Capcom Arcade Stadium is a perfume soaked and kiss covered love letter to the arcade. Capcom really has set the benchmark for how iconic publishers should preserve their work for future generations. The pitch-perfect emulation is notable, but it's the courage to make the necessary changes to classic games and ensure accessibility for all that is truly genius. Sure, having to buy everything in packs is a pain but you're bound to uncover a few unexpected gems in the process. Now, how about that Rival Schools: United by Fate, eh Capcom?
The ship combat and looting might carry King of Seas' piratical adventure for some, just beware that there's grinding through a bunch of stretched out story missions to get to the heart of the game. It's a game to break out when you're feeling extra piratey, but it has enough flaws that you should weigh them up before getting your cutlass out.
Earth Defense Force: World Brothers is a genuine joy to play and a fun spinoff from the main series. EDF is a silly series even with its dark undertones, but World Brothers is a lot more light-hearted, and could well lead to a lot of new players looking forward to Earth Defense Force 6.
It's wonderful to have the classic Famicom Detective Club games remade with modern artwork and with full Western localisations, but the flow of these visual novel detective stories is distinctly lacking and infuriatingly obtuse at times. Still, we can hope this is a sign that Nintendo is considering a truly modern revival of the Detective Club series in future.
I'm fairly sure that Beautiful Desolation is a decent game. This is a vast world clearly built with passion and with a keen attention to detail. Unfortunately, this console conversion is no way at all to experience The Brotherhood's latest. Awful pathfinding, so many invisible walls that if they were visible they could be seen from space, and clunky, unresponsive controls turn the fetch quest-heavy gameplay into a meandering slog.
Rise of the Slime ticks all the boxes of a bad game. Not only is it a roguelike that crashes regularly to ruin your run, but the game has little explanation of basic mechanics, too much variety in the deckbuilding for consistency, little meaningful longevity, and a poorly considered port to Switch. If you're desperate to play it, get the PC release, but do yourself a favour and save your cash for your next run at a deckbuilder.
BioWare has done a fantastic job of bringing the Mass Effect trilogyup to meet the standards of 2021. While it's still a bit rough in some areas, and there's quirks to how they've retrofitted some elements into the oldest of the three (which is still inferior in gameplay feel), this is the definitive version of the landmark trilogy you remember.
It's hard to say how impressions of Dog Airport Game might have changed if we'd gotten the game outside of a pandemic, but it's a lovely comedic slice of a forgotten time when air travel was normal. Just with tons of weird dogs and puns.