1256 Published Reviews

Maid of Sker

PCPS4Xbox One
6.00
Josh WiseJul 31, 2020
The designs of Elizabeth’s family aren’t so much foreshadowed as foreshouted, and the plot soon wavers off-key and winds up shipwrecked. But something about it hangs around, like the hum of an unsettling tune.

Fight Crab

PC
1.00
Imogen DonovanJul 29, 2020
Fight Crab shares a lot of similarities with the glorious gladiatorial battles of Ancient Rome, which were what made primary school history lessons actually fun. Though, like the sporting spectacle, it might not be everyone's cup of tea.

Destroy All Humans!

PCPS4Xbox One
7.00
Josh WiseJul 27, 2020
I would recommend the remake to anyone with a nostalgic thirst for the original, but so, too, to those that like their laughs with a dark bite. It isn’t without its blights. For one thing, the art direction isn’t to my taste; compared to the dirt-dry palette of the original, the colours in the new game are glucose-sharp, with lawns that practically glow. Characters have a warped style and a rubbery shine, with hair and features like frosting.

CARRION

PCSwitchXbox One
7.00
Josh WiseJul 23, 2020
Carrion abounds with the thrills of being the monster, then, but, less common and more cosy, with the kick of being in a monster movie—of slithering in celebration over the tropes of the genre. The good news is that, for a while, it works.

Necrobarista

PC
9.00
Imogen DonovanJul 21, 2020
As the hours tick by, these protective layers peel back and fade away, and the real conflict corrupting The Terminal becomes clear. Its characters, silly and cruel, good-natured and detached, flirtatious and depressed, are enlivened by the presentation and the enchanting writing. You understand why Maddy got herself into this pickle in the first place. You don’t want to say goodbye.

Ghost of Tsushima

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseJul 14, 2020
Nor could it, in a blockbuster video game that demands a generous supply of action and flash. Still, when you’re cantering through its serene peaks, reenacting your favourite samurai-movie battles, it’s difficult not to come to a simple conclusion. That was brilliant!

Little Orpheus

iOS
7.00
Josh WiseJun 22, 2020
The mission, as Yurkovoi outlines it, is “to drill to the centre of the Earth, and find out if we could establish a city there.” What could be a more perfect symbol for the Soviet Union during the Cold War? A country tunneling into itself and praying for a promised land. Workers of the world, unite! Everybody’s gone to the rupture!

Disintegration

PC
7.00
Imogen DonovanJun 13, 2020
Disintegration poses interesting questions about how we will define the human experience in a recognisable future. It's not going to answer those questions, sadly, but the gameplay is so creatively rewarding and satisfying. Plus, cool robots.

The Last of Us: Part II

PS4
9.00
Josh WiseJun 12, 2020
Where it succeeds isn’t in how close it scrapes to the level of prestige TV, or to films. Its coup is not, “Look how closely we can make games resemble highbrow art.” It’s more, “Look what previously fenced-off realms we can get interactivity into.

Skelattack

PS4
7.00
Josh WiseJun 02, 2020
Skelattack is a masterpiece in the art of the pleasant. Your quest is broken up by trips back to Aftervale (courtesy of a minecart and a fast-travel tunnel network), where you can buff your sword at the blacksmith, purchase upgrades to your powers (I recommend extra Boom-a-rib range), and check out the pages of lore, which you find hidden out in the world.

Maneater

Xbox One
7.00
Josh WiseMay 23, 2020
The price that Maneater pays for its satirical too-muchness is the true wonder and horror of the unadorned depths, summed up nowhere better than with its star. The body of a shark—the long, lethal slash of grey, the basins of impenetrable black, and the impossibly widening maw—is a nightmare of natural design. It needs no mutation.

HUNTDOWN

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMay 19, 2020
It’s that latter film that’s been going round in my head, since playing Huntdown. Its closing lines are fired between a policeman and his prisoner: “You’re pretty fancy, Wilson.” “I have moments.” Huntdown isn’t fancy. It rarely swells beyond the sum of its parts; with parts as precision-tooled as this, it doesn’t need to. But now and then throughout, there are sights to be treasured.

John Wick Hex

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMay 09, 2020
This is hardly the nerve-igniting spectacle available in the films, which are, in effect, a string of level-winning replays. What we are offered instead are the chilled thrills of the cerebral superman; the man who lives in an existential rhythm all his own; the man for whom the stresses and distractions of others are like distant thuds against a wall of ice; the man who comes and goes as easy and cool as the wind. In short, we are offered the chance to be Keanu Reeves.

Streets of Rage 4

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseApr 29, 2020
The people that have been waiting for this, in one way or another, for over two decades, may well feel some missing part of their soul slotting back into place, like a silicone cartridge. I can’t vouch for such powers, but I will say that when the credits rolled, I felt better, gunning for action, as if life were a thing to rage through with a smile on your face. How often does that happen?

Deliver Us the Moon

PS4
7.00
Josh WiseApr 27, 2020
The game they have made is well worth playing—for anyone who looks to the stars—if only for a single wondrous scene. About halfway through, you have to wrangle an antenna array, which means driving a buggy across the surface. It was there, cruising over a silvery, cratered plain, that I realised the mission was a success. The moon, for a few moments, was delivered.

Moving Out

PS4
7.00
Imogen DonovanApr 23, 2020
Moving Out is a puzzle game that prioritises co-op capers in a peculiar land where smooth moves are anything but. It's a game that pays particular care to chaos, as the player careens and lurches into dressers and shelves, scattering their contents satisfyingly.

Final Fantasy VII Remake

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseApr 22, 2020
As a result of magnifying such a comparably miniscule portion of play, the pacing in the remake lumbers. Still, the prospect of leaving planet Earth for a few hours comes at a premium in our present moment.

Spyder

iOS
7.00
Josh WiseApr 14, 2020
As the mission wears on, its conceit gathers cobwebs, but do we always need to be blown away?

RESIDENT EVIL 3

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMar 30, 2020
Resident Evil 3 is a play for our imagination as much as our memory. It understands that the fear we felt long ago didn’t fade; it took root in our brains and mutated into myth. And this is what it might look like.

Nioh 2

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMar 23, 2020
The curse of any Soulslike is that, sooner or later, it must face up to the fact that there is no such thing. With Nioh 2, Team Ninja has done a better job than anyone else at making smart innovations to a treasured design template, but you can’t innovate art, or the rolling fogs of sensation that envelop you when you’re in the company of something you can’t explain.

DOOM Eternal

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMar 17, 2020
It’s only when you stop playing, feeling somehow frazzled, energised, and jittery, that you realise the game has as much in common with the audiovisual arts as it does with a double-shot of espresso.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Switch
9.00
Imogen DonovanMar 16, 2020
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is beautiful and peaceful, offering safe harbour from the stresses of everyday life. There’s so much to do and so much to see, so what’s wrong with making a back seat?

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

PCXbox One
9.00
Josh WiseMar 10, 2020
It has enough belief in its genre to proceed with nothing other than earnest devotion, unburdened with the need to boast a USP and brimming with the confidence that comes with knowing that, in the beauty stakes and beyond, there are very few, in the rarefied realms of indie or AAA, who can challenge it.

Dreams

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseMar 06, 2020
Dreams is devoted to the realisation of exciting wishes, and with it Media Molecule has its defining, if not quite definable, game. The limits of its possibilities will become clear only as they are pushed back. “To the dream ‘No’ does not seem to exist,” said Freud. We shall see.

Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition

PS4
8.00
Josh WiseFeb 11, 2020
Those intoxicated by the game’s dreamy brew may argue that there are no detours—that, like the Zero, you’re either on it or you’re not. If you’re anything like me and Conway, however, you’ll be somewhere in-between.