The past months in games has been interesting. While it certainly wasn’t the best year, it had its fair share of memorable games sure to go down as partly defining of the last generation (is it fair to call the Xbox 360 and PS3 ‘last gen’?).
I liked the usual suspects: Bioshock: Infinite, The Last of Us, GTA V. But I even didn’t mind the co-op madness of Fuse, the repetitiveness of Knack, and the craziness of The Wonderful 101.
We don’t have to like every game the general consensus approves of, but sometimes we can be too harsh on games that aren’t actually that bad!
The Bureau: XCOM Declassified
I wanted to love this game. Really, I did. But it quickly falls into a seemingly endless spiral of repetitiveness and underused combat mechanics. And yet I still enjoyed myself. I think that it’s a game that is never confident in the story it wants to tell or experience it hopes to offer, instead hoping you’ll play it on the Commander difficulty setting and frustratingly push your way through. I found it to be surprisingly compelling, if a little dry at times, and never felt as though it was deserving of the criticism it received. It’s not a must-have, but it’s certainly an interesting take on the Mass Effect-style combat.
Granted that this game hasn’t necessarily been panned, it hasn’t been as well received as I thought it might be. The Kinect controls work surprisingly well, and the overall Theme Park-meets-Viva Pinata feel had me going back for seconds, time and time again. To be honest I think it’s one of maybe two or three Xbox One games that are absolute must-plays at this point in the console’s life.
Now, I’ve publicly declared my love and hate for Knack across MMGN, but I still feel the game is better than what many say. I gave it a 6.5/10 because it never quite realises the potential of its ideas, or really go beyond just being a launch game. Still, I’ve enjoyed it more than many other acclaimed launch games, and found it to be an enjoyable ode to the old-school 3D platformer.
While it lacks the emotional punch offered by others in the genre, Fuse is an enjoyable sci-fi romp refined for four-player co-op play. There’s enough there to play alone but AI-controlled squadmates don’t quite offer the battlefield coercion to make solo play a viable option for the whole duration. Fuse is undoubtedly drenched in co-op fundamentals and is best played with friends. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but it’s a solid experience ahead of the end-of-year next gen rush.
The Wonderful 101
I haven’t played much of it, but I can understand why The Wonderful 101 hasn’t quite turned out to be the must-have Wii U game Nintendo might have hoped it would be. It’s kind of crazy, and the camera loses the plot at times, especially with big bosses on the screen. But it’s an intriguing interpretation of the action genre. The boss battles are also worth the price of admission alone. It might not have been “panned” but I’ve met plenty of people that hated its difficulty and lack of combat tutorials.