CategoryGames

Hyper Light Drifter Review

We all have our demons to face down, and sometimes words fall short of expressing what is existentially wrought. In fact, often times words would only muddy what otherwise exists in a state of perfect and serene clarity.  And even 16-bit sprites can’t always outrun the shadows. Hyper Light Drifter by Heart Machine is a hack-and-slash pixel art adventure that offers no words but instead...

Moon Hunters Review

Does every story have just one interpretation? Or does one learn something new with each telling? The answers to these questions form the crux of the story in Moon Hunters: The Personality RPG.  This beautiful pixel art based RPG is deceptively short and sweet, veiling a deeper story and exploration-based unlockables behind multiple play-throughs. In fact, this game is intended for lots of...

Seasons After Fall Review

If you were an innocent forest creature suddenly possessed by a spirit intent on jettisoning the cycle of seasons in favor of her own misguided ends, what might you be feeling? And if that disembodied spirit looked down over your now lifeless body, would you wish for it back? These are a few questions not exactly posed by Seasons After Fall, a 2D puzzle-platformer released by Swing Swing...

UnRavel Review

UnRavel is a part-platform, part-puzzle game for Xbox One. The protagonist is Yarny, a self-aware bundle of yarn attempting to reclaim lost memories and piece together the joys and losses of a family through a lifetime. Your journey takes you through fields and forests and industrial waste dumping grounds, all suffused with beauty and regret. Gameplay  The game mechanic is fairly simple...

Abzu Review

Every so often you have a chance to play a game that is so unconventional that it really stays with you. Abzu is one of those games. I recently had a chance to play through it, and wanted to write a mini-review. While there are some elements of conventional gameplay in Abzu (some light puzzle-ing, do this action to open this door, exploration etc.), at its core it feels much more like an exercise...

RiME Review

Imagine that you awoke washed up on an unfamiliar shore. Your memories lie fragmented, reawakened in flashes of loss and regret. A mysterious land sprawls out before you, dominated by an immense tower which reaches towards the sky. You don’t know why you are here, but the tower draws you near. In such a situation, what would you feel? Fear at the loss of memory and the unfamiliarity of your...

Mass Effect: Andromeda Review

I confess to being a newbie to the Mass Effect series, having little to no familiarity with the previous installments beyond what my friend Brandon has explained to me. However, I recently had some downtime and a couple Xbox gift cards to spend, and Xbox was doing a summer sale on games, letting me pick this one up for a nice little discount. I had, of course, heard about many of the early...

Ori and the Blind Forest Review

Some video games are captivating because of the game mechanic, while others are able to bring emotional catharsis to bear. But Ori and the Blind Forest, by Moon Studios (released by Microsoft Studios), is a game that is able to weld breathtaking beauty with a minimalistic yet deep emotional pathos, all while continually improving upon its fundamental game mechanic. You play Ori, a young Spirit...

When Worlds Collide

In a previous post I critiqued the supposed intersection of blockbuster movies and blockbuster video games argued here; namely, how there is a substantial difference between the bigness of games like Skyrim and the over-the-top-meant-to-distract-you-bigness of blockbuster films. In my original post I quoted what the author felt was a good example of a “big” game done right: the most recent...

I Took An Arrow In The Knee

I have to admit to being a pretty big Skyrim fan. I am currently on my fifth character, a Khajiit archer who is quickly leveling up his Sneak ability. Eventually I will level up his Smithing and Enchanting skills enough so that I can craft a Dragonbone bow that has both Lightning and Soul Capture abilities, a necklace and ring that gives me +40 Archery and health (each), and a Dragonbone helmet...

Jason Watson

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