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1050 games reviewed
73.9 average score
80 median score
55.6% of games recommended

Shacknews's Reviews

Sep 28, 2022

In particular, it’d be nice if the game did more in the way of teaching you the ropes, offered different control schemes, and provided a wider array of accessibility options. In general as well, it’d be nice if the game offered more in the way of incentives, excitement, and action to keep you coming back for more, regardless of its punishing difficulty.

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7 / 10 - Dome Keeper
Sep 27, 2022

Priced at under $20, Dome Keeper will keep you on your toes for several mining sessions. Its cyclical design is simple and executed fairly well, keeping the tension consistent throughout a run. However, upgrades quickly become restrictive in terms of effective builds, and both mining and defense become predictable in subsequent playthroughs. That said, the game has plenty of room for future updates that could help balance things out. Dome Keeper, without taking too many risks, fits simply and innocuously inside the world of the iterative survival genre.

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9 / 10 - Grounded
Sep 26, 2022

Of all the survival games I’ve played, Grounded is easily one of the coolest. The very theme of it is fun and the execution is pretty on target too. Playing as micro-sized kids in a vast yard full of pests and threats is really interesting, the story keeps exploration intriguing, and the progression, whether alone or with friends, feels satisfying. I’m not fond of how hard it is on normal difficulty alone, or the lack of variety among nearly required gear, but it really gets all the more delightful with friends helping. Even then, there’s plenty of ways to enjoy Grounded solo, too. Between Creative Modes, multiple difficulties, and a nice set of accessibility options, Grounded feels like one of the strongest entries to the survival genre in a long time.

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Sep 22, 2022

I had hoped that Dig would be an adventure on par with the original Shovel Knight, but instead, it feels like every bit the spin-off and side story that it is. It's certainly not a bad game, but fans for hoping for a more substantial adventure will have to dig a little deeper.

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9 / 10 - Beacon Pines
Sep 21, 2022

I’ll admit, I’m a bit of a softy when it comes to good stories, but I’ve still played quite a few games and seen enough narratives of all kinds to think it’s hard to floor me these days. Or so I thought, anyway. I’m not sure if I was caught off guard or if Beacon Pines really is just that good. It’s pretty easy to see that its art and music are both top notch. Ultimately, this is also a story good enough that I’d love more people to see it so I can talk to them about it. It might not be the longest game, and the thrill of the exploration may bottleneck a bit at the end, but the changing course, different routes, and ultimate ending of Beacon Pines are still more than worth exploring for any fan of narrative adventure.

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Sep 19, 2022

Doom comparisons aside in style and tone, Metal: Hellsinger is one of the most unique, refreshing video game offerings I’ve seen in a while thanks to how it caters to fans of metal music, and its approach to rhythm mechanics. We could use more heavy metal-focused rhythm games, and I hope to not only see more games like Metal: Hellsinger in the future, but to see more from the talented developers of Metal: Hellsinger, The Outsiders, as well.

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9 / 10 - Tinykin
Sep 8, 2022

Tinykin is a meaningful experience that reminds me of why I fell in love with video games. I hope a lot of people play it so we get more colorful and wonderful titles like Tinykin because games like this are what it's all about.

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Sep 8, 2022

SD Gundam Battle Alliance has me at odds because there’s a lot of things I like about it and a lot of things I don’t, both as a Gundam fan and just a general player. The mobile suits and pilots are fun to collect and explore. The story and missions are also fairly well-done and I like the look of the super deformed versions of a lot of my favorite mobile suits from across the series. My big miff is that the difficulty spike between series of missions makes repeatedly playing the same scenarios to level up your pilots and mobile suits a near-mandatory chore. I also just don’t think it makes good use of the SD spinoff formula. Mix in some annoying inconveniences in camera and other gameplay design and while SD Gundam Battle Alliance may be fun at first, the luster will likely fade for many after a few hours.

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9 / 10 - Splatoon 3
Sep 7, 2022

While I wouldn't call Splatoon 2 old and busted by any means, there's no denying that Splatoon 3 does feel like the new hotness.

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7 / 10 - Ooblets
Sep 1, 2022

Ooblets is a peculiarly enjoyable jack-of-all-trades adventure that stumbles near the finish line. The slice-of-life farming sim and town interaction are more developed than the card battling, and the leveling system feels unfinished. That said, the game may expand with additional content or balance patches as the developer continues to update it. Priced at half the cost of a typical full-fledged game, Ooblets is still worth playing for a few hours or so every once in a while, but there are better farming sims, monster battlers, and card-based games out there.

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Aug 30, 2022

The Angler has a lot of soul. Every time I log in and see the (approximate) time and weather, I know exactly what spot I want to go to and what fish I’m looking for. I get excited when the conditions are just right to target that pike, and I know just the spot. The pull is there to keep me coming back. Even though it’s rough around the edges and somewhat feature-bare, you’re going to find your own spot that you don’t tell anyone about. Your own little slice of Golden Ridge heaven where you hope to one day land your Diamond.

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Aug 30, 2022

Pac-Man World Re-PAC Edition might be worth checking out if you’re extremely curious about the game, genre, or even the time period it comes from, but there are just better games to spend your time with. If you insist then just try to get it on sale, or better yet, during its inevitable visit to Xbox Game Pass before making its way to the bargain bin.

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If you're a fan of the Turtles, this is the collection for you. If you're a fan of arcade brawlers, this is the collection for you. If you're simply curious about this specific time in gaming history, the Cowabunga Collection is still worth owning. It's a phenomenal piece of work and a reminder of why the Turtles remain such a relevant franchise in video games to this day.

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Aug 26, 2022

It's not the best Kirby game out there, but it's certainly better than I expected it to be. It doesn't have the same staying power that a game like Mario Party or WarioWare does, but if nothing else, it's a tasty appetizer.

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Aug 25, 2022

Midnight Fight Express offers players the tools to recreate their own John Wick-inspired action scenes while sporting the skins of their enemies. The replayability factor is there for players wanting to achieve S-rank or complete all level challenges. Despite its fluid and engaging combat, it is not likely that I will return to the streets for more.

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7 / 10 - Saints Row
Aug 22, 2022

Rebooting the series, Saints Row tries to modernize its approach and themes but struggles at times to stick the landing.

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3 / 10 - Madden NFL 23
Aug 19, 2022

At the end of the day, Madden NFL 23 is a poor pro football simulator. It isn't even a fun arcade-style game. It feels somewhat aimless with the development team pulling the game in many different directions at the same time. The changes from Madden NFL 22 are minimal and the PS5/Xbox Series X/S exclusive features still do not address core gameplay problems.

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7 / 10 - GigaBash
Aug 16, 2022

GigaBash has a lot of fun elements to it. The monsters are quite varied and well-designed, in terms of both original creatures and obvious nods to classics. I also really enjoyed the battlegrounds, music, and stories (as short as the latter was). And that last note ultimately sums up my experience. In both gameplay modes and story, it doesn’t take a lot of time to see everything GigaBash has going on. Even so, if you can wrangle some buddies together either locally or online, GigaBash would make a solid addition to a party game night.

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7 / 10 - Rollerdrome
Aug 16, 2022

Despite its limitations, Roll7 should be lauded for putting out such an interesting idea. Rollerdrome feels like a seed that can flourish into something greater. Extreme sports games with this kind of gimmick don't come along often and it's worth strapping on some skates to experience.

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9 / 10 - Rumbleverse
Aug 15, 2022

Iron Galaxy has not only put forward one of the best games of 2022 so far, it's also created one of the best battle royales in a long time. It manages to be wildly different from its contemporaries while also being a game worth learning and mastering in its own right. While it's impossible to predict what Rumbleverse will look like by this time next year or a few years from now, this game is off to a great start and has already shown world champion potential.

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