The bottom line: I started out immensely hyped for Batman: Arkham Knight, but ended up feeling burned out. The actual timeline of events below the jump.
While the graphics take advantage of modern processing power despite Axiom Verge otherwise resembling a 16-bit game, Axiom Verge doesn’t make many modern design concessions. In other words, it’s hard in an NES way. This is a commitment to purity you may appreciate, or may find controller-snappingly frustrating. I would describe my experience with Axiom Verge as an ebb-and-flow of joy and frustration.
The Order is a difficult game (I don’t mean in the difficulty sense): it’s flawed, it’s unusually paced, and the constant shifting between relinquishing control and having it sometimes arrested the flow of seamless events that developer Ready at Dawn aimed for this experience to have. But when it hits the mark it does so in an impressive, often thrilling fashion.
Critics and reviewers have so far been mixed across the board; and so here I come to tell you why I think The Order | 1886 is a good game, and how I don’t think it’s all that dissimilar from another AAA Sony exclusive.
I’ve accidentally lost a couple of late nights to Hyrule Warriors, because of the powerful compulsion to play “just one more map.” Sometimes I’m saved by the battery life on the WiiU controller. So in spite of the few things I’m iffy on, I’m pretty sure I love this game.
At first impression, Bravely Default is actually terrible. It is the JRPG that Zynga would make. … the story is the most generic JRPG tale possible, an epic where one must take a magical priestess and her fairy sidekick to a temple to “Activate the Wind Crystal” and then three other elemental crystals of increasing power thereafter.
I knew, hour one, that I was going to play it for a hundred hours anyway.
I had hoped that I would be able to get these The Longest Journey pieces out a bit before Dreamfall Chapters released, but as it turns out The Longest Journey is…well…long. But I still managed to finish my replay of Dreamfall: The Longest Journey one night in advance of the release of its sequel. For better or worse, it was much as I remembered.
It was with no small amount of relief that I decided not to write this piece as a review. At first I thought maybe I would, but I realized, quickly, that I might not like what I had to say in it – not always. Not everything.
Foreword from the author,
Sometimes writing things is difficult. Not literally, like pushing keyboard buttons, that’s usually not difficult, except when coke spills in your keyboard and really messes up the Alt key, that makes pushing the buttons difficult because Alt is really underrated and oft-used. But I meant difficult like, the space in my brain that would normally come up with things to say to the computer word processor is absent. Or filled with noodles. And my brain doesn’t have a way of eating the neighbor noodles so they just have to live together. The noodles are useless too, it’s not like they do something.
…other than being a member of the cruel killer point-and-click genre, which is inherently retro, I would say this Shadowgate is thoroughly modern in most other ways. What I came into this wanting to be able to say about Shadowgate is: It Is Shadowgate. What I actually really have to say is, “It’s Shadowgate, but it’s Shadowgate made in 2014.” And every change that that implies.
“… a pretty good basic indie platformer with lots of fun things to do in it and some clever levels and bosses.”
“… a game where you, as the titular Knight, can smack the crap out of Reize Seatlan using a shovel.”
From the beginning, The Wolf Among Us struck me as easier to recommend than The Walking Dead, functionally its nearest counterpart, because it isn’t so relentlessly bleak. With the first season now concluded, I think it may just be Telltale’s best season to date.
While the gameplay itself offers much to enjoy,
the real treat is in the aesthetics.
Child of Light is a fairy tale rendered
in watercolor, and darkly poetic.
Ground Zeroes sold me on The Phantom Pain.
Last week saw the release of Moebius: Empire Rising, an adventure game along the vein of Gabriel Knight, with some of the same pedigree. Specifically, the game is written by Jane Jensen and developed through her Pinkerton Studios label, published by Phoenix Online Studios. Phoenix Online previously worked on the Cognition series that I found so compelling last year, so I’ve been following their other work and I previewed a lot of their games at GDC this year. I was looking forward to Moebius when it was announced, and let me just say: this is an interesting one. But not at first glance. You have to dig deeper.
I really like Escape Goat 2 and I think you might too. When it’s not pissing me off, anyway, which it did do frequently. Still, it’s a snack-like game and even when it’s frustrating, it’s so friendly and colorful that it’s hard to hold a grudge.