While the backtracking remains, it feels much less painful this time around thanks to it being part of a game with smooth performance that’s ultimately much more fun to actually play. The game is considerably improved as a result, and much of what made the original quietly special can now shine far more brightly. It might not be perfect, but within this slightly flawed framework beats the heart of an absolute masterpiece. Those who fell in love with Nier through Automata should go into this with a clear expectation that this is not that game – but if they do, they’ll find much to love.
A-Train: All Aboard! Tourism won’t be for everyone. That’s not just because it’s part of a niche genre – it’s also because of the way it’s structured and the time commitment to truly get into it and dig deep into the ‘good stuff’. It never quite goes off the rails, but sometimes you’ll wish the journey could be a little quicker – and not everyone will be able to stick it out. If you manage that – and more fervent fans of transport sims should be able to do that – there’s a bit of a hidden gem here.
Everything that made that original game special, and ultimately a cult classic, is faithfully and lovingly reproduced here. It’s a safe reimagining, but simply on merit of all the small modernizing touches, which add up to a lot, it’s also pretty clearly a better game than the original – and considering how much I loved that game, that’s no small feat. I can see many more hours in my lair ahead – and with potential updates and DLC down the line to address some issues, true world domination could still be ahead.
While it does feel like a smaller package in terms of grand story presentation, the new additions and quality-of-life fixes make it less grindy to play, with greater flexibility in exploration, navigation, and resource collection adding to the portable possibilities.
I’m not sure I’m yet at the point where I’ll be able to play Ghosts ‘n Goblins with the proficiency that so wowed me to witness as a child. But playing it always gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling that’s entirely at odds with the fiendishly challenging, unforgiving nature of Knight Arthur’s adventure. It’s an all-time classic, and seeing such a game resurrected so lovingly on new platforms is always welcome.
Bowser’s Fury is a short experience – it’ll take a competent player a couple of hours to see all it has to offer, and a few hours more to drive it all the way to 100% completion – but it’s completely worthwhile. It has some great surprises, which is why I talk about it in such generalized terms. Bowser’s Fury would’ve made a great download-only, budget-price stand-alone – so as a bonus included with an already excellent game, its value can’t really be overstated.
Little Nightmares 2 is a superb sequel that carries on the impressive tone of the original, but improves in all key areas. This isn’t explosive horror, there’s no gore or torture, and for the most part you’re jumping onto levers, solving puzzles, and climbing up furniture, but that doesn’t mean Tarsier hasn’t created a standout horror experience.
It’s clear that Respawn still has the chops to make a quality Medal of Honor game. There’s a lot of heart here, and an attention to detail that must be admired. With that said, it’s clear the studio had troubles accomplishing its goals in VR – and the result is a curious VR experience that’s worth experiencing, but equally is nothing like a VR system seller. It stands strides behind Alyx – but then again, so do most VR games.