Hardcore Gamer's Scores

  • Games
For 3,133 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 9% same as the average critic
  • 41% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 72
Highest review score: 100 Mark of the Ninja
Lowest review score: 20 Into the Dark: Ultimate Trash Edition
Score distribution:
3133 game reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There have been plenty of outings over the past few years that take the basic template of golf, as a sport, and manage to transform into something else. Whether it’s deep in strategy or surreal in delivery, fans of golf have been well serviced. Golf With Your Friends, by contrast, comes across as the antithesis of this approach. A game that goes out of its way to antagonize, despite its variety and ridiculousness in course design. In some parts, that philosophy does find a way to delight and entertain, without descending into an unnecessary leap of faith or threading the needle-like situation that most of its holes unfortunately end up forcing players into. Those who can find joy in such random, unearned chaos may get a small ounce of fun here, but for everybody else, Golf With Your Friends‘ unpolished, finicky and messy delivery takes little time to put even the most patient of mini-golf enthusiasts off completely.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    With a few more tweaks in certain areas when it comes to the difficulty and improved farming controls, Atomicrops could easily be a terrific roguelike shooter. As is, though, it’s still enjoyable, with great action that easily keeps you wanting more, a lot of goods to hunt for and try out in order to come up with a good strategy, and eye-popping, vibrant visuals that make astounding use of pixel art. It may be a tricky crop to tackle, but there’s still a rewarding experience here that’s worth checking out.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Minecraft Dungeons is a capable all-ages dungeon crawl that, while doesn’t use its license to anything like its full potential (see Dragon Quest Builders 2 for how to do it right), is still good fun once it gets moving. The variety of enemies keeps you on your toes, and the various skills and weapons make for plenty of experimentation in figuring out the best way to take them on. Each level has at least a couple of secrets to chase after, ranging from obvious to head-scratchingly obscure, and finding everything while collecting all the gear will keep players busy for hours whether fighting single- or multiplayer. Just be aware that if you’ve got any experience with the genre, the difficulty selections on the levels are there for a reason. The younger crowd deserves a good intro to the world of dungeon crawling and Minecraft Dungeons provides that nicely.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Huntdown is awesome, plain and simple. The action is intense and extremely fun, with big, superb levels, tons of firepower to work with, and a cavalcade of amazing enemy encounters and even more amazing bosses. Huntdown is an extremely enjoyable romp that does its coin-op predecessors proud when it comes to satisfying gameplay and perfectly-executed graphics, earning its spot alongside the other retro indie greats…or just alongside other great action games, period. If you’re reading this, then just go and buy it. You will most assuredly not be disappointed.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Anyone interested in narrative-focused games needs to check If Found… out. While there are some stumbling points here and there, the act of playing and experiencing the artistry is top notch. This is a game much closer to a dream than a visual novel. If Found… is the latest release from developer DREAMFEEL and will be many people’s introduction to them. It makes an incredible impression and cements this studio as one to watch. Hopefully this release inspires others to create their own games to share their unique experiences with the world.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While its story missions and their variety can be improved upon, especially when it comes to the endgame, Maneater is an absolute blast. The open world is beautiful, captivating and inviting for players of all kinds, the combat is incredibly fun, and it has a nice and sharp bit of humor to it as well, reveling in just how much the people of Port Clovis are obvious jerks…which only makes it more enjoyable to rip them apart, of course. It might not be on par with the likes of Jaws, but what we have here is still one stellar b-movie to gleefully go nuts in. And sometimes, that’s really all you need in order to help live out your monster movie fantasies.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There’s a little something for everyone in the title — collectibles, intuitive gameplay and brilliant visuals. The use of the fairy tale narrative inspires a Brothers Grimm aesthetic that fits with the morals of Neversong‘s story. It’s also a title that has some good replay value as you receive permanent special items after beating the game at least once. While it’s a short game, length of time does not necessarily detract from the quality of the title. Instead, it takes the time needed to tell the story it wants to tell. Length of play-time is often associated with quality, but oftentimes developers take extra time just for the sake of it. And while there are some light gameplay missteps, the title recovers by being genuine in its storytelling. Neversong shows that even deep, emotional stories can come from small packages.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Nearly ten years later, Saints Row: The Third remains an anomaly in the open-world genre as so many continue to embrace seriousness and realism. Saints Row: The Third Remastered arrives at just the right time to inject a dose of silliness and zaniness into the genre.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    ’80s Overdrive comes to the Switch in top form and stands even taller on the hybrid console than it did on the 3DS three years ago. With games like the original arcade great Outrun and other modern games like Horizon Chase Turbo that it inspired, it would be easy to get lost in the shuffle, but it doesn’t. It stands out thanks to a bright visual style and a memorable soundtrack that makes use of some of the best ’80s-infused music you could ask for. It controls like a dream and even the original version’s touchscreen support is retained for menus to make things easier to navigate. It does fall a bit short with track creation, but is a must-buy overall. ’80s Overdrive is one of the best racing experiences on the Switch, period.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Bottom line, Skydance Interactive has undoubtedly created the deepest VR experience to date with The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s hard to go wrong with Hatsune Miku and all the other Vocaloids in one of the most enjoyable rhythm titles on Switch. Although everything about how to play is simple at face value, it gets more challenging the higher the difficulty goes and constantly challenges one’s rhythm and ability to be alert without getting distracted. Anyone who enjoys the style of music and keeping up with a beat will enjoy the latest in the Project Diva series, as Mega Mix delivers on being a fantastic time. The new mega mix mode is an awesome addition that gives more ways to enjoy all the songs and move to the beat the entire time. There’s a reason Hatsune Miku is so popular and Project Diva Mega Mix further proves she’ll be here to last for a good long time.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Infinite – Beyond the Mind is a finely-crafted game that blends several genres together. It’s reminiscent of Sigma Star Saga from many years ago with its seemingly odd merger of two genres together which winds up creating something that’s not only a great representation of one genre, but two. It’s a smooth-playing action-platformer that also manages to be an enjoyable side-scrolling shoot-em-up with a bite-sized level structure that ensures players are never bored. Those craving a fast-paced game that keeps them engaged from beginning to end should give Infinite – Beyond the Mind a shot.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Jay and Silent Bob: Mall Brawl is tons of fun for fans of 8-bit brawlers. This is a great freebie for people who backed Chronic Blunt Punch, and for those who didn’t it’s easy to get your money’s worth from the cost of admission. As an NES beat ’em up rated E10, it’s a short title with simple gameplay and the tone is more in tune with the short-lived Clerks animated series than how Jay and Silent Bob are portrayed in Smith’s films. But that may have also been intentional since the NES did have puritan content standards that would have never allowed Jay’s rap to exist in glorious 8-bit chiptune. Either way, Jay and Silent Bob: Mall Brawl is a fun title that retro gamers and Kevin Smith fans can enjoy while they wait for Chronic Blunt Punch or his next film.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The Wonderful 101: Remastered is a charming title with a ton of unique mechanics that make it almost intimidating to approach. It can look confusing from the outside and while the beginning tutorials are lacking, once further in it all begins to click little by little. Despite trying to be so action heavy from the get go it’s a slow burn that would benefit from a way to practice moves and abilities in a safe space without being in deadly combat that can be difficult at times if not paying close attention. The story, dialogue, characters, visuals and soundtrack are all a delight that nail the superhero vibe it’s going for, while the unique Wonderful Ones are fun to collect and learn little tidbits about. Anyone looking for a short, challenging and action-packed adventure with tons of side content begging to be discovered should consider checking out PlatinumGames’ most unique title to date.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The new combat elements are where the game truly shines with the implementation of special units with specific and unique abilities, which needs to continue in the series going forward. While the game takes place in the official XCOM timeline, it still sits as a side story and its own entity. The political undertone rather than the alien war isn’t preferred, but there’s kudos there for trying something new and not throwing it into XCOM 3. The voice acting is abysmal and there’s no multiplayer option, but it’s hard to complain given the price point. A welcome surprise, XCOM: Chimera Squad plays like a real-time board game and the strategy element pays off.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Predator: Hunting Grounds is bolstered by its unique gameplay dynamics and beloved license, but falls flat thanks to unbalanced and repetitive matches as well as a general lack of polish. Some matches manage to capitalize on the thrill of hunting prey and surviving alien encounters, but the overly-simplistic Fireteam gameplay and the unnecessarily complicated Predator mechanics lead to matches that end far too quickly to feel satisfying for either side. With some post-launch balance refinements, additional polish and a proper Fireteam tutorial, the title could re-emerge as an imperfect but more frequently enjoyable experience thanks to its strong fundamentals. But as it stands, Predator: Hunting Grounds is tough to recommend at launch to those who don’t consider themselves diehard Predator or asymmetrical multiplayer fans.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Streets of Rage 4 doesn’t do much to advance the formula of classic beat ’em ups and that’s what makes it great. The game can be completed in roughly three hours, which is just enough for this type of game. Unlocking all the Easter eggs is a nice way to add to the nostalgia fix. Playing through with each character offers a slightly different game experience, but the real joy comes from playing these types of games with friends. Streets of Rage 4 is a must play for fans of retro beat ’em ups.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While SnowRunner has a few quirks here and there, overall it’s a fantastic game of exploration and brute-force driving. The maps are beautifully designed, seeming much bigger than they actually are and filled with gorgeous scenery and plenty of goals to track down. The slow pace of the driving takes a bit of getting used to, but fans of the series have already made that leap and those who haven’t yet will find that struggling out of the mire or navigating the ice floes in a river gives its own sense of satisfaction.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Sakura Wars is a blend of adventure, visual novel, dating sim and action game. Trying to blend all these different types of gameplay together to create a dramatic adventure is a tricky tightrope to balance, but the game succeeds more than it doesn’t.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Despite some stumbles, Splash Damage has successfully taken the essence of the Gears franchise and transferred it into a turn-based strategy game. Gears Tactics is a true Gears title with a campaign that builds and expands the franchise’s lore, all while introducing new characters and adding new wrinkles to old ones.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    At this point, the first three original Mana titles have all received remakes. Trials of Mana not only wipes the floor with the other two, but stands so far above them it’s hard to believe the vast difference. It’s a fantastic remake that captures the original story and characters with an amazing new way to enjoy it.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Half-Life: Alyx is an incredible journey, worth every second of the nineteen hours from start to epic finish, and an adventure worthy not only of the Half-Life name but also the enhanced expectations that grew during the series’ thirteen year absence.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    What players might expect out of Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories and what it actually is are two entirely different things. It markets itself as a serious yarn centered around a catastrophe where player choice matters, but it’s actually an intentional comedy that uses the drama of the situations to heighten the absurdity of it all. It’s weird, but in a fantastic and enthralling way. Players with patience and a great sense of humor will come away extremely pleased. Those that can’t abide a laundry list of technical imperfections would be well served staying away. Disaster Report 4 is heavily flawed with too many irritating parts to suffer past, but it still comes recommended for anyone that believes Weird Al’s “Dare to be Stupid” should be the national anthem.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, not everything new works. Some of the new story elements feel out of place with the overarching story and tone, and quite a few of the many hours feel like padding. When the story, combat and characters come together, however, Final Fantasy VII Remake captures the magic that makes Final Fantasy special. Final Fantasy VII Remake is just the beginning of this new journey and it’s already off to a great start.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Overall, the game does wonderfully in providing great spell variety with detailed abilities that synergize well across the board. Despite the balance issues, it’s still worth checking out for something to quickly get into. One Step from Eden is a flavorful, intuitive experience that’s hard to put down once you pick it up.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Bleeding Edge has a ton of potential, largely thanks to its fun and well-designed combat, colorful style and characters, and nicely-crafted levels and goals that emphasize the need for teamwork and strategy. But in trying to deliver so much when in comes to the fighting elements, it lets a few awkward moments slip through, and worse, puts less emphasis on elements like the story that need it, as well as a need for more content. It’s still an enjoyable multiplayer brawler as is, but future updates and additions will act as the true test to see if Bleeding Edge can truly improve and stand alongside the greats.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Animal Crossing has always been a series where every little thing leads to something productive. Doing nothing and staring off into the sky is relaxing, decorating houses is fun and catching critters feels rewarding. There’s never been a real “point” to Animal Crossing but that’s what makes it enjoyable, as every person can enjoy and do what they like at their own pace. New Horizons nails this feeling more than ever, with so many options and lots of things to collect and enjoy. While it’s easy to play in short bursts, it’s often hard to stop playing when ideas keep coming and experimentation is so much fun when there’s little to no consequences. New Horizons is by far the best Animal Crossing and anyone looking for a way to relax or get creative should not miss out.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Modern Warfare 2’s bombastic campaign remains as fun to play as it was in 2009 thanks to excellent gameplay and well-designed arenas. An impressive visual overhaul rounds out the remaster experience, bringing the game more in line with titles from this generation. It’s short with little to do after the credits roll, but the lower price and the quality of the campaign experience help alleviate some of that concern. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered may not be the full experience, but it solidly delivers an updated take on one of the better campaigns in the series.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    In Other Waters is a great little adventure. While part of the appeal lies with its design, its presentation — its imagining that possible disconnect an AI controller may have in both seeing and not seeing the world around them — it’s the sneaking-in of unease at such large, open bodies of water, where both visuals and tone strike an impressive middle-ground. Some may want to denote this as sluggish, as intentionally slow for some artistic pay-off. But there’s a wonderful amount of emotion to be felt here. Even if it’s merely through some readjusting one’s perception on navigating an alien world — a realization that things aren’t as hostile or as tense as you’d usually expect. Through that clever mix of minimalist color, shape and the vast negative space all around, In Other Waters conjures one of the year’s most surprising and serene recommendations for screen and portable console alike.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Bubble Bobble 4 Friends is the best-playing entry in the long-running series. If you’ve ever enjoyed a Bubble Bobble game, you owe it to yourself to give it a shot. The gameplay is faster-paced and tighter than ever before and it looks fantastic in either handheld mode or on TV. The core formula has been tweaked to include more puzzles and boss battles, but the root of the game remains intact. The end result is a classic-feeling, user-friendly game that isn’t bogged down by a lot of the clunkiness of games of the original’s era.

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