Kill la Kill: IF succeeds in translating its namesake's hyper-kinetic universe, wild action, and extreme characters into a fun experience, but is held back by lackluster side-content and flaws inherent to its own design. It's worth your time if you're already a franchise fan, but those yet to be ensnared by Life-Fibers should wait until this particular couture number moves to the reduced rail.
Crash Team Racing: Nitro-Fueled not only succeeds as a loving and faithful adaptation of the classic PS1 release, but it has been turbo-boosted by a glut of welcome new content including characters, tracks, and modes. Though it occasionally shows its age in course design, and erratically pumps the brakes with a surprising difficulty spike, Nitro-Fueled remains a fast and fun kart racer, sure to please old fans and worthy of a test drive from new ones.
My Friend Pedro is a crazy, violent, and sometimes downright weird score-attack title. It's designed to be played and replayed in perpetuity, with the aim simply to master its wild action, wide variety of weapons and maneuvers, and over-the-top physics. As long as you're aware of what you're buying into here, you'll have a (double-barreled) blast with its gleefully unashamed anarchy.
A Plague Tale: Innocence is a grim, gripping, and fantastic adventure. The solid stealth gameplay offers little new, but the unique setting, affecting characters, excellent dialogue, and oppressive atmosphere more than redress that linearity. Add to this a lean design, an emotive score, and a commitment to narrative focus, and A Plague Tale deserves to be heralded as one of 2019's very best adventures.
Nearly 30 years later, Mortal Kombat still deserves to hang in the top-tier of fighting games. With improved visuals, overhauled mechanics and exciting strategic potential, MK 11 offers a brilliant fighting experience. Unfortunately, the overall fun is bogged down with miserable modern-day business practices that frequently pump the brakes on your enjoyment. The Fight is the thing, however, and as long as the fists are flying, then Mortal Kombat 11 packs a helluva punch.
Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid suffers from dated visuals, poor presentation, and a serious lack of content, unable to hide its low-budget shortcomings. At its core is something of a slick and wholly-accessible fighting game. Yet without the visual pizazz of the brand, a full, varied roster of characters, or a glut of exciting content to dive into, Battle for the Grid ultimately feels like the unfinished prototype of what could have been a very special release.
Strictly speaking, you don't need a review to tell you whether to play the final episode in the fourth season of a franchise. This far down the line, you're already on board, or you aren't. I think Take Us Back's writing will find some division in the community, regardless of your own personal outcome.
While it still makes for a fun fighting experience, Dead or Alive 6 shows that the brand has unquestionably run out of ideas. With little to showcase in the way of fresh concepts, exciting gameplay ideas, or brand creativity, this long-running series chooses to coast by on being "more of the same.", whilst hoping to be the engine that pulls the DLC train. During this competitive era of fighting game reinvention, that just isn't going to cut it for your 60 bucks.
Ape Out is a marvelous example of what can be done with gaming when a handful of talent think outside the box. Challenging, occasionally annoying, but addictive gameplay, painted in gorgeous splashes of colour and quirky, attractive visuals, all backed with a breathless score. This odd release is proof positive that creativity in gaming remains alive and well. Go Ape.
Metro Exodus is a tour-de-force in apocalyptic exploration. It offers a rich, evolving world, brought to life with stunning visuals, immersive sound and ghastly creatures. These thrills and chills are irritatingly tempered with menial tasks, poor voice acting, dull stealth and a soulless hero, all of which prevent Metro Exodus from achieving its true potential. Behind these grievances, however, lies a thrilling adventure for anyone who dares board The Aurora. Just prepare to get your ticket punched.
Video games have really changed as a storytelling medium. what was once a casual dash from left-to-right, dropping baddies and collecting shiny objects, opened up into new realms of drama, narrative and even philosophical messages. Of course, that doesn't make these games immediately any better than the goofy platformers and shmups of gaming's formative years, but it has been amazing to see the many different ways gaming has been adapted by talented designers to tell all manner of dark, abstract and inquisitive tales.Into a busy market of chin-stroking titles such as The Missing, Gris and Gone Home comes Vane, a new PS4 adventure from Tokyo outfit Friend or Foe. Vane, like its brethren, eschews typical action gameplay to present a mood-piece adventure, not dissimilar from the work done by Team ICO. Vane wants to put freedom back in the hands of the player, letting them engage in a strange, mystical journey - without hand-holding - and with player-led discovery being the ultimate prize.
I remain invested in The Walking Dead as it nears its conclusion, now just two months away. Though the move to Skybound hasn't improved the technical reliability of the Telltale Games experience, the artists, writers, and voice actors continue to present a story that remains suspenseful, delivering some great individual moments, even if it sometimes pads the run-time to reach them. Beyond that, it's just nice to see you again, Clem.
With GRIS, Nomada has created an abstract adventure, as beguiling as it is haunting. By focusing on its courageous protagonist, and creating a bewitching but frightening world for her to overcome, GRIS succeeds with its short but unforgettable odyssey. Awash with meticulous detail, charming aesthetics, and smart design, GRIS is something special. Take the trip.
Arachnaphobe warning!Other than video games, my main passion is women dressed in suits, with drawn on pencil-thin moustaches movies. Whilst I haven't kept a complete tally of how many films I've watched, I know it's thousands upon thousands, with a personal best a couple of years back of about 200 in one year. I've seen a lot of the greats and most of the classics. But more importantly, I've seen plenty of the worst movies ever made.I don't mean some crappy horror sequel from 2006. I mean truly atrocious films of no redeeming quality. Shit like The Starfighters, Zombie-a-Go-Go and Americathon. I've also seen awful films that, somehow, remain wildly entertaining; R.O.T.O.R, Voyage of the Rock Aliens, Animal Protector and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.So many times, the question is asked "What is gaming's Citizen Kane?" Aside from this being one of the very worst questions ever to leave anyone's lips, we're also yet to find a true and fitting answer. But forget the artsy classics. What I want to know is when does anybody ever ask "What is gaming's Death Wish 3?" Well, if they ever do, you look 'em dead in the eye and you tell them it's Earth Defense Force 5, baby.
Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight is a follow-up of sorts to the 2016 PS Vita title Persona 4: Dancing All Night and is the sister title to Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight. Having released in Japan earlier this year, Moonlight and Starlight are now preparing to rip up dance floors on this side of the pond. So put your best foot forward and let's find out if the kids are alright.
There are plenty of things in Britain that aren't strong. The pound, the economy, my intestinal lining. But one thing that remains rock solid is our apparent nostalgia for the original PlayStation console. The launch of the PS1 was the moment that Britain apparently decided it wasn't "dorky" to play video games, thanks to trendy marketing tactics by Sony and a lot of demo pods in expensive nightclubs.As such, games like Crash Bandicoot, PaRappa the Rapper, and other cutesy characters, that your average Terry would have balked at in '93 as "for little kids", were now super-cool icons for the late teen/early 20's market. This nostalgic love runs deep even today, as exemplified by Crash's domination of the UK Charts for not one, but two summers in a row.Me, however, I wasn't sold. I didn't care much for the glut of 3D platformers that swamped the shelves in the wake of Nintendo's Super Mario 64. I was all about the punching and the giant spiders and the powerbombs. So, it's with a bit of sigh that I received my review code for Activision's Spyro Reignited Trilogy, which compiles three dragon-y adventures from the later years of the PS1. I played the original game way back when, but that has become a fog with time. Y'see, I don't particularly care for the genre, or the characters, or the starry-eyed nostalgia surrounding Spyro's brand.But the smug little bastard put me in my place, that's for true.
Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session! (PS4)Developer: Bandai NamcoPublisher: Bandai NamcoReleased: November 2, 2018MSRP: $49.99 (No Drum)Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum Session, is the second of two Taiko games that launched last week, alongside Nintendo Switch release Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum 'n' Fun. But whereas the latter's focus is on mini-games and party modes, Drum Session's PS4 release is more focused on the core Taiko no Tatsujin experience.Drum Session's rhythm-action gameplay is very straightforward. You bash along, on your drum controller or PS4 pad, in time to symbols that appear on a fast-moving on-screen track, ala Rock Band, Guitar Hero or any number of previous similar titles. The red symbols represent hitting the skin, the blue symbols require a tap on the rim. The larger symbols mean you strike with both sticks together, while extended yellow bars require players to hammer out a thunderous drum roll.Players score points for perfect timing, as well as for not dropping a beat, with extended combos making for major league scores. There is a large variety of songs to choose from, ranging in difficulty, and you can compete against a friend or against other player's "ghosts" online.
Damsel is an intense, occasionally frustrating title, for those who have quick reactions, an eye for planning, and a patience for repetitive death. Those who like their games challenging, twitchy, and demanding of player improvement should consider joining Damsel on her wild ride into the night. But those expecting story, adventure, or even mercy will likely find themselves thirsty for more.
The Missing: J.J. and the Island of Memories, is a short, dark trip through the nightmare of youth; growing up, discovering yourself, and existing among a society that rarely understands. Sure to be a divisive title, there are those who will find The Missing overpriced and melodramatic, while others will be taken by its surrealist story of undying friendship, ironically becoming an indelible memory to those who dare to experience it.