Afterlife falls into those cracks between game and cinematic creations and is worse for it. Without a UI or any indication on how to experience its branching narrative without blindly stumbling through it, it fails as a VR game. Without the set cinematic frame, of the direction that all standard movies have, you can miss some of the better moments in the because it’s going on behind or to the periphery of your vision. The performances and the more powerful moments of this experience make it easy to see it has been nominated for a number of high profile awards – but for me, this virtual voyeuristic experience lacks the clarity provided by the staples of either medium to really capitalise on its more powerful moments.
Bulletstorm lives and dies on its campaign and the Switch version has absolutely smashed it out of the park. It’s a crying shame the planned sequel was cancelled due to the poor sales of the original release possibly in relation to launching so close to Gears of War which was considerably more successful. The madness of this game warrants a second outing, the tremendous Skillshot system still unrivalled to this day.
The combat, side missions and boss battled are all a triumph of that original pitch I was served a few years ago, combining the best of mobile gaming wrapped up in a highly polished and visually spending package without any adverts or micro transactions. Unfortunately, It’s just too short. Clocking in at 2 hours for a straight forward play through and ~6 hours for a 100% run, it feels like there could have been more before the formula had ran its course.
Riverbond breaks no new ground but is an enjoyable romp through a highly detailed and eye-catching voxel world that accommodates younger players better than most in this genre. The bosses, as menacing as they look, aren’t quite up to scratch and in co-op, you can easily lose yourself in the action, but if you’ve got a brood of kids to entertain and a few Dualshock 4 controllers handy, you can easily get 7-10 hours of fun out of this game before the repetition sets in. Perfect for a rainy day.
Roarr! Jurassic Edition on PS4 is a budget title for a budget price. It’s 5-6 hours of family friendly, repetitive button mashing in a clean but simplistic world set to a half-decent soundtrack. The occasional bug, the difficulty that goes from too easy to cheaply unfair and zero replayability beyond butting a dress on a T-Rex mean any potential the game has is squandered however.
Erica is a genuinely terrific achievement. As far as the ‘PlayLink’ aspect goes – even if the game is not officially part of Sony’s range – there’s nothing better out here. Technically it feels solid as a rock, with gloriously smooth transitions from gameplay back to FMV cut-scenes. You immediately feel part of the world and it never really gets old. You want to do right by Erica the moment you meet her and there’s very few games that offer this level of interaction, even if as a whole, the game is about the journey rather than the destination.
PC Building Simulator on PS4 is an enchanting game, channelling creativity and problem solving through the medium of making and fixing computers that even a PC newcomer like I can get to grips with and wholeheartedly enjoy. I do wish the game had spent a little more time explaining 3DMark scoring and overclocking as these are areas that it skips over too quickly for my liking but otherwise, this is a game that's easy to access, even easier to lose an afternoon too and is a great translation of the PC version.