As a long-time fan of Monster Hunter, words can't express just how pleased I am with Monster Hunter: World. The move to current generation consoles does nothing but wonders for all the areas and monsters you'll encounter during your playthrough, and it's amazing just how well it's been positioned in terms of accessibility. It's an immense game filled with quality content, and one that's driven by an addictive and satisfying gameplay loop that never lets up. The narrative may not be anything to gawk at, but it's by no means terrible and is undoubtedly the best in the franchise. If you've ever wanted to give Monster Hunter a try, there's no better time to than now. Capcom has hit this one out of the park, and Monster Hunter: World deserves the monstrous amount of success it's been garnering.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm is undoubtedly a risk that Square Enix didn’t need to take. The original Life is Strange ended in a way that left fans expecting nothing more, so the prequel’s announcement came as quite a surprise. Thankfully, newcomers Deck Nine have created a mini-series that is not only respectful of the original but stands on its own as an essential prequel. The visuals may suffer from slight blemishes, and the uneven voice acting can be off-putting at times, but the game quickly makes up for this through its engaging characters, excellent pacing and great plot twists. It’s a no-brainer for fans of Life is Strange and an equally perfect starting point for newcomers.
Ōkami HD serves as proof that even among today's trends, progression in an open-world game such as this one can be meaningful. The newly improved 4K resolution is just an added bonus that further demonstrates the game's visual style will never get old, regardless of its obviously dated textures. In my opinion, it's a near-perfect game, and one you should definitely experience if you haven't already. It's also one well worth revisiting, even if it'll be your fifth time. The latest release of Ōkami HD might not provide much more for people who've played the remaster already, but when it's priced so cheaply, it's not much of an asking price.
Like many, the Star Wars franchise is dear to me, so I'm disappointed EA let their plans for monetisation and a rush to meet deadlines get the better of them with Battlefront II. While there's some fun to be had in Battlefront II's multiplayer and arcade modes, there's no denying its story and mission design is lazy and uninventive. The game is full of Star Wars charm, expressed by its well-designed maps and excellent production values, but it's ultimately let down by a lack of incentive to keep playing and the very system that's supposed to let us live out our far-fetched Star Wars fantasies. The life of this game now depends on where EA goes from here – and yes, there have been steps taken to rebalance the economy, and free DLC is a good start – but inherent mediocrity limits them when it comes to players who want something that's more than a one and done Star Wars adventure.