Hardcore Gamer's Scores

  • Games
For 2,025 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 8% same as the average critic
  • 42% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 Assassin's Creed III
Lowest review score: 20 Into the Dark: Ultimate Trash Edition
Score distribution:
2025 game reviews
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Dead Space 2 is one of the most disturbing, grotesque and unsightly games I've ever played...but it's so damn good.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Yeah, both games are a bit too talky, and somewhat short as well, but they deliver high octane giant robot action with grace and skill. Both games hit the ground running, give the player a ton of power, and don't let up on the energy until done.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Dead Space 2 is one of the most disturbing, grotesque and unsightly games I've ever played...but it's so damn good.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Delivering the full HD experience, Blizzard’s jump to current-gen consoles is a flying success.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Bit.Trip is a must for anyone who owned any of the original games on the Wii, or heard of them and just wants to try them out. Their designs are simplistic in theory, but a riot to play.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While some of the controls can be a bit bothersome, the overall gameplay mechanics and sense of enjoyment is overwhelming. Mix one of the most gratifying cooperative campaigns in recent history with an absolutely charming cast of characters, and you have an addictive upper echelon independent game.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Trials HD is a whole lot of of fun. It seems simple enough, but there’s an incredible amount of skill needed to be good at it.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you loved the first Geometry Wars, you're going to adore Geometry Wars 2.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A combination of fun, fairness, beauty and joy, Mario Kart 8 is absolutely brilliant.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number is purposely discomforting, hypnotically visceral. It’s one of the best games released so far this year.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    BattleBlock Theater doesn’t do anything particularly new, but that’s perfectly okay, because everything it does do it does without a hitch to speak of.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The action is huge, the enemies gigantic and the firepower overwhelming. Earth Defense Force 4.1 is finally the game the series has always tried to be.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Even seventeen years on it still stands taller than just about every other game that built upon its foundations. Aesthetically speaking, almost no game of its era has aged quite as gracefully, and even with the remastered visuals turned off it still looks great.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Blizzard has perfected the RTS and now they’ve laid a fantastic foundation for the FPS.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you’re someone who typically shrugs off indie games as somehow less meaningful then their AAA counterparts, you owe it to yourself to play Hyper Light Drifter. Alex Preston and his team have delivered a title that highlights everything great about the medium as a whole, it’s as simple as that.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While technical hiccups are a shoe-in with any game as complex as Rocksmith, the ones found here don’t mar the experience much. Since every facet of gameplay has been given a nice thick coat of improvement in Rocksmith 2014, issues that the original title was known for have either been removed entirely, or overhauled beyond recognition.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There’s a lot of good mining in the depths of SteamWorld Dig, and it stays fun from the basic beginnings to its chaotic ending. It’s not a bad little journey for a steambot that didn’t have a pickaxe to call his own when he showed up in town.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Freedom Planet is a love letter to SEGA fans, and newcomers are in store for a special gaming experience that they won’t experience elsewhere in this modern age.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Nihilumbra is the kind of game that many will look over because they think they’ve played things like it hundreds of times before. It’s not. This is a project filled with incredibly smart puzzle design and an important message at its core.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition is a fantastic experience, and one of the best games I've played this generation. Even with some graphical hiccups, it remains superior to the console counterparts, offering more content, better graphical options and a frame rate that is steady throughout. Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition is an experience like no other that will invoke a multitude of emotions while keeping you planted on the edge of your seat.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While a few more arenas would have been nice, this is the ultimate modern Bomberman, and one of the best multiplayer games around. [Oct 2007, p.66]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky is one of the finest JRPGs in the history of the genre, and that still holds true for its Steam debut.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not only is Forza Horizon a worthy addition to the series, but one of the most comprehensive racing experiences this generation.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Don’t be surprised to see this small, yet emotionally giant, title competing against the big boys for Game of the Year 2014.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Talos Principle: Deluxe Edition is a fantastic package of two great first-person puzzlers.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Like a great novel, Inkle’s games can steal entire nights of sleep from you as you’re immersed in their text, and Sorcery! 3 is their most potent work to date.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Episode 4: Dark Room shows how far Dontnod has continued to push the limits of Life Is Strange, with every choice made, regardless of how significant it might be, having a real meaning behind it.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This makes Bejeweled Twist easily the best in the series, and brain-consumingly addictive to boot. [Dec 2008, p.56]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    As far as a baseball game, MLB 10: The Show is the best.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s truly impressive just how solid a game Ys: Memories of Celceta is. It has a lot of moving parts, and yet never once does it get lost in all its trying to do. Instead, all of its aspects feel polished, well-conceived and executed in tandem with a remarkable sense of precision. This is one of the Vita’s most prized RPGs, and realistically, one of its best titles.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Once again cementing its status as a JRPG masterpiece, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a game you owe it to yourself to experience.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With Darksiders II, the franchise has cemented itself as an essential property among the likes of Devil May Cry and God of War. Even with the scale increasing in practically every area, the game manages to be less intimidating than its predecessor.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s a deep dark well filled with monsters and gems, equal parts platformer and reverse vertical shooter, and falling into its depths is the stuff that 1980s arcade dreams were made of.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Though it doesn’t navigate through every hairpin turn with perfection, F1 2013 still manages to cross the finish line with an impressive lead on its competition.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    When Blizzard announced they were making a digital CCG, we all expected it to look and sound beautiful, and there was little doubt that it would be well-balanced, but I don’t think anyone anticipated this level of sophistication and subtle brilliance.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With an absolutely stellar presentation, some of the most memorable tracks picked from the last game, an arsenal of modes to play, and one of the lengthiest stories in a fighting game, Persona 4 Arena has everything a fighter should have, plus more.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Gorgeous, addictive and absolutely exploding with content, this is the ultimate Super Smash Bros. experience. Though the stage design tool is once again lacking and Smash Tour will be hit or miss for some, you’ll still be playing this for years to come.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Goodbye Deponia sends off the series in the most profoundly memorable way. While there are some pacing concerns and minor technical issues here and there, these are overshadowed by the comical story and clever puzzle designs.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It may have resulted in a seemingly incoherent fusion of ideas and pixels, but at its heart, #IDARB is a classic sports game that will click with just about anybody, and the extra helping of random chaos will never cease to entertain.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    For fans of the comics and adventure buffs alike, The Wolf Among Us continues to assert itself as a must-play game.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A high-score run on Super Stardust HD is more a marathon than spirit, but it's still the best thing running on the PS3. [Oct 2007, p.66]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 59 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is a game that’s meant to be both played and savored, and anyone looking to try something that combines familiar gameplay elements with a very tranquil tone should give it a shot.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    As far as puzzle games go, Scribblenauts is one of the best and will have you entranced by its cute and creative nature.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Every element is perfectly in place with dynamic gameplay, inspiring level design, a fantastic Noisia/Combichrist soundtrack and an over the top modern tone that wholly compliments the series. Combine all that with a 15-20 hour campaign full of an emotionally resonant (and often outlandish) story, and all but the most jaded gamers will walk away satisfied.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Few games – hell, few films – are so genuine and earnest in their execution, and few first episodes of anything are so effective in leaving you wanting more.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    It really hits the sweet spot that few games do: it’s forgiving enough for people who like simple, easygoing games to finish, but challenging enough for completionists to work at for days, even weeks on end.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    You may get a sense of deja vu as you play, but GRAW 2 is still a game that's worth having in your library. [May 2007, p.52]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    It's an interesting evolution of the brawler, a neat implementation of DS controls, and a worthy successor to its notorious forefather. [Spring 2008, p.53]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Lego Harry Potter Years 1-4 is a fantastic game, offering many great hours of game play.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    This game is tightly designed and coded, contains tons of abilities to take advantage of, and is just downright fun.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Lego Harry Potter Years 1-4 is a fantastic game, offering many great hours of game play.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Lego Harry Potter Years 1-4 is a fantastic game, offering many great hours of game play.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    BioShock has a surprisingly deep and vivid storyline. It doesn't just throw you a few curveballs; it refines how stories are told in gaming. [Nov 2007, p.50]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    With its unique gameplay, addictive multiplayer, lively characters, and stylishly minimalistic visuals, You, Me & The Cubes is exactly the kind of game what the Wiiware scene needs more of.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Without a doubt, the raft of online features elevates Black and White to the height of pre-3DS Pokémon greatness. This is the biggest game in the series, and brings a wealth of tertiary additions that fans have been asking for.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In the end, though, it's a testament to the game's quality that even in the face of the imperfect camera and combat, the wonderful adventuring aspects manage to make up for whatever other shortcomings this game may possess. [July 2007, p.54]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Without a doubt, the raft of online features elevates Black and White to the height of pre-3DS Pokémon greatness. This is the biggest game in the series, and brings a wealth of tertiary additions that fans have been asking for.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Anyway, Mana Khemia has a solid story, hilarious character dialogue, and an engaging combat system, and it lets you make giant swords using only dirt, vegetables, woodchips, and household cleaning products.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    It may have taken over five years, but the delays and development reboot was well worth it as Alan Wake is one of the top exclusives for the 360, and a welcomed new IP several years into the lifecycle of the 360.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    If you love Contra games, chances are you already know that Contra ReBirth is worth the 1000 points. But if you’ve never played a Contra title, and want to see what the fuss is all about, Contra ReBirth is an outstanding example of why so many gamers consider Konami the masters of runnin’ and gunnin’.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Not only is Silent Hill Origins a strong handheld effort, but also a worthy entry into the beloved series. [Dec 2007, p.60]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    This game is tightly designed and coded, contains tons of abilities to take advantage of, and is just downright fun.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Shift shows a lot of potential for the series and will go down as one of the best racing games of 2009.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In the end, though, it's a testament to the game's quality that even in the face of the imperfect camera and combat, the wonderful adventuring aspects manage to make up for whatever other shortcomings this game may possess. [July 2007, p.54]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 81 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In the end, don't think about what you're not getting in Overlord: what you are getting is a hilarious, complex, unique experience. It's an absolute must-have for PC gamers. [Sept 2007, p.66]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 88 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    While the flow of battles are definitely slower by today's gaming standards, the strategic depth is still far better than most games released today. [Nov 2007, p.60]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 90 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In short, Assassin’s Creed 2 is the game that the original should have been
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Whether you’re a skater (like myself) or simply a gamer who likes to virtually tear it up, Skate 2 offers a fairly complex control scheme that rewards those who dig into the moves with one of the most bold, creative, and downright fun games, like evar.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    It's a unique experiment with a lot of depth for those willing to donate the time. [Vol 3, Issue 2, p.64]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In the end, Heavy Rain is a revolution in video game storytelling offering an emotional thrill ride. Unfortunately it doesn’t quite hold up on the gameplay end of things.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Teenage Zombies is pretty much the perfect platformer. [Spring 2008, p.52]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The formula may be a little over 22 years old, but Mega Man 10 shows that it’s still more than capable of delivering just as much fun as it did all those years ago.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Shift shows a lot of potential for the series and will go down as one of the best racing games of 2009.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The PC version won a number of awards and the PS3 version holds up quite well. [June 2007, p.60]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 70 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    If you like tennis games and you have a Playstation 2, it belongs in your gaming library. [July 2007, p.62]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 81 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    At 1000 points, Rage of the Gladiator brings just enough content and old-fashioned fun to warrant adding it to your WiiWare library.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    With easy-to-pick-up controls and stunning graphics, Fight Night Round 4 is a fantastic experience with plenty of replay value and tons of unlockable content to keep any boxing fan busy for months.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    I'm addicted. [Vol 3, Issue 2, p.60]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 78 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The formula may be a little over 22 years old, but Mega Man 10 shows that it’s still more than capable of delivering just as much fun as it did all those years ago.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In short, Assassin’s Creed 2 is the game that the original should have been
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Whether you’re a skater (like myself) or simply a gamer who likes to virtually tear it up, Skate 2 offers a fairly complex control scheme that rewards those who dig into the moves with one of the most bold, creative, and downright fun games, like evar.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The gameplay, as I said above, is fast-paced. It actually feels a lot like old school NBA Jam in execution. [Sept 2007, p.68]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 85 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Infamous is everything you could want in a single player experience, from its beautiful graphics to its amazing gameplay.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    It's not a game to be entered into lightly: once you start, it may not be possible to stop. [Mar 2007, p.60]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 81 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    In short: come for Balthier, stay for the solid gameplay. It's a win-win situation. [Dec 2007, p.63]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Do not dismiss Borderlands as “just another shooter.” Co-op play is all the rage in FPS games these days, and not only is it featured here, but it is encouraged.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    A lot will depend on how the endgame of Lich King develops, and where we go from here. Right now, Lich King is a solid foundation to build on, with a lot to keep you occupied.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    With easy-to-pick-up controls and stunning graphics, Fight Night Round 4 is a fantastic experience with plenty of replay value and tons of unlockable content to keep any boxing fan busy for months.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Excitebike: World Rally, like its predecessor, seamlessly merges simplicity with fun.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The majority of this review may carry a negative, disappointed tone, but allow me to stress that Ninja Gaiden II is not a bad game, nor is it a broken one. It's actually one of the best that the Xbox 360 has to offer, and easily worth your money.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Looking back over my experience, I can safely say that Yuji Naka delivered once again at creating a simple, fun, and challenging platforming game.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Plants vs. Zombies is a huge game with a great sense of humor, and while it tends to play itself once a strategy is completed and the field of fire constructed, putting it all together and experimenting with the possibilities stays fun for a long, long time. [Summer 2009]
    • Hardcore Gamer
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's a unique and fun shooter boasting a far more vibrant color palette and better default soundtrack than Beat Hazard. Vertical shooter fans will adore it, as will those with extensive music collections.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There's a giant world to explore here, loaded with details and fantastically pretty. Whether you're stealthing your way through a ramshackle outpost or climbing a radio tower on top of a mountain, it's always engaging, pulling you effortlessly from one scenario to the next and hitting all the right notes along the way.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    All in all, Total Extreme Wrestling 2013 is a beast of a simulator.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you're up for the challenge, They Bleed Pixels is a fast and fun action-platformer that will put all your reflexes to the test. It's utterly unapologetic about killing you, and because the controls are so smooth and precise every single failure feels exactly like it should- as something that could have been avoided if only you'd played better. It's not a game to play when you're looking to wind down at day's end, but bring all your skill and a load of patience, and They Bleed Pixels will make you feel like a magician with a gamepad.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Anyone who loves runners will adore this since it’s got far more depth than most of that genre’s offerings and makes trick-chaining easy to learn. This is still a very challenging game, but it’s a fair one that is well worth its price tag.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Whether or not this brief glimpse into the future of Metal Gear Solid is worth 20 or 30 bucks is up to you, but I can say without any hesitance that Ground Zeroes displays the biggest evolution of the series seen since the original Metal Gear Solid on Playstation, even if that evolution only lasts for a short, fleeting instant. Bring on The Phantom Pain.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There should be no doubt that Valkyria Chronicles is a modern classic that has earned each one of its fans and accolades. As the game rolls on, the battle system shows itself to be both complex and intuitive, with enough depth that hours can be lost in a blink. While some might be put off by ponderous exposition, the overall package is sublime. Players who have not experienced it before really should give it a shot, but as there is no brand new content to be found in the remaster, those who have played the original to death need to decide if a graphical upgrade and trophy support is worth purchasing again.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Lumo is a wonderful little thing, gorgeous and intricate and tricky, and a perfect example of what a game from the past made for the present can be.