2821 Published Reviews
Afterparty is a unique look at the people we are, the people we wish to be, and how the world, its occupants, and even ourselves can frequently fuck with both. While as a video game it offers mostly persistent conversation, that conversation is excellently performed and smartly written. Despite undeniable narrative and technical shortcomings, Afterparty is still a shindig worth turning up to, even if the invite seemed a little more promising.
The heart and soul of Disco Elysium is stumbling through success, which has a certain charm to it. Sometimes that road is bumpy and restricted, but the fluff behind those bumps is at least interesting.
Disney TSUM TSUM FESTIVALSwitch
Disney Tsum Tsum Festival is packed with stuff to do, but most of it should be left to full family households with everyone on deck. It needs to focus more on depth rather than quantity, but the few games that are deep are fun enough to play with a crowd.
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020Switch
I'm as surprised as you are that I had so much fun with this one. Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020's retro suite is compact but it kicks everything up a notch, which is an easier sell for newcomers. Just make sure you have at least one friend to prolong the fun with once the story is over and done.
Even with occasional design quirks and bugs holding it back, I adore this game as is. Similar to Planet Coaster, I think it'll get better over time, and Frontier will surely flesh out the species list with DLC packs. But even if that doesn't happen, I'll be satisfied. Some of us have been waiting decades for a game like Planet Zoo to come along and scratch our Zoo Tycoon itch. Now that it's here, I can't get enough.
Ring Fit AdventureSwitch
Two weeks of a workout regiment is not nearly long enough to give a full assessment of how effective it is, but it is enough time to see that Ring Fit Adventure is one well-crafted exercise game. Will it be good enough to help me overcome this lifelong struggle? Ask me again in a month and then five months after that.
Death Stranding is not the overly-strange inaccessible walled garden the marketing has made it out to be. It's weird, don't get me wrong! But anyone with a surface-level understanding of surrealism in art should be able to acclimate to what is essentially a playable Hollywood production.
Call of Duty: Modern WarfarePS4
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare isn't the best Call of Duty game. Hell, it's not even the best Modern Warfare game. But it does maintain the series tradition of delivering a solid feature-packed release. Modern Warfare offers a great single-player campaign and exciting multiplayer gameplay, all dressed up in excellent visuals and terrific sound. Death, taxes, and Call of Duty. The brand may long in the tooth, but it isn't ready for discharge anytime soon.
Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HDSwitch
As a return effort the core of Super Monkey Ball is there with Banana Blitz HD, it’ll just be hard to turn people onto it unless you’re going in with a solo mindset. If you haven't ever experienced monkeys in balls before and plan on coming in as a rogue agent, that budget pricing helps.
Luigi's Mansion 3Switch
The Luigi’s Mansion franchise has come a long way since the original was criticized over its lack of content. With an absorbing single-player campaign and a Scarescraper that still packs a punch, Luigi’s Mansion 3 is the most content-rich entry in the series, and one of the best times I've had with my Switch in 2019.
It's a shame that a good game is held back by incredibly boring design decisions. I think Greedfall is on the verge of greatness but falls short in too many areas to really go down as a must-play. It's absolutely an enjoyable romp, just one plagued by the thought of what could have been.
The Jackbox Party Pack 6PC
The Jackbox Party Pack 6 continues Jackbox's streak of funny, low-key party games without deviating much from their established formula. If you're looking for something fun to do with a group for a couple of hours, you can't go wrong with one of the Jackbox Party Packs. There aren't really any experimental games like Zeeple Dome from last year's collection, but there's plenty worth playing in this year's Pack.
Little Town HeroSwitch
I didn’t expect to have so much vitriol for Little Town Hero going into it, however, I found very little to like. Its 18-ish-hour runtime felt like an eternity as I slogged through battle after battle. I struggle to fathom who this game is designed for, but all I can recommend is to stay away lest you get dealt a bad hand.
Given that a physical copy of the original MediEvil goes for roughly $30 these days, shelling out the same price for a PS4 remake is a steal. A new coat of paint can't inherently fix all of the issues with the original, but anyone with an open mind for kooky mascot platformer action will be pleasantly surprised with MediEvil.
Manifold Garden has a lot going for it, but above all else, it's simply pleasant – to look at, to listen to, and to play. It's the kind of game you can revisit every couple of years and be confident it'll hold up.
The Outer WorldsPS4
Despite some nominal issues that might be easier for some to hand-wave than others, Obsidian has out-Fallouted recent Fallout efforts. The Outer Worlds is more limited from a size standpoint compared to a lot of other open world adventures, but it makes up for it in charm and a succinct vision without much bloat.
Killer Queen BlackSwitch
I was a little concerned about how well Killer Queen would translate when it came to home platforms. Fortunately, Liquid Bit was able to take all the mechanics of their arcade game and compress them into a version which retains all the chaos and urgency of the gameplay. Black is a little different from the Killer Queen I was used to. But it's still Killer Queen, and that makes it one of the best multiplayer games around.
Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for NeighborvillePS4
Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville doesn't go out of its way to surpass expectations, but it's a silly, strange, joyful game – one I'm glad was greenlit. If PopCap can continue what it started, this stands a fighting chance of becoming my favorite PvZ spin-off. I hope it gets that opportunity.
The Ninja Saviors: Return of the WarriorsPS4
The Ninja Saviors: Return of the Warriors is a smart and slick reworking of a classic. Though 2019 sensibilities sometimes date its thin gameplay, modern characters, surprisingly varied combat, and a very welcome co-op mode breathe new life into Taito's iconic title. The Ninja Saviors is ideal for retro game speedrunners and perfect filler for lazy afternoons or long journeys. Go ninja! Go ninja! Go!
There is no element of surprise or wonder here, nothing to make players consider the game at a deeper level. Instead, it acts as a good reminder of the far superior titles that came before it.
I'm trying to be a bit vague here when it comes to Inmost's narrative details to avoid spoilers, but don't cancel that Apple Arcade subscription just yet. It's worth a playthrough as you wait for the next thing to come along, but you'd be hard pressed to exhaust all of the great games on the Arcade even if you tried.
Various Daylife is easily the most niche game on a service that's generally targeting the casual audience. It can be cumbersome, it lacks polish in areas, and it feels underdeveloped. But, it can also find ways to squeeze out a small amount of enjoyment from time to time and as the world opens up, it finds a decent balance between adventuring into the field and the mindless work menus. I don't know if a game like this could survive outside of Apple Arcade, but it is another example of how the subscription service can lead to some unique and experimental games.
As with any visual novel, Neo Cab isn’t going to appeal to everyone, but those looking for a taste of conversation should be sated here. Through the lens of science fiction, it deftly explores many concepts that relate to real-world concerns, and that’s something to be commended. Yet, while I had issues with Neo Cab, I will admit that it’s worth the fare. It perhaps didn’t set my world on fire, nor do I think it’s going to climb atop anyone’s list of favorite games this year, but it’s at least a nice ride while it lasts.
John Wick HexPC
It's not a perfect game, but John Wick Hex still lives up to its premise and creates a new blueprint for how to adapt a film property. Hopefully, it does well enough for a sequel because I'm dying to step back into the shoes of John Wick.
Sometimes it's okay to just unwind with a lower-stakes adventure, and that's where Concrete Genie comes in. It might not be on a lot of Game of the Year lists, sell as well as other open world games, or even be referred to as a "classic" in the years to come. But I'll never forget it. Go in with an open mind and a few caveats.