183 Published Reviews
AO Tennis 2PC
Overall, AO Tennis 2 plays and runs really well - this being one of the few tennis games on PC that does - it's just a bit of a shame that it falls flat in a few ways. The missing major players are a downfall: not having Serena Williams or Novak Djokovic is a bit odd in a game that's all about the Australian Open but tennis is probably a licensing nightmare.
Detroit: Become HumanPC
That’s not to say there’s nothing to get out of Detroit: Become Human. At a superficial level it looks fantastic, your choices can often feel hefty and impactful, and the overall presentation value is comfortably in the very top tier of adventure games. But it is a game you may have to enjoy through gritted teeth; either raging or outright laughing at the clunky metaphors and hamfisted messages. Enjoy it I did though, honestly, even if it wasn't perhaps for the reasons Cage may have been hoping for.
Euro Truck Simulator 2 - Road to the Black SeaPC
Overall, Road to the Black Sea is another fantastic DLC for Euro Truck Simulator 2 that everyone has been waiting for since Beyond the Baltic Sea was released last year. Now we're just keen to see whether and when the final chunks of Europe will be coming our way.
As a game though, Bee Simulator needs a little more meat on its bones. It's not a full on simulator like other simulators; it's an open-world arcade-like experience. It would be nice if we could actually land on a flower to collect pollen, for instance, rather than flying through a gamified light ring.
American Truck Simulator - UtahPC
Overall, the Utah DLC is a fantastic expansion, as it usually is with SCS and both ATS and ETS2. There's lots of attention to detail, and if something is missing they usually rework it into a future update. The team is always adding some new areas as well, it's never a let down. It was particularity great to see the Tree of Utah while driving to the salt flats, there's always something to watch out for during these behemoth treks across America. Here's hoping to seeing the whole of the continental United States one day, it should make for a hell of a drive.
Planet Zoo is the best zoo management game around and it’s not even close. It also features far stronger management systems than Frontier has ever achieved before, culminating in a fantastic package for tycoon and animal fans alike. There’s a lot to love here, even if the scope for creativity can’t hope to match Planet Coaster.
I loved it, though I barely understood much of it. It's a wild ride despite being mostly walls of text. It's the only game where I honestly couldn't say what I thought my character would do at any given turn because I felt I barely knew him, and that was, I feel, by design. You're getting to know him as you're making the choices that define him. Like you are, in a way, with yourself in real life.
GRID is a fantastic audiovisual experience, a decent racing game, and a barebones package. It’s the epitome of just enough, but enough is the optimal word here. Here’s hoping the next GRID can kick on bigger, better, and more ambitious things.
Trine 4: The Nightmare PrincePC
Overall, Trine 4 is a fantastic, beautiful and extremely enjoyable game to play. Originality may not have been high up on the list of priorities by the time this fourth outing rolled around but everything, from the sumptuous visuals to the audio, everything is tip top. For people who have played previous Trine titles, this one may be the best one yet. It’s a remarkably solid side scrolling title and what seems to be a welcome change from the ill-fated Trine 3.
It breaks my heart a little to slap a relatively low score on this. Both The New Order and The New Colossus were fantastic reinventions of a venerated gaming franchise, delivering satisfying gunplay with surprisingly touching narrative hooks. Youngblood still has that great feel, it’s just wrapped up in a co-op focused bubble which detracts from the traditional flow of the game.
The end result is a relaxing, intriguing and sleek murder mystery tale that's certainly worth enjoying once. It's not overly long if you play on normal, nor is it particularly replayable, but finding out who the killer is definitely scratches an investigative itch.
The Sinking CityPC
There's a stealth mechanic as well, but I didn't really use it as it was hopelessly useless. For all of these small failings, however, the feeling that you're a detective investigating a series of unfolding mysteries, this is a really solid contender. The Sinking City is deeply evocative in its oppressive dourness, and stays true to the investigative backbone of Cthulhu. We are presented an open world of horror and suspense that HP Lovecraft surely would have enjoyed investigating.
MotoGP 19 is a fantastic package overall and, hopefully, it ends up with a thriving multiplayer scene. The first post-launch patch was absolutely crucial in terms of tightening up the brakes and, while some of the physics still aren't quite there, it's a strong start.
American Truck Simulator - WashingtonPC
Overall, as with all their DLC, SCS Software has done a fantastic job. From the level of detail on the road markings being different from state to state to the police cars having the correct state trooper name on the car instead of something generic. Throw in the free 2GB version 1.35 update and the addition of "experimental" DX11, along with many other features, and ATS is growing into a stronger game than ever before. For those thirsting to expand their US play area in American Truck Simulator, Washing is a must-buy.
Total War: Three KingdomsPC
It's not without its UI issues, but Total War 3 Kingdoms provides a beautiful, rich strategy that is well paced while enjoying a new layer of story depth through diplomacy and intrigue.
Mortal Kombat 11PC
Â All in all, Mortal Kombat 11 is a great package, and nicely fleshed out with a ton of content and modes for both the casual fighting game players like myself and the hardcore community who want to get stuck into the online battling. The heavy involvement of microtransactions can be an annoyance, for sure, but there's more than enough to get busy with to help beat the grind.
Close to the SunPC
Despite its lofty ideas and immersive environments, Close to the Sun is a fairly lightweight adventure that trades on creeping scores and an intoxicating aura of mystery. There’s nothing to grapple onto that really elevates it above this. That's not to say this is an average game, it's a stronger experience than that, it just struggles to pull itself into the echelons of must-play territory. For horror fans, that could well be enough though, and it’s an engaging enough time but not one that necessarily sticks after the credits roll.
Despite all of this griping, and all of these complaints, Tropico 6 is still sort of fun. Partly it's just watching the numbers going up. When the freighter arrives in port and your first shipment of electronics goes to market, netting you enough money to build a new stadium, it's like a little pat on the head that can be weirdly addictive.
Hearts of Iron IV: Man the GunsPC
What it comes down to is that Paradox is just amazing at listening to their community and developing their games long after release. Now that ships are done, I expect that the air force will follow not too far behind. Then, who knows? Of course, they could release a DLC of nothing but National Focii for everyone from Bulgaria to Tannu Tuva and many fans would be ecstatic. If more companies were like Paradox, the world would be a better place.
DiRT Rally 2.0PC
I sort of have to criticise, you know? It's the job. Truth is, though, I've really enjoyed every minute I've spent with Dirt Rally 2.0, just as I did with 1.0 before it. The handling is gorgeous, the routes are truly beautiful to look at, and the management is ...manageable. The cars all have tons of individual character, the rallycross feels scrappy and frenetic and everything just comes together wonderfully. Codemasters, eh? They really have the hang of this thing.
As a sequel, Metro Exodus pulls ahead of the rest of the franchise in a big way by leaving the very metro itself behind. Aesthetically, the place is a joy to explore from beginning to end, and there’s enough variation to keep things feeling fresh. Dig down deep and it’s another Metro with a new skin, but it’s a damned good one of those all the same.
Resident Evil 2PC
All told, Resident Evil 2 is an utterly fantastic remake, reimagining a 90’s classic for a modern audience with modern sensibilities. A single playthrough is slight at about 8-10 hours, but every minute is oozing with quality. If that’s enough for you there are also alternative routes with other characters, a couple of secret modes and some fairly crazy unlockables for those who absolutely master the game. Resident Evil 2 is a brilliant rendition of one of the finest survival horror experiences of all time.
Jagged Alliance: Rage!PC
I'm really struggling to find anything good to say about Jagged Alliance: Rage, other than that its name is appropriate. I suppose the stealth mechanic sort of works, although even there occasionally your sneaky work can be ruined by a patrolling soldier somehow glitching and eternally clambering on and off a rock instead of completing his route.
All in all, Darksiders 3 feels like an incredibly safe game. There’s precious little to elevate Darksiders 3 to the level of the previous two games, let alone its peers in 2018. It’s a game that offers few surprises, few challenges, and few moments of greatness. What it does, it does to a satisfactory level and never kicks on from there.
Mutant Year Zero: Road to EdenPC
Hardcore fans of turn-based tactics may be slightly put off by Mutant Year Zero’s obvious missteps but that aside, The Bearded Ladies have cooked up a special game here that’s got great potential for the future. Road to Eden isn’t perfect but it’s definitely stood out from the crowd for me in what’s been an excellent year.