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If you are looking for a new challenging game to take on with a unique take on a tried and true genre, UnderMine is absolutely a must-play. Especially as a day-one Xbox Game Pass release, there is simply no reason not to go spelunking in this well-crafted, deep, and challenging game. With its unique take on roguelike combat mechanics and an array of resources and stats to balance and manage, UnderMine is a great place to start for newcomers to the genre and players looking for a serious challenge alike.
Skater XL doesn’t have to be for you. It’s a simulator with innovative physics-based mechanics in a genre that has long been built around arcade-style unrealistic tricks, racking up points, and nailing huge combos. If you’re looking for that classic experience, you’re best waiting for Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1 + 2. But, if you’re somebody who loves customizing and living your best-simulated life with no need for objectives to complete, this is absolutely the game for you.
Overall, Fairy Tail isn’t a perfect JRPG but it comes pretty close! Every part of Fairy Tail is beautifully designed and well thought out. While I wasn’t the biggest fan of the combat system at first, I did see the appeal and fun challenge the turn-base combat system brings to this game. I especially loved how the developers incorporated in key elements from the franchise such as teamwork and comradery into the game. Long-time fans especially will enjoy the experience to relive stories previously told in the manga and anime. In addition to being able to able to enjoy never before seen story and quest elements. And while I think this game will be well received by long-time fans, it is also very approachable and welcoming to newcomers too.
Hellpoint is, mechanically, a typical game in the Dark Souls genre. However, the sci-fi theme is really what separates it from other games. Although the upgrade systems aren’t always intuitive and the game has a few other minor issues, the unique enemies and story make up for it. Hellpoint is a hard game but well worth the struggle.
Fight Crab doesn’t do much outside of its very shallow premise. It delivers on exactly what it promises and not much else. If you can acclimate yourself to the purposefully messy controls, there is some fun to be found within its short playtime. It is in no way going to be the next big fighter or take the tournament scene by storm, but it doesn’t need to nor is it trying to. It’s silly enough to be a brief distraction and sometimes that’s all a game needs to be.
Neversong is a challenging cinematic platformer with beauty, whimsy, and elements of horror, that has a touching story to tell. While the game will be frustrating for some, it’s a challenge worth undertaking especially on the Nintendo Switch. While the game was out on PC before, the Switch is the perfect platform for both the game-type and design of the game.
Overall, Destroy All Humans! is a fantastic remake that I’m sure will please returning fans of the series but might frustrate new audiences. Everything about the game looks great and runs well but since nothing about the core gameplay has changed, it feels stuck in the early 2000s.
Carrion takes the formula of many of the great 2D adventures that came before it and repackages it with grisly body horror and the twist of being a monster on the loose. It doesn’t change up the formula too drastically with its basic genre mechanics, but it still manages to do everything that it does do near-perfectly in a short amount of time.
Paper Mario: The Origami King is an absolutely phenomenal game. It simultaneously makes a return to what made the original games so great, namely the exploration and humor, while still progressing forward with new, creative battle systems and ideas. I had a blast playing through the game, finding collectibles, rescuing Toads, and saving the Mushroom Kingdom in a beautiful, paper world that always kept me laughing.
When all is said and done though, Röki is a lovable game with deep storytelling, and while the mechanics behind crafting and puzzle-solving isn’t my cup of tea, the narrative and art are. This game offers beauty in its design and emotion in its narrative. At only 12-15 hours of playtime, this is an easy game to pick up and play through.