If you’re fresh off the likes of Streets of Rage 4 or River City Girls, I feel like this stands next to them pretty handily. Couch multiplayer fans will feel comfortable enough taking in the short runtime, even with a few rough edges. Certain elements here ultimately amount to nitpicks, but the total package still holds up today.
Tadpole Treble Encore is certainly what I would call “content dense.” It’s not a long game by any stretch – one of the unlockables is a mode where you go through the whole game in one life with no saving – but it delivers a lot in the time that it has.
Ocean’s Heart is a love letter to its genre, and I feel like it’s one that does it justice. I really enjoyed this game and all it had to offer. The main story, as well as the side-quests, keep you interested and immersed in the world you’re exploring, the visuals are full of color and charm, and the gameplay, while basic, is elevated by constant puzzle-solving and exploration, making it harder to get bored. If you have it in you to ignore the clunky controls (which I did) then you will find a lot to enjoy about this game.
If you have the right people around you, or are just in the mood for something relaxing? This is an excellent option. Just relax. Settle down for the game. Don't worry about people who are going to make this into a big to-do or anything of the sort, just... let it wash over you. Sit on the couch. Close your eyes for a bit, there's no timer.
I really think of all the ways to adapt Animal Farm, this is definitely one of the best ways. Actually making the decisions and watching corrupt leadership undermine them, or being the one to justify sacrificing the “lesser” people for the “greater good,” really emphasizes how easily selfishness ruins a perfectly good dream.
If you’re looking for a centralized platform to play these games, the bulk of the titles offered here are fun enough to keep you engaged for quick bouts of alien-blasting action. Would I go out and grab this at full price? No, probably not. But having two solid offerings out of three at a sale price? It’s work a look. Just don’t get your hopes up for multiplayer.
That said, the game unfortunately feels more like a DLC patch than a sequel title. And in spite of that feeling, they really didn’t improve any of the things that one might have complained about in the original game. Its release also kills off the community for the original game, so if you are a hardcore veteran of the original, it feels even more like you have to pay full price for a patch just to be able to play again, and a patch that doesn’t give you everything you wanted at that.
Look, I’m fine with difficult games. The early Ys titles are some of my favorites, I love the Fire Emblem franchise, and I enjoyed the time I put into titles like Code Vein. In those games, though, at least it feels like you have a fighting chance, that if you screw up and die, it was completely your fault. Unto the End just wants to punish the player. It feels like it went too far off the deep end of “purposefully difficult game” and ended up in kaizo territory. The challenge here isn’t fun, it’s just annoying.
I, AI really doesn’t push any boundaries or try anything new at all. It’s a budget title and I can cut it some slack for that. But I feel like the only people who could enjoy this are those that spent hours upon hours playing Space Invaders, Galaga, or R-Type back in the 80s, whom might get enough of a nostalgia trip from this to go play those games again. Anyone else will be reaching for the deck of cards pretty quickly.
So I might be a bit more reluctant to go wade back in, but if you like yourself some Souls-like action and fancy something novel, you should definitely give this a shot. And if you like buckets of blood and body horror, you might get a kick out of it too.