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...These quibbles aside, Battlefield 2042 is still a great deal of fun. Purists may not love the specialist system or the lack of a single player story, but those who want huge environments with loads of players should find the chaos of Battlefield 2042 quite enjoyable. Portal is going to give this game even greater life than usual and something I’ve enjoyed sinking my time into so far.
Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water reminded me why I love this series so much. It has its flaws, but they are minor compared to what the title does really well. There is a genuine sense of creepiness that permeates almost all of the game, and those brief times of respite help to build up the interesting story at the heart of the game. Horror fans will want to give this a go. Meanwhile, I will impatiently await my remake of the original trilogy.
So overall, while I do wish that there was more narrative and storytelling as I think Tandem: A Tale of Shadows could have really benefited from that addition, what’s being presented in terms of gameplay was both fun to play and challenging. From alternating points of view and visual presentations over to some creating puzzle solving, I think that Monochrome Paris and Hatinh Interactive have created something worth looking into.
Overall, if you were a fan of the original Blue Reflection I would suggest checking out its sequel, however fans of JRPGs in general should find plenty to love here. Various cast of characters each with their own quirks, multiple locations to explore and an interactive battle system will make the hours easily pass on by as Blue Reflection: Second Light is an enjoyable adventure taking the series into a new direction from the original Blue Reflection.
Corpse Party is the best version of this release yet, which is saying something as it has seen multiple ports over the last twenty-five years. It has the most polished visuals, accessible menus and extra content. The pacing and graphics might not be for everyone, but if you are a fan of creepy writing and outstanding audio design, then give Corpse Party a chance during this year’s scary season.
Overall, Neptunia X Senran Kagura: Ninja Wars is a pretty fun game. The combat largely takes after Senran Kagura with Neptunia themes and felt really smooth. The plot is fairly cliché, more than I was expecting for a collaboration spin-off, the side scenarios were pretty funny, and it was all in character. The illustrations are nice, the music is all great, and the stages don’t take too long to finish, so it doesn’t start to wear on you too bad. While the game is incredibly short, the post game content is a nice challenge. Fans of either Senran or Neptunia will be able to get a kick out of Neptunia X Senran Kagura: Ninja Wars.
"Disciples: Liberation is a very enjoyable fantasy game that mixes turn-based combat with real-time exploration and a smidge of simulation / city-building. It can be a risk trying to balance these different elements, but kudos to the development team for striking a satisfactory balance. I really enjoyed my time with this game and it is pretty easy to sink a few dozen or so hours into it. Fans of strategy / RPG titles will find a lot to like here and should definitely give Disciples: Liberation a look." - Nick "So overall, even with the shift of the Disciples series with Disciples: Liberation to a more real-time and turn-based tactics RPG than the older entries of “player versus player” styles, it’s in good shape. The shift isn’t a bad one but as mentioned above, a few small tweaks could definitely help to polish this off even further regardless of if you decide to drop into this dark and intriguing world on the PC or on the consoles at the beginning of next month." - Pierre-Yves' PC Preview (https://chalgyr.com/2021/09/preview-pc-disciplesliberation.html)
Overall though, The Lightbringer by Rock Square Thunder is a light hearted and maybe even entry level adventure for those thinking of getting into the style or for veterans needing something low key for an afternoon. Soft and bright colour palettes with an easy to pick up gameplay, it’s a relaxing game if you’ve been needing a break from forty hour adventure or daily grinds.
So overall, fans of RPGs, fans of the occult, fans of aliens, ghosts and crazy science experiments, I would seriously recommend checking out Cococucumber’s Echo Generation especially over Halloween which is the perfect time for this kind of story. Well written dialog and an interactive and engaging combat system supported by an amazing soundtrack, this is going onto my Game of the Year list.
Song in the Smoke is an excellent survival game that creates a genuine sense of dread as you manage your resources and explore often unforgiving environments. The setting is interesting, and while the visual textures can suffer a bit at times and the actual combat was a bit off for me, the sense of discovery while exploring new places was an immersive thrill.
Overall, I had a lot of fun playing through Caligula Effect 2, and those who felt squeamish with some of the content in the first may feel better with the second. Caligula Effect, both 1 and 2, are pretty unique games, and I highly suggest looking into either or both of them, as they are both really fun titles.
To conclude, Chasing Static was a pleasant experience for anyone who’s interested in classic, suspenseful horror, graphics and all. Even though it runs short, with only 4 hours of gameplay, you’ll find that the controls run smoothly and you get a healthy dose of fear and anxiety to boot. I’m giving this game a 7.5 out of 10 for its nostalgic performance. Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a poor sheep that needs my help.
Overall, SkateBIRD is a great game about skateboarding that could be the next great title but misses its tricks a little bit too much. The game has a great foundation and is really entertaining, but it needs a bit more work to really nail it in this genre. I think it is quite fun, relaxing, and casual but it’s not a title that people will stick around for long play sessions.
Overall, Rogue Lords has some really nice aspects to it. The experience system feels reasonable for unlocking characters and skills, and there a lot of really interesting takes on the old roguelike formula. That being the case, good lord the difficulty is all over the place. I can’t say “expect a challenge”, because you might not get one, and I can’t say “it’s easy”, because then you get rolled over like a soft pastry. If you really like roguelikes, and don’t mind the potential for a little extra punishment, you’ll probably be right at home here, but barring a balancing patch, newcomers may be pushed away. Rather forcibly.
Astria Ascending is a beautiful game to look at, and the various systems provide plenty to do while soaking the aesthetic in. There’s a deep, interesting world here that took a bit of time for me to sink my teeth into, but once I got into the groove I really enjoyed peeling back the layers. That said, there are concerns around the pacing at times and the platforming elements fell a bit flat for me as well. Astria Ascending is a good JRPG overall that fans of the genre will likely want to give a try.
"As a final statement, I have to say I’m incredibly pleased with the progress that has been made on the Skelter gameplay since I first picked the first title up on Vita and binged it for 3 days straight. Many a function have been refined, the combat feels smooth, if not a bit unfair at times, the tower exploration is fun, and the characters are all unique and interesting. There’s a reason the Mary Skelter series has cemented its place as my favorite dungeon crawler, and you really don’t want to miss it." – Richard "So overall, between all of the elements new and old, the dungeon crawling between various parties and having to think in more than just what’s in front of you alongside the amazing massive amounts of dialog to tell the story, Mary Skelter Finale closes the book on this amazingly and macabre fairytale series." – Pierre-Yves
So overall while Xuan Yuan Sword 7 doesn’t really do anything new mechanically, it’s still enough of a solidly built title especially if you’ve been needing a break from the open worlds that have been all the rage of late. With a duration of a dozen plus hours, the world looked great on the Series X and there’s enough bad dad jokes from Zixu to his sister to make you either laugh or groan while they explore the lands to get her real body back.
Hot Wheels Unleashed is a fantastic and thoroughly enjoyable arcade racer that brings my childhood imagination to the big screen in thrilling fashion. The visuals are fantastic, there’s plenty of modes and some pretty solid progression elements that kept me coming back for more.
Overall, Dice Legacy is a very fresh and creative entry in a genre that can often feel like every game is just a reskin of another. The use of dice to randomize the actions available and the steady pace of external events changes this from a game of long-term strategy to one of improvisation and reaction. Clean, visually appealing art style wars with a slightly too large UI scale that can obscure much of the play area. Great for people who like to think on their feet and maintain a decent rate of action and excitement for extended periods. Not an at-your-own pace city builder like Cities: Skylines or other descendants of SimCities, however, so look elsewhere if you’re after a quiet, relaxing time.