Screen Rant's Reviews
All of this coalesces into a game that is surprisingly chill but also full of surprises. The storytelling, characters, and monsters are all trademark DQ. And with post-game content (no spoilers here), the good times can keep on rolling. The vibrancy on display here, along with Dragon Quest's signature sense of humor, dares anyone to play it without a smile. Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince is one of the most fun games of the year.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora is a staggering sensory experience, and the consistent beauty of its world goes hand-in-hand with an engaging story and meaningful progress for Ubisoft's approach to open-world game design. Its weakest points are the areas where it doesn't go back to the drawing board, although repetitive elements go down more easily as part of a package that stuns in so many ways. A flight to an alien moon might never be in the cards for most of Earth's inhabitants, but Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora is, and it might just be the next best thing.
Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader is an excellent adaptation of the Warhammer universe into a genre that some may expect not to work. A compelling RPG with a strong understanding of its original property, it’s a great example of the classic C-RPGs of the 1990s and early 2000s. Although it perhaps does nothing revolutionary, it provides an intriguing and exciting adventure, especially for fans of the tabletop game.
Despite these missing quality of life features, SteamWorld Build still manages to be fairly addicting. Sense of progress is consistent enough even with occasional moments of waiting, and making discoveries feels rewarding enough to keep things engaging. The varied environments found throughout the game all feel uniquely designed, and accompanied by the blend of ambient sounds and satisfying soundtrack, the world as a whole comes off as intriguingly charming. Though it may not feel absolutely complete in its systems, SteamWorld Build is still a worthwhile venture for players looking for a creative new management sim.
Additional achievements, challenges, unlocks, and secrets bring enduring value to Risk of Rain Returns, and the new graphics do just enough to contemporize the look of the game without sacrificing its creepy pixelated presentation. This all manifests into a project that feels like a true gift for fans and a premium prospect for roguelite veterans who may have missed its original launch. Risk of Rain Returns takes an all-timer which might have been overshadowed by its sequel and gives it much, much more than a fresh coat of paint.
Ultimately, Persona 5 Tactica is another fun spin-off that proves the depth of its source material. Persona 5 has successfully ported itself to the musou, rhythm, and tactical genres, all the while maintaining the charm and flash that made it so instantly recognizable. At this point, it would be weirder to see a genre that the series didn't successfully adapt itself to than one it does.
Spirittea is a fantastic cozy game. It sticks closely to the life sim template with the skeleton of its gameplay, but its main gameplay of bathhouse management and its spirit -finding progression system means that players will thoroughly enjoy what Spirittea has to offer. In addition, it's even better on Switch as something to be lazy with on the sofa or on a long journey.
Ugly is a hidden gem among indie games. It features a beautiful, melancholic narrative that will intrigue players as they unravel the nobleman’s hideous past. The puzzles are both challenging and engaging without being too complex for casual players to enjoy as they master the fascinating mirror mechanic of this world. Ugly is an interesting, unique experience that is recommended for players of every kind.
Star Ocean The Second Story R ticks all the right boxes for a faithful remake of a beloved title from the PS1 era. Its stunning new visuals and new meaningful mechanics make it a must-play JRPG for both newcomers and fans of the original. When considering the whole package, Star Ocean The Second Story R may not be a heavy hitter like other titles from this year, but it’s definitely a charming remake that tells a compelling story JRPG fans should experience at least once.
Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name is a success. With just five chapters total, it tells a compelling story that maintains interest throughout. It's also a neat summary of Kiryu's storied past, serving as a solid introduction to him for those who found the franchise through Yakuza: Like A Dragon and Ichiban.
The Invincible is hard to recommend on the basis of its gameplay alone, as its walking sim core doesn't always feel like the best use of its potential. Its best features can be found elsewhere, however, with a competent take on a great story and a truly staggering success in the looks department keeping the engine running across a modest runtime. Branching possibilities may not be enough to incentivize a second bout of slow exploration, but as a one-time dip into a mysterious tale of beauty and danger, The Invincible might just do the trick.
It's a matter of taking that memorable original score, the over-the-top firefights, the thoughtful questlines, and the raw retro/pseudo-90s shtick that ultimately leaves less residual concern over a clumsy facial animation or a tedious boss here and there. Every chapter of RoboCop: Rogue City gives players something interesting to do, an unexpected encounter to resolve, or a sly reference to decipher. The result is a great game that accomplishes everything an adaptation could wish for, breathing new life into its source material and setting a new high bar for the franchise.
Despite the game's pacing issues and ability to enrage its players, Ghostrunner 2 can be a challenging game to put down. The game's exciting synth-wave tracks and well-written supporting cast pair well with its visuals and outstanding boss battles to keep players interested. Ghostrunner 2 improves on the first game in many ways, but if the sequel were an anime, a lot of it would feel like filler material between its more engaging, epic boss battles.
At its core, this latest entry in the Just Dance franchise is essentially exactly what players have come to expect. The always-online and subscription components, coupled with a focus on the future at the expense of the present makes this particular title not stand out from its peers. However, a solid song collection and creative routines still makes Just Dance 2024 something probably worth picking up for fans of the series who look forward to a new lineup each year.
Even those who enjoyed the show, but never played the original game, may have trouble immersing themselves in Gargoyles Remastered. Many of the changes made in Gargoyles Remastered are simply that - changes - and not necessarily improvements, leading to an overall disappointment for the potential this could have had.
And still, there’s the bones of something great here. A mystical underworld to explore, secrets to unearth, terrors lying in wait in the darkness. A heretofore-unseen, fully realized original Hellboy adventure is screaming to be properly told, to be freed from the trappings of this torment. Hellboy Web of Wyrd is a tragically beautiful blunder.
However, it also leaves a lot to be desired in that its graphics are certainly not impressive by any means and its overall gameplay is incredibly simple and repetitive, even for its target audience. At times, many things feel confusingly implemented and the option for co-op feels a bit like an afterthought. With all that being said, it is still potentially worth giving a chance as there is a lot going on for PAW Patrol World that will help introduce young children to modern gaming in a way that not many other games like it can, however, anyone over the age of the target audience is likely to be unimpressed and quickly bored.