Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is a well-presented game that is full of the typical Nintendo and Sega charm, and is a fun game to bust out when you just fancy some simple, straightforward arcade-style fun for which you don’t have to think too hard. This isn’t a game you’re going to be playing for months at a time — but it is one you may just find yourself wanting to get down off the shelf now and again the next time you fancy seeing Daisy in a leotard.
It’s hard to really see who Akiba’s Trip: Hellbound & Debriefed is aimed at. People that were put off by some of the issues in Akiba’s Trip: Undead & Undressed aren’t going to play its even jankier predecessor, and £34.99 is a steep asking price even for someone that might be interested in trying this out. If you’re desperate to see the series’ origins, then this might be worthwhile — just go in with appropriately low expectations!
Should you buy a copy if you already have Delicious! Pretty Girls Mahjong Solitaire? Sure! You get more puzzles, more girls, more outfits and some new music — albeit not nearly enough of the latter. Plus, y’know, it’s a fiver; that’s pocket change these days.
Despite my occasional irritation at the characters’ decisions and responses throughout the narrative, I enjoyed Scarlet Nexus. It could have just done with a little more refinement; if you’re going to include “Social Link”-style systems, for heaven’s sake make sure they aren’t disconnecting the player from the bigger story at play!
All this isn’t to say that the game isn’t worth playing. Whether you are a fan of the original or you are experiencing it for the first time, Skyward Sword HD is a Zelda game worth playing as much as any other. However, it doesn’t wipe away the issues that the original had completely. The various quality of life issues that are implemented in this version only serve to highlight the issues that plagued the original — and the fact that some of those issues require more than a simple “quick fix” provided by a remaster like this to resolve.
Ultimately, Cris Tales ended up fixing few of the issues that I had with the game’s demo back in 2019, while also adding a few more thanks to the Switch port. I can’t imagine the currently average story getting much better at the end, and most of the ideas and gameplay mechanics presented at the start end up going nowhere. It’s a shame, as there was a lot of potential there — hopefully some of the more glaring technical issues can be fixed in a post-launch patch, at least.
Because despite the game’s many flaws, Kodaka proves that he continues to make brave and bold decisions in his creations, and has still delivered a title true to his vision. While featuring an extremely constrained plot, its surprising focus on love and its excellent take on the FMV genre was a thrill to experience. I simply want even more — and for Kodaka to have the opportunity to iron out the few nitpicks I’ve mentioned above.
Whether you like to blast through a game’s story as quickly as possible or take your time mastering every possible mechanic along the way, there’s something to like in Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book. So if you’ve passed this installment in the series by up until now, I’d encourage you to give it a go — particularly if you’re one of the series’ many new fans who came along with the introduction of Ryza. You won’t be disappointed!