GameWatcher's Scores

  • Games
For 1,735 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 55% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 39% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 72
Highest review score: 100 Portal 2
Lowest review score: 10 Haunted House: Cryptic Graves
Score distribution:
1735 game reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    I really don’t like how specific and restrictive the Technocrat and Diplomat advisors are, but their quality is for the most part okay. And aside from ship designs, "okay" is a word I can apply to the whole of the Humanoids Species Pack. The end result is kinda obvious, and something I alluded to at the opening of the review: it’s inherent value is based on your personal attraction to what is offered, and if you are attracted to the ships and races in display, you’re in luck.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Whereas The Surge managed to get the basics of Dark Souls right but failed to make either the enemies or world interesting, A Walk In The Park corrects this problem (for the most part). The idea of a sci-fi Souls game was cool but setting it in a Disneyland-style theme park is clever and done pretty well. It’s very much Itchy & Scratchy Land from The Simpsons, with killer mascots and murderous jolly robot parades. Things get ridiculously tough towards the end and the game starts to forget about the fun enemies, but with this expansion Deck13 have finally made a Dark Souls alternative people might want to play. If you own The Surge, you need to take A Walk In The Park.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A unique mix of strategy and RPG mechanics that miraculously loses very few of either.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    DOOM VFR is one of the most action-packed games I’ve ever played using the HTC Vive. It’s a shame Bethesda ignored the huge amount of progress that has been made in VR development. DOOM VFR is a good game, but with a number of changes it could easily become a great game. Do not buy this game if you suffer from motion sickness as you simply won’t be able to play it for longer than five minutes at a time. However, if the locomotion issues don’t bother you, DOOM VFR is definitely worth picking up.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock is a massive treat for fans of the franchise, but even if this is your first exposure to the universe, it’s well worth your money. It’s a sufficiently deep, extremely fun and good looking turn based space strategy game with fantastic combat and a content-rich campaign.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Way of Redemption is all there technically and functionally, but it’s empty and short on content. Every moment spent playing, the obviousness of it being an attempt at a forced e-sports success hangs over the experience, which is pretty dull to begin with.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    KING Art and THQ Nordic have breathed a life into Black Mirror that it most definitely was lacking in 2003. The mystery and suspense are still there and the puzzles are diverse and challenging, but the house has taken on an excellent visual redesign. Exploring and investigation is an intriguing endeavor and the ghostly moments provide a fascinating highlight to puzzle solving and plot advancement. If that wasn’t enough, the story is chock full of interesting characters with passionate voicing that make the story that much more interesting throughout the game. We certainly wish the animation was a little better in both gameplay and cutscenes at times because it hurts the mood the game is trying to build when the cracks show. That said, when everything is in proper working motion, Black Mirror is a suspenseful horror adventure that will tickle brains with its puzzles and exploration and quicken pulses with its dark story.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Attacking a recently settled city near my borders and settling for peace immediately afterwards, instead of being embroiled in an eternal war against a drastically inferior enemy due to imbecilic AI diplomacy.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Whether you’ve played past titles in the franchise or not, World of Final Fantasy is a seriously strong JRPG that any fan of the genre should get a kick out of. Emotional, hilarious and deep, it proves yet again that a good RPG is about more than just thwarting a world-ending menace - it’s about the journey and everyone who makes it worthwhile.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Star Wars Battlefront 2 could’ve been game of the year, but some key mistakes basically ruin the whole thing. The progression system being randomized in Loot Crates and players getting significant game-changing upgrades, many of which were paid for, are the main offenders. With every player stocked up with Star Cards that give them massive advantages new players face a long uphill struggle, and it makes Battlefront 2 a chore to play. Which is upsetting, because DICE have put in so much effort into all the maps, modes, and Classes, and really nail the Star Wars feeling. When it works it’s a gorgeous spectacle, an imaginative and epic shooter with some wonderful objective-based ideas. Then you get blown up by an Improved Thermal Detonator for the 23rd time while other players shrug off your rockets and the fun oozes out immediately. The single-player campaign is simple but entertaining, however it can’t save Battlefront 2. If you’re desperate for Star Wars you’ve got no other choice, but if you want until a sale the game will be even more unbearable to play. Get Wolfenstein 2 instead.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Jade Dragon adds precious little to Crusader Kings 2, which would have benefitted much more from a playable and visible Chinese region. This expansion feels far too feature-bare for its price tag, and even at a smaller price point none of it feels really impactful. Even when you have access to the China menu, you’ll likely find yourself progressing via other means.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    As with all region-focused expansions for Europa Universalis IV, the first question you need to ask is whether you want to play as a nation from said region, because If not, you should look at another expansion instead. However, for those interested in playing as Muslim nations, Cradle of Civilization has plenty of new mechanics, features and events to make it worth your time and money.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A fantastic show of force from the long-standing Team Ninja, but one that feels like it didn’t truly understand the mass appeal of the genre. Spruced up with the group’s signature style, Nioh only falters with its less captivating world. We can appreciate the heritage, but it won’t grab everyone.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The Calm Before The Storm is probably a better title. The third episode of Telltale’s second season of Batman isn’t big on action, massive shocks, or set-pieces, but it is big on character development, interaction, making choices, and probably making the wrong ones. Fractured Mask isn’t the most eventful episode, but it’s still fun, all the characters are clashing wonderfully, and it’s fun waiting for the hammer to fall and your choices to bite you hard. Which will probably happen in Episode 4. We can’t wait.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite a few performance hiccups we encountered and the absence of a few of the more fun console perks or events, Injustice 2 on PC is a much better port than the first game or Mortal Kombat X. And a good thing too, because Injustice 2 is a superb fighting game. Combat is satisfying and is just as accessible to casual fans as professionals, and there’s an absolute wealth of content both online and offline that could keep you playing forever. The story mode is an absolute blast, with fun writing, acting and amazing facial animation, and sports a far better villain than the Justice League movie. Injustice 2 is by far the best fighting game this year, and may very well be the best fighting game on PC.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Spintires: MudRunner is a well-thought out and obvious improvement over the original in a number of ways. The physics feel tight and loose where they need to be, the new vehicles are genuinely fun to explore and drive, and the overall look of the game gets down and dirty in the best of ways for an off-road delivery simulator. It can get tedious at times and we wish the game took a few more chances, context, and variety in challenging our driving skills, but exploring and making our own battles through the tough journey from place to place is still a highlight, especially with friends along for the ride. A sketchy damage system and a few less than stellar textures make this game feel less polished than it ought to be at times, but with a healthy mod community and a ton of support and depth behind it, Spintires: MudRunner feels like an off-road trek that will keep on giving.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    AER is a pretty and charming game, but doesn’t have enough of its own original ideas to feel fresh, and it is plagued by a few flaws that prevent it from being a true standout in the genre of artsy indie exploration games. That said, the experience itself is fun and pleasant, even if it isn’t particularly memorable. If you already like these kinds of games, you’ll enjoy AER, but if you don’t, this isn’t what will make you fall in love with them.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    We get the impression that Sonic Team wanted Forces to be the Best Sonic Game Ever, with a Greatest Hits package of everything good in the series, but they didn’t have the time, money or talent to accomplish this. The 2D sections control poorly, and the 3D sections sport the same problems that the series has had since Sonic Adventure – such as dying if you don’t play the level exactly as the designer intended. There’s fun to be had, but even then Forces feels so cheap and abrupt that you’ll be finished with it entirely in 4 hours. It’s not the worst 3D Sonic game, but in trying to do everything Sonic Team didn’t really accomplish anything. Next time, stick to just Generations 2 or Colours 2. Or even better – give Sonic entirely to other developers.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    In terms of bringing old-school Call of Duty up to modern standards, Call of Duty: WWII does fairly admirably, but at the same time every end of it feels like something is missing. The campaign is a tour and spectacle of the terror and intensity of the conflict as the Allies fought their way into to the Eagle’s Nest, but the forgoing of nearly all outside perspectives in favor of an all-American campaign feels narrow in comparison to previous COD outings that have tackled this subject matter. Likewise, multiplayer is as tight as ever and War mode is a solid addition that we hope to see built upon in all further Call of Duty content, but the hub feels tacked on. Zombie Mode is still Zombie Mode and fans will find a lot to discover and challenge in the new scenario, but the stark tones might put off the more lighthearted fans of the mode in its previous incarnations. COD: WWII is far from the worst of the series and players will find a wealth of well-crafted moments and design here, but a few too many oddities and omissions keep it from being the best that Call of Duty has ever offered.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The original Hand of Fate took a lot of different styles of gaming and brought them together successfully to make something really unique. Hand of Fate 2 improves upon nearly every aspect of the original, providing diverse new challenges that help build the world around the Game of Life and Death. The new scenarios, the success checks that come with them, the companions, and new encounters and gear cards all add hundreds of unique touches to the game that make every card flip an experience. Meanwhile, despite a few small flaws combat is as smooth as ever with the new weapons and companion abilities allowing players to find their own preferred way to dispatch the wide array of opponents they come across. Luck is a fickle mistress and this game isn’t shy about stomping out your quests like a merciless tabletop game master in any part of your endeavors. That said, Hand of Fate 2 rewards the determined and stacking the deck in your favor to overcome its challenges makes this quest well worth the effort.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus is easily the best single-player FPS of 2017, but it has surprising problems. The story is great, well-written and well told, and goes to places both dark and humorous, but it leaves a lot left over for Wolfenstein 3. The levels are fantastically designed with many ways to approach them, but occasionally you’re not sure where you need to go and there’s often not enough variety in the levels – we’re not sure we want to see another metallic Nazi base ever again. And the combat’s just fantastic. We loved every moment of it and we’re certain we’ll want to play it again, but to be honest… The New Order was a little bit more satisfying.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Origins absolutely achieves Ubisoft’s goal of bringing back their flagship franchise with a bang. The game has very few flaws and issues, and all of these are dwarfed by the strides it has achieved on the gameplay front. Origins marries the parts of the familiar AC formula that work with a host of improvements that result in an extremely entertaining and satisfying gaming experience, backed up with a great story to boot. Assassin’s Creed is back, and it’s better than ever. Oh, and you can pet cats! GOTY 2017.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    South Park: The Fractured But Whole is an excellent sequel and the funniest game this year, but it’s simply not as good as The Stick Of Truth. Even ignoring how unique the first game was at the time, the storyline was more epic, the locations more varied, the jokes jaw-dislocatingly good in that game. This one is great, always funny and usually pretty disturbing in that South Park way, but the superhero storyline kind of peaks with Professor Chaos and that’s not even halfway through the game. Fortunately at least the combat is far better and never less than entertaining, and fights can get really inventive and very tactical. If The Stick Of Truth was an all-time classic episode of South Park, The Fractured But Whole is merely a very good one. Still, this is the one with Tweek x Craig, which is always excellent news. Hopefully Trey Parker, Matt Stone and Ubisoft will get it right again in 2020 with South Park: This Time They’re Playing Star Wars.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s interesting that The Inner World – The Last Wind Monk comes out at the time it does. The game has a lot to say about things like discrimination, acceptance, purpose, and willful ignorance and goes about it in humorous and sometimes surprisingly deep ways. It has everything a good point-and-click should have from meaningful world engagement and enjoyable dialogue to good, old-fashioned, item-heavy puzzle solving. That said, it’s clearly a journey that Studio Fizbin isn’t out to bar anyone from for the sake of nostalgic difficulty. Their adaption of point-and-click mechanics to modern times with things like the hint system ensures that the only thing keeping a player from moving forward at any point is their own stubborn resolve. It could have better character animations at times to go with all of the solid and wonderful things built visually, aurally, and mechanically around these characters. However for the most part, The Inner World – The Last Wind Monk makes a strong case that point-and-click adventures still have a lot to offer in modern gaming.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Rogue Trooper is an interesting concept. The science-fiction design it was based on translated decently to the original back in 2006 and it translates better now with everything learned in over a decade. The best parts of the game took players into airships to chase villains across ravines and cities and put them blind into treacherous forests full of snipers. These things made it along well to Rogue Trooper Redux. Unfortunately, bad enemy AI and overly simple controls where actions get caught up in one another keeps Rogue Trooper from being challenging as much as it comes out frustrating at times. Rebellion is developing a pedigree for helping to putting old school projects back together for another more meaningful go. Rogue Trooper Redux isn’t the best they’ve ever done, but it’s most certainly an interesting shooter and one well worth considering if you want to take a modernized revisit to yesteryear.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Evil Within 2 is an excellent game and a wonderful survival horror, perfectly mixing Silent Hill and Resident Evil 4 while correcting all the flaws of the original. The story’s better, the locations flow together well, the more open areas are fun to explore, and the ability to choose between action and stealth is very welcome. It’s also incredibly creepy with truly wonderful monster designs. The combat can be a little frustrating, especially early on, and occasionally the stiff Resident Evil 4/Gears of War-esque controls make things a little tougher than they need to be, but in general The Evil Within 2 hits the mark. If you’re looking for that ideal horror game to play on Halloween, this is the one to go for.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Shadow of War won’t win any prizes for originality, well, not after the first game swept them all. But it’s a bigger and (mostly) better sequel to a series that still feels unique, and for fans of Middle-Earth we’re not likely to get more movies so you can’t really ask for better than this.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Stars in Shadow: Legacy isn’t a drastic shift in direction, but it is some pretty meaningful additional content at a small price tag. The Tinker race has a lot of distinct personality in their programming to make them stand out among the already varied factions of the core game. I wish the galaxy at large responded a bit more to their more extreme measures and made it a little more difficult to be an expanding robotic zealot race, but they still play differently enough to warrant several games worth of interaction with and as them. The other additions such as the Arda Seed aren’t enormous either, but they add important little strategic wrinkles to consider regardless of what faction you play. When it comes down to it, Legacies is a budget-friendly and meaningful return to the Stars in Shadow universe.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    I’ll admit, it’s taken me this long to feel the need to expand Cities: Skylines above it base offerings. Now I understand why. Each expansion brings heaps of free content to owners of even just the base game, so you might only pick up the full bag if it focuses on what you need. For me, Mass Transit feels unnecessary; whereas for others that may have been all they ever wanted. Green Cities is like sugar in this case. I don’t need it, but I want it.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Field of Glory II is a testament to the sheer wealth of consideration and ingenuity that Slitherine and Byzantine games have put into hybridizing a tabletop and digital strategy experience. The game’s battles feature a depth that will invite new players to explore and learn while making veteran strategy gamers work overtime to wring success from its turn-based battlefields. Learning the rules can be overwhelming, but putting them successfully into action against an enemy force feels great. Some sound elements could be better and it’s a shame that the vast number of factions aren’t utilized a little further, but with creative modes like the map editor, we may very well see some fantastic user-generated campaigns down the line. All-in-all, Field of Glory II lives up to its legacy and delivers a sheer technical depth that will keep tactical minds engaged from start to finish.

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