I have mixed feelings about The Dead Tree of Ranchiuna. I like the environments and sound design, but I feel like a game in this genre should really have a gripping story. The game just didn’t deliver for me in this area, but I can’t say I wouldn’t try out another walking simulator if I thought the story might fit my tastes better.
I have to say, I had a lot of fun with Dynasty Warriors 9 Empires. The level of customization here is crazy, the political parts of the game are easy to understand, it’s fun to stroll around with officers, and the combat here is great. I feel like if I were playing this on a higher difficulty the strategy part would get insane, but there are a few different levels to choose from. This means every player can adjust this until it feels right to them. It took me around 10 hours to do one campaign and see a good bit of the events this one has to offer. There is still plenty of gameplay on the table here for me. If you are fan of these games, this one would certainly be worth the $59.99 asking price. There is a lot of meat here to keep players happy for a long time. If you want a graphically stunning version, the Switch version probably isn’t the way to go, but it runs well enough that if you want to have it on the go, it certainly isn’t a bad choice.
Sifu is a solid action game. The kung fu techniques were a treat for the eyes, combat is fluid and fun, the main character designs and environments were beautiful, and the difficulty felt just right. Add in the great soundtrack and sound effects, and you got a pretty good package. Unfortunately, the game is held back by some visual issues, a short length, and low replayability. If you’re a kung fu enthusiast, or a big fan of action games with a good amount of difficulty, I think the game is worth the $39.99. However, if you’re looking for a game you can play long after you finish the main stages, you may want to look somewhere else.
Crisis Wing is very much a standard shooter, for better or worse. It works and works fairly well but there isn’t much to really make it “pop” even when compared to other shooters – even those of the era it’s trying to emulate. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, since sometimes a basic game hits different and can act as a nice palate cleanser to unwind with between major releases. Even at the reasonable $7.99 pricetag, there are other shooters you may want to spend your time playing and returning to over this one.
At the end of the day, Queeny Army is a decent retro style shooter held back by a few design choices. The game is still a decent value at just $4.99 on the Switch, and if you can overlook some of the frustrating design choices here, there is some fun to be had. Each of the ladies having their own story adds quite a bit of replay value, so if this is your type of game, there is plenty of bang for your buck here. I just feel like the frustration level outweighs the fun for me, but to each their own. I’m sure some of you out there will quite enjoy this.
SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters’ Clash is an average card battler. It is really easy to pick up and play with a little depth, but I feel like some of the mechanics here hold it back a bit. At the $7.99 price tag, I feel like it is a good deal for those looking for something to just pick up and play on the go. I played right around eight hours and there were still plenty of cards left for me to hunt down on this one. I feel like fans of card battlers will have some fun here, even with the flaws. Hardcore SNK and Capcom fans will likely want to snag this one up as well. If for nothing else than to see the pixel art of their favorite characters battle it out.
Despite any issues I had with the game, though, Endwalker was an experience I cherish, not only as a longtime Final Fantasy XIV player, but as someone who loves the power stories have to explore difficult subjects, but still affirm the beauty of humanity. Endwalker made me angry, sad, joyful and everything in between throughout its runtime. It’s been absolutely brilliant, and I am forever thankful for the chance to experience this story and this world.
Shin Megami Tensei V is, without a doubt, my favorite game of the mainline series. I love the demon interactions and the fun combat system, and the world they created to explore is simply amazing. I played the game on Normal difficulty, but there are easier and more challenging ones that players can choose from to fit their skill level. There is more than enough content here to justify the $59.99 price tag. This is a great entry for newcomers and old fans alike and no one should sleep on it.
Shantae: Half-Genie Hero – Ultimate Edition has a lot of fun to offer beginners and veteran adventure players, with adorable characters, vibrant levels, a great score, and plenty of replayability. While it isn’t particularly difficult, the various modes and DLC adventures offer a bit more challenge than the main adventure, and we can always use more Shantae in our lives. It took me just short of seven hours to beat the base game, and each DLC story is around two to three hours, so it’s the perfect length for someone who can’t dump too much time into a single game. For $15 USD, you can’t go wrong picking this one up.
I was really debating how I would score Metroid Dread. After all, it did live up to many of my hopes and expectations, which is hard to do after a wait this pronounced. But I still couldn’t shake the feeling that Super Metroid did many things just a bit better. As such, I can’t help but score this a little lower than I wanted to. That said, if you’re a fan of the Metroid series, you’ll find a lot to enjoy here for only $59.99. Not only is it challenging and story-driven, but there’s plenty of incentives to replay the game in the form of various galleries. While there’s some frustrating design issues that could have been avoided, this is still a must play game for fans of the series, or just those that own a Nintendo Switch. Here’s hoping we don’t have to wait another 20 years for the next epic tale of Samus Aran.
Lost Judgment is an amazing game with a relevant, compelling story, memorable characters, gorgeous locales and an impressive soundtrack. Combat is incredibly fluid and fun, and there is an absolute truckload of things to do. It has its pitfalls, but the good so far outweighs the bad and I can’t help but place this in my Game of the Year contender list. It’s a shame the future of this series is in limbo, but I can only hope we get to see some more adventures of Yagami and Co. for years to come.
I wouldn’t exactly say I had a great time with Corpse Party (2021), it was indeed a dark game that I don’t think I was quite prepared for. Still, the game is exactly what it’s supposed to be and, as I said earlier, I was completely sucked into it whenever I played. Corpse Party’s story is messed up at times and, if you plan to get into it, you should be completely prepared for what exactly you’re getting into. If you happen to be a horror fan though who has never played Corpse Party before, then I definitely highly recommend Corpse Party (2021). This is absolutely the game for you and there’s no better time to pick it up than now.
I simply can’t recommend SkateBIRD. If you want a good skateboarding game, this certainly doesn’t provide that. If you want something kinda janky to laugh at, it’s not good for that either. However, if you’re curious how a skateboarding game could arguably feel worse than the first Tony Hawk Pro Skater, you can check this out for $20 on Steam. All its content will probably take about 10 hours to get through, though I can’t imagine there’s very many people that will actually make it through all of it.
I have to say, Blue Reflection: Second Light not only meets my expectations, but exceeds them. I spent right around 40 hours with this one and fell in love with all the characters. The stories told here are not only very emotional, but relatable to all of us on a certain level, and that’s something I find very rare in gaming. The graphics and sound design just really drove home how emotional and wonderful this story is. I had a great time with the crafting system, obtaining new items and building facilities to unlock more events with the girls. Gust should really look hard at the combat system they used here. It takes everything I loved about Ryza’s combat and makes it better. Anyone that loved the anime or the previous game should snag this up as soon as possible at the $59.99 price tag. There is a lot here you’re gonna love. If you have never played or experienced anything from this amazing franchise, there is no better time to start than right now. There is nothing else quite like it.
Tormented Souls is a classic survival horror romp through the bowels of the Winterlake Mansion. Beware, as the place is infested with hostile terrors that will gladly end you. The game stays pretty true to the play style of the classics in the genre. It is a pretty decent survival horror adventure, though you might find it on the difficult side, especially if you’re new to such games. You can complete the adventure in 10-20 hours depending on how much you die. The game also includes three different endings to get. While Tormented Souls is currently available for $19.99 on Steam, Xbox Series X, and PlayStation 5, it will also be coming to Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 soon. Can you uncover the fate of the missing twins, or will you perish along the way?
While Neptunia X Senran Kagura: Ninja Wars is one of the shorter spin-off titles, clocking in at around 12 hours to complete the main quest, I still had a lot of fun. The combat is easy to pick up, but has a enough depth to keep you coming back for more. The story and writing are very entertaining, and the soundtrack is pretty nice as well. I do think the mouth flaps during the visual novel sections are pretty rough, but that’s not really enough to keep this from being one of the better spin-off games in the franchise. If you’re a fan of Neptunia or Senran Kagura, this one is a no brainer at the $49.99 price tag. If you’re not a fan of either of those, this one would be good to pick up down the line once you’ve played some of the other games in the respected franchises.
While G-Darius HD is mostly just an arcade title with some upgraded visuals, that’s not really a bad thing. This is still one of the best made shmups to ever grace any platform. This port does add things you would expect like leaderboards, video options and a quick save feature. I think for the $29.99 asking price they could’ve added a bit more to this, but I wouldn’t really call it lacking in features either. If you are a big Darius fan, you should probably jump on this soon. You’ll be really pleased with how well handled one of your favorite titles was. If you just have a passing interest in these games, you may want to wait on a sale to dive in.
Even though this took a lot longer than I expected, I really had a great time with Mary Skelter Finale. This is everything I could’ve asked for in a story conclusion, with a great ending and tons of extra content. The dungeon crawling is a ton of fun, even if the maps are huge and puzzle-filled at times, and the combat has enough depth to keep you coming back for hours on end. If you’re a fan of the series, at $49.99 the asking price is a no brainer. You will love this. In fact, fans of the franchise that haven’t snagged up one of Idea Factory International’s fantastic Limited Editions, should highly consider it. At roughly $105 it isn’t cheap, but it is packed with goodies like a hardback novel set, soundtrack for the entire franchise, a poster and more. If you have never played Mary Skelter and want to see what it’s all about, this entry includes all of the story bits from the previous games, so there is no reason you couldn’t jump in right here and have a great time as well.
I am very glad I decided to review Metallic Child. I had so much fun exploring each level and watching Rona’s story unfold. The combat here is easy to get into, and has enough depth that advanced players have plenty to dig into as well. The bosses were all unique and a lot of fun to challenge, and the little extras they threw in here were a great bonus. Things like Rona’s customizations that give her starter weapons or perks, a ton of unlockable messages that build the world, and even some awesome fan art to unlock. It took me around 10 hours to complete the main story, but I could easily spend another 10 obtaining everything and doing post-game challenges. This game is well worth the asking price of $24.99. I would recommend this to anyone that enjoys a good action game, or a cute android protagonist. You won’t be disappointed if you pick this one up.
I have enjoyed my 25+ hours with Garden Story for Switch so far. While I have cleared the story, there are still a few upgrades I don’t have, and more cosmetic unlockables to get for Concord to wear. The game is a very chill, relaxing adventure, aside from the bosses which are more hardcore for some reason. However, casual players can still enjoy it using the option to disable death if they so choose. I prefer not to use such an option unless necessary, but it’s a nice inclusion if you want it. The game is marred by a few relatively minor flaws, like the previously mentioned inventory issues. However, it’s a rather unique and enjoyable little journey overall. You can nab Garden Story on the Nintendo Switch eShop for $19.99, and it is also on Steam. Can you help Concord, the unlikely grape hero, restore peace to an ailing grove?