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Average Game review score: 0
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179 game reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • Critic Score
    I think some people might say that Orcs Must Die 3 is more of the same, and those people are right. But it is more of the same with a fine level of articulation and polish. It’s a well-oiled machine where every part of it works, ready to operate in perpetual motion seemingly infinitely. More of the same is not a negative here. It’s a blessing.
    • 88 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    I finished Rift Apart a few days ago, but my saved game says I've played 98% of Rift Apart, with a few collectibles left to be swept up. You can bet your ass I'm gonna get that last 2%.
    • 74 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    If the developers stick with it, I believe they can fill in that content in the spaces they’ve carved out for it. And hopefully they do, because I think they’ve really got something here. Insurmountable has a strong, foundational bedrock, and it already shows how even that, piled high enough, can amount to something quite striking.
    • 74 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    I’m sure it isn’t deliberate, but it’s impossible to ignore the dichotomy between the joy of the early game versus the monotony of the latter. It’s the age old warning: learn to be better, lest you become one of us. The numbers mattered insofar as using them to create the best wine I could—abusing them left me fatigued, desensitized and alone. As an accidental commentary on the joyless existence of big business, it turns out Hundred Days has a good acidity.
    • 84 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    As the credits rolled on Resident Evil Village, I was struck by just how much of the back quarter of the game felt like a desperate attempt to work Ethan Winters and his arc into the greater Resident Evil narrative. This, much more than its action emphasis, is what is frustrating about Village. For the second game in a row, Resident Evil has shown that it has outgrown its conventions, that it can create fresh horrors in new places. And still, everything must come crashing to a halt so that the curtain can be pulled back on the same threadbare wizard we've seen for 25 years.
    • 85 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    The more pressing problem: the second zone isn't that interesting. But the shooting is good. Really good. I just don't know how long that'll last. [10-Hour Impressions]
    • 83 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    And this is ultimately the root of the problem with Nier 1.22 — it's forcing us into an era where the remake is the definitive text, the canonical copy of a game that existed for over a decade that formed connections with players and shows us an entirely different world of game making. The original text has murdered the exported release and the revision has come to strangle the original text because the best-selling sequel demanded it. What we're left with is two nearly identical Niers each vying to be the true Nier. One must imagine Yoko Taro happy when he watches quietly as one snuffs the other.
    • 83 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    ’Trials of Fire’ blends a roguelike deckbuilder and tactical hex based combat with small maps that don’t feel cramped.
    • tbd Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Future Aero Racing S Ultra is a fun, but unremarkable, homage to F-Zero. But why does it sound like that?
    • tbd Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Like many of my favorite small strategy games, Dorfromantik activates what I think of as my meditative lizard brain, thanks to the tiny thrill of getting those hexes to fit together. It’s well-suited to casual engagement, and challenging enough for the score obsessed (myself included) to play it over and over.
    • 69 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    There's a brand-new script, a new cast of voice actors, tweaked gameplay, and altered cutscenes...These are the kinds of changes you might see in a "remaster" 10 years later, not a port.
    • 77 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    There’s handful of dazzling set pieces in the final third of Genesis Noir, none less so than the crescendo itself. I don’t think it's a spoiler to describe this as a dance across the cosmos, or that color does eventually explode into the game. Like the earlier duet, it offers another opportunity to wild out, to simply throw the cursor across the screen and see what emerges. It gets close to the loose-limbed and improvisatory nature of jazz—an opportunity to revel in the game’s singular and beautiful kind of cacophony. While an undeniable audio-visual marvel, the moment also transcends spectacle, hinting towards something profound about the act of creation, be that cosmic or indeed personal.
    • 82 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    One of the most appealing things about Loop Hero is in the way it allows you to discover its parts. The game is as complex as you want it to be, and can become extremely complicated indeed as you gain more and more cards. Some of the interactions between cards can only be discovered by placing them in certain combinations, sometimes transforming them into entirely new tiles.
    • 70 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Perhaps the style made more sense when the game’s creative director Lemoore conceived Maquette back in the early 2010s, but the world is a different place now, and the game, despite its clear technical achievements, feels like a time capsule.
    • 89 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    All told, that's the most exciting part about Bowser's Fury: it feels genuinely new. That's not always the case with a new game in a franchise as long-running as Mario, but Bowser's Fury proves there are still ways to make the act of making Mario jump feel exciting all over again. Onward.
    • 87 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Hitman 3 ultimately succeeds at delivering some of the things that I really enjoy about these games, but those highlights keep getting overshadowed by inflexible Mission Stories, or the way the main plot kept putting more constraints on the game's possibilities. Maybe I’ll enjoy everything so much more by the time I do each of these levels five or six times and the actual story is far back in my memory, buried by how many ways I can use grapes to decimate my enemies. But the entire time I was playing for this review, I kept scrolling back to the levels for Hitman and Hitman 2, thinking about simply going back and exploring those all over again, and I’m not sure that desire is going to go away.
    • 76 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    What I will say is that the game’s uncompromising sensibility shines brightly at its conclusion. I won’t spoil the exact details but it’s a masterclass in unceremonious restraint which lands harder than any grandstanding finish. Unto The End understands that terrible things happen and the world often just keeps moving. This doesn’t necessarily undermine the tribulations of its bearded character—his body will carry the violence of this passage for a long time to come—nor does it diminish my own frustrations. After everything, I’m left with the sound of his heavy exhales in the fading light of this harsh and snowy setting; foregoing any kind of traditional pay-off feels like the perfect way to end this story, almost making the gruelling journey worth it.
    • 86 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    The expanding aura of decency and compassion that follows in V's wake makes Cyberpunk an unexpectedly charming game in spite of its chauvinist streaks and retro-kitsch. In the face of the thoroughly amok-machinery of techno-corporatism that has destroyed society and ruthlessly crushes any challenges and dissent that it might face, Cyberpunk 2077 wants to believe in a hero, and the promise of a neon sunset.
    • 92 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    But damn if this doesn't feel like Demon's Souls, an accomplishment in and of itself that feels like a magic trick. Part of what happens when you revisit an older game is having to confront the reality of the time it was developed in, realizing your imagination had been filling in serious nostalgia gaps. How you felt was informing your too-rosy remembrance of what it looked like. Here, Bluepoint tries to bridge that gap with an updated presentation that makes Demon's Souls truly feel like a 2020 game worthy of being a next-generation launch title. [Opening Hours impressions]
    • 75 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    One of the highest compliments I can pay Bugsmax is that when the game warned me I'd hit a point of no return in the story and I'd no longer be able to complete any unfinished side quests, I panicked because I really wanted to finish them. Could I find a way to delay my review? Hmm. Sadly, my deadline for writing this piece, written in the midst of pandemic and election, meant that wasn't an option—I had to push forward. And so, reluctantly, I did.
    • 80 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    It’s a game of iteration and variation, one so similar to its predecessors but so different in execution that it has made an old franchise feel new again.
    • 83 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Satisfying. It feels good to look at, it feels good to play, and it functions as a justification for Sony's experiments with DualSense. Whether those experiments pan out is somewhat out of Sony's hands, but Astro's Playroom offers a roadmap for how other developers could take advantage of it. If no one else does—well, at least we'll have Astro's Playroom. And Astro's Playroom is pretty damn good.
    • 85 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    As fun as it is to be Miles, to be the geeky black superhero I have always wanted to exist, the game cannot reconcile the differences between its New York and the one I see outside my window. That failure would be understandable, but what is unforgivable is that it does not even make the attempt.
    • 70 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Legion was built according to the ever-ballooning scale of AAA games, and it suffers for it. The people who made it could never get the resources they needed to be pursue this ambitious experiment without also making it a blockbuster, 30+ hour long game. It could never wear its politics on its very fashionable sleeves, without also being tailored for style over substance. The frustrating truth is that given the context of its development and the case of its goals, Watch Dogs: Legion might be the very best it could be. But as even DedSec would tell us, revolutions don’t happen from the inside out.
    • tbd Metascore
    • Critic Score
    One of the best ways for a Dungeon Master to learn is to play a bunch of games as the player. Baldur’s Gate 3 is letting me simulate that experience and make up for all the years I missed playing Dungeons & Dragons as a kid. I’ve already made changes to next week’s session, tweaked some of the traps, and carved out new paths for my players to discover in the final dungeon of their adventure. All thanks to Baldur’s Gate 3.
    • 70 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    All this is fun and compelling, but what makes the game more than a time waster is the lovely, sparse writing.
    • 82 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Genshin Impact feels like playing the future of games as the industry leans more into the games-as-a-service business model, monetizing big budget free-to-play games with battle passes and loot boxes. To put it another way: Genshin Impact is what happens when a company goes, "What if Breath of the Wild was Destiny?" It's disorienting at first and then quickly starts to make all the sense in the world. It's too soon to say what Genshin Impact's lasting impact on the industry will be, but given its immediate success, it's not hard to imagine a near future where many games look a lot like it.
    • 79 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    It's a new take on old ideas, in a new era, for a new audience. It’s a strong beginning, but a beginning nonetheless.
    • 82 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    3D All-Stars is a paradox: a collection of great games and a missed opportunity. These games deserved better, a respectful contextualization of their place in the history books. But ultimately, in my heart of hearts, I'm just happy to get a chance to declare this: Super Mario Sunshine was good.
    • 91 Metascore
    • Critic Score
    Crusader Kings III is massively, powerfully alive. You can almost feel it pulsing when you play it. Often, deep into the third, fourth, fifth hour of play, I'd realize I wasn't so much playing it as watching it develop.

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