Rice Digital's Reviews
Destiny Connect: Tick-Tock Travelers may not be the sort of RPG that many people find truly life-changing in the same way as some of the higher-profile games of this world. But it is a thoroughly lovely game that I suspect nowhere near enough people have played.
As noted, The Silver Case isn’t an experience that everyone will enjoy or want to engage with. I’ve seen people on Steam go so far as to request refunds because of the simple presence of the “solve the puzzle for me” button — it’s fair to say that people like that were never this game’s intended audience. If you’re up for what this game has to offer, though, which is a fascinating story told in a particularly fascinating way, you’ll have a thoroughly enjoyable time. And you’ll be left wanting more.
It’s perhaps not a game you’d take on as your “main gaming project” at any given time, but that’s why it’s a cheap, downloadable title for a handheld system. It’s wonderful gaming comfort food, great for playing on the toilet or in bed, and if it sounds like something which appeals you should make a point of checking it out sooner rather than later — because remember, after March 27, 2023, there will be no means of acquiring this game officially any more, and since it’s a game specifically designed for the 3DS, I suspect we won’t see any kind of port, reissue or physical preservation of this game. Once it’s gone it’s gone, as the saying goes.
Ultimately, though, it doesn’t matter too much, because as previously noted, this is a game where mechanics are king. And those mechanics are very, very solid indeed. So long as you can deal with the low-budget presentation — the game is clearly built almost entirely out of royalty-free assets — there’s a super-fun arena shooter experience to be had here. And, best of all, it doesn’t feel like yet another Vampire Survivors ripoff, as good as many of those are!
The Bathhouse arguably isn’t Chilla’s Art’s strongest game, but it’s by no means their weakest either. It’s atmospheric, well-presented and offers an intriguing story — albeit one which perhaps could have been developed a little further to answer some lingering questions.
Little Witch Nobeta is a quality game that deserves to do well. It’s a pity The Internet had to happen all over its Steam reviews, but try and ignore the stench and just enjoy the game on its own merits. It’s a well-crafted, challenging but accessible game with solid mechanics, an intriguing story and plenty of things to discover across multiple playthroughs. And I’d love to see plenty more games like this.
I suspect The Silver Case still has plenty more to offer beyond the point I’m at — I’ve only cleared the prologue chapter and the first main “case” in the Transmitter scenario — but I’m already thoroughly intrigued. If you’re looking for something very, very different from pretty much anything you’ve played before then The Silver Case is well worth checking out. I will certainly be continuing to do so in my own free time.
Casual Challenge Players’ Club is a good idea, executed extraordinarily poorly. There’s definitely scope for a pool game with a narrative — in fact, it’s been done before, if you check out the excellent and vastly underappreciated Backstreet Billiards on PS1, which couples a full-on adventure game with 3D pool action — but Casual Challenge Players’ Club does not provide that in any way, shape or form. Couple that with the atrocious physics of the pool action and the inability to just play a simple game of pool, and you, regrettably, are left with a game that really is not worth bothering with.
It’s great to preserve the original arcade experiences as much as possible, of course — particularly with real arcades being a dying breed, and physical arcade machines often sadly ending up discarded and unloved — but Turtles in Time shows us that there’s still a great deal of value in a game originally designed for the arcade being significantly reimagined for its home release.
The arcade version of Turtles in Time is definitely worth playing, then — but, as we’ve previously noted, a lot of people actually hold the SNES version in even higher esteem than its source material. So we’ll take a look at that next time, and see if that’s an attitude still worth holding in 2022, now we have easy access to both versions via the Cowabunga Collection.
Slightly underwhelming boss fights aside, then, Splatoon 3’s single-player definitely lived up to expectations, and is once again well worth spending some time with if you can drag yourself away from the multiplayer. It’s also nice to see Nintendo taking Splatoon’s lore admirably seriously; there’s a thoroughly interesting setting here, and it’s cool to see that it’s clearly been thought about in more depth than simply “there’s kids, right, who are also squids”. It’ll certainly be interesting to see where the series goes from here.
Soulstice celebrates the great things about its biggest inspirations while being memorable in its own right. The presence of Sir Donovan as a capable male Chimera fills a void from Claymore, and how the game explores and shows memories reminiscent of the Vestige fragments in Code Vein makes for a nice interlude after countless battle segments and heavy plot reveals.
n a world where the Internet feels like an increasingly toxic place on a daily basis, Splatoon 3 is a real oasis. It’s a place where people can come together and have fun, and you get the distinct impression that those out to behave like a little shit are not only not welcome, they’re actively silenced. And, to be perfectly honest, these days I am all for that.
I’m genuinely impressed with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project. It represents a solid evolution of the Turtles beat ’em up formula, and is a prime example of a late-era NES game that looks, sounds and plays great. If you, like me, have previously ignored it in favour of the arcade game on the basis that an 8-bit console game couldn’t possibly be as good, then take a bit of time to educate yourself. You will almost certainly be very pleasantly surprised.
All in all, Splatoon 3’s single-player mode hasn’t disappointed so far, and I anticipate it’s going to be a fun experience for the few hours it will probably last, going by my experiences with the previous games. It’s perhaps not as substantial as a Nintendo game designed entirely for the single player such as Super Mario Odyssey — but if you’ve typically shied away from Splatoon on the assumption that it’s a multiplayer-only affair, I’d encourage you to give the single-player mode a shot.
Whether you’re an adventure game veteran from the ’90s or a younger gamer who simply enjoys narrative-centric experiences, Brok is a title you shouldn’t miss. It’s a textbook example of the passion independent developers bring to their projects, and how that passion, when leveraged correctly, can produce not only compelling narratives, but also excellent video games.
HoloCure’s new update doesn’t fundamentally reinvent the game, but it does refine it nicely. A number of the sprites have been redrawn, additional enemy types have been added and the greater variety of ways to play mean that each run can be quite a bit different from the last. The game’s in a good state now — and if subsequent updates continue to be this substantial, the future for HoloCure is very bright indeed.
The important thing to note is that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game shouldn’t be written off just because it’s an NES port of a technically superior arcade game. Rather, it should be looked upon as a distinct experience that has its own value — and plenty of enjoyment to offer, even for a modern audience.
However you choose to play it, Galaga ’88 is worth experiencing. For those who struggle to engage with the older fixed shooters, it’s a nice game to bridge the gap between those classics and more modern shoot ’em ups. And for those who have been happily following the series since its earliest days, it’s a fascinating and well-designed evolution of the formula. It’s one of Namco’s best arcade games — and one that doesn’t get talked about nearly enough these days.