God is a Geek
1998 Published Reviews
Assassin’s Creed: The Rebel CollectionSwitch
For fans of Assassin's Creed who only own a Switch now or who simply want a reason to play these games again, this is a lot of game to sail through. And for anyone who never experienced Black Flag, or indeed the series as a whole, this is a great entry point.
The battle action is decent, but with move-sets better suited to platforming, often characters feel clunky. You’ll be longing for more options in the heat of battle, and those cheap deaths from being flung into pits will always irritate. It’s not terrible by any means, and treated as a sweetener on top of the amazing content in the Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove collection is when it will be most appreciated. It’s just unlikely to be something many people return to again and again.
The controls are as tight as you would expect, and there’s plenty of humour, challenge, and content to keep you coming back for more. The only disappointment is Joustus, which felt underused and under-explained, which is a shame considering this is one of the game’s main differences when compared to the previous titles. But as an additional minigame, it is most welcome, as is more Shovel Knight for that matter. King of Cards is a worthy addition to the series that both fans and newcomers can enjoy. Shoulder barging skeletons into lava has never been more fun.
The amazing theme and artwork just can't carry the lackluster gameplay of Yaga. The frustrating luck system affects so much of the game, and it's hard to get invested in the crafting when your weapons just keep breaking.
Honestly, I had enormous fun with Avicii Invector. The music had me bobbing my head along to the beat, smiling as my little ship bounced, pitched and rolled along its circuits. It tested me at times, forcing me to focus, but often the design would work so well that I would subconsciously find the rhythm of the button prompts. The story scenes are often daft, but they’re well animated in their simplistic, animated comic style, and although there isn’t much of a plot, there are still touching moments throughout. A fitting tribute.
The combat is sluggish and unsatisfying, voice acting is terrible, everything moves at such a slow pace, and the story isn’t half as interesting as I hoped it would be. Visually, there are definite improvements, with Bailu village looking lovely, but the main city of Niaowu lacks any real vibrancy or vitality, and when games like Yakuza get it so right, it feels as though maybe Shenmue should have been left in the past.
If you've not played Alien: Isolation, then now's the time! If you've been waiting for it to come to the Switch, then it's a must buy if you want to be scared to death, filled with impressive visuals and thrilling moments.
To call Genesis a return to form would be a tad unfair to Darksiders 3. Fury’s adventure had some great moments and more than earned its place in the franchise, but Genesis just feels like it’s on a higher level in many regards. From the gorgeous visuals to the smooth, frenetic combat and environments that beg to be explored, the quality on display here is incredibly impressive. Despite a smattering of minor issues and a few iffy design choices, Darksiders Genesis is still a fantastic videogame, and might even be the best Darksiders game to date.
Die hard fans of XCOM will likely fall in love with Phoenix Point, a hard-as-nails challenge that offers procedurally-generated replayability and a suite of tactics to help you thrive on and off the battlefield.
Simulacra is a solid horror game with some good ideas. If you can overlook the voice acting, there's a fun, unnerving experience to be had.
Arise: A simple storyPS4
Arise: A Simple Story is perfectly named because that’s all it wants to tell through the platforming medium. However, there’s an oxymoronic complexity to how it achieves this simplicity. It feels so stripped back and full of emotion because the sounds, visuals, creative direction, and character animations are all working together. They create a whole that is so sublime and enjoyable you sometimes don’t notice the parts. You just notice how it makes you feel inside, and the look on your face, be it a smile or a tinge of sadness.
While the game looks and sounds like it could have been from a bygone decade, the gameplay and structure is very much of the modern era of mobile games. Originally released a short while back after a lengthy gestation period, this version marries all of the charm of its iOS predecessor with the superior control method the Switch allows. It doesn’t last long, but you soon develop a sense that with the right upgrades, skill and patience you could ostensibly train yourself to beat the thing without error. It is a lot of fun trying.
Mortal Kombat 11Switch
If you absolutely want a portable version of Mortal Kombat 11, this is a fine experience for the core gameplay. If you want to play docked, getting it on literally any other system is a better idea. While it is unlikely to expect major updates to the port so long after release, I hope the Krypt at least can be improved because it feels and looks horrible compared to the other platforms.
There’s a charming aesthetic to it all, bright and colourful and aimed squarely at kids, but the slapstick, ragdoll humour will appeal to grown-ups too. It can be frustrating to navigate the maps with a stretcher full of dizzies, but that’s kind of the point. Either way, it’s much more fun to play with a buddy, or one of your kids, than it is to go it alone.
Sniper Ghost Warrior ContractsPC
Sniper Ghost Warrior: Contracts isn't the prettiest game and certainly not the most accessible, but it's an enjoyable budget title, and worth picking up for fans of stealth-based action.
Citadel: Forged with FireXbox One
It isn’t all terrible, and I do feel that with some attention focused on quality of life improvements and perhaps a little more respect for the player’s time there is potentially a really fun game underneath. There are lots of caves and interesting things to explore which have loot in them, as well as enemy camps to raid, dungeons to delve into and mysterious monoliths that will provide you with a temporary buff. There is some potential with the different crafting recipes as well as the items you can find in chests and in dungeons to really experiment with different builds.
I suspect that even the most hardcore management sim/park-building fans will tire of how inefficient the menus are and how awkward it is even to set up a new enclosure. More casual players will certainly be out of their depth, even Sandbox Mode won’t be enough to keep them engaged. Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t a bad game, but in its current state, Planet Zoo is a little too unstable and a little too complex. It’s a game that feels like it needed a few more months to iron out its flaws.
Red Dead Redemption 2PC
If you’ve been holding out for the PC version, your wait has been worth it. With a burgeoning online mode that, although not quite there yet, is well on the way, and a fifty hour campaign to get through with emotional highs and lows, this is an even better version of one of the best games of this generation. Once upon a time people would overuse the word “epic”, but it’s a phrase truly befitting of Rockstar’s brilliant Red Dead Redemption 2.
Sword & Shield is a really tricky Pokémon entry to pigeonhole. It retains the old Pokémon charm, but it's not without flaws
Black Future '88Switch
Even with no shortage of challenging side-scrollers to get into these days, Black Future '88 is more than worthy of your time and does more than enough to stand out in an increasingly populated crowd
Sid Meier's Civilization VIPS4
Civilization VI plays really well on console, and with the release on PS4 and Xbox One, the UI has been adapted to switch between menus, move around the map, and make your selections regarding what to produce with relative ease. If you’re new to Civ 6 and want to get involved, this is a great place to start, but be prepared to spend a lot of time learning the intricacies and nuances of each leader and option the game offers.
Terminator: ResistanceXbox One
The biggest problem with Terminator Resistance is that it feels a little unambitious, borrowing gameplay traits from all over the place but doing absolutely nothing new or unique. Smashing lots of ideas together doesn’t save this from feeling like it was put together on an assembly line, like its automated antagonists. It would probably be harsh to say that Terminator Resistance is “bad”. It’s okay. But given some of the releases we’ve seen this year, some notably from indie developers, “okay” ain’t getting it done.
Doctor Who: The Edge Of TimePS4
Doctor Who: The Edge of Time is a plain adventure that doesn’t push the boundaries of virtual reality. It’s more about fan service than it is about anything else, but it does have moments where it shines, particularly when the Weeping Angels pop up. If you’re a big fan of Doctor Who, you’re going to enjoy visiting the TARDIS, bumping into the Daleks, and swinging around the Sonic Screwdriver, but even then the excitement wears off rather quickly.
A charming Zelda-esque Roguelike with a compelling assortment of permanent upgrades. A few technical issues do detract from the experience, but the beautiful world of Sparklite is well worth exploring.
WRC 8 FIA World Rally ChampionshipSwitch
While not unplayable, it is a shame that WRC 8’s fantastic gameplay has been tarnished somewhat by the control issues of Nintendo’s console. Perhaps with some tweaking and maybe a game update, the excellent handling of the other versions can make its way into this port. It would be a shame if it were left as it is, especially considering the quality of the PS4 version I played back in September. The Switch deserves better, WRC fans deserve better and honestly, KT Racing can do better.