Need For Speed Heat Review – The Return Of The Reboot

Publisher: Electronic Arts Developer: Ghost Games Release: November 8, 2019 Rating: Teen Reviewed on: PlayStation 4 Also on: Xbox One, PC The Need for Speed franchise is back from a brief hiatus after the failure of 2017’s Need for Speed Payback. During that time, developer Ghost Games has refocused and concentrated on the series’ core: cops, high speeds, world exploration, and customization – with a hokey story thrown in for old times’ sake. Need for Speed Heat has its flaws (its cop integration could be better), but it’s a rousing return that delivers on many of the franchise’s touchstones.  …

by jordan
November 14, 2019

Pokémon Sword & Shield Review – Maxing Out The Pokémon Formula

Publisher: The Pokemon Company, Nintendo Developer: Game Freak Release: November 15, 2019 Rating: Everyone Reviewed on: Switch Throughout the history of the Pokémon franchise, each entry has introduced incremental new features and experimented with new mechanics to support your primary goal: traveling the world in search of the rarest and most powerful creatures. Pokémon Sword & Shield carry on this tradition, debuting a new wide-open area and supersized Pokémon in battles, without sacrificing the elements that made the series such a hit in the first place. While not every aspect of this new generation is perfect, Pokémon Sword & Shield…

by jordan
November 13, 2019

Disco Elysium Review – Living On The Edge And Loving It

Publisher: ZA/UM Developer: ZA/UM Rating: Not rated Reviewed on: PC When a detective wakes up surrounded by empty bottles in a trashed hotel room, crime fiction has trained us to fill in the blanks with all sorts of issues – substance abuse, egomania, heartbreak. Because Disco Elysium incorporates some of these common elements, it fooled me into thinking I was in familiar narrative territory. I was not. As the hours unfolded, this investigative RPG surprised and delighted me at almost every turn with its complex world, fantastic dialogue, and ability to convey a constant struggle with the warring facets of…

by jordan
November 13, 2019

Planet Zoo Review – Wearing Down Barriers

Publisher: Frontier Developments Developer: Frontier Developments Release: November 5, 2019 Reviewed on: PC A good simulation game has the power to make micromanagement exciting instead of laborious. Watching your empire grow and seeing the fruits of your decision-making is what drives these experiences, making the overwhelming feeling of pulling so many strings rewarding. Planet Zoo captures a lot of that appeal, trying to take its simulation elements in more meaningful and complex directions. Unfortunately, it spends far too much time on the tedium. From the creators of Planet Coaster and billed as a spiritual successor to Zoo Tycoon, Planet Zoo…

by jordan
November 8, 2019

Plants Vs. Zombies: Battle For Neighborville – Mindless Mayhem

Publisher: Electronic Arts Developer: PopCap Games Release: October 18, 2019 Rating: Everyone 10+ Reviewed on: Xbox One Also on: PlayStation 4, PC After the Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare series gave players two games full of exciting heroes and intense battles across fun multiplayer modes, Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville rebrands the series. However, despite the new name, make no mistake: This new entry carries forward the enjoyable multiplayer suite from those enjoyable Garden Warfare games while experimenting with PvE modes to mixed results. Regardless of what mode you want to dive into, you can expect zany, over-the-top action…

by jordan
November 7, 2019

Death Stranding Review – The Wanderer

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment Developer: Kojima Productions Release: November 8, 2019 Rating: Rating Pending Reviewed on: PlayStation 4 Also on: PC The mystery around Death Stranding has piqued everyone’s curiosity as to the game’s true nature. Part of this is down to the creator himself, Hideo Kojima, who has consistently obfuscated his titles with complex stories, themes, and the personal fancies of an auteur. It’s also due to the incredulous feeling that there must be more to the game than what we’ve seen so far. Surely players must do more than transport cargo – a video game trope in and of…

by jordan
November 1, 2019

Lonely Mountains: Downhill Review – Serene Velocity

Publisher: Thunderful Developer: Megagon Industries Release: October 23, 2019 Rating: Rating Pending Reviewed on: PC Also on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, Mac A gentle wind rustles the autumn leaves, and an owl’s solitary call echoes across the mountainside in the pre-dusk light. My bike rattles across an old wooden bridge, and the path ahead curves around the rising roar of the waterfall. Instead of following it, I accelerate off the cliff at ill-advised speed, and crash headlong into a tree trunk, just missing the jump. Time to restart the checkpoint. Such is the flow of Lonely Mountains: Downhill, an…

by jordan
November 1, 2019

Luigi’s Mansion 3 Review – Frights And Delights

Publisher: Nintendo Developer: Next Level Games Release: October 31, 2019 Rating: Everyone Reviewed on: Switch After ridding several haunted mansions of their ghost infestations in the series’ first two games, the taller, goofier brother of Nintendo’s first family is ready for his biggest task yet: cleansing a whole haunted hotel. In Luigi’s Mansion 3, our hero grabs ghosts and solves simple puzzles on a mission to defeat King Boo and rescue Mario, Peach, and the Toads. With themed floors full of fun environmental puzzle and a ton of exciting encounters, this hotel is well worth checking into. As Luigi progresses…

by jordan
October 28, 2019

Afterparty Review – Worth The Hangover

Publisher: Night School Studio Developer: Night School Studio Release: October 29, 2019 Rating: Rating Pending Reviewed on: PC Also on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One Alcohol has a sinister temptation that can lead to excess. Bad and embarrassing things often come with a night of overindulgence, from losing inhibitions to waking up hungover. Night School Studio, best known for its breakout hit Oxenfree, leverages that by making alcohol the centerpiece of Hell. But before you think this is just a game about partying, think again. Afterparty is at its strongest when it subverts your expectations, explores relatable topics about life and…

by jordan
October 28, 2019

Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare Review – A New Theater Of War

Publisher: Activision Developer: Infinity Ward Release: October 25, 2019 Rating: Mature Reviewed on: PlayStation 4 Also on: Xbox One, PC Modern Warfare is familiar in name, but its content carries a different tone and flow than we’ve come to expect from the annualized Call of Duty series. Developer Infinity Ward takes big chances in both multiplayer and the single-player campaign, and while some of the ideas hit with deadly precision, others fall flat. As great as it is to have a single-player campaign back after its hiatus in Black Ops 4, Infinity Ward shifts the focus away from the large-scale…

by jordan
October 25, 2019