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YIIK has been a bit of a strange one for me. Whilst I enjoyed seeing the quirky story through to its conclusion and loved exploring the wonderfully crafted world, the repetitive battle system and poorly executed levelling up system left me feeling a little underwhelmed. Neither aspect was particularly game-breaking nor did they make YIIK end up feeling like a bad game, but they did stand out a lot as I made my way through the fairly lengthy adventure. It’s definitely going to be a divisive experience for gamers though and it certainly won’t tick enough boxes to warrant a purchase for everyone. For me though, YIIK did enough right to make it recommendable for fans of RPGs or those who like a truly surreal experience – it’s far from perfect, but it still manages to offer an enjoyably bizarre journey that I was glad to be a part of.
Sundered: Eldritch Edition is not without its flaws thanks to the early overwhelming difficulty and its sometimes dull level design, but as you get more used to the combat mechanics, slowly upgrade your character, and see what the game really has to offer you won't be able to help but get completely hooked in. It becomes more enjoyable the further you proceed, whilst each visually impressive showdown you come up against always feels better than the last. It also just so happens to work perfectly on the Switch, with the handheld mode not only a good way to experience Sundered's world but the newly added local co-op also giving you a genuinely enjoyable and fresh way to actually play it. It's just a thoroughly entertaining game to play through and with the improvements that've hit since the game's initial release, it'll be more difficult than ever to actually put the controller (or the Switch console itself) down.
I’ll admit that I was already a big fan of the game after spending hours with it in my younger years, but I’m glad to report that Onimusha: Warlords Remastered still holds up well today. The combat is fun and surprisingly intricate, the world itself is fascinating to explore, whilst the visuals manage to hold up well despite being originally designed for the PlayStation 2 – it certainly won’t feel like you’re playing an eighteen-year old game. It has its flaws too though and some gamers might not tolerate the fixed camera angles or the amount of backtracking featured in the game, whilst there’s no denying it has moments that it can just generally feel a little bit clunky too. The pros of the game absolutely outweigh the cons though and with the low price-point of £15.99 you’d be a fool to miss out on Onimusha: Warlords Remastered. Not only is it a great way to experience a series that needs a SERIOUS revival, but it also just so happens to offer a thoroughly enjoyable demon-filled adventure in its own right too.
There’s no doubting that Double Cross’ adventure is a fun one to be a part of and the level design itself is varied and on point throughout, but unfortunately some lacking combat mechanics hold it back from platforming greatness. I just never felt challenged throughout the game and with most foes easily taken down with just a bit of button mashing, it became difficult to feel particularly excited with each enemy encounter. It’s just so easy. It definitely has some neat ideas on show though and platforming-adventure fans will have fun making their way to the end of Double Cross’ tale – it’s just a shame that it doesn’t deliver in all areas of its design.
Legendary Eleven offers a fun and fluid arcade footballing experience, but a lack of depth within its game modes and a poor AI makes it one that you shouldn’t expect to find yourself completely invested in. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed my time with the game and the local multiplayer matches were a blast, but with no online matchmaking there was little else for me to do once I’d cleared all of the game’s cups and Legendary matches. Still, those looking for a quick fix of old-school footballing action will certainly appreciate what Legendary Eleven offers and there’s definitely fun to be had – especially if you get a group of friends together to play it. Just expect the experience to be a short-lived one that you probably won’t spend too much time with when alone.
HoPiKo is quick paced, chaotic and fun, though there’s no denying that the tough difficulty might be a hurdle for some gamers. Sure, it’s satisfying to progress through levels, but the difficulty spikes and requirement to finish all five levels in a stage can certainly be frustrating as you try to work your way through to the end. A tricky difficulty doesn’t make a game bad though and HoPiKo is certainly very enjoyable, whilst the fantastic chiptune soundtrack will definitely keep you entertained as you attempt to eliminate the Nanobyte Virus for good. It won’t be for everyone, but those who enjoy a satisfying, well-polished and challenging platfomer should give HoPiKo a try.
I enjoyed Pang Adventures as much as I did the original when I was younger, with the arcade-like gameplay still as addictive and fun as it was back in the old days. Sure, it could be a little simple and repetitive at times, but I still had a good time playing – especially with a friend in local co-op. Add to that a fairly low price-point and some jolly old-school gameplay, and it’s easy to recommend giving Pang Adventures a try.
There’s a lot of fun to be had playing Road Redemption, with its satisfying racing, sweet combat, and variety of environments doing more than enough to keep you entertained throughout each race. Sure, it has its imperfections with the AI being a bit too clever and the collision-detection a bit off, but overall it gets more right than it does wrong. Unfortunately, the single player campaign holds it back a little with the repetitive nature of playing the same events over and over growing a bit wearing over time, but with individual events outside of the campaign and multiplayer on offer there’s plenty to keep you coming back for more. It might be far from perfect, but Road Redemption will certainly scratch that Road RASH itch (…I’ll grab my coat).
Nippon Marathon offered some fun with its multiplayer showdowns and my friends and I had plenty of laughs as we raced across each bizarre course, but there’s no denying that it’s ultimately a flawed experience that lacks the depth to keep you hooked in for too long. Add to that some janky physics, a varying quality of level design, and a lacking single player mode and it’d be easy to completely dismiss the game and play something better. Still, the moments of fun it does offer deserve some praise and the silliness of the whole experience did offer something completely unique when looking for that local multiplayer fix. There are undoubtedly better multiplayer games to play out there, but if you want something a bit different (and completely bizarre) it might be worth giving Nippon Marathon a look just to experience the absurdity of it all first hand – just don’t expect to want to spend more than a few hours playing it.
LEGO The Incredibles isn’t a bad game by any means and there’s certainly fun to be had playing through TT Games’ representation of the Pixar heroes’ adventures, but when compared to the most recent releases in the LEGO franchise I can’t help but to find it a little underwhelming. I just felt like there wasn’t anything here that I hadn’t seen done before, which is something that the LEGO games have been guilty of over the last few years but somehow feels more predominant here than ever before. Like I said though, there’s enjoyment to be had with LEGO The Incredibles and I’m sure youngsters in particular will enjoy zipping around levels as Dash, smashing through walls with Mr Incredible, stretching through stages as Elastigirl, and smashing things apart with Violet’s energy blasts. It’s just a shame that the game doesn’t quite live up to its ‘incredible’ name, and instead just feels a little bit ordinary.
Bomberman has always been a series that I’ve held close to my heart, and whilst it might have got off to a rocky start on the Nintendo Switch, the commitment Konami has shown in releasing free updates has been commendable. Everything has been packaged together nicely in Super Bomberman R: Shiny Edition, and it’s helped make it a genuinely worthwhile title in the series that’s an absolute blast to play (both figuratively and literally). Whilst Super Bomberman R’s original release on the Nintendo Switch might have left gamers feeling a bit short-changed, the new ‘shiny’ edition is simply jam-packed with enough content to keep you bombing your friends and online foes for a long time.
The team at Coldwood Interactive have took what was already a delightful platforming experience and improved it ten-fold thanks to the addition of a second character. Swinging your way through Unravel Two’s impressive levels with a friend is just a blast, whilst the improved level design and tighter controls just add to the experience. Unravel Two was a really pleasant surprise when it was revealed at E3 2018, and after playing it through to its conclusion, it’s actually exceeded my already high expectations. Whether playing on your own or with a trusty co-op partner, Unravel Two is simply a stunning adventure that you don’t want to miss out on.
TO THE TOP provides one of those exciting gaming experiences that simply wouldn’t be the same if you played it outside of virtual reality. The controls are solid throughout, the level design creative, whilst the sheer size of levels (and the amount there are to play through) will keep you busy for hours on end – the fact that virtual reality just makes it feel all the more immersive is just the cherry on top. Add to that a really enjoyable multiplayer component, and it’s easy to see that TO THE TOP is simply an essential purchase for PlayStation VR owners. Just don’t be surprised if some levels induce plenty of rage and cause you to unleash a myriad of different swear words that you didn’t even know existed…
I think that Illusion: A Tale of the Mind is probably the perfect example of what is considered an ‘average’ game. There’s no denying that it has a wonderfully weird world and that there are some really clever moments to encounter during the roughly four-hour adventure, but there were also too many times where I was left frustrated by some poorly designed puzzle or annoying chase sequence for me too feel too enamoured by it all. It’s certainly not a bad game and I wasn’t bored during my time with Illusion: A Tale of the Mind. There are just too many better puzzle-adventures out there right now that are probably a bit more deserving of your time.
Saturday Morning RPG offers a short-but-sweet RPG experience that doesn’t break boundaries within the genre, but still offers plenty of fun. It’s quirky and neat, whilst the constant 80s pop culture references kept a smile on my face from start to end. Whilst it can start to grow a little repetitive with time, its short length ensures that it never outstays it’s welcome. Add to that the bonus of a fairly low price point, and it’s easy to see that Saturday Morning RPG is a worthy addition to anyone’s Nintendo Switch library.
City of Brass offers plenty of thrills with its Arabian Nights roguelike adventuring, but after beating it once it doesn’t offer much to keep you coming back for more. The genre typically lends itself well to repeated playthroughs and extended challenges, but after completing the game in a relatively short time there wasn’t much there to encourage me to keep playing – a lack of variety as far as gameplay is concerned doesn’t help the situation, either. It doesn’t make City of Brass a bad game nor does it make it one that’s not worth checking out, but players hoping to be whipping their way through malicious genies for hours on end might be left a little bit disappointed by the lack of depth on show.
Earthlock: Festival of Magic plays like an old-school RPG but with a modern (and pretty) lick of paint, though that’s for better and worse: fans of RPGs from the PlayStation One era are going to love it, but those who’re used to a bit more depth might expect more from the genre. Personally, I was a fan of the game and whilst it did have a few shortcomings here and there, my experience was a positive one. Earthlock: Festival of Magic might not necessarily be the best RPG you’re going to play, but it doesn’t mean it’s not a thoroughly enjoyable one that fans of the genre will definitely want to check out.
I went into Solo with very little in the form of expectations, but it ended up being a charming little adventure that I’m genuinely glad I got to play through. Don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t do anything overly thrilling on the gameplay side of things whilst the concept of answering questions about love could be guilty of feeling a little pretentious, but if you get yourself in the mind-set that the game demands you’ll find that you can have a surprisingly meaningful experience. It doesn’t outstay its welcome too, which is a necessity for a title that doesn’t have the most complicated of gameplay mechanics. There’s no doubting that Solo won’t be for everyone, but those who’d enjoy an evocative little journey that does something different will certainly want to check it out.
Ys Origin embraces the old-school style of RPGs and mixes it up with quick-paced action-packed battling, and it makes for a surprisingly intuitive and very enjoyable experience. I had a lot of fun fighting my way through Devil’s Tower as all three characters and each adventure managed to feel unique in its own little way. The only real problem with the game is that it takes the ‘old-school’ approach too literally at times, with some features of the game a little too simplified and the saving system a little unforgiving. The game shows its age at times visually too, especially with some of the bland environments you explore. Still, none of these flaws stop Ys Origin from being a great action-RPG experience and one that fans of the genre will want to check out – regardless of whether or not it’s their first time with the Ys series.
It might seem repetitive to some, but The Sword of Ditto’s cycle of battling against the evil witch Malmo offers hours upon hours of entertainment. The world of Ditto is both stunning and intriguing, and whilst there’s fun to be had conquering its villain, it’s just as exciting to simply explore it and take in all it has to offer. That being said, some of the game’s mechanics could falter the more you play, with the most noticeable one being the passing down of experience points between heroes. There were some technical issues that could be a pain too, though fortunately those are a bit more few and far between. There’s certainly more pros than cons though, with The Swords of Ditto offering more adventuring smiles than sighs. Whether playing alone or with a friend, this is a world you’ll want to save time and time again.