It’s always wonderful to come out of a year packed with so many fantastic games. Despite the looming next-generation of consoles, there was no shortage of worthwhile experiences that expertly iterated upon or redefined the medium’s most well-known conventions in 2019. Games like Death Stranding and Disco Elysium challenged what we can expect from open-world games and CRPGs respectively. On the other hand, Apex Legends and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice presented impactful new takes on well-established genres. No matter which way you look at it, 2019 was an amazing year for games.
Below you can find a comprehensive list of every game that scored an 8 or above on GameSpot’s review scale in 2019 across all platforms. If you think that sounds limiting, you might be surprised by the number of excellent games that crossed our path this year.
If you’re interested in what we’ve highlighted in our annual Best Of awards, be sure to jump over to our Best Games of 2019 hub. And while you’re there, keep your eyes peeled for our most anticipated games coming in 2020.
80 Days — 8/10
What is certain is that no matter your objective or playtime, you’ll have an adventure worth writing home about. It’s the stories you’ uncover that makes 80 Days a joy to play. There’s a constant sense of wonder in visiting these glorious cities and meeting interesting characters, and I’m eager to jump back in and see what kind of trouble I can get Passepartout into. Phileas Fogg is just going to have to damn well like it. — Hope Corrigan [Full Review]
A Plague Tale: Innocence — 8/10
Powerfully ghoulish depictions of the plague and rats aside, Innocence is ultimately an emotive story of resilience against harrowing odds. The game’s title is an obvious nod towards the loss of innocence the endearing young cast faces throughout their journey. But more than that, it also speaks of the depths of human depravity and the agonizing cost of survival in the midst of war. Despite the unremitting horrors of Innocence’s beginnings, the game occasionally lets in a faint glimpse of hope. One of my favorite moments is when Amicia spots another wildflower in a lone trek across the city, nestled among the decay of the rats’ revolting nests. Without her brother around, she picks it up, and places it gingerly in her own hair–a personal reminder to keep trudging on amidst the hardships, and a testament to her growing strength and tenacity. Despite flashes of predictability, moments like these will bring a lump to your throat, as it did mine. — Khee Hoon Chan [Full Review]
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown — 8/10
Good aerial combat is important for a game involving jet fighters, but it’s a given quality for Ace Combat. Skies Unknown boasts a beautiful photorealistic world, entertaining mission variety, and a reason to get excited about clouds. But most importantly, it carries renewed devotion to the history and stories of its fictional universe, and with that, it brings back the human, emotional center that makes it remarkable. Ace Combat 7 is a fantastic return for a series that is at its best when it wears its heart on its wings. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
AI: The Somnium Files — 8/10
Despite the occasional frustration in exploring its dream landscapes, the whole of AI: the Somnium Files winds up being a fun, thrilling, and engaging experience. The story is filled with intriguing twists and shocking surprises, and the characters and their individual arcs inspire you to care about what happens to them. The somnium dream worlds add a layer of psychological horror to the ongoing mystery, and Date and Aiba’s constant back-and-forth interactions provide levity to make every investigation all the more amusing. AI’s unconventional detective story is one you won’t soon forget. — Heidi Kemps [Full Review]
Apex Legends — 9/10
Apex Legends is a mix of smart shooter ideas that makes for a competitive, team-based game that gets at all the best parts of battle royale while addressing a lot of the weaknesses. Respawn’s intense focus on team play makes Apex more than just a worthy addition to the genre; it’s an indicator of where battle royale should go in the future. — Phil Hornshaw [Full Review]
Assault Android Cactus+ (Switch Port) — 9/10
Assault Android Cactus+ is the ultimate version of an excellent game, and a perfect marriage between console and content. It’s exciting and intense without ever being impenetrable, and the new Campaign+ feature is a great reason to dive back into the game even if you’ve already completed it elsewhere. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Available digitally on Nintendo Switch and PC via Steam.
Astral Chain — 8/10
Astral Chain’s shortcomings don’t overshadow what it does best. It’s an incredible execution of a fresh take on Platinum Games’ foundation, standing among the stylish-action greats. And its own anime-inspired swagger makes fights all the more exhilarating. You’ll come to appreciate the calmer moments in between that add variety and offer a second to relax before jumping back into the superb combat. After 40 hours with Astral Chain, I’m still eager to take on the tougher challenges, and I’ll be grinning from ear to ear as I hit all the right moves, one after the other, while watching it all unfold. — Michael Higham [Full Review]
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night — 8/10
It’s that sense of comfort in its own skin that makes Bloodstained such a treat. This isn’t a bold modernization of the genre or a departure from its roots. It is exactly what it set out to be: a return to the style of a bygone era, with a few modern improvements. Its perception was always going to be affected by how well it invoked the feeling of a classic Castlevania game, but Bloodstained does that and better. With more flexible combat and level design that always beckons to check just one more room, Bloodstained shows that a modern Metroidvania can stand alongside its predecessors as an equal. — Steve Watts [Full Review]
Borderlands 3 — 8/10
Borderlands 3 has a few stumbling blocks when it comes to bosses, but these fights are overshadowed by the game’s rewarding gunplay and over-the-top humor. The game’s character-driven narrative acts as a satisfying finale for the loot-shooter franchise, and the new mechanics and features–especially the reworked skill trees and weapon manufacturer effects–give you plenty of agency in how you want to play through it. If you’ve never been a fan of the franchise, it’s unlikely Borderlands 3 does enough things differently to change your mind, as the game best excels at continuing what the series has always done: deliver a humorous tall tale of misfits looting and shooting their way to heroism. — Jordan Ramee [Full Review]
Bury Me, My Love (Switch Port) — 8/10
Bury Me, My Love might share a similar structure to other mobile text-based adventure games like Lifeline and Mr. Robot:1.5.1exfiltrati0n.apk, but the story it tells and the themes it delves into are relatively unexplored within the medium. It shines a light on a situation people are all too eager to ignore and humanizes the stories of those most commonly relegated to ticker text on news reports, and for that reason alone it’s an essential experience. That the story it tells is so engaging and believable, with wonderfully well-rounded characters, only elevates its exploration of the realities of war, and it manages to successfully elicit a genuine human connection. Switch might not be the ideal platform to play Bury Me, My Love on, but whatever your system options are, it’s well worth following Nour on this all-too-real journey. — Richard Wakeling [Full Review]
Cadence of Hyrule — 8/10
Cadence of Hyrule is a fantastic Zelda game in its own right, even though it adopts the gameplay mechanics of another series. Beyond the aesthetics, it nails the satisfying sense of exploration and increasing power, and it revels in the joy of discovery, as all the best Zelda games do. It’s an extremely successful melding of two great game series and an experience that makes you feel eager for Nintendo to do more interesting things with their major licenses. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Catherine: Full Body — 8/10
Imagine that you wake up one morning and, to your horror, discover that you had inadvertently committed an act of infidelity. Think about the kind of confusion and dread that might race through your head at that moment. How did it happen? What the hell are you going to do? How on earth are you going to explain and amend the relationships with all parties involved? What kind of deep-seated anxieties might have led to this moment? In 2011, Atlus’ Persona studio explored this predicament with Catherine, using a peculiar blend of social simulation and Sokoban-influenced action-puzzling. Eight years later, Catherine: Full Body is a remaster that demonstrates how well the game’s distinctive premise and exploration of adult themes still hold up, even if its new additions to the plot don’t fit in seamlessly. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
Children of Morta — 8/10
Children of Morta’s fantastic art style and enjoyable storytelling take what would have been an otherwise fun roguelike dungeon-crawler and elevate it a great deal. Taking down enemies and eventually triumphing over bosses is enjoyable, but what kept bringing me back was the connection I felt to the Bergsons, and my sincere desire to help them push back against the Corruption. After all, it’s a lot easier dealing with dungeons full of monsters when you have a family to come home to. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Gathering Storm (Expansion) — 9/10
Gathering Storm is overall a great expansion, ushering in two significant new systems that work hand in hand to deepen the experience. The embellished diplomatic options extend the range of interactions with other leaders, allowing you to work cooperatively towards common goals or pull the strings to your advantage behind the scenes. While the introduction of climate change delivers new strategic choices whose consequences resonate ever-more-loudly as you advance throughout the eras. It isn’t simply more Civ, it’s a whole new way to play Civ. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Control — 8/10
It’s not often that a game invades my thoughts the way Control has. I’m at the point where I want to consume every last thing it has to offer. And if I’m honest, it also makes me want to go back and replay Remedy’s past games, too. Sure, it’s a faulty metroidvania in some respects, but there are so many exceptional qualities afoot that Control handily deflects any momentary ire. I can’t wait to take part in discussions about the game, to see what others have figured out, and to better understand where it all fits into Jesse’s story. — Peter Brown [Full Review]
Crash Team Racing: Nitro-Fueled — 8/10
Simply put: This is a remaster done right. Nitro-Fueled maintains the spirit and rock-solid foundations of a childhood favorite while building on it and modernizing it where necessary–even if the handling might take a bit of getting used to. Adventure mode’s classic variant feels a little tough, but your first race on Roo’s Tubes or Sewer Speedway will bring a nostalgic grin to your face regardless. When the nostalgia fades, Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled remains fun and engaging enough to keep you racing on with a smile on your face for much longer yet. It’s good to have Crash back. — Oscar Dayus [Full Review]
Creature in the Well — 8/10
Creature in the Well manages to inject the geometry-focused experience of pinball into the frenzied gameplay loop of a dungeon crawler to craft a unique puzzle action game. On occasion, the game’s hands-off approach to conveying information is a hindrance, but the well-structured dungeons and monstrous antagonist more than make up for it–producing an engaging hack-and-slash experience that allows for satisfying experimentation. — Jordan Ramee [Full Review]
Available digitally on Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam.
Death Stranding — 9/10
Death Stranding is a hard game to absorb. There are many intertwining threads to its plot, and silly names, corny moments, and heavy exposition belie an otherwise very simple message. That comes through much more clearly in the game’s more mundane moments, when you find a desperately-needed ladder left behind by another player or receive a letter from an NPC thanking you for your efforts. It’s positive without ignoring pain; in fact, it argues in both its story and its gameplay that adversity itself is what makes things worth doing and life worth living. It’s a game that requires patience, compassion, and love, and it’s also one we really need right now. — Kallie Plagge [Full Review]
Destiny 2: Shadowkeep (Expansion) — 8/10
Shadowkeep represents a shift in the fundamentals of Destiny 2, and that has only improved the game. Returning to the moon is full of spooky fun, and while Shadowkeep might not be as huge as Forsaken, it still provides some impressive additions to the world that will take time to fully explore. More meaningful choices in Shadowkeep are pushing me to think beyond just packing my most powerful guns and shooting everything in my path. These are improvements that represent a giant leap forward for Destiny 2. — Phil Hornshaw [Full Review]
Devil May Cry V — 9/10
DMC5 thrives on the stylistic and mechanical prowess of its predecessors. It sticks to tradition above all else, pursuing a few ambitious new ideas along the way, but mostly maintaining the series’ focus on intricate fighting systems and campy bravado. Rarely does the game stumble, consistently leveraging its spectacle and mechanical depth to push aside any small frustrations. All the while, the story exudes a charismatic charm that keeps you constantly intrigued as you’re refining your skills. DMC5 proves the series can still be brilliant and imaginative without compromising its longest-held traditions. — Matt Espineli [Full Review]
Devotion — 9/10
Devotion doesn’t quite match the anxiety-inducing frights that permeate each cautious step forward in games like P.T. and Amnesia: The Dark Descent, but its domestic terror burrows deep inside your psyche long after the final credits have rolled. The sorrowful story it tells meshes malice with tenderness, metaphor with stark truths, and achieves it all with the nuanced kind of environmental storytelling other games can only strive for. There are moments when it jumps out of the genre completely, surprising you with a sudden tonal shift, and others where the oftentimes clichéd presence of a children’s doll is used to signal a character’s poignant detachment. Everything Devotion does is in service of this story and its character development; you learn about these people’s lives, empathize with their plight, and come to understand their actions, even if you don’t agree with them. Home is where the heart is, and Devotion is a shining example of what the horror genre is capable of. — Richard Wakeling [Full Review]
Disco Elysium — 10/10
Disco Elysium is a mad, sprawling detective story where the real case you’ve got to crack isn’t who killed the man strung up on a tree in the middle of town–though that in itself, replete with dozens of unexpected yet intertwined mysteries and wild excursions into the ridiculous, is engrossing enough to sustain the game. Rather, it’s an investigation of ideas, of the way we think, of power and privilege, and of how all of us are shaped, with varying degrees of autonomy, by the society we find ourselves in. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Steam.
Downwell (Switch Port) — 8/10
The idea of plummeting into the unknown is terrifying, but Downwell is a game where the systems coerce you to take big risks, and enjoy the reward and thrill of pushing your limits to achieve a new personal best. The difficulty and diligence required to master Downwell does not make it an easy task, but its straightforward controls, utilitarian lo-fi presentation, and steady stream of exciting moments make the journey a consistently enjoyable and engaging experience, no matter how many times you may die on the first stage. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
Dragon Quest Builders 2 — 8/10
Dragon Quest Builders 2 is a great game, combining exploration, sandbox-building, questing, and town-management into a delightful package that will gladly suck up your time and put a big smile on your face. It’s the sort of game that you’ll intend to play for a little while, only to find that hours have flown by once you manage to actually put it down. Don’t dismiss this one when you see big square blocks on the box–you’ll be missing out on a very fun twist on an excellent gaming foundation. — Heidi Kemps [Full Review]
Eastshade — 9/10
By giving you a paintbrush (and a kettle) instead of a sword, Eastshade is a rare first-person open world game that’s not about killing but rather about doing good deeds, helping people see the error of their ways, and bringing communities together all through the power of art. It’s a breath of fresh Eastshadian air and a genuine, unironic feel-good game. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to put the kettle on. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam.
eFootball PES 2020 — 9/10
The licensing issue revolving around PES will likely never going go away, and people are still going to download option files to get all of the official kits and badges anyway. Like its predecessors, eFootball PES 2020 continues to do its talking on the pitch, refining and improving on last year’s game to present what might be the greatest football game ever made. Sure, it’s disappointing that you still can’t play as Borussia Dortmund and the majority of the Bundesliga and a few other leagues, and its single-player offering is almost identical to what was included three years ago. But all of this effortlessly drifts to the back of your mind once you step between those white lines and simply start playing the beautiful game. — Richard Wakeling [Full Review]
Erica — 8/10
Erica has a strong, fleshed-out narrative full of twists and turns that each bring their own unique piece to the story. Its cryptic tone is carried through the audio, visuals, and writing; it never lets you relax. Sometimes weird controls jolt you out, but there is an abundance of enticing threads to follow, and it’s a treat to be able to mold your own adventure out of it. Using a combination of crisp cinematography and FMV-specific game mechanics, Erica never fails to hook you into its haunting, mysterious world. — Funke Joseph [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4.
F1 2019 — 9/10
F1 2019 is yet another strong step forward for the now decade-long franchise, with a ton of refinements over last year’s game as well as some great new features to help elevate it to a new level. The Formula 2 cars are superb to handle, and the new additions to career mode, like driver swaps, add some much-needed drama and excitement that real Formula 1 has been missing for some time now. F1 2019 is a masterclass in how to make an engaging and alluring racer, and once again stands tall on top of the podium. — James Swinbanks [Full Review]
Falcon Age — 8/10
Like deflecting a bullet with a knife in Superhot, looking down the sights of a sniper rifle in Killing Floor Incursion, or slashing a block in half in Beat Saber, interacting with your bird in Falcon Age has a tactile pleasure that is truly satisfying. The bird itself, meanwhile, looks great, behaves believably, and feels on the whole like a coherent, fully realized character; more than a sidekick or ally, you come to think of it as a companion, like a cat or dog at home. The highest compliment I can think to pay Falcon Age is that it evoked the same feeling I get caring for my real-life pets–including the real wince of bone-deep alarm I felt anytime my bird was at risk of injury. This is about much more than a cute animal. It’s about a bond, and one Falcon Age nails. — Callum Marsh [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4 and Xbox One.
FIFA 20 — 8/10
Flawed and iterative, but comforting, complete, and compelling, FIFA 20 is as frustrating and as essential as ever. The Journey and FIFA Street will continue to be missed, but Volta offers a genuinely different option for those who want to dip in and out across FIFA’s smorgasboard of game types, while Ultimate Team continues its route to world domination. It’s just a shame Career Mode continues to stagnate–even if EA has finally remembered it exists. — Oscar Dayus [Full Review]
Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers (Expansion) — 9/10
Some of its changes to the player experience are still causing a little discomfort during this teething phase, but Shadowbringers makes a strong case for itself as the game’s most engaging expansion. It’s not just the sheer scale and strength of the narrative weaving in years of old lore without cheapening the experience for new players, or the immaculately designed boss fights replete with spectacular music and thematic touches. It’s also the implementation of the Trust system and the chance to truly feel the impact of the Warrior of Light’s decisions over the past expansions through exploring the stories of your companions. For a story that starts with a laser focus on your character’s motivations and misgivings, it tells a tale that ends up being the biggest and the best that Final Fantasy XIV has ever told. Equal parts redemption, vengeance, cruelty, and sassy Elezen, Shadowbringers promises a hell of a lot when you take your first steps into Norvrandt and delivers a truly spectacular finish even if it stumbles a little along the way. — Ginny Woo [Full Review]
Fire Emblem: Three Houses — 9/10
When all was said and done, all I could think about was starting another playthrough. I was curious about the mysteries left unsolved, of course, but I also hoped to undo my mistakes. There were characters I didn’t talk to enough, students I didn’t recruit, and far more effective ways to train my units. A second playthrough treads familiar ground in the beginning, but after learning and growing so much in the first, it feels fresh, too. That speaks to Three Houses’ mechanical complexity and depth as well as the connections it fosters with its characters–and whether you’re managing inventories or battlefields, it’s the kind of game that’s hard to put down, even when it’s over. — Kallie Plagge [Full Review]
Hypnospace Outlaw — 8/10
As an exploration of early-ish internet culture, Hypnospace Outlaw demonstrates how far we’ve travelled online over the past 20 years while at the same time asking whether we’ve gone anywhere at all. The bandwidth may have improved since 1999 but the content can look all too familiar today. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Stream, GOG, and Itch.io.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — 8/10
But especially as it wears on, Fallen Order becomes perhaps the strongest conception of what playing as a Jedi Knight ought to really be like. It’s true that Fallen Order borrows liberally from other action games, but those elements work together with Respawn’s combat and environment design, and a story that finds humanity in the Force and in its characters, to hone in on what makes the world of Star Wars worthy of revisiting again and again. Even with some rough edges, Fallen Order represents one of the most compelling game additions to the Star Wars franchise in years. — Phil Hornshaw [Full Review]
John Wick Hex — 8/10
It’s a disappointing thread that ties together the exceptional gameplay, which faithfully captures the feeling of being John Wick in a strategic and pulsating formula. John Wick Hex has turn-based gameplay at a pace you’ve likely not experienced before, and it intricately balances its systems to give you a sense of being an expert hitman while also making it feel earned. It’s a slick and well-oiled game that succeeds in giving you a new, engrossing way to experience John Wick and its signature brand of chaotic action. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4, Xbox One, and PC via the Epic Games Store.
Katana Zero — 8/10
The uncertain future of the story that Katana Zero so brilliantly sets up is concerning, but that shouldn’t deter you from diving into this compelling introductory chapter. Its combat provides an exciting challenge that tests both strategy and reflex, while also giving you clever abilities to make it as stylish as possible. The narrative contextualization of both your abilities and role within Katana Zero’s world is expertly written, with a clever dialogue system letting you inject personality into character interactions. Katana Zero is bloody and brutal, but it’s also a heartfelt tale that you shouldn’t overlook lightly. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Killer Queen Black — 8/10
Minor gripes aside, Killer Queen Black is the very definition of a great multiplayer game: easy to learn, fun to jump into, and packed with the sort of clutch moments that make you jump up and cheer. The satisfaction of spur-of-the-moment decisions, like sniping a Queen from the other side of the map with a carefully-timed laser gun blast, knocking an attacker pursuing your Queen off-kilter with a thrown berry, or eagerly shoving yourself in a snail’s mouth pixels from the enemy goal in order to buy your teammates time to complete your berry hoard is consistently engaging. If you’re looking for a unique, competitive multiplayer experience for online or local group play, Killer Queen Black is the bee’s knees. — Heidi Kemps [Full Review]
Kingdom Hearts III — 8/10
But the story of Keyblade wars, time-travelling villains, body-hopping also-rans, and world-ending darkness isn’t what I’ll remember about Kingdom Hearts 3 or the series as a whole. What sticks with me is the exciting battle against elemental titans with Hercules, taking Rapunzel out into the unfamiliar wide world for the first time, snapping selfies with Winnie the Pooh, and going toe to toe with Davy Jones. In 2002, as Sora, I left Destiny Islands to travel across the universe and make new friends. In 2019 I brought old ones home, and I had so much fun doing it. — Tamoor Hussain [Full Review]
Kirby’s Extra Epic Yarn — 9/10
Extra Epic Yarn brings new life to a Kirby game that’s nearly a decade old. Everything there is to love about Epic Yarn is still here, but the addition of traditional transformation abilities and challenging Devilish mode provide options for anyone looking for a different or more difficult platforming experience. The two new minigames aren’t game-changing additions, but they’re both fun to complete and provide a change of pace if you ever need a break from the campaign. Whether you’re looking to relive Kirby’s adventure into Patch Land or want to pick up the game for the first time, Extra Epic Yarn provides hours of good fun, all wrapped up in charming, craft-influenced visuals. This 3DS port is the best version of the game, hands down. — Jordan Ramee [Full Review]
Knights And Bikes — 8/10
Knights & Bikes was created by a small team featuring several people who worked on LittleBigPlanet and Tearaway, and you can feel that all these games share a similar creative vision. There’s a kind of wide-eyed, rough and tumble spirit of adventure running through all three games that is hard to resist. Knights & Bikes is a wonderfully warm, effortlessly inviting experience that’ll make you feel young again. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam.
Life Is Strange 2: Episode 2 — 8/10
One minor issue is the meta-knowledge that the Diaz brothers are two episodes into a five-episode journey, so you have an acute awareness that no matter how positively things are going, you’re never too far from it all unraveling. However, even if you can see where things are going, there’s a joy in taking each new step of the adventure and in managing the careful balance between being a guardian and a friend to Daniel. The larger consequences of how you’ve chosen to guide Daniel are still to come, but the cracks are starting to show and the pressure is heightening. That said, no matter how you leave Daniel and Sean at the end of this chapter, there is the palpable sense of hope, of a new way forward, and of the unconditional love between two brothers. — Jess McDonell [Full Review]
Life Is Strange 2: Episode 3 — 8/10
Despite its supernatural themes, Life Is Strange almost always delivers an honest moment instead of a sensationalized one. There’s something far more relatable about a teenager mumbling apologies after their “first time” instead of dancing down the street to the tune of “You Make My Dreams Come True,” and it’s these moments that truly solidify your investment in Sean. At one point, Finn tells Sean, “Memories are just lessons for the future.” For a story that so rarely lets its characters escape unscathed no matter how you choose to act, it’s a solid adage. The goal of making it to Puerto Lobos feels increasingly immaterial given the escalation of Daniel’s powers and the hurdles in their way. As they say, the journey matters far more than the destination, and Sean and Daniel’s journey is one that continues to intrigue. — Jess McDonell [Full Review]
Life is Strange 2: Episode 5 — 8/10
Saying goodbye to the Diaz brothers is as difficult as it was to leave Chloe and Max in the original Life Is Strange, which is a testament to the extraordinary strength of the game’s character building. Though the story of the Diaz brothers arrives at some kind of ending, the larger implications of the story and its politically-charged themes raise more questions than they can possibly hope to answer, though to even ask them feels like an admirable feat. As the game itself states within the blog of a gone-but-not-forgotten ally from Episode 1, “It’s not a happy ending, but maybe it can be a hopeful one.” — Jess McDonell [Full Review]
Luigi’s Mansion 3 — 8/10
But while the multiplayer modes may not hold your attention for long, the strength of the Luigi’s Mansion series has always stemmed from the satisfaction of exploring its carefully constructed settings, and in that regard Luigi’s Mansion 3 certainly succeeds. The game may not radically diverge from the series’ formula, but it offers up another meticulously crafted set of challenges to overcome while smoothing out some of the issues that held Dark Moon back, and the sense of accomplishment you feel when you clear a particularly head-scratching obstacle is just as potent now as the first time Luigi unwillingly strapped a vacuum to his back and stepped into a haunted mansion. — Keven Knezevic [Fire Emblem]
Madden NFL 20 — 8/10
Madden NFL 20 is an improved version of the annualized professional football series that excels in some areas and leaves something to be desired in others. The new QB1 career mode–which includes a barebones NCAA football experience–overall feels like a half-baked idea that doesn’t deliver anything meaningful or interesting. When it comes to the on-the-field action, however, the new X-Factor and Superstar abilities shake up the familiar gameplay formula to give seasoned players and newcomers alike a fresh way to scheme plays and orchestrate strategy on both sides of the ball. — Eddie Makuch [Fire Emblem]
Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Jr.’s Journey — 8/10
It’s not every day a hero gets a chance to literally walk around in their mortal enemy’s shoes, which is what made Bowser’s Inside Story such a bizarre but wildly unique concept back in 2009. Even though not much has changed since its original DS release, it’s still one of the stronger Mario RPGs, and its innovative gimmick remains exciting on 3DS. The setup here is that a mysterious affliction called the Blorps is spreading across the Mushroom Kingdom thanks to Fawful, an obnoxious trickster who’s been handing out poisoned mushrooms. Naturally, Mario and Luigi are on the job, but after Bowser gets suckered into eating one of the mushrooms, he ends up with a surprising side effect: accidentally swallowing everything in his current field of vision, including the Mario Brothers. As Fawful makes a play to take over the kingdom, Bowser heads out to get some fiery payback with some unexpected help from the Mario Bros. — Justin Clark [Full Review]
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order — 8/10
More so than its predecessors, Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order excels because of its character diversity and the ways its disparate heroes work together. For this reason alone it’s an ideal co-op game, whether you’re playing with another friend in the same room or with three friends online, but the AI more than holds its own if you’re playing alone, too. It falters in places, but there’s still nothing quite like the Ultimate Alliance series, and this long-awaited third entry makes it a triumphant return for a superhero brawler that feels more relevant than ever. — Richard Wakeling [Full Review]
Metro Exodus — 8/10
At first glance, Metro Exodus gives you that wide-open, free, and dangerous world unbound by tunnels, though the scope of its tale focuses on what drives you personally and the lengths you’re willing to go to protect what matters most. The open sandboxes may not be strongest addition, but the game still embraces the sense of vulnerability and post-apocalyptic terror alongside impactful weapons used in refined combat and stealth scenarios. You may miss the mystery and intrigue of the previous games, but Exodus puts together a charismatic crew of friends and family that you’ll want to follow to the ends of the earth. — Michael Higham [Full Review]
MLB The Show 19 — 9/10
Despite the lack of innovation in Franchise Mode, MLB The Show 19 excels when it comes to the sheer variety of single-player content on offer, while significant improvements to fielding round out the on-field package, making this one of the best baseball games ever. That’s not a particularly bold statement considering the series’ consistent quality throughout the years, but MLB 19 continues that upward trajectory with its most robust offering yet, guaranteeing another year’s worth of excellent baseball. — Richard Wakeling [Full Review]
Monster Hunter: World – Iceborne (Expansion) — 9/10
This expansion is rife with moments like that; all of the tweaking and the improvements feel like they were done with the excellent building blocks of Monster Hunter World in mind, which means that getting to the meat of the matter is quicker and more satisfying than ever. There’s no more fussing about with new systems or worrying about ruffling the feathers of hardcore fans with a direction change in the series; those teething problems have already come and gone. Iceborne is a confident step into the future of the franchise, and it’s hard not to think about what might come next. — Ginny Woo [Full Review]
Mordhau — 8/10
Mordhau is tough, violent, beautiful, and doesn’t pull its punches. Despite an intense learning curve that could be better alleviated with more tutorials or better practice tools, its supreme swordplay and combat mechanics eventually outshine any initial frustration. The scale of battle is overwhelming and chaotic, but there’s a definite sense to all the nonsense that, once you uncover it, gives you an incredible rush every time you go toe-to-toe with the enemy–even if you don’t come out the other side intact. — James Swinbanks [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Steam.
Mortal Kombat 11 — 9/10
MK11 isn’t just a sequel for series fans and NetherRealm devotees, it’s a gateway into the realm of fighting games for anyone who has a passing interest in watching ruthless warriors beat each other silly. Streamlined mechanics keep the act of fighting furiously exciting no matter what your skill level, and comprehensive tutorials encourage you to dig into the nitty-gritty. There’s a diverse roster of interesting characters and playstyles, and the story mode is an entertaining romp. The randomization of Krypt rewards and the odd issue with the game’s always-online nature can occasionally chip away at your patience, but Mortal Kombat 11 absolutely hits where it matters. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
NHL 20 — 9/10
NHL 20 successfully captures the ice hockey experience from the ponds to big games under the bright lights, with a fine attention to detail and simple yet deep controls that are best-in-class. Once you get over the shock of Eddie and Doc being out of the game, the new commentary team do an adept job of providing informative and playful banter, while the game’s multitude of varied modes each have their own distinct feel and appeal that go a long way to make NHL 20 an excellent representation of hockey culture across the board. — Eddie Makuch [Full Review]
Night Call — 8/10
If you’re going to play Night Call, then play it on the “Story” setting. The normal difficulty claims it is “the way Night Call is meant to be played.” I disagree. Night Call is at its best when you’re behind the wheel, gliding through the rain-kissed boulevards, lost in conversation with whichever lost soul just happened to appear in the back seat of your cab. It presents itself as a noir mystery, but the murders you’re investigating are the least interesting narrative element. Night Call’s real strength is in the stories it tells about Paris, about the people who live there and the meaningful connections you can have with them no matter how brief or unexpected. It’s these people you’ll remember once you’ve solved each case, not the fares you charged them. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam and GOG.
No Man’s Sky Beyond (Expansion) — 9/10
The drastic improvements made to No Man’s Sky in its Beyond expansion are the new gold standard for how to gracefully cope with a game’s flaws post-release. The game laid the foundation with its release, but it took Beyond to elevate it into something magnificent. Successfully transitioning to VR is a creative victory on its own, but realizing just how full and vibrant and rewarding an experience this game has now become is almost poignant. Beyond represents the courage of convictions, a concept that has not only met the lofty expectations it set forth, but transcended them. — Justin Clark [Full Review]
Objects in Space — 8/10
Those with affinity for the kind of nuanced technical challenges of running a space freight business will be enraptured, but such players will be far from the only ones. In its best moments, Objects in Space can work a unique kind of magic. Few other games pull away the barriers between ship and captain so completely, and yet lean so hard on the mundane. Pulling yourself away from the real world and allowing the mysteries and adventure soak in can take a bit, but once you’re settled into your chair and piloting, you’ll find there you’ll find there’s no place quite like it anywhere–be it our world or its own. — Daniel Starkey [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Steam and GOG.
Observation — 8/10
Observation is a wonderful example of how to do focused, self-contained science-fiction storytelling in a game. It’s well-written and clever, and nails the sci-fi tropes and aesthetics it both plays to and builds upon. It’s a game that demands to be analyzed and thought about further once you’re done with it, and while the internal world of the game is small, inhabiting it is a real pleasure. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4 and PC via the Epic Games Store.
Operencia: The Stolen Sun Review — 8/10
Operencia tells a wonderful story derived from Central European folklore, mythology, and history, and it does so with unwavering confidence in its makeup. Companion characters are funny, and the banter between them makes for a fun experience that’s not without its heartfelt moments. In terms of combat, the strategizing is so engaging that you’ll likely end up charging rat warriors headfirst instead of hopelessly attempting to avoid bumping into them. Best of all, though, this world is so stunning that you’ll just look at the trees, the water, the rocks–everything. It’s a shame that some of the puzzle solutions are needlessly frustrating and present significant obstacles in getting through the story, but aside from that Operencia provides a truly special experience.
Operencia transports you somewhere far, far away, and once you get there, you’ll probably want to stay a while. — Cian Maher [Full Review]
Available digitally on Xbox One PC via the Epic Games Store.
Outer Wilds — 9/10
Outer Wilds’ deeply captivating narrative and plentiful mysteries push you further into exploring its richly varied and stunning solar system. The time loop you’re trapped in lets you craft bite-sized expeditions that all end up telling their own stories, irrespective of whether you make a monumental discovery or simply encounter a playful interaction. Having a tool to neatly document your discoveries helps you slowly piece together a tale filled with charming writing, and one that presents its own open-ended questions that add emotional heft to the numerous exchanges you parse through during your travels. By letting you chart your own course and piece together its mystery at your own pace, Outer Wilds makes each of its expeditions feel incredibly personal and absolutely unmissable. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Overland — 8/10
All that matters is getting your survivors to the West Coast and making it through seven different biomes filled with an increasingly distressing variety of threats and hardships with whatever tools you can scrounge together. Overland perfectly captures a feeling of being helpless, of only just getting by, and of being afraid to venture too far away from your car into the pitch-black dark of night. Every movement you commit, every action you command, and every item or character you sacrifice for another will be an apprehensive decision. But taking each of those tough steps makes you even more grateful to hear the soft chime of your car’s open-door alarm when you make it back, and the rev of the motor when you escape down the highway, relieved to leave another pack of abnormal creatures behind. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
Phoenix Point — 8/10
Phoenix Point has plenty of bold new ideas for the XCOM genre, but not all of them have the same level of shine. It can feel a bit unwieldy at times, a bit less user-friendly than you’d hope. But it’s a game that feels more concerned with experimentation than perfection, that’s more interested in discovering new paths to take than walking one that’s already well-trodden. As a hybrid tactical/strategy game, it’s dynamic and deep with the occasionally disorientating misfire along the way. As a contribution to the genre XCOM first defined, it’s a well-aimed shot. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Pikuniku — 8/10
While Pikuniku is a light experience, it’s got enough charm and verve to stick with you well beyond completion. From Piku’s weird wobbly gait and looping jumps in the opening right through to the game’s funny, bizarre ending, Pikuniku is more gripping than its simple aesthetic and playful tone would suggest. It’ll make you feel like a kid again. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Pokemon Sword and Shield — 9/10
In collecting, battling, and exploring, Sword and Shield cut out the bloat and focus on what makes these pillars of the Pokemon games so captivating in the first place. You’re not held back by overly complicated back-end systems or hoops to jump through; from the outset, you can start wandering the Galar region, seeing its new Pokemon, and trying out its new battle strategies with very little in your way. This leaves you free to enjoy what Pokemon is all about, and that makes for an incredibly strong showing for the series’ proper debut on Switch. — Kallie Plagge [Full Review]
Rebel Galaxy Outlaw — 8/10
There is a lot to do in Rebel Galaxy Outlaw, so much so that it’s easy to lose yourself among the myriad of activities beyond flying around and shooting things. Juno is a great character despite her sometimes jarring movements, as are much of the rest of the charming cast. The combat is fast, frenetic and consistently challenging, although that challenge can sometimes feel impossible without stepping back and grinding out some progress elsewhere, which quickly gets frustrating. Thankfully the core of the game–its combat, trading, and space flight–are all superb and had me launching into the stars for many hours of galactic trading and explosive firefights. — James Swinbanks [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via the Epic Games Store.
Resident Evil 2 — 9/10
Resident Evil 2 is not only a stellar remake of the original, but it’s also simply a strong horror game that delivers anxiety-inducing and grotesque situations, topping some of the series’ finest entries. But above all, the remake is an impressive game for the fact that it goes all-in on the pure survival horror experience, confidently embracing its horrifying tone and rarely letting up until the story’s conclusion. Though Resident Evil 2 has its roots firmly in the past, it reworks the familiar horrors into something that feels brand new and all its own. — Alessandro Fillari [Full Review]
Samurai Shodown — 8/10
Samurai Shodown is a great reboot. It captures what made the original fun and unique, but also at a time when high-damage, high-stakes fighters like this are a rarity, making its combat feel both fresh and familiar. Its accessibility and easy-to-grasp gameplay belie a lot of strategic depth that makes for very intense, bloody struggles. While the single-player experience is a bit lacking, it doesn’t drag down the whole significantly–Samurai Shodown is a fighting experience well worth taking up the sword for. — Heidi Kemps [Full Review]
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice — 9/10
The orchestration of intense one-on-one boss encounters that truly test your mettle, and slower-paced stealth sections that let you take on battles at your own pace, is masterful. More so than in previous games, From Software has honed in on the inherent tension found in the challenging nature of its games, and uses it to incredible effect. Sekiro marries the developer’s unique brand of gameplay with stealth action to deliver an experience that is as challenging as it is gratifying. — Tamoor Hussain [Full Review]
Shovel Knight: King of Cards — 8/10
Whether you’re challenging foes at a table in a tavern or bashing them into oblivion with your scepter, King of Cards is like comfort food if you already have a taste for Shovel Knight. It doesn’t stray from its established formula and often sticks closer to the format of the first game in the series rather than the more experimental expansions that came after it. And while its well-balanced platforming and demanding combat are a treat, its use of existing boss fights and enemies with little to no change in their mechanics saps some of the surprise out of these exciting encounters. It’s been a persistent issue in each of Shovel Knight’s expansions, but the King of Cards’ attention to level design and deeply engrossing gameplay do help mask it better than before. If this is meant to be a farewell to Shovel Knight’s first adventure, it goes off with all the spectacle and confetti it deserves. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Sky: Children Of The Light — 8/10
Sky is both different to everything thatgamecompany has made before but also a smart evolution of what makes its games special. It’s simple to play while feeling incredible at the same time, making the act of flight exciting every time your feet leave the ground. It also features a fascinating spin on in-game purchases, locking its most alluring rewards behind the action of making friends and making a positive enough impression on them. That means you have to play a lot of Sky to eventually work towards what you want, which saps some life out of the gorgeous vignettes you’re free to explore. But it’s no less memorable for the ideas it presents or calming in the way it gives you the freedom to pursue them, making it another journey worth seeing through. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Available digitally on iOS.
Super Mario Maker 2 — 8/10
The Mario series is worth all the admiration it gets, and Super Mario Maker 2 is an excellent tool for picking it apart by pushing its enemies, mechanisms, and Mario, to their limit. I’ve yet to make a stage of my own that I think is worthy of sending out to other players, but I’m committed to getting there. Whether exploring the full potential of a single element or throwing things at the wall to see what sticks, I’ve got the itch to join the creator’s club. Mario Maker 2 makes the learning process intuitive and enjoyable. Most importantly, it’s enabled designers amateur and professional alike to share their creativity with the world. The community is off to a great start, and thankfully, the fun has only just begun. — Peter Brown [Full Review]
Tetris 99 — 8/10
Tetris 99 may not be a proper battle royale game, but it taps into the same emotional well, where a large number of players vying for supremacy creates an ever-present intensity that’s difficult to shake. Add that layer to a game that’s plenty capable of instilling tension on its own, and you’ve got a riveting experience that even at its worst is still a game very much worth playing. There’s obvious room for improvement, but that’s the last thing on your mind when the pieces start falling and the players start dropping. — Peter Brown [Full Review]
Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 — 9/10
The setting of The Division 2 is ripe for potential, and it’s a shame the game doesn’t use it to say anything. I have absolutely no clue why I’m here, what anyone’s motivations are, and I wish I had a strong narrative driver to fuel a purpose behind my endless hunger for progression. This letdown is hard to ignore for the game’s initial hours, but the strength of the systems and design that fuel The Division 2 as a game are compelling enough to keep you captivated for dozens more. The range of enemy types continues to keep combat encounters challenging, the equipment I earn and pick up continues to feel different, valuable, and asks me to consider new ways of play. The ravaged environments continue to intrigue, and sometimes they’re so stunning I find myself needing to take screenshots before I move on. It might not have much to say, but The Division 2 is a perpetual cycle of tension, relief, and reward that’s difficult to stay away from. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
The Eternal Castle Remastered — 8/10
The Eternal Castle is more than a mere nostalgia trip for aging gamers still hanging on to their 5.25-inch floppy drives. In many ways, it’s just as modern as it is retro and more than capable of holding its own against its more illustrious contemporary peers. Luckily it’s just my memory that isn’t as good as it used to be. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Steam.
The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening
Though the remake has a couple of blemishes, it’s still an easy game to recommend. People speak of Link’s Awakening as the secret best Zelda game. That’s a tough call to make, but it’s definitely one of the best. If you haven’t touched a classic Zelda game in a while, Link’s Awakening will almost instantly transport you back to the ’90s. It’s simple, in many ways, but the orchestrated journey still conveys a sense of adventure, and this new version is without question the best way to experience it. And more than anything else, it will put a smile on your face. Remakes are a dime a dozen nowadays and often easy to overlook. Don’t make that mistake with Link’s Awakening. — Peter Brown [Full Review]
The Occupation — 8/10
Of course, it seems churlish to complain too much about a game I’m enjoying enough to willingly replaying it again and again to explore every facet of its story. The Occupation is the sort of game you’ll find yourself thinking about when you’re not playing it, that gets under your skin in ways you didn’t even realize. I’m going to play it again. Maybe this time I’ll completely crack the case. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
The Outer Worlds — 9/10
I finished The Outer Worlds wanting more, eager to jump back into the world to see extra things. It’s not a short game, but it’s one packed with such a steady stream of wonderful characters to meet, interesting places to explore, and meaningful, multi-layered quests to solve, that it didn’t feel like there was any room to get tired of it. I wanted to rewind the clock and do everything in a completely different way. The Outer Worlds is consistently compelling throughout, and it’s a superb example of how to promote traditional RPG sensibilities in a sharp, modern experience. — Edmond Tran [Full Review]
The Surge 2 — 8/10
Story and sidequests aside, however, The Surge 2 is absolutely worth the effort when the combat is taken in isolation. Not only does it pack a punch, but it also channels plenty of depth in its limb targeting and deflection systems, and is ably supported by a genuinely varied collection of weapons and potential character builds. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
The Witcher III: Wild Hunt (Switch Port) — 9/10
Although the Nintendo Switch might not be the best platform to play The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, it’s still a fantastic experience that shouldn’t be missed. If you are looking to replay The Witcher 3 and bask in its detail and beauty, the Switch port may not quite scratch that itch. However, what makes this game excellent isn’t its graphics, but the powerful stories it tells, and those are as vivid as ever on Switch. — Jake Dekker [Full Review]
They Are Billions Review — 8/10
At its best, though, in both the original survival mode, across the bulk of the campaign and in the one-off challenge of the week maps, They Are Billions remains a tight and compelling strategy game. The knowledge that you’re always just one misstep away from disaster creates a gripping, tense atmosphere that’s unusual for the genre. And the cycle from defense to offense and back again as you progress from one wave to the next offers both well-paced urgency and the ability to set clear short-term goals. It’s a smartly designed game at its core, despite the distractions. Just like a lone zombie can bring about your demise, sometimes one strong idea is enough. — David Wildgoose [Full Review]
Available digitally on Ps4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam and GOG.
Total War: Three Kingdoms — 8/10
Three Kingdoms feels like a breath of fresh air. By harkening back to the intricacies of older titles and builds on some of the foundations laid by Thrones of Britannia, it offers a distinctly contemporary and thorough experience. This is the most ambitious that Total War has ever been, from the variety of different ways that you can enjoy the game to the sheer scope of the stories that they’ve weaved around each unique character’s playable experience. Three Kingdoms feels like the rightful evolution of the series, pulling from its roots in historical military tactics to come up with an engrossing modern strategy game that is always a delight, even in its less well-oiled moments. — Ginny Woo [Full Review]
Available digitally on PC via Steam.
Tropico 6 — 8/10
Even so, you have more than enough tools to control just about everything that happens in Tropico. Failure and success, then, can feel quite a bit like a referendum not just on your policies, but on your rendition of El Presidente. The notion of dictatorship as a role that you play for yucks is still there, if that’s a hat you want to wear–though it’s harder to indulge your own selfish impulses when you can see how your actions are condemning Lydia the lumberjack to a lifetime of poverty. — Daniel Starkey [Full Review]
Untitled Goose Game — 8/10
The important thing is that Untitled Goose Game is a hoot. It’s a comedy game that focuses on making the act of playing it funny, rather than simply being a game that features jokes. Wishing that it was longer speaks to how much fun I had with it. There’s nothing else quite like Untitled Goose Game; it’s charming and cute despite being mean, and both very silly and very clever. It’s also probably the best non-racing game ever to feature a dedicated “honk” button. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Void Bastards — 8/10
This delicate balance highlights the assortment of randomized levels, enemy compilations and uniquely designed weaponry that all make Void Bastards an absolute delight. It’s wildly entertaining to go from ship to ship and eradicate enemies with constantly shifting strategies, and equally engaging to use your scavenging gains to make yourself feel increasingly powerful. It’s a satisfyingly stylish shooter that manages to play as well as, if not better than, it looks. — Alessandro Barbosa [Full Review]
Available digitally on Xbox One and PC via Steam and the Microsoft Store.
The Walking Dead: The Final Season Episodes 3 — 8/10
And yet, smartly, this ghost of Lee isn’t crafted as some all-knowing magical father who tells Clementine exactly what she wants to hear. We’re forced to remember Lee was making it up as he went along, that his road to being the person Clementine needs was paved by his–and by proxy, your own–mistakes. But there was love, and there was hope, and for the first time in this series, Clementine being ready to face the uncertain future has nothing to do with being able to shoot or how short her hair is but the fact that she is surrounded by people, a place, and a purpose like never before. Whatever awaits Clementine at the end of this road, she goes there with a full heart. If the finale lives up to the future set up in Broken Toys, so will we. — Justin Clark [Full Review]
The Walking Dead: The Final Season Episode 4 — 9/10
We know what kind of legacy Clementine and you, the player, leave on A.J., but if there’s any comment on what Telltale’s legacy looks like, it’s in the finale as well, in a stretch where you have control of A.J. instead of Clementine. Here, the trademark Telltale UI has changed, no longer that distinctive up-down-left-right grid of responses, but a floating collection of potential thoughts or emotions to have. It looks a little like the crucial time-stopping decision clouds of Life Is Strange. It acts a little like the emotion-based response system of Mass Effect Andromeda. It feels like a statement by a group of developers whose legacy is now safe and sound. It’s rare that a shuttered studio gets to dictate the final grace notes of their body of work, but that’s the opportunity Telltale had with these final episodes, and it’s one that was not wasted in any way. The Walking Dead ends not with a bang, but an accomplished sigh. — Justin Clark [Full Review]
Warframe (2019) — 8/10
Thinking back to GameSpot’s original review, it’s interesting how much the game has improved, yet also how much has stayed the same. The game still has issues with repetition and lack of explanations for its more complex systems, but it’s managed to overcome their severity by introducing so many events and revisions that continue to elevate it. While there are inevitable bouts of frustration here and there, I always manage to center myself once I move on to other opportunities. In a lot of ways, that’s what Warframe manages to do best. One moment you’re taking part in a random spy mission on Saturn, and the next, you’re partnered up with a powerful squad of players that help you through several void fissures. Just when you feel like you’ve hit a lull, a better, and more fulfilling opportunity will likely present itself. Perhaps most importantly, Warframe makes sure that the time spent in its world is almost always well rewarded. — Alessandro Fillari [Full Review]
Available digitally on PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam.
Wargroove — 8/10
That’s good news, because Wargroove is a delight to play, and the possibility of an endless supply of content for it is a tantalizing prospect. Chucklefish could have offered up a prettied-up take on Advance Wars with online multiplayer and called it a day. Instead, it’s made meaningful improvements that make this both a satisfying answer to starved Advance Wars fans’ wishes and a genuinely great experience on its own merits. — Chris Pereira [Full Review]
What The Golf — 8/10
What the Golf is a comedy game first and foremost, and it succeeds at its primary goal. Perhaps the game’s most telling feature is the ‘Show To A Friend’ option on the main menu, which runs you through a quick playable “best of” reel of some clever challenges the game offers up. What the Golf is an experience that can be shown off, fully understood, and effectively sold to a player in the span of about two minutes–and like all great jokes, you’ll want to share it. — James O’Connor [Full Review]
Available digitally on Nintendo Switch and PC via the Epic Games Store.
Wolfenstein: Youngblood — 8/10
Wolfenstein: Youngblood has the series’ signature first-person shooting thrills that’ll have you gladly busting shots and blasting lasers in the face of Nazi trash–and the opportunity to do so alongside a friend. It incorporates some new ideas which are serviceable for the most part, but hits more of the right notes in RPG elements and level design. It also knows the resistance doesn’t end when one person cuts the head off a monstrous regime; the fight continues, sometimes into the next generation. And the way this brief spin-off broadens the saga with the Blazkowicz twins makes you wish there was more to see from this new cast of lovable knuckleheads. Jess and Soph–and Abby too–learned from the best, and embrace their newfound duty of ridding their world of tyranny while being cool as hell doing it. Youngblood is short, but oh-so sweet. — Michael Higham [Full Review]
Yoshi’s Crafted World — 8/10
Yoshi’s Crafted World is at its best when it’s relaxing and pleasant. The 2D-to-3D level design keeps you curious while the go-at-your-own-pace approach keeps the pressure off and leaves you to appreciate the small, imaginative details. Its most interesting ideas never evolve past their first introductions and are frequently confined to one or two levels, but individually, those levels both reward your curiosity and your willingness to slow down and look at what’s around you–and it’s those simple pleasures that provide the most joy. — Kallie Plagge [Full Review]
Source: Game Spot Mashup