Den of Geek
122 Published Reviews
Ratchet & Clank: Rift ApartPS5
While I would love to see what the developers at Insomniac Games can do once they’ve really figured out the power of the PS5 and perhaps the direction they want to take this franchise in, Rift Apart is, at the very least, a very good time that occasionally flirts with greatness.
New Pokemon SnapSwitch
There’s really no other game quite like New Pokémon Snap. It’s a nature-photography arcade game whose gameplay feels pure and simple and yet is wholly unique at the same time. There’s maybe no better way to immerse yourself in the wild world of Pokémon—the lovable creatures have never looked so good.
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s FurySwitch
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury is a no-brainer purchase for anyone who has yet to experience one of Mario’s most imaginative adventures. The Nintendo Switch version might not introduce a lot that wasn’t already here before, but both the base game and Bowser’s Fury are primed to delight players of all ages seeking two distinct flavors of pawsome platformer.
I know that many would complain about there not being enough in the way of traditional gameplay if the puzzle sections were reduced, but I think The Medium as an even more narrative-focused experience would be more effective overall.
Hitman 3 doesn’t do too much to improve on its predecessors or the Hitman formula in general, choosing to instead emphasize the features and elements that always made the series great, while showing them off through some of the best and most intricately constructed maps the series has seen so far.
This is a game with a strong sense of identity, and that’s something that you can’t say about a lot of AAA open-world games these days.
World Of Warcraft: ShadowlandsPC
Such as it is, though, Shadowlands’ endgame content offers such a massive improvement over BfA that you’re actually hearing longtime WoW players sound excited about playing the game again. That’s an accomplishment in and of itself, even if it sometimes feels like Blizzard is still working on what the ideal modern WoW experience really looks like.
Immortals: Fenyx RisingPC
Unfortunately, for every one thing Immortals does right, it does five things wrong. The various armors that you collect are all pretty cool looking and come with unique stat buffs, but unlocking them often requires you to solve tedious puzzles, which again, are no fun for a litany of reasons. I really wanted to like this game—it reminded me of ’90s games like ActRaiser with its art style and arcade-y action.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of CalamitySwitch
The core gameplay loop remains largely the same throughout and might not change much outside of upgrading characters, yet by placing a greater emphasis on story and cleverly integrating elements from the established canon in smart mechanical ways, this hack-and-slash adventure easily surpassed my expectations. Knowing how this story ends doesn’t make the events leading up to it any less thrilling.
Demon’s Souls resurrects a game that could have easily become a historical footnote overshadowed by its more popular successors. In the process, it also manages to get everyone excited about the potential of next-gen console gaming. It’s the best next-gen launch game and a damn good entry into the Soulslike genre.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold WarPC
There are some rough edges here, particularly in the short campaign mode. The lack of variety in multiplayer is also disappointing. But the underlying gameplay and multiplayer progression system remain compelling. Cold War may not be the best Call of Duty game, but it’s a strong showing for the series at the beginning of a new gaming generation.
Dirt 5 is arcade racing stripped down to its purist form. There are no upgrades to fuss with and damage is purely cosmetic. It’s just one high speed thrill after another on gorgeous racetracks set all over the world. Yes, the career mode is on the shorter side and the vehicle selection is a little light, but what is here is an absolute joy to play.
Godfall is an impressive graphical powerhouse. I just wish there was more to the gameplay. At launch, this is probably the best title to show off the PS5 or a new graphics card, but between the repetitive missions and baffling lack of matchmaking, this is a game with no real staying power. Godfall looks like a million bucks but plays like a budget title.
Assassin's Creed ValhallaPC
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is an enormous game with a lengthy campaign and tons of things to do. It’s not going to blow anyone away who’s familiar with the series, but amongst its peers, I think Valhalla is in the upper tier of the Assassin’s Creed hierarchy.
Watch Dogs LegionXbox One
There’s still some fun to be had in Watch Dogs: Legion. Hacking environmental objects to see the reactions of NPCs or raising blockers to evade police remain as amusing as ever, but you’ll really have to make your own fun in this sandbox, or hope that the game’s code spits out one of its better recruitment missions.
Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles MoralesPS4
There are a ton of surprises and tie-ins to the first game that are revealed as you play Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales which I can’t reveal here, but it’s safe to say that Insomniac isn’t anywhere near done telling this story. I had a great time with the game, and while some will probably complain that the campaign is a tad short, I respectfully disagree.
Yakuza: Like a DragonXbox One
Even on the current generation of consoles, Like a Dragon is an impressive reinvention of the Yakuza series, with storytelling and combat on par with the very best of the JRPG genre. It’s not the Yakuza game I thought I wanted, but now it feels like this is how the series was always meant to be played.
Between its engaging story and fantastic atmosphere, Amnesia: Rebirth hits all the right notes that made The Dark Descent an instant classic. Just don’t expect anything quite as genre defining as the original. Rebirth is a good horror game to get lost in this Halloween season, but this bout of amnesia feels much more familiar the third time around.
EA SPORTS FIFA 21PS4
Generally, the game before a new console generation launches isn’t going to re-invent the wheel, and that’s manifested with most of 2020’s sports titles — especially while dealing with a global pandemic that has radically affected game development teams. While FIFA 21 is a far cry from the series’ PS4/XBO peak with FIFA 17, it’s also got a leg up on last year’s poorly-received entry. Take that as faint praise if you like.
Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About TimePS4
In many ways, the team succeeded, with an absolutely massive platformer featuring some very cool new additions to the Crash formula, but the reliance on some of the series’ most dated design choices leads to an often frustrating experience.
STAR WARS: SquadronsPS4
Its story might be a little rote, not taking full advantage of the period it’s set in, but EA Motive has absolutely nailed the feeling of what it means to be an X-wing and TIE fighter pilot – both on a standard display and VR. The foundation is also here for multiplayer to flourish, providing new seasonal events are introduced to further inspire players to take flight.
Mafia: Definitive EditionPC
Still, Mafia: Definitive Edition serves as a nice reminder of a time when open-world games didn’t need to be inundated with objectives and side activities in order to be considered great.
Ultimately, Crysis Remastered is a glorified texture pack tweaked to run on modern hardware without any hassle. And if you’ve already spent a lot of money on a top of the line PC, you might as well drop another $30 to see what it’s really capable of, but for everyone else, Crysis is best left to memories and memes.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-ReckoningPC
In theory, a game like Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is an ideal candidate for a remaster. When it was released in 2012, it felt like it was just a few tweaks away from greatness. Re-Reckoning could have made the improvements to elevate this cult classic, but barely tweaked graphics and level scaling alone make it hard to recommend a return trip to the Faelands.
Ultimately, as terrific as the action is on the court, it’s hard for me to give NBA 2K21 a strong recommendation. That’s especially true if you own 2K20. Or at least wait until the 2020-21 NBA season begins, when rookies are in the mix. It’ll be cheaper then, anyway.