Death Stranding: Directors Cut adds a lot of new content that greatly enhances the base game. For those who have never played Death Stranding, the Directors Cut will provide a version of the game that is far more exciting and enjoyable than the original. For returning players, you may not find enough substance to make it a worthwhile purchase. The firing range, racetrack and new mission will give you some moments of fun but unless you plan on playing the game from the start, the new content will not occupy your time for long.
Deathloop delivers a tense and exciting story from start to finish. Layers upon layers of complex and polished narrative elements build a juggernaut of storytelling perfection. With all of this built on top of solid gun controls, simple yet effective stealth mechanics and some pretty wacky special powers you have a game that delivers everything it should in all areas.
It is rather disappointing how Monster Harvest introduces an interesting concept but gives such a watered-down implementation of everything it tries to do. The combat couldn't possibly be any more basic. Farming is pretty much a one-click task that you eventually automate. The tiny stamina bar forces you to go to bed or waste money to restore stamina if you want to really get the most out of a day. With the two core gameplay mechanics of this game feeling half-finished, there isn't much else for you to really do that brings any entertainment. This game desperately needs a long term goal that players need to really invest in the game in order to reach. In its current state Monster Harvest feels more like an early access game that isn't quite finished yet.
Aliens Fireteams is a pretty solid shooter that is quite a bit of fun to play with a team of friends. The combat is flexible enough that it is fun but not too complex that you need extended tutorials to figure everything out. The aliens are incredibly well recreated and can give you chills when they are crawling along the walls or just straight up sprinting toward you as you are trying to fill them with bullets before they lunge on top of you. The different classes add a lot to the combat when your squad makes use of the different perks. The lack of incentives to replay the game is by far the biggest flaw that will prevent this game from being one that you keep coming back to.
The Director's Cut of Ghost of Tsushima makes an already stunning game one of the most impressive looking games on the market today. Iki island brings you on a fun adventure that takes a break from the more historically believable story of the main game. The adventure might be a little short but packs quite the punch. It is unfortunate that there isnt more to do on Iki island outside of the main story but considering there is quite a lot of content in the base game that you can still enjoy, the Director's Cut is a worthwhile purchase for anyone looking to step into the shoes of a samurai.
Skyward Sword is definitely one of the better games in the Zelda series. Some experimental ideas and mechanics were implemented that breathe some fresh air into the dungeons and puzzles throughout the adventure. When viewed from the timeline where Breath of the Wild exists, it is really interesting to see how Nintendo took the franchise from Twilight Princess to where it is now. Skyward Sword is absolutely a must-play for anyone who is a fan of the franchise.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is exactly what you would have hoped for on the PS5. Beautiful environments with a visual fidelity that would stand up to an animated movie. A massively diverse arsenal of weapons, although disappointingly, no groovitron. The combat is rock solid and it is all wrapped up in a bow with one of the more Hollywood action style stories we have seen in a Ratchet & Clank game. It is a real shame that there is next to nothing to do outside of the main story but it doesn't stop this from being one of the best games in the series and a stellar title to add to the lineup of first-party PS5 exclusives.
Returnal is a whole lot of fun to play. The adrenaline-fueled combat is complemented with flawless controls. The Dualsense haptics further amplifies the action, absorbing you into the game. The story contains more than enough mystery to catch the attention of any sci-fi lover. It drives you to discover more and does a great job at trying to explain the mechanics of a roguelike in a more mature and detailed way. The randomness of the game can be a little frustrating at times when you just can't find the items you need to survive. The inability to apply any permanent upgrades that impact your combat strength makes it very hard to stay engaged when you are faced with an obstacle that is proving to be a real challenge. Difficulty goes hand and hand with the genre and despite making your blood boil from time to time, Returnal is a masterpiece for the roguelike genre and was a worthwhile risk for the development team that really paid off. It doesn't matter how much you get your ass kicked, you will keep coming back for more.
DARQ manages to deliver a frightening experience without ever explicitly scaring you. The subtle themes of darkness and despair are woven into every room that slowly chips away at happiness to create an incredible atmosphere that rises and falls as you make your way through the rather short adventure. The use of multiple perspectives on a single 2d world does so much to enhance the challenge level without having to resort to convoluted puzzle solutions that only serve to frustrate the player. You simply have to think outside of the box and the solution will be there. DARQ is an incredibly immersive experience that should be on the list of every horror fan.
As a debut game, Maquette has really set the bar high for the future Graceful Decay. Between the emotional story, challenging and creative puzzles and the beautiful visual style, this game is a great showcase of the talent that lives within this development team. Maquette is a refreshing entry to the first-person puzzle genre that will provide you with more than a few challenging moments and a memorable experience.