It’s a new year! Yes, 2019 is off in full now, and the first month brought us no shortage of video games worth playing. If your new year resolution was to play more video games then seriously try going outside or working out instead. Also nearly all those new year resolutions fail, so maybe don’t make it to play more video games. However, while you may or may not fail your resolution, you’re in the correct place to read the biggest failure of all: our opinions.
Yes, it’s the TechRaptor Game Review Roundup! Here we collect all of our reviews and previews into one easy to digest article. So let’s dive right in and show you what we hit up in the brand spankin’ new month of January.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
Summary: Black Mirror: Bandersnatch nobly introduces interactive storytelling to the masses, but anyone familiar with the genre will find this adventure lacking. 6.5/10. You can read our full review here.
Cook, Serve, Delicious! 2!!
Summary: Cook, Serve, Delicious! 2!! offers up a wok full of cooking fun. Once you get the controls down you’ll be remembering lamb sauce with the best of them. 9/10. You can read our full review here.
Kingdom Hearts II
Summary: Having the most absolutely fantastic combat, design, boss fights, worlds, and soundtrack of the series keeps Kingdom Hearts II‘s slightly convoluted plot from ruining it. 9/10. You can read our full review here.
Summary: Vane‘s first fifteen minutes are amazing. Then the game plummets in quality faster than a diving bird. Tons of glitches, obtuse puzzle, terrible controls, an awful camera, and stuttering frame rate keep Vane from being worth your time. 2.5/10. You can read our full review here.
YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG
Summary: YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG is an earnest love letter to the culture and video games of the 1990s. Its novel take on JRPG combat pairs with an abundance of style and a memorable soundtrack to make a charming yet familiar experience. 7/10. You can read our full review here.
Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep
Summary: Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep‘s revamped battle system and fun main cast do a lot to support it even when terrible minigames and a dumb story drag it down. 8/10. You can read our full review here.
Slay the Spire
Summary: Slay the Spire is a vertiginously challenging and infinitely replayable roguelike deckbuilder set in a highly original dark fantasy universe. 9.5/10. You can read our full review here.
My Time at Portia
Summary: My Time at Portia suffers from arbitrarily long timers in its crafting system, but that’s overshadowed by its rustic aesthetic and in-depth social system. For fans of the crafting and farming simulation genre, this is a title worth checking out. 8/10. You can read our full review here.
Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Seeker, Slayer, Survivor
Summary: Seeker, Slayer, Survivor plays like filler DLC. It’s below average and lukewarm at best, with very little of what makes an Obsidian RPG in the mix. 4.5/10. You can read our full review here.
Genesis Alpha One
Summary: Genesis Alpha One is a great roguelike for those looking for long methodical sessions. The in-depth simulation shows off great care from the developer but quickly becomes tedious as you try to meet everything’s limited conditions at once. 6/10. You can read our full review here.
Summary: Wargroove is the turn-based tactics game you’ve been waiting for. It looks wonderful and sounds amazing, but it also plays so well. The strategy layer is deep but simple to learn. With several different modes in single player and multiplayer, there is something for both hardcore and newcomers of the genre. 9/10. You can read our full review here.
Resident Evil 2
Summary: Resident Evil 2 is a triumphant celebration of the original that scares to the core and sets a new standard for remaking old games. 9/10. You can read our full review here.
Summary: Sunless Skies is a fun romp with enough plot variety to keep you entertained. While the writing lacks the sharpness of previous installments, this is a good series introduction for beginners. 7/10. You can read our full review here.
Life is Strange 2 – Episode 2: Rules
Summary: Rules continues the compelling journey of the Diaz brothers, further expanding on the supernatural elements teased during the first episode’s conclusion with less forcefully controversial and predictable writing. Unfortunately, the episode is hindered by some substantial technical issues. 7.5/10. You can read our full review here.
Summary: Tiny-Tasy Town has its flaws, but the majority of them are no worse than the hiccups one might expect from any other Steam Early Access title. This game has a lot of potential and the problems I’ve encountered all seem simple enough to fix. What’s there now is an okay game, but it could become something great with a little elbow grease. I hope that Rabbiroo can pull it off. You can read our full preview here.
Summary: From an educational standpoint, Attentat 1942 is an excellent way to showcase a harrowing moment in time. It captures a solid blend of gameplay, proving once again that tangential learning through video games is an invaluable tool to inform audiences. It’s an important game because of how vividly it showcases historical events. It’s technically impressive thanks to its blend of clean FMVs and historical footage. Clearly, Attentat is worth playing, even if it’s out of the norm for most players. You can read our full impressions here.
Summary: During this preview, I only had about 2 hours in total to spend on this desert level. I easily could have spent half a day (or more!) seeing everything this single level had to offer. I managed to breeze through 2033 and Last Light in under 10 hours and I have a strong suspicion that I’ll be spending a lot more time in the world of Metro Exodus. You can read our full preview here.
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown
Summary: I still have a lot more of Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown to play. I’m only halfway through the campaign, and I haven’t even touched either the VR mission or the multiplayer. However, my initial impressions are extremely positive. I can’t wait to dive back in and go back to shooting down as many jets as possible before dropping bombs on ground targets. This is exactly the shot in the arm the series needed, and before the game is done I may have a new favorite ace pilot. You can read our full impressions here.
Deliver Us the Moon: Fortuna
Summary: I’m not quite sure why the devs launched Deliver Us The Moon: Fortuna in an incomplete state. Whatever the reason, I find the entire situation troubling and unethical. What makes it worse is that this was otherwise a truly excellent game and it’s disheartening to have that ripped away from you so suddenly. I had expected to transition to a new chapter only to be greeted with the ending. I cannot in good conscience recommend Deliver Us The Moon: Fortuna to anyone in its current state until the developers clarify the game’s status on their store page or release the remainder of the story. Avoid this one until it’s properly finished. You can read our full impressions here.
Summary: Miasma Caves is an Early Access title bursting with potential, but there’s work ahead. The developers are going to need to do a lot more if they want to have something more than a passing novelty. I can see this turning into a title that would eat up a solid 10 or 20 hours of my time after the gameplay was solidified and there were more substantial goals for players to work towards. I’m happy to finally get my hands on the most current version of the game and I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes. You can read our full preview here.
Dawn of Man
Summary: If you’ve been curious to try something out like Frostpunk or Banished, Dawn of Man might be a good place to start. It’s not super challenging for beginners to get into and it makes for an overall enjoyable experience. I spent a little over 30 hours in the preview build of this game and it’s only just past Version 0.5. I’m quite keen to see what else Madruga Works comes up with for the game’s proper 1.0 release. This is a game that’s definitely worth checking out, even for players who may not be super excited about the genre. You can read our full preview here.
Summary: Moa Cube is able to play to the visual novel medium to their strengths, and in so doing have created a modern fairytale with Cinders. Complex and in the proactive hands of the player, Cinders is about uncovering your personal “happily ever after” for the journey you choose to take. Complete with updated, well-written characters, it is well worth a play for those willing to experience something magical yet surprisingly grounded. It’s everything a good retelling should do. You can read our full impressions here.
Summary: Anthem’s demo shows that BioWare took notes from the successes and failures of similar games. They clearly got the message that having beautiful audiovisuals is not enough to make a shallow game good. Though Anthem has both in spades, it’s about more than that. In a looter-shooter, people need some kind of actual, comprehensible story to keep them hooked. That seems to be here. Frankly, it would be excessively reckless to go out and pre-order Anthem right now based on the relatively strong demo. However, the fact that there aren’t any glaringly obvious problems (technical demo issues aside) with the core gameplay is a good sign for BioWare. You can read our full preview here.