Super Neptunia RPG feels like the junk food of its genre, something easy and inoffensive to eat, but offering no real substance and resulting in something like regret. It’s unfortunate to say, because it’s not terrible, just bland and dissatisfying enough to leave it sitting beneath more compelling and accessible titles in the Switch library.
If you are willing to go the distance and sink some time into a very unique experience, there truly is nothing else like Golem Gates out there- for better or for worse. One thing is for sure though, if you take the dive on this title, you’ll be invited to partake in an extensive package that will either excite or exhaust you.
The continuous growth and increasing variety in both card collection and available relics- as well as a friendly whale (serpent) creature who gifts you with a random additional buff at the start of each new run means that Slay the Spire is a deliciously addictive experience. If you’re only casually interested in trading card games, this can also be an extremely valuable tutorial for deck stacking and various optimization techniques for more serious play, as well. Just don’t get too salty about losses, and you’ll find plenty to love as you journey onwards and upwards.
With bland enemy and boss encounters, a wonky progression system, and three difficulty options that steadily ramp the challenge and replayability if only because they punish failure more stringently, one would do wise to steer clear of Crypt of the Serpent King unless they are dying to spend the three dollars. Mind you, you’ll definitely get what you’ve paid for with that money, but there are other action-based, first-person Role-Playing Games out there that do the job better than this. While the game is an admirable attempt to create a continuously-rewarding experience, those rewards deplete within an hour of booting up the title.
Skelly Selest could easily be a Good to Great game here at SwitchRPG if it wasn’t held back by simple game mechanics that detract from the whole experience. After about five or six hours, I knew the game well enough to start compensating for these shoddy mechanics, but that wasn’t ideal and it sure didn’t feel great. You could forgive Skelly Selest for some of these missteps if it was taking you on a gorgeous journey into the bowels of hell, but it’s not. As it stands, Skelly Selest feels like a title that should win an award for “most to be desired.” It’s fun as long as you can manage the directional combat mechanics, which should never be an issue in a game of this genre. Small gains are made with a variety of game modes, secrets, and powerful upgrades, but it’s just not enough to save Skelly Selest from eternal damnation.
The Atelier Arland series continues to amaze me in ways I never expected from the outset. Atelier Totori, like Rorona before it, features deep, engaging gameplay systems which demand thinking and strategy despite people frolicking around in what is to be considered the alchemical equivalent of “tutus.” The story isn’t going to be the driving force of the whole experience, but it does have the potential to wrap up neatly enough in the end. The pacing here is so much smoother than that of Rorona, to the point that I wish that this would have been my first foray into Arland. Alas, you really should play Rorona before diving into this one, unless you don’t care about the story and characters whatsoever. That said, if you enjoyed Rorona, definitely give this one a go. It won’t blow your socks off, but it is still worth your time.
The point I am trying to make, I suppose, is that if someone were to ask me if they should buy or play Final Fantasy XII, I would answer that watching a video of someone else playing the game would achieve roughly the same effect as playing the game themselves. If you enjoyed Final Fantasy XII upon its original release – bless you – having the opportunity to play it three times as fast is a godsend, as the plodding pace of all of its playable characters both in and out of combat is surmounted and its near-excruciating grind is made one-third as fast. But otherwise, I can see no reason to look into this game outside of watching a Youtube video.
While not a perfect game, nor will it be for everyone, Atelier Rorona can easily provide hours of entertainment for those that dig time management, intricate crafting mechanics, and especially multiple endings/playthroughs. Resource management is a must in order to get the most out of the experience, and your familiarity with the franchise may end up affecting the overall opinion you form of the title when it stands on its own. As I’ve come to experience first hand, growing pains might detract some from fully appreciating the game, especially if you aren’t interesting in playing through it more than once. That said, the core mechanics have certainly piqued my interest, and I’m genuinely looking forward to my next outing in Arland, and there will be another soon!
The focus on masquerades and pushing it to a legitimate political centerpiece, as well as infusing it with otherworldly magical properties, is both refreshing and interesting take on the "detective's tale". That is why it is all too unfortunate that Masquerada's potential is marred by poor, repetitive combat and meaningless character progression – which would not be an issue at all if it weren't billed as an RPG in the first place.