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Bone Robot Quickies - Round 2

There are some games that warrant a lengthy, developed review. That's what you'll typically find on BoneRobotGames. These ones require little discussion, whether it be good or bad. Bone Robot Quickies will take a quick look at a handful of games at a time.


 



Immortals Fenyx Rising How can you take so much from other great games and stories and flub it all? Ask Immortals. Another modern game burdened with potential that is completely squandered. They stood on the shoulders of giants and then decided they'd rather be the gum that the giants stepped in. I was going to write a full review for it and that alone bored me so much I decided not. Do not play.



Slay the Spire I never played card games before because they seem boring and simple. Slay the Spire proved me wrong and made me angry I didn't try it sooner. It's got depth, variety, difficulty, and it delivers it to you in smart fashion and in short order. Easy to pick up and hard to master. Lots of replayability. I couldn't put this game down for a long time. Give it a try, it's worth it. Dead Space 2 I went back and played this recently because I remembered liking it when I first played it. It's not as good as Dead Space 1. Its like a comic book with these big action set pieces that make no sense. The second half of the game is an action gauntlet. Loses everything that was good about its predecessor and adds nothing of value. Middle Earth: Shadow of War I didn't like Shadow of Mordor, and this game was somehow worse. I had two horrendous glitches in the first mission. The battle system basically plays itself. It is somehow ANOTHER example of people getting access to a prolific and deep story, setting, and world, and letting someone write it who has only seen "Live Free or Die Hard." It's a Shadow of the Lord of the Rings series and a Shadow of a video game. Gears 5 The hatred I feel for Gears 5 makes me retroactively dislike the original trilogy against my will. It somehow turned from meatheads in huge armor with chainsaw guns to a generic action schlock that feels like a rough draft written by a high-schooler. There was a segment where I was driving a snowmobile around where I simply stopped driving and uninstalled it. No innovation on the Gears formula and a toilet-worthy story. The Gears are grinding. Outriders The cover mechanics and 3rd person shooting of Gears mixed with the loot stylings of Destiny without the polish or joy of either. Add (or subtract?) a terrible, narrative-lacking, dissonant story tacked on top. It almost scratches the itch of the games it is trying to emulate, but has no charm or soul, as well as not performing any of the functions as well as the games they steal from. There was a host of release-time bugs, glitches, and matchmaking problems. Sophomoric outing that leaves much to be desired. I dropped it after level 10, gave it a second effort, and stopped again at 20. This game sucks. Spellbreak An early-access-ish Battle Royal from unknown-to-me developer Proletariat. You have magic gauntlets instead of guns, and I've been enjoying the changes from standard BRs. It's sort-of balanced, but it simply feels fun to travel around their wonderful atmosphere with the spells and runes they give you. Tons of cool movement abilities, fast-paced magic battles with interactive spell combos and crossplay. Loads of fun casually, but not much player base, and the people who have been playing for a while are really good. It has charm, environment, and great ideas. Not flawless execution, and is missing something, but competent and enjoyable, at least for a time.


Control Incredible writing, dialogue, and atmosphere. Truly unique. I have never played a game that nails the supernatural this well without being hokey or over the top. Well designed throughout. The kind of game that had me encounter several crashes and wild glitches, and I was so invested and interested that I glossed over them to continue playing. Super fun game. It deserves more praise and accolades. Great core systems and engaging gameplay, and everything else is done so well that they are fantastic bonuses to the experience. Monster Hunter World After 10 hours it feels like plant collector world. A walking simulator with the occasional monster. It would still be pretty cool if fighting was fun but it feels like garbage to play and it's tedious. It has endless hours of content because each action is stretched out to infinite reaches. Seems hard to mess up a game about hunting huge monsters but I felt like I spent way more time having cats cook me dinner or playing tutorials and story beats. I couldn't justify any payoff of epic monster fights there might be because the interim was just so boring. Void bastards This is an interesting game. You travel along branching paths exploring space stations and ships. It got difficult quickly, and I struggled to get very far, but it is unlike many games I've played. An FPS roguelike with tactical elements, and an assortment of weapons and items to choose from while you either stealth or fight your way through these ships. Worth a look for its unique style and charm. I didn't particularly like it, but it has merit on its incredible execution and design, even if they aren't my style. Heaven Dust A top-down, simple, miniature, Resident Evil ripoff. Not too difficult, very straight forward, and plainly easy, but still it checked boxes of "gaming elements" that many modern, huge games fail to understand. Exploration, clues and mystery, accomplishment. Easily accessible, gameplay-first attitude with the story told in extraneous "found journal" items. It felt unpolished and unfinished, and sometimes would kill you cheaply and without warning. It was only 6 dollars and was worth it for a few hours of zombies, mansions, and puzzles.

It takes two This game felt like if Banjo Kazooie was a good game. The story was a bit cliché, but competent. The controls are fast and rewarding, the two-person puzzles are inventive and interesting, and require full cooperation. It's a better split-screen adventure than "A Way Out" by an unfathomable amount. I only played for an hour or so with a friend and already had fits of laughter when we accidentally sabotaged each other or screamed with joy when we got out of a tight situation by the skin of our teeth. They periodically have instantly-accessible competitive minigames to duke it out between coop sections. Plus I was able to download the friend pass and play for free with my friend who purchased the game. It takes two is designed so well it would be fun to play by yourself, but is enhanced greatly by the team emphasis. It's a dream come true and I hope Hazelight Studios gets more EA support in the future.

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In an effort to have even deeper discussion about games, I have started a podcast to coincide with the Bone Robot reviews. We will be able to have a conversation about lengthy subjects, or a multitud