Mini Review Tentacular (PSVR2) - Physics Puzzler May (Ten)tickle Your Fancy
Release the Kraken
Tentacular is a physics-based puzzler where you take control of a tentacled monster who's raised by the townsfolk of La Kalma, a small village in the middle of the ocean. You're on a journey of self-discovery, trying to find out how you came to be and where you belong. Using your long sucker-laden limbs to manipulate objects, you...
Mini Review Return to Monkey Island (PS5) - Original Creators Return to Beloved Point and Click
Rubber chicken with pulley optional
We find the mighty pirate Guybrush Threepwood sitting on a park bench, a bit older but not necessarily wiser. He is relaying the tale of a quest from The Secret of Monkey Island to a familiar youngster. The story that plays out is essentially the greatest hits of his first two adventures, with a sprinkling of...
Mini Review Inscryption (PS5) - The Most Unique Game You Will Play All Year
Heart of the cards
Inscryption is one of those games where the less you know the better. A card battling roguelike on first impression, it's what happens outside those duels where the true magic lies. Daniel Mullins has crafted a deceiving title full of layers and surprises; pulling them back and learning how they tick is what makes Inscryption...
Review Cult of the Lamb (PS5) - Deliciously Evil, Giddily Gruesome, and Bloody Brilliant
Few games make as strong a first impression as Cult of the Lamb. It had us in its thrall within a minute, and we remained enraptured for most of our 20 or so hours with the game. It’s a title that frequently delights, with an arresting tone, gruesome gameplay, and a cavalier approach to taste and decency. Only a handful of minor...
Review Trek to Yomi (PS5) - Short Samurai Slasher Thrives on Amazing Atmosphere
Highway to hell
Trek to Yomi isn't much of a trek, to be honest. This tribute to classic samurai cinema is only a few hours long at most, taking place across just a handful of story chapters. But what Trek to Yomi lacks in longevity, it makes up for in sheer atmosphere and spectacle. It's a superbly crafted indie adventure from a visual point of...
Review Weird West (PS4) - Ambitious Top-Down RPG Comes Close to Greatness
With the success of Deathloop last year, the comeback of immersive sims from their late 90s/early 2000s heyday seems to be in full swing. Through dogged determination and fantastic game design, Arkane Studios has almost single-handedly revived the genre a decade after releasing the first Dishonored title. So it makes sense that Weird...
Mini Review Shadow Warrior 3 (PS4) - A Very 2014 Shooter
Shadow Warrior 3 might be set in the demon-ravaged ruins of a futuristic Japan, but the game itself feels like a return to the early 2010s. Protagonist Lo Wang is constantly quipping, breaking the fourth wall and using his own name for dick jokes as he auditions to be the next Ryan Reynolds. There's parkour, grappling hooks, and an...
Mini Review Serious Sam 4 (PS5) - Mental Breakdown
Serious Sam 4 almost immediately disappoints. That’s not to say it’s bad — it's another generally playable slice of carnage in the long-running series — but it’s also yet another prequel, a fifth game in which the villain, the tastefully named “Mental”, does not make an appearance. It's another shooter much like...
Mini Review Death's Door (PS5) - Indie Darling Is a Tightly Designed Joy
Death's Door released to rampant critical acclaim on other platforms earlier in the year, and it's easy to see why. This is a lovingly crafted isometric action-adventure, stacked with engaging exploration, tense action, and a wonderful atmosphere. It draws obvious inspiration from The Legend of Zelda as you journey across an interconnected...
Mini Review Carrion (PS4) - A Grotesque Metroidvania with an Incredible Atmosphere
Feed the birds
Ever watched John Carpenter’s The Thing and thought how cool it would be to play as the organism? If so, Carrion is the game for you. You play a small organism that escapes from a holding cell. Upon reaching the vents you find yourself in a massive, sprawling research laboratory with two goals: spread your infection throughout the...
Mini Review Olija (PS4) - A Lot Achieved with Very Few Pixels
Devolver Digital continues its love affair with moody pixelated action games with Olija. This one has you exploring a mysterious land after Lord Faraday and his crew are left stranded, and it's your job to find a way back home. Things become complicated once you come across a cursed harpoon that grants a sort of teleport...
Mini Review Stories Untold - Uneven Horror Anthology Frustrates More Than It Frights
Be afraid. Be marginally afraid
For the uninitiated, Stories Untold is a creepy collection of four stories, each taking no longer than an hour or so to finish, and each with different gameplay elements. The first and by the far the best episode pays homage to the old school text adventures that you might have played if you grew up in the '80s. The...
Review Gorn - A Satisfying, Comically Violent PSVR Brawler
Are you not entertained?
Gorn is one of those games you can describe in just a few words. It's a VR beat-'em-up where you engage gormless gladiators in a bloody fight to the death. That's kind of it, really, but that simple concept makes for a more engaging experience than you might think. One of virtual reality's first success stories on PC...
Mini Review My Friend Pedro - Stylish Action Stumbles on Rigid Design
Flash in the pan
My Friend Pedro has finally brought its zany 2D shooting gallery to PlayStation 4, and it's a strange beast. Ignoring the fact you play a character devout to a sentient and bloodthirsty banana, the game feels at odds with itself on quite a fundamental level. It's aiming to make the player feel like a John Wick, gun-fu master at all...
Mini Review GRIS - This Simple 2D Platformer Paints a Gorgeous Picture on PS4
GRIS is the word
GRIS is beautiful. From the very moment the game begins to its emotional end, you could push that Share button at any time and have a frame-worthy screenshot. What makes this 2D platformer so striking and so captivating is its minimalistic visuals, using limited colours, hand-crafted animation, and breathtaking backdrops to great...
Review Metal Wolf Chaos XD - Former Xbox Exclusive Brings Its Bonkers Plot to PS4
"The beauty of me is that I'm very rich"
Who would have thought that after Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, From Software’s next project would have you sitting in the driver’s seat of a mech in an attempt to rescue the United States of America from the wrath of the vice president? We’re only half-joking: Metal Wolf Chaos XD is an updated version of...
Review Observation - Space Survival Story with Some Surprises
I'm just looking, I'm not spyin'
Space is kinda terrifying when you think about it. It can be unsettling taking the wrong turn in Wales and winding up surrounded by fields and sheep with nothing but your SatNav for company -- imagine being trapped on a space station and looking out of your window to see nought but the immeasurable black void staring...
Review The Messenger - Pixel Perfect Platforming Action
Say what you want about the ubiquity of pixel art, side-scrolling indie games, but the truth is that when done well, they're brilliant. There are a handful of good examples, like Shovel Knight, Celeste, and Freedom Planet, but The Messenger might be the easiest to recommend. This Ninja Gaiden inspired action platformer is the full package...
Republished on Wednesday 27th June 2018: We're bringing this review back from the archives following the announcement of July's PlayStation Plus lineup. The original text follows. As we looked away from the screen to make some review notes, another player rounded the corner and started beating our motionless avatar. Not wanting to stand...
Review The Swords of Ditto (PS4)
Pass it on
The classic Legend of Zelda formula lives on in many an indie adventure these days, but few match the quality of The Swords of Ditto. This is a procedurally generated quest in which you have just a handful of days to prepare for and defeat an evil witch. Win and you bring peace to the game's colourful world. Lose and a new hero will have...
Full minute hero
Minit is the adventure game distilled down to its purest and simplest form. Developed by a team of independent developers whose combined credits include Horizon: Zero Dawn, Celeste, and Nuclear Throne, this is a top-down, open world adventure game you play a minute at a time. It doesn't sound like it should work, but it somehow does...
There is no game, only Zuul
80s pop culture has been gaining momentum in a big way in recent years, between things like the mega popular Stranger Things and the ever-expanding – and much deserved – popularity of synthwave in the music scene. The decade was rich with shows, films, songs, and everything in between that people young...
My feet are killing you
Republished on Wednesday, 26th July 2017: We're bringing this review back from the archives following the announcement of August 2017's PlayStation Plus lineup. The original text follows. Well, well, well – if game juice were a real beverage, then Downwell would be the Um Bongo of the fruit flavoured sugar water...
Review Enter the Gungeon (PS4)
Releasing an indie roguelike in 2016 is tough. There are already several almost perfect and incredibly popular entries in the genre floating around in the wild. Indeed, not only is the market flooded, it's flooded with liquid gold. Thankfully, Enter the Gungeon not only borrows good ideas from its peers, it also plays enough new tricks...
If there's one thing that the United States has primarily contributed toward the betterment of society, there's no shadow of a doubt that it's 80s and 90s action flicks. Filled to the brim with fearless heroes killing innumerable amounts of communist fascists, terrorist scum, and extra-terrestrial threats, few can resist a...