Beholder Review

Games set within countries plagued by totalitarian regimes generally cast you as either the chosen hero who must rise up against their oppressors, or as a cog-in-the-machine type whose primary concern is survival. Beholder is the latter sort of game, casting you as Carl, the landlord of a small apartment complex in a war-torn region. Carl must alternate between spying on and assisting his tenants ...[Read More]

Linelight Review

In a period when so many games vie for our attention with bombastic action scenes and deeply involving stories, finding a game like Linelight feels like a blessing. There’s no excess, nothing to distract you from the mechanics and obstacles at play. As intended, its presentation is minimalistic, bordering on stark, with merely a few lines and colorful highlights against a lightly blushed bac...[Read More]

Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World Review

When Yoshi’s Woolly World came out on Wii U in 2015, its well-hidden collectibles seemed at odds with its often breezy platforming–most of the challenge was in finding its secrets, so opting to forgo them made some stages too basic. Updated for 3DS, the leisurely pace of Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World feels right at home on a handheld. It’s the superior of the two versions and still works b...[Read More]

Dynasty Warriors: Godseekers

The Dynasty Warriors games, despite their apparent absurdity, usually make a fair attempt at being historically accurate. You can, in series tradition, flatten ten men with the push of a single button; but you can also try–and fail–to save a comrade’s life in one particular battle, only to look it up on the internet and find that they actually died there on that same battlefield ...[Read More]

Urban Empire Review

These days, it’s easy to let political frustration well up a bit. We like to think that, given the keys to the city, we’d do better than a real politician. “It’s so simple!” you might say. “Give people what they ask for, take care of them, and there won’t be any problems.” For better and worse, Urban Empire lets you explore that idea–or, at lea...[Read More]

Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8: Final Chapter Prologue Review

What’s in a name? As much as you can cram, or so Square Enix seems to think with Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8: Final Chapter Prologue. If nothing else, the awkward, mile-long moniker hints at the impressive breadth of content available: an HD remaster of the Nintendo 3DS’ Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, a short-but-entertaining coda of sorts to Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep for the P...[Read More]

Tales of Berseria Review

Just from the title, there are a few things you can expect from a Tales game: a lengthy story, melodramatic writing, dated visuals, and a real-time battle system. For the most part, Tales of Berseria sticks to the same formula. The story is long and punctuated with both predictable and unexpected plot twists, the writing can swing from tender moments to cringe-worthy ones, and the real-time combat...[Read More]

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard Review

We didn’t know it at the time, but Resident Evil 4 was the beginning of the end. Though in many ways the series’ best game, it also signaled the start of Resident Evil’s transformation from survival-horror into something far scarier: forgettable, derivative action. By contrast, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard has been heralded as a return to form–a classic, uncompromising fright...[Read More]

Yakuza 0 Review

Despite the Yakuza series’ cult status, mainstream success has eluded it in the west. If you’ve never played a Yakuza game before, however, Yakuza Zero is a logical place to test the waters for yourself. It’s the series’ debut on PlayStation 4, and as a prequel to the first Yakuza game, it doesn’t rely on preexisting knowledge of its principal characters. More importa...[Read More]

Gravity Rush 2 Review

The original Gravity Rush had many positive qualities, but controlling Kat, its upbeat and unusually skilled hero, was the reason to play the game. With the ability to control her center of gravity, you could walk on walls and ceilings, and–most important of all–fly through a magnificent floating city in the clouds. The unusual gravity-based nature of Kat’s powers made the age-ol...[Read More]

Wild Guns Reloaded Review

There’s a particular genre of arcade action game that has truly fallen off the radar in recent times–games where you control a character from a third-person view on a 2D plane, shooting objects and enemies in the background with a reticle while dodging shots and obstacles in the foreground. I’ve heard this odd genre called many names: “shooting gallery,” “Cabal-like” (after the game that pop...[Read More]

Shantae: Half-Genie Hero Review

Fans of old-school platformers have had plenty of choices lately, and WayForward’s Shantae: Half-Genie Hero–the latest in the series that debuted on the Game Boy Color–is yet another great addition to the list. The franchise has received two excellent, intentionally retro-styled adventures on modern platforms, but Half-Genie Hero mixes in modern 3D graphics with its traditional 2D game...[Read More]

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