The Ascent’s ambition is often the most surprising thing about it. I went in expecting a decent, simple cyberpunk top-down shooter. Instead, I got a compelling action game that feels great to play, and an introduction into a world I can’t wait to see expanded in future sequels. The Ascent is the type of indie superstar game you bring up to prove how much can be accomplished by a small team today.
Monster Hunter Stories 2 is a win, with so many quality of life changes from its predecessor on 3DS. It’s welcoming and accessible, familiar yet new, complex but not too confusing, and has plenty of surprises waiting for players and I can see myself playing it way beyond this review.
To a certain type of player, Legend of Mana is likely to be considered the perfect remaster. It touches up the visuals, but not too much. It makes quality-of-life changes, but preserves the original design and difficulty – warts and all. Some may find that preservation detrimental, with this twenty year-old game showing its age – but it does also make this the new definitive way to experience a classic.
Game Builder Garage seems to want to showcase just what it’s like to make a game, albeit in a simpler way. It’s sometimes challenging to the point of being headache-inducing. It is unrelentingly complicated. When it clicks, however, it’s fun, magical, and incredibly rewarding.
Taken alone, any one slice of the game – like a single house, the village itself, even the way combat handles – has its issues. But combined, it merges into something that’s still special – even if it isn’t quite as brilliant as Resident Evil 7 or 2 Remake. It’s an easy recommendation – though if you didn’t back in 2017, you might want to play RE7 first.