flaws hold it back from true greatness, but its excellent, story-focused side quests on the other side make a few drab combat encounters worth pushing through. The studio's best game to date, Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden is a new IP we hope is here to stay.
Jujutsu Kaisen: Cursed Clash is unfortunately cursed trash. Its shallow, unsatisfying combat system fails to capture the balletic brilliance of the anime and manga's striking skirmishes, and its disjointed single player campaign is unlikely to be enjoyed by franchise faithfuls or prospective new fans. Given the enormous popularity of Gege Aktusami's series, it's frankly unfathomable how badly Bandai Namco has dropped the ball here.
Foamstars is a colourful, unique, and entertaining shooter. The modes and characters on offer at launch are fun twists on genre staples, and the central foam mechanic is a playful addition with some potential for strategy. It's lighthearted, fast-paced fun with plenty of style. While the steep microtransactions and the so-so co-op missions keep it from being squeaky clean, there's a lot to like about this bubbly multiplayer title.
Incredibly bland gameplay and some overly frustrating chase sequences make Silent Hill: The Short Message a chore to play much of the time. While there are some intriguing full-motion cutscenes and heavy story details, they're not worth pushing through the dull sequences in between to experience them. Silent Hill: The Short Message is completely free, though, so all it's asking for is 90 minutes of your time to see if you enjoy it more than us.