There are a few reasons why this isn’t a full review of the new Mass Effect: Legendary Edition. Number one is that the sci-fi trilogy contains dozens and dozens of hours of content and doing a full review will take a while. The second reason is that there are already hundreds of reviews for all three games, and while those reviews might not be for the Legendary Edition they remain largely relevant today, so it makes more sense to focus on the technical side of things. But the biggest and most important reason, at least to me, is because I want to take my time with this one. The Mass Effect games are special to me, a massive part of my teenage years and a huge factor in my love of the Xbox 360 era. To review this new Legendary Edition in a timely fashion I’d have to rush through them all, and…well, I’m just not willing to do that to myself. Sorry. I’m going to savour every moment, do every quest and maybe even chase down every Platinum trophy. This partial review, then, is based off of 20-hours with the first Mass Effect and a quick look at the other two games. Plus, the first game features the vast majority of the remastering effort due to its age, and so focusing on that seems sensible.
Rogue-likes might be incredibly popular among a certain group of players who love to torture themselves as they crawl and scrape for every piece of progress, but they’ve rarely made the jump to triple-A, typically being the domain of smaller developers. Housemarque has changed that with Returnal, a game that combines their experience in bullet-hell arcade games with the classic rogue-like experience of dying again and again and again. Throw in gorgeous graphics, a whole bunch of systems and a story that could make a Christopher Nolan movie seem straightforward, and you have the ingredients for a rather interesting Playstation 5 exclusive. But is it worth spending £70 on?
Well, better late than never, right? Weeks after becoming a hit, in no small way due to launching on Game Pass on day one, my review for Outriders is finally here. People Can Fly have been quiet over the years, working on co-developing and remastering Bulletstorm, so it’s great to see the former Gears of War: Judgement developers releasing their own project after so long, a sci-fi third-person shooter with plenty of loot. Is it worth playing? Should you pick it up or download it from Game pass? Yes, and yes.
In 2004 my teenage brain was blown apart by a Bolter shot to the skull. Not only was I discovering the crazy world of girls and hormones, but Relic Entertainment had just released one of the greatest RTS games ever. Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War brought the daunting table-top game to PC in spectacular fashion, introducing a whole new generation to the Space Marines, the WAAAAAAAAAAGH! loving Orks, the silky voice of the forces of Chaos and the mysterious Eldar. And best of all? It’s so much cheaper than the bloody tabletop game. Let’s take a trip down memory lane, shall we, and see how Dawn of War holds up in 2021.
Over the last few years, we’ve seen a bunch of old games being brought back, like how Streets of Rage 4 resurrected a long-dormant franchise or how Crash Bandicoot 4 brought back an iconic character. Now it’s the turn of Evil Genius, a strategy game from 2004 that had you taking control of a Dr Evil style villain and carving out a lair in which you could plot the downfall of the world. The critical reception was fairly middling but the game earned itself something of a cult status. Now, after years of careful plotting and planning, Rebellion has given us the sequel that the original game so deeply deserved.
Genesis Noir can often feel less like a video game and more like an interactive Experience, with a capital E. It’s an abstract journey through time and space presented as a brooding noir tale about a watch peddler who witnesses the murder of his beloved Miss Mass at the hands of a jealous third party. The gunshot that kills her is the Big Bang, and thus our humble seller of time desperately combs time and space in a bid to find a way to stop the Big Bang itself and save his lady love. It is at times evocative, striking, jaw-dropping, exciting, and at other times is awkward and dull and pretentious. Above all else is unique and creative, a passion project created by a dedicated team across years of their life. I’m just not sure that Genesis Noir is for me. Or for you.
On Kickstarter the folks behind the long-running web-comic Cyanide & Happiness managed to raise $575,000 for this three episode point and click adventure project over 3-years ago, proving in the process that people will gladly pay good money for dick jokes. “The game will be a new approach to point-and-click adventures, filled with dark comedy, drama, weirdness, and an apocalypse in the suburbs.” That’s some big, bold claims about a genre that’s been around since time began, so does does Cyanide & Happiness: Freakpocolypse manage to live up these promises? Eh, not really.
The titular Sir Lovelot is on an epic quest to find the love of his life. To do that he’s going to venture from tower to tower, gifting the princesses that live within them a flower before climbing up their luxurious hair and getting down to…business. But each morning comes the same story of a broken heart. Perhaps they simply were not compatible, or perhaps Sir Lovelot can’t love good, I’m not judging. Regardless, Sir Lovelot heads out to once again seek the love of his life, and on the way to that love maybe find a few more princesses that need might be inclined to engage in a bit of casual rescuing. Ahem
Back in the ancient times known as the 90’s the city-builder genre was the shit, and we had loads to choose from. Pharoah, Caeser, Zeus, Stronghold – those are just a few examples of these games, and over the years these ideas have been built upon, modified and occasionally even thrown out the window, giving rise to a whole host of new and awesome titles. But there’s always that urge to go back to the roots of our nostalgia, and that’s exactly what Nebuchadnezzar aims to do.
Cardaclysm describes itself as a “procedurally generated collectible card game mixed with action RPG elements.” That’s one super sexy sentence that gets my motor running, if you know what I mean. Having been in Early Access since early in 2020, Cardaclysm has now fully launched onto Steam, so it it worth the small asking price of just £11.99? It’s time to D-d-d-d-d-d-DUEL!