2990 Published Reviews
The Jackbox Party Pack 7Switch
Overall, I thought this was a pretty solid Jackbox pack, if not one of my favorites. There were some issues with the Switch edition that I hope will be cleared up soon -- not just with Champ’d Up, but it also took quite a while for some of the other games to connect. Otherwise this was a really solid mix of games, with much more thought put into the “personality” of each game (always love a good theme song).
Nioh 2 - Darkness in the CapitalPS4
Even if the story doesn't hit as hard this time around and the stakes, in general, can feel weirdly low (due in part to the self-contained time-hopping conceit), I can't deny it: Darkness in the Capital is fun as hell. I didn't expect to want to completely redo my build after falling in love with the Fists, but here I am.
There isn't much for me to love or hate here. Torchlight III is a slow burn, one that struggles to stand out like its predecessors did back when this genre wasn't nearly as stacked with great competitors. If you're down for a simpler grind, you might find something to latch onto, but don't count on it.
STAR WARS: SquadronsPC
Sure, it has shortcomings in the single-player and it may not be as "hardcore" of a simulator as some were hoping for, but what Motive has delivered here is more than just a strong foundation. I genuinely hope they build off of it moving forward, either with updates or sequels, because it's hard not to love everything they've built.
Super Mario Bros. 35Switch
There's plenty to criticize, but Super Mario Bros. 35 is a free download, so give it a shot. I've played many rounds already and will jump into plenty more until that fated March 2021 eShop removal death date. Hopefully Nintendo has a change of heart like it did with Jump Rope Challenge and updates the game to address some of its shortcomings: because it has even more potential than a temporary flight of fancy.
Genshin Impact could be a little more lively than it is when leveling, but the beauty of its world helps suck you in. You really can't beat free, so long as you resist the rather tame temptations to spend money.
Future updates will hopefully sort out all those connection issues, but what Spellbreak needs more than anything is a glow up. Because the elemental combat here is sensational, but all that goodness is trapped in this garden-variety fantasy setting that's holding back the true potential of what Proletariat could create here.
Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About TimePS4
Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time is a strong return for the series, and a showcase of what might have been if we got a true follow-up to Crash 3. I sincerely hope that Activision entrusts Toys for Bob (and Vicarious Visions) with the keys to the Crash kingdom from here on out. I wanna see more of the little guy.
WWE 2K BattlegroundsPS4
It lacks so much of what made over-the-top arcade wrestling games great in the first place, while also being filled to the brim with microtransactions. The spectacle of its over-the-top moves and abilities are quickly lost in the tedium of its progression, lack of depth, budget presentation, and technical issues. It almost feels like 2K has come crashing down with the WWE license...and it hurts inside.
Mafia: Definitive EditionPC
All this time, the first Mafia was the best of the trio. It just took a phenomenal effort from Hangar 13 to do it justice with Mafia: Definitive Edition. This feels like the rare necessary remake that elevates and builds upon the original. It's truly an offer you can't refuse.
Serious Sam 4PC
It's a simple review for a simple game, folks. Serious Sam 4 doesn't wildly reinvent the formula; and really, it doesn't need to. There's plenty of room for old school style FPS games in an ocean of looter shooters and games-as-a-service titles.
I have to admit, I found Hotshot Racing to be quite enamoring. I don’t have much nostalgia for the early days of 3D racing games, but I do appreciate a good arcade racer, and that’s exactly what this is. Its cheery sound design and visuals are endlessly charming and the driving feels exactly as it should. If you feel the need to go back to the simpler days of racing games, this certainly fits the bill. This likely won’t be the last time I take it for a lap around the track.
Super Punch PatrolSwitch
At $4.99, you really can't go wrong with downloading Super Punch Patrol from the eShop. With a few adjustments this could be a really good, potentially great game, but there's easily five bucks worth of entertainment here, including 12 costumes to unlock across the three characters and an online leaderboard if you want to chase high scores. Just make sure you bring a friend along because this city is not kind to those who walk its streets alone.
Hades had the unenviable task of bridging a well-established action-roguelike format with impactful character-driven storytelling, and neither element feels like an afterthought. They lift each other to new heights. The finer details – all those little artistic touches that add up over time – really seal the deal.
Super Mario 3D All-StarsSwitch
Super Mario 3D All-Stars, as barebones as it might be as a compilation, is a great way to experience (or re-experience) these games all over again. It was a joy running through all three of them even if they weren't strictly upgraded. That goes double for Mario Galaxy, as this is going to be my preferred way to play it from now on.
13 Sentinels: Aegis RimPS4
Had Vanillaware crafted a title where the story and the action wove into one another flawlessly, we'd be looking at the greatest game the developer has ever made, without question. Unfortunately, that's not what this game is, and while what is here is great, it's crushing to see just how close 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim came to perfection.
Death and TaxesSwitch
It’s definitely a worthwhile game, especially if you’re a fan of bureaucracy simulators. If you get stimulation from organizing, considering, and processing. Entrepreneurial pirate aside, the game is well written and delivered. The soundtrack is outstanding, the atmosphere is just so, and the replay value is nice.
Spelunky 2 is more Spelunky. It doesn't wildly reinvent the formula, and even brings back a lot of the same hazards and enemies that tormented you the first time around. But it innovates ever so slightly in so many ways to help give this sequel its own life. Either way, it sucked me back in.
It manages to keep things smelling fresh by putting you through some absolutely bizarre situations, and you’ll never forget the first time a lobster comes at you with a revolver. On the other hand, this kind of stupid fun is always fleeting. You’re probably not going to spend a lot of time mastering the art of the death pinch, and once the novelty wears off, you’ll likely molt your old shell and move on.
Borderlands 3 - Psycho Krieg and the Fantastic FustercluckPC
Although it can feel slow-going at times, Borderlands 3: Psycho Krieg and the Fantastic Fustercluck benefits from its lore-heavy framework and a clear focus on one major character. If Gearbox has anything to say about it, this isn't the end of Borderlands 3's DLC, despite the fact that this is the final expansion of the first season pass. There's plenty of room for improvement if it is meant to be.
The Outer Worlds: Peril on GorgonPC
Peril on Gorgon is a meaningful and natural extension of the base game. It avoids feeling tacked on, which was my main concern coming in, and it's more of the good stuff, not filler. Don't skip it! That said, without knowing exactly when or where the second half of the Season Pass will slot in, I'd potentially wait to knock both DLC stories out at the same time (and save a bit of money) if you can.
Paradise Killer is a strange experience. Even having completed it, I have difficulty putting into words what it was like to play it. It's sometimes boring, often intriguing, frequently funny, and startlingly deep. I didn’t go into this expecting such an amazing detective experience, but that’s exactly what I got. It’s rare to see a game so adeptly balance style and substance, and even though it’s not a flawless experience, it has it where it counts.
Every time Moon would lose me with its constant waiting around or head-scratching puzzle solutions, it would win me back with its humor, characters, writing, and music. This is a game that exudes joy, and while I wasn't always having fun playing it, I am grateful that I at least got the chance to experience it.
When Avengers isn't getting in the way of itself with its tacked-on campaign, it's a bit of silly arcade fun. If a lot of these concerns are answered via post-launch patches and the DLC characters are fun to play, there's plenty of room for improvement with Avengers. At launch, it's not going to wow everyone. Maybe Marvel wanted this out as soon as possible, but it could have used another delay.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2PS4
Blemishes aside, Activision is doing so much right this time beyond just putting Vicarious Visions in charge. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 isn't going to blow people away, but it preserves the original experience with a few modern conveniences. It's a win.