Microsoft

Star Wars: Squadrons (Xbox One)

It’s a misfire to see the post-Return of the Jedi Empire so flush with diverse faces. While the industry pushes for inclusiveness, that message trickles down and places all genders and races onto the side of a directly Nazi-esque regime. In brief, one-sided dialog exchanges, hearing phrases akin to real world authoritarian power grabs is… Continue reading Star Wars: Squadrons (Xbox One)

Microsoft

Battletoads (2020, Xbox One)

The Battletoads trio spend much of this reboot/reset/sequel/follow-up attempting to regain their popularity in a haze of fourth wall-shattering humor. It’s legitimately funny, frequently so, and the art style coincides with modern animation; Battletoads wouldn’t be out of place on Cartoon Network. By the finale, they come together, defeat evil, and shuck their quest for… Continue reading Battletoads (2020, Xbox One)

Sony

Resident Evil 3 (2020, Xbox One)

There’s a breathlessness to Resident Evil 3, a genuine urgency to cure Raccoon City of its corporately-induced infection (released by the ludicrously unethical Umbrella Corp.). Everything about Resident Evil 3 surges, desperately pushing toward the solution – a vaccine. It’s nigh impossible to imagine a game more “in the moment” than this, right now. In… Continue reading Resident Evil 3 (2020, Xbox One)

Microsoft

Doom Eternal (Xbox One)

A continent-sized pentagram is charred onto America when Doom Eternal begins. More than Satanic in Doom’s context, it’s symbolic of capitalist aspirations finally conquering us all. Much happened between Doom and Doom Eternal. That story is lost in book-length text logs hidden around levels. Evil won though, and that evil is corporate fealty. While Earth… Continue reading Doom Eternal (Xbox One)

Microsoft

Madden NFL 20 (Xbox One)

This year’s edition of the NFL’s carefully controlled videogame product focuses on QB1, a thin story concerning a college player pushed into a starting spot in his senior year – one game before the National Championship. Then, into the NFL, of course. It’s sports fantasy drivel, thinly formed but allowing people to live vicariously through… Continue reading Madden NFL 20 (Xbox One)

Microsoft

Forza Horizon 4 (Xbox One)

At the festival race starting line, LED boards flash rainbow colors, bright enough to reflect off the vehicles as their engines hum in excitement. It’s gorgeous. Finish the race and massive, 30-foot tall LED boards sprout up, likewise splashing colors in a kaleidoscopic celebration of cars. It’s prideful, the best of what Forza Horizon is… Continue reading Forza Horizon 4 (Xbox One)

Microsoft

Halloween: Haunted ’86 (Xbox One)

The limitations of the 8-bit NES – the console Haunted ’86 was designed for – add to its creeps. A tight, restrictive color palette locks Haunted ’86 to using extensive black. That means ledges and background objects appear to just peek out, their edges highlighted. It’s mood where so few games of this ilk even… Continue reading Halloween: Haunted ’86 (Xbox One)