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Warriors Orochi 4 (Xbox One Review)

It’s natural to push for progression in our most beloved franchises. We want to see them grow and prosper, but what happens when it all goes wrong? How do you reassure players that the experiment that blew up in their faces wasn’t the new norm? Well, the easiest solution is to go back to the basics and that’s exactly what Koei Tecmo has done with Warriors Orochi 4.
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Life is Strange 2: Episode 1 – Roads (Xbox One Review)

Given the current climate surrounding adventure games and the loss of Telltale Games, it feels odd to say that we are privileged to bear witness to another excellent addition to the genre and applaud its delivery, but here we are. Life is Strange was one of the first games in the current generation to show that you didn’t need a big, well known franchise to push the medium and that you can recover from the missteps of poor spin-offs – yes, Before the Storm is pretty bad and I won’t hear otherwise – with a title like Life is Strange 2.
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The Council: Episode 4 – Burning Bridges

Episodic games are curious things. Not much changes between episodes bar the story. You could even argue that there isn’t much to really talk about, but as soon as that episode ends there’s always an urge to grab the first person you can find to talk about them. It’s part of their magic. The Council has kind of been like that, magic.
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Valkyria Chronicles 4 (PlayStation 4 Review)

For me, 2008 felt like a dire year to exclusively own the PlayStation 3. Multiplatform releases were great, but the exclusive titles were far and few between. Sure enough, we had Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, but that was simultaneously exciting and disappointing. And so, Valkyria Chronicles caught my eye. It sat on the shelf with its quiet mix of 3D anime and pencil-sketched artwork and I was instantly attracted to it. There weren’t many other games like it, and the system was starved.
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Immortal: Unchained (Xbox One Review)

The term Souls-like has been tossed around more times than a poor pickup line at a bar. Sure, the overly familiar term resonates with a great many, but if its poorly delivered you’ll be left with a red face. That is to say that Immortal: Unchained hit out with its best attempt and ended up picking up the tab rather than a hot date.
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Destiny 2: Forsaken (Xbox One Review)

Since the inception of Destiny 2 we have been constantly reminded that there was a road map. A succinct plan of where we were going and when we would get there. Yet it always felt like we were on the road to nowhere. And then Destiny 2: Forsaken dropped.
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Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Strikers (Xbox One Review)

Naruto is one of the most prolific anime ever to grace modern media to date. Even with its popularity dwindling in previous years, there is still an unprecedented demand for adaptations. CyberConnect2 previously bought Naruto to life on modern consoles with the Ultimate Ninja Storm series, but they’ve now passed the torch to Soleil to bridge the gap between generations with Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Strikers.
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Shenmue 1+2 HD (Xbox One Review)

There’s no denying that Shenmue was a powerhouse when it first landed nearly 20 years ago. Then Yu Suzuki followed it up with the even more stellar Shenmue II. The series’ impact on gaming was felt universally, in spite of its niche appeal. The thing is, revolutionaries rarely stand the test of time. We’re no longer staring at the glass ceiling; instead we’re on the great glass elevator we made of its remains. So, did Shenmue stick around for the ride?
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Elea – Episode 1 (Xbox One Review)

At their peak, episodic games can compete with the best TV has to offer and they all have one thing in common: a hook. Every great series gives you a reason to keep coming back. I’m not sure if Elea has that.
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Divinity: Original Sin 2 – Definitive Edition (Xbox One Review)

Divinity: Original Sin revolutionised the way I see RPGs. It set a precedence that no game has surpassed since. Divinity: Original Sin had a rich story, engaging strategic combat, a wealth of different styles of play, and it didn’t take itself too seriously. Now it’s long awaited successor, Divinity: Original Sin 2 is making its way to consoles and it’s one for the books.
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Strange Brigade (Xbox One Review)

Rebellion Developments have had an illustrious career in games. With a hand in games like Alien Vs. Predator, Rogue Trooper, and their crown jewel Sniper Elite, they’ve left their mark on the games industry over the years. There is an undeniable pedigree to almost every game. A pedigree they are upholding with Strange Brigade, adding yet another title to their venerated library of shooters.
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Yakuza Kiwami 2 (PlayStation 4 Review)

Writing this review reminds me that an era is now over. While Yakuza 6: The Song of Life was the swansong for the series’ protagonist, Yakuza Kiwami 2 marks the final “new” game to feature the Dragon of Dojima, Kazuma Kiryu, as the playable protagonist. Filled with a number of new content and revisions for Yakuza 2—originally released in 2006—does Kiwami 2 serve as the fitting end to an era of incredible games that now, finally, has the recognition it deserves in the west?
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Guacamelee! 2 (Playstation 4 Review)

Five years on from the original release, Drinkbox Studios’ 2D action platformer and universally praised Guacamelee! has finally returned with a sequel. In a multi-dimensional world filled with Mexican culture stereotypes and video game references galore, the Mexiverse (yes, that’s what it’s called in the game) is having it’s fabric of existence torn apart by a Luchador named Salvador.
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Dead Cells (Xbox One Review)

It was only a year ago that I delved in to Sundered, a relatively entertaining Metroidvania that emphasised the need for repetition to progress. Now, in a not so distant future, Dead Cells seeks to improve upon the grind for upgrades laid out before it in Sundered, but does it differentiate itself enough to justify your hard earned cash?
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The Council: Episode 3 – Ripples

Lots of things tend to sag in the middle, particularly my comic book shelf that has been questionably overfilled. Understanding why there is a sag is just as important in noticing the lasting damage it causes. In the case of my bookcase, I’ve simply over encumbered the shelf. How does this apply to The Council? Well, episode 3 is at the point where that sag in the middle could turn into a catastrophic slope.
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Sonic Mania Plus (Playstation 4 Review)

A franchise that is both experiencing some long unseen highs and the usual bumps in the road, Sonic Mania has gotten a cheap and cheerful DLC expansion simply named “Plus”. The blue blur is continuing to ride the wave of success from the original version of Mania whilst also licking his wounds from the extremely mediocre reception of Sonic Forces. The main focus of Mania Plus’ additions is the Encore Mode, which also continues the oddly tied canon of Mania and Forces. Sonic (the classic incarnation of him) returns from the Modern universe after the events of Forces to immediately find and give chase to the Phantom Ruby again. After a brief pursuit on Angel Island, Sonic comes across the imprisoned Mighty and Ray, who haven’t been seen since Knuckles Chaotix and SegaSonic the Hedgehog respectively. The reunion is cut short when one of the Hard Boiled Heavies grabs the Phantom Ruby and uses it to revive the rest of the villainous group; as well as reversing time to repeat the events of the original Mania.
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EarthFall (Xbox One Review)

Imitation is the highest form of flattery, but rarely does an imposter stand out. Be it Path of Exile imitating Diablo or Two Worlds aping The Elder Scrolls, it’s rare for us to remember the impostor over its inspiration. So, can Earthfall buck the trend with its frantic alien horde culling and topple Left 4 Dead?
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Epic Loon (Xbox One Review)

Party games were once the centre of geeky social gatherings. A crowd of friends flocking around a singular television, tormenting each other until friendships fall apart. While Epic Loon doesn’t classify itself as a party game, I can’t help but be overwhelmed by the friendly, competitive vibe when playing with other people. But does Epic Loon fill that void where Mario Kart and Fuzion Frenzy once reigned?
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The Spectrum Retreat (Xbox One Review)

Puzzle games are fantastic motivators in the virtual world and it’s well documented that they can benefit you in real life too. Solving a complex puzzle is both challenging and rewarding, but what about simple puzzles? Well, we’re about to find out with The Spectrum Retreat.
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Jurassic World: Evolution (Xbox One Review)

The idea of a Theme Park World-esque game based on the Jurassic Park franchise has been a no brainer since its inception. The idea of filling your own island with tourists and dinosaurs alike was tantalising. There’s a delicate line to tread between man and nature and it would have been at your fingertips. It was destined for success, or at least that’s what you’d expect. Somehow, uhm, Frontier have found a way to circumvent those expectations.
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Warriors Orochi 4 (Xbox One Review)

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

It’s natural to push for progression in our most beloved franchises. We want to see them grow and prosper, but what happens when it all goes wrong? How…

Life is Strange 2: Episode 1 – Roads (Xbox One Review)

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Life gets stranger.

The Council: Episode 4 – Burning Bridges

Friday, October 5, 2018

Episodic games are curious things. Not much changes between episodes bar the story. You could even argue that there isn’t much to really talk about, but as soon…

Valkyria Chronicles 4 (PlayStation 4 Review)

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

For me, 2008 felt like a dire year to exclusively own the PlayStation 3. Multiplatform releases were great, but the exclusive titles were far and few between. Sure…