Saving Content's Reviews
Playing Evil West feels like a PlayStation 2 game, in a good way, in that it’s a what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of game. I do wish the story didn’t feel like I was watching a made-for-TV movie on Syfy, as it was predictable and not giving me a character I actually care about. I was just there for the gore, monsters, and visual effects in all their spectacle. The gauntlet is easily the coolest thing about the combat, so Flying Wild Hog was right to make that the centerpiece. All of the other tools you’re given only enhance the experience, but combat tends to get stale from encounter to encounter as the game goes on. Evil West is a fun vampire-slaying romp while it lasts, and has an honest single-player experience with online co-op that can’t go unappreciated.
Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales is thankfully not an origin story, as that was handled expertly in the previous game. So what we get here is a fun and exciting game that just jumps right in without the painfully slow ramp-up that other games fall victim to. Once again Insomniac offers a refreshing take on the open-world game that’s never dull to engage with any and all of its systems. Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales is a massive achievement, showing that lightning can strike twice.
Ten years is far too long to go without a new McPixel game, but it has been so worth the wait to get something so unabashedly silly. It’s a joyous adventure from start to finish, retaining all of its charm along the way. McPixel’s greatest skill is that of self-preservation, and uncovering all the ways is endlessly amusing. McPixel 3 has a true sense of progression from its open-world to the scenarios, it feels more like a proper game this time around. McPixel 3 combines the ineptitude of MacGruber with the last-minute saves of MacGuyver in totality, and does so with great unpredictability.
With the WRC license heading to EA for 2023, this is a beautiful swansong from KT Games. WRC Generations has the most cars and the most locations for the comprehensive rally simulation experience. The developers went all-out on this one, and it shows with such attention to detail to get everything right. For a series synonymous with this studio, they’ll be missed in the years to come, but have left an indellable impression. WRC Generations is an epic collection and celebration of all things rally, this is essentially a greatest hits and goodbye letter from KT Games.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II enters a new age of tactical, punchy shooting. The Modern Warfare II campaign is another tour de force, co-op is limited but worthwhile, and the multiplayer may be missing some core features and longevity unlocks, it still gets its hooks in you. With the rumored DMZ and Warzone 2 modes on the horizon, it feels like the best is yet to come for the game as a whole. As it stands, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is a solid spectacle that’s less groundbreaking than its predecessor, but is Infinity Ward shooting with pinpoint accuracy.
Sackboy: A Big Adventure is not revolutionary or iterative for the genre, but it’s just a solid and casual platformer. Sackboy is a Sony mascot I’m the least familiar with, though is one of my favorites next to Astrobot. While it is very much a stylized game, the way the colors, material, and textures all come together make it so pretty to see in motion. Sackboy: A Big Adventure is simply a wonderful 3D platformer that will delight everyone of all ages for dozens of hours.
Whether its revisiting the game again or experiencing it again, Shatter Remastered Deluxe is just as revolutionary as when Shatter debuted in 2009. It’s a visual delight with sublime controls and the best pulse-poudning electronic soundtracks to-date. I love being able to revisit this game and experience it all over again, and the price is right to facilitate such a return. Shatter Remastered Deluxe is must-own, must-play, must-have on all platforms.
Without the understanding of the first three games not being on PC, a lot is lost for newcomers. That said, having the two most recent UNCHARTED games on PC is worth any trade-offs, due to being so gorgeous and refined. The $50 pricetag is a bit steep for five to six year old games that doesn’t include the multiplayer component. All-in-all this is a fantastic collection, a duology of Sony’s best action-adventure games from the PlayStation 4 era that don’t look or act like their age. UNCHARTED: Legacy of Thieves Collection is nearly thirty hours of cinematic action and you’ll wish it wasn’t over so soon.
Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope is just a downright fun and adventurous game, one that continues to bring the turn-based tactics genre to a wider audience and also makes its own unique mark in the gaming space. There’s just so much to love about this game, and it’s incredibly easy to recommend it to anybody who’s a fan of tactics games or Mario games. It’s a great one to kick back with and play in short or long sessions, and really the only thing holding it back in any way is that the source material naturally limits the depth and nuance of the story that the game can tell beyond the fairly standard “big bad villain wants to ruin everything” structure. And that’s okay; this is a Mario game after all, a franchise built on big bads wanting to ruin everything over and over again. We don’t come to Mario games for the story (usually), we’re here for the cute, whimsical setting and characters and the highly polished gameplay. Sparks of Hope is a fantastic follow up to the original Mario + Rabbids that meets or exceeds it in every way, and once again it is a title that we are lucky to have the opportunity to play.
Gotham Knights features a lot of perplexing changes, and suffers from being a good game fraught with bad decisions. While I think the combat can be sluggish, and the grind is not especially interesting or engaging, it never stopped me from having fun. When the game gets out of its own way, I was having a blast solving crimes and interacting with my favorite villains. It’s these glimmers of greatness that’ll keep its hold on you just long enough to see the credits. This won’t be able to take on the mantle and legacy that Batman: Arkham Knight left behind, but that’s okay, and so is Gotham Knights.
CULTIC is off to a great start, with Chapter One being an assortment of excellent combat, familiar enemies, and sometimes samey levels. It’s perfect to dig into for this Halloween season, and has a really great atmosphere that can’t be beaten. I’m eager to return to this when Chapter Two is released, as this is only half the story, making it feel a little incomplete. Chapter One of CULTIC offers a Nu-Blood experience, lots of replayability, and tons of memorable and emergent gameplay moments.
I sincerely enjoyed my time with Autonauts and could see anyone with no programming knowledge to that of a pro programmer having a good time here. With the added combat, that adds a whole new group of people who could potentially enjoy this series now as well! There is a little bit of a learning curve, but it’s fun to learn. Plus, resource management is still a hoot to manage. Building up your little outpost and getting the automation going is as enjoyable as it was in its first installment, and the added battles against the Piratebots are neat. Autonauts vs. Piratebots is a title that will readily eat at your brain when you’re not playing. You’ll sit there and start thinking of everything you could possibly do to make your assembly line more efficient or how to program your bots in ways to maximize output, and I think that’s a sign of a well-made automation game.
Chasm: The Rift has quickly became one of my favorite shooters of all-time with fun weapons, great enemy design, and solid puzzles. It’s a standout game, and now saved through video game preservation. I’ll admit that the game is a bit high-priced, but there’s value here thanks to the remastered visuals and the DOSBox emulation. You’ll get two similar, but different looking experiences from them. Chasm: The Rift is short enough to play in a single sitting, but long enough that you’ll always remember.
Overall, Lego Bricktales is one of the closest LEGO building experiences I’ve come across, with something like LEGO Worlds in that same camp. With the added collectibles to find and the presented story, it gives this game some fun bits to do outside of the actual building. The game could be fun for a younger audience, but with the lack of voice acting and the physics puzzle possibly being a little too advanced, this is more of an older LEGO enthusiast’s adventure. Regardless it’s still a fun time to be had.
Dakar Desert Rally is a way to experience Dakar in digestible chunks, that never overwhelms the player. Admittedly it’s in dire need of some patching, but what’s here is absolutely playable and enjoyable until then. It’s so close to greatness, but the bugs and missing features make it feel not ready and incomplete. Dakar Desert Rally is still a great introduction to the sport, and when the dust settles, what remains is a solid racing game that’s like nothing else.
GOOD BOYS possess the technology and talent to make a well made game, but clearly lack the experience in making it wholly enjoyable. TRAIL OUT asks the player to endure a lot of problems for the pockets of fun you could potentially have. Now, if you can overlook its many rough edges and tedium, it’s essentially the next FlatOut when had in small doses – but Wreckfest this is not. In the end, TRAIL OUT is unfortunately more trouble than it’s worth, and doesn’t come recommended.
Dome Keeper blends resource gathering, defense, and roguelike elements seamlessly. Each run was truly fresh start once you got underground to dig for resources, gadgets, and relics. There’s lots to explore and replay in just a single mode, compound that with other difficulties and configurations, will keep you coming back for more. Bippinbits excels at the micro tactics here, where one small change in how you focus your tech tree can alter the trajectory of the run. Dome Keeper is lovingly crafted, rewards thoughtful play, and has more going on under the surface than it leads on.
Shovel Knight Dig is an absolute treasure to behold, the visuals are so colorful and vibrant, and the soundtrack is equally as bubbly. It’s a wonderful addition to the lore of Shovel Knight without being clumsy or overwrought. It’s a roguelike doesn’t feel like one, and isn’t a slog to get to the good stuff, as every run is an exciting escapade. You won’t have to dig too deep to find the fun, because Shovel Knight Dig is a worthwhile adventure that feels like an evolution of the series for another reason to adore it.
Serial Cleaners will clock-in on average around eight to ten hours for a single playthrough, and for a narrative-led game around stealth, is just the right amount of time. I do wish you could replay levels you’ve beaten, a feature from the first game not present here, but it didn’t hamper my enjoyment. Having the story being told only in flashbacks seemed like a trope at first, but there’s a reason for it that pays off. Serial Cleaners is a stylish game that plays like a reverse Hotline Miami, coupled with a variety of characters with unique gameplay mechanics that keeps things fresh.