Thoughts On Video Games: Winter 2019/2020

I’ve kinda slacked back on writing about video games recently. Or more accurately I’ve still been writing reviews but not actually posting them on Giant Bomb. Really should take the time to post them soon. Gotta get back in the groove so I thought it would be good to put down some quick thoughts about some games that I played but didn’t really take the time to think about them till now.

A lot of this list is entirely thanks to either Xbox Game Pass or Project X Cloud. Between the two they really have filled that gap of time that I spent renting games from Blockbuster/Gamefly/Redbox. Even though I have a wide variety of choices I feel like the games I tend to play end up being rather similar. Although I do try to seek out types of games I don't usually play sometimes. Although you won't really see that in this list right now. Anyway lets start talking about the game.

List items

  • Only one minute remains before your demise thanks to a very cursed sword. That is the entire premise of this Zelda like adventure. Trying to figure out what needs to be done in a minute is a neat premise. The fact that the items are carried over after each death along with different spawn points makes every task doable. Aided by a black and white pixel art aesthetic makes it stand out even more. Plus while the puzzles I needed to solve weren’t crazy I just enjoyed the 2 hours it took to make my way through the game one minute at a time.

  • Over the years many Trials like games have come out. Each one does it’s best to create tracks that are fun to play. So why not just let the computer create random tracks? Along with a behind the back viewpoint that is the gist of this game. It works well enough and it even has a rogue lite element that requires the player to beat a set levels with a limited number of lives. Extra lives are earned by completing bonus objectives and with enough tries you can bypass areas to take on the next zone at the start. It works well enough but after a bit it just becomes rather bland. Nothing really stands out and every level really starts to look similar. Still nothing wrong with the game it just doesn’t seem to have any staying power.

  • Honestly unsure why this is the SW game I keep coming back to the most. Jedi Outcast is the one I have the most fond memories of yet I never get very far into it when I revisit it occasionally. Meanwhile, this is the second time I’ve finished this one in the span of the year. Nothing real special about it since it’s just Doom but Star Wars. Something about limited aiming must just work for me very well. The limited animated cutscenes are also rather cool looking even if they are really dated. But hey if you want to blast a bunch of pixelated Stormtroopers this is the game for you.

  • A talking banana wants you to shoot a bunch of people. Well only one real choice here. Copious amount of slow down shootouts awaits all who decide to try this game out. Each of the levels is set up in a way for the player to use whatever new weapon/skill they find within it. While the main game is just shoot stuff with a bit of slow down each section feels like a little puzzle that needs to be solved correctly to succeed. At least if you want to get an S rank in every level otherwise randomly shooting everything works well enough. Overall it mixes shootouts with timing based puzzles well enough that it kept me entertained during the 4 hours it took to finish it. Thanks to some of the crazy moments it feels like a fun mindless game that anyone can enjoy.

  • I find this game to have a lot in common with Uncharted 3. They both go all out yet they don’t really manage to land safely. This time Laura managed to start the apocalypse. Oops! As you might expect this causes her to rethink her ways but not really in an interesting way at all. As for the gameplay it is a solid TPS that feels a bit floaty in how the action plays out. I think it was thanks to the fact that I played it on Project X Cloud since Gears 5 feels similarly odd sometimes. But it’s still playable even though the stealth sections almost always ended with a shootout. All the different seatpieces are well made but nothing really sticks out in my mind. Just a solid little experience that should appeal to anyone that likes this style of grand adventure game.

  • I enjoyed the first Spyro game just as much as Mario 64 when it was first released. That remains true here too. I really do like the fairly small levels that make it simple to collect everything. With Spyro having pretty much all his skills at the start as the game goes on it manages to change it up just enough to keep it entertaining for me. Plus anyone that likes platformers that focus on collecting things will likely enjoy their time with this one. I’m just talking about the first game though since I never got around to putting too much time into either sequel.

  • This game is indeed pretty rad. It follows a glob of cells that never quite die since they just keep coming back to life. Their goal seems to be to escape from the tower but a variety of ghoulish enemies stand in their way. The game itself is all about using random weapons and items earned along the way to succeed. Sometimes the tool you're looking for won’t be found so adapting to whatever you do find is important. A solid variety of tools gives the game plenty of variety combat wise and even the platforming is mixed up some with extra challenges that will test your skills if you need the loot. A lack of an interesting story is mostly why I haven’t played this to much. Still I see why everyone was a fan of this game when it was originally released now.

  • Wow I played a lot of randomly generated games this time huh. This one is based on a card game I think? Although instead of that you have a team based dungeon crawler. A lack of real variety in how you can see similar rooms over and over again makes it have less replay value. Even though they want you to play it a lot to collect a new card after competing each session. Feels like this game might not make anyone happy since it doesn’t let you play the card game and it’s just so-so dungeon crawler at best.

  • Both of these bike games were about going down hill but this one is focused on a track that is prebuilt. With the real goal being about the player getting down the hill as fast as possible. Plenty of shortcuts are available and they must be used to succeed in beating the fairly tough times for each track. Additionally this game is played from a top down view and I think it really feels like the old Hot Wheels game even in how the track is laid out in a way that is a bit unfair since you can’t see what’s coming up next. Compared to the other bike game I think I like this one a little bit better. If your up for the challenge this might be a game worth checking out.

  • Rebooting Wolfenstine is no easy task yet Machine Games managed to do that and make a solid sequel. Yet this side game doesn’t quite hit the mark.The greatest thing this game is lacking is some sort of narrative. Setting the two daunghers of BJ out into the world of killing Nazi’s could have been a silly fun time. Yet all we really get is a bunch of firefights that consist of going down a bunch of super narrow levels. The coop angle does very little other than giving each other buffs and the layout of the level makes stealth almost impossible even if you want to play it that way. Which I 100% did in the original game.

    The part where they want the player to switch up guns to exploit an enemies weakness is a good idea on paper too. Yet how it is laid out makes it hard to tell if I’m even using the correct weapon at all. The lack of an impact if you pick the right one makes it tough to tell since enemies can take quite a bit of punishment. Which then makes fights last a bit to long. Honestly the best thing in this game might be the altered Wolfenstein 3D arcade machine that lets you play through most of that game. Overall the lack of the narrative that made this series interesting and the change to the combat makes is rather subpar compared to what they've made before. Changing up how a game works is a good thing but this one didn’t quite hit the mark correctly.