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Much like Dead Cells and The Messenger, Katana ZERO pulls apart the typical concept for a 2D action platformer by being a rare outlier that flirts with art and action. It’s a pixelated mashup of 47 Ronin and Timecop — cuffing a time-bending samurai quest to chic katana duels, instant deaths, interconnected rooms, and a darker ’80s neon aesthetic that’s accentuated by one of the year’s best original soundtracks. Its lush combat sequences and VHS free fall into themes of trauma and life and death are here for Saturday mornings, but Askiisoft’s execution is what makes ZERO a timeless paragon in its genre (and on the Switch).
Blood and Truth offers all the thrills of life in London’s gangster underworld, with none of the increased life insurance premiums. The PSVR shooter makes the most of its immersive medium, from shootouts taking place in a DJ booth – complete with lasers and pyrotechnics – to small but immersive details like reaching to your chest for ammo before slotting it into your weapon. The special attention that developer SIE London Studio has put into motion capture and voice artists stops the cutscenes sliding to the bottom of the uncanny valley, and there are nice little breaks between all the firefights – like picking locks, climbing towers, or wrecking an art exhibit – to stop it all just feeling like a shooting gallery on steroids. See extra info on DawnofGames.com Gaming Blog.
“Into The Breach is focused. It is an exceptional distillation of turn-based tactical strategy. The compact, chessboard-sized 8×8 maps mean that confrontations and problems arise immediately. The short missions means there’s a constant urgency. The clear transparency of its systems shows you absolutely everything that is going to happen in the next turn–what enemies are targeting, how much damage they will deal, and any effects that will occur. It’s a game that tells you everything you need to know, keeps randomness to a minimum, and never wastes your time.”
Studio Ghibli may no longer be involved, but just like the first game, Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom truly looks and feels like a joyous anime adventure transformed into an absorbing role-playing epic. It’s still delightfully strange, and that’s a very good thing: this doesn’t feel like another Final Fantasy. And it makes some big strides over the first game, with improved combat along with an extremely clever player progression system that’s tied into the narrative. We’d still point you towards the original game to start, of course – but if you dug that one, there’s plenty more to like in this gorgeous sequel. Read extra details on https://thedawnofgames.com/.