5 Hits and Misses From Last Week’s Biggest Video Games
Last week saw the release of a number of high profile games, ranging from a superhero movie tie-in to a floating pink cream puff. The reviews are in, so let’s take a look at how the games held up under critical scrutiny.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
(PS4, PS3, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Wii U, 3DS, PC)
Movie tie-in games have a long history of mediocrity, thanks in part to short development cycles designed to get the game out the door in time for the movie’s release. That seems to have been the case with The Amazing Spider-Man 2, a title that hit just about every major platform last week — and landed with a thud.
One thing it gets right is the web-swinging mechanic. Or, as Polygon puts it, “Let me first say that the swinging around New York is very, very good.” IGN agrees, saying that, “For all the fun you can have swinging around New York City, it’s canceled out by boring Peter Parker segments, frustratingly dull combat, and annoyingly persistent glitches.”
So if you’re in the market for a game that simulates swinging between skyscrapers, this is it. If you want anything more from a game, however, you’re better off looking elsewhere.
Daylight starts with you waking up in a dark, abandoned asylum, and you have to make your way out. Each time you play the game, the environment changes and you piece together more clues about what’s going on. Unfortunately, most reviewers agreed that this isn’t an experience you’ll want to to through more than once. Or, as GameSpot puts it, they were surprised by “how poor [the game] is, how it makes no effort to escape rusty cliches, and how nonsensical its writing is.”
But at least it’s scary, right? Kind of, but Paste Magazine says that the game relies on “typical and predictable” frights, like “furniture crashing, gusts of wind and the sound of stomping feet.” Even when you’re under attack, the reviewer says, “Flares render Daylight’s monsters harmless and I never come close to running out of them.” It’s too bad, because this game sounded fun.
Child of Light
(PS4, Xbox One, Wii U, PS3, 360, PC)
Consensus: Very Good
Here’s a game that most reviewers really enjoyed. Child of Light is a role-playing game that puts you in the shoes of a girl transported to a fantastical world that Kotaku calls “flat-out gorgeous.” The fighting is also fantastic, with GameSpot reporting that it’s “interesting and engaging” and that “the energy of these encounters carries a fast-paced excitement.”
On the flip side, Kotaku wasn’t so captivated by the game’s incessant rhyming dialog or its story, which the developers were obviously “trying so hard to make a beautiful/meaningful/profound” but didn’t quite manage. But most reviewers agreed with IGN, who said, “The artwork on display is stunning, and the combat is constantly engaging, and the characters openly defy genre convention.” So pick this one up if you’re looking for something unique and enjoyable.
Kirby Triple Deluxe
This run-and-jump platformer is primarily aimed at younger gamers, but most reviewers agree that anyone who enjoys a well-crafted action game should take a look. Just like in previous entries in the series, Kirby Triple Deluxe has you explore a colorful wonderland, vacuuming up enemies and using their powers to clear out all adversaries in your path.
In terms of looks, US Gamer says it “features some of the most impressive and creative graphics on 3D — practically HD quality fare — and it absolutely explodes with color.” GameSpot adds that, “It’s as inventive as platformers come, unashamedly making use of just about every piece of 3D trickery around to craft some wildly unique, colorful, and thoroughly masterful levels.”
IGN wasn’t quite so forgiving of the easy difficulty level, however. “With so many powers and abilities at his disposal, breezing through its levels becomes incredibly easy for most of the game. It just gets boring.” But if you don’t need a challenge in your video games, this is one to check out.
Mario Golf: World Tour
Consensus: Pretty Good
Mario Golf: World Tour is what you get when you mix a crazily inventive game world with one of the slowest sports in existence. You get the best of both worlds — a game that requires precision and talent in its later levels, but that also moves quickly and is full of cartoonish charm.
There’s lots to do in the game, with single-player and multiplayer modes, unlockable content, and quick challenges always ready to be taken on. Reviewers complained about the difficult-to-control camera which, as Destructoid puts it, is “clunky and imprecise, especially when compared with other golf game franchises.”
Overall, most reviewers agree with Polygon’s take, which sums it up nicely: “World Tour more than delivers on the series’ past strength on consoles, resulting in a polished, streamlined, and extremely compelling way to hit the links.”