Babylon's Fall is a mixed bag with combat mechanics and customisation standing at the forefront of the positives. But the majority of the game just doesn't flow as well as it could’ve with dated graphics, shockingly repetitive gaming loop and expensive microtransactions, Babylon's Fall is a bit of a letdown.
But this trilogy is just plagued with so many bugs, glitches and performance issues that really ruin this long-awaited comeback. Fans will have to wait in hope that any patches that are being planned happen right away.
Aside from the new additions to gameplay, I feel the title still played it too safe as there wasn’t too much to separate its overall experience from past titles. The familiarity and reuse of certain gaming mechanics may be fully welcomed by fans who have waited so long but I feel more is needed to differentiate the overall experience.
Aztech Forgotten Gods packs a lot in its relatively short playtime, with the boss battles and engaging story being the biggest highlights. The game just could’ve done with a few more extra features to boost its longevity and warrant a second playthrough.
The Cruel King and the Great Hero is a delightfully innocent game that looks to bring in newcomers to the JRPG genre with its simplistic controls. However, I feel veterans of the genre will simply find this game way too easy with its linear and basic approach. There just isn’t enough depth within its core gameplay and becomes repetitive real quick.
GetsuFumaDen: Undying Moon is an intense follow up with an addictive gaming loop, although once you’ve beaten the game there is little to warrant a return. Yes, there are additional difficulty settings to unlock and one extra secret, but other than that there isn't anything groundbreaking to urge players back after that first run through. Hopefully, Konami can add some extra DLC in the form of levels or extra bosses.
Dynasty Warriors 9: Empires is clearly aimed at the Musou fans who want more to experience more strategy, however, all of the strategic elements can become really convoluted and if not a tad repetitive. It feels like there is a lot of missed potential here with bland maps and an experience that feels pretty bare at times, it's still fun but it's defiantly not one of the best titles in the series.
Monark has a solid combat system that combines great tactical elements with turned-based action. There is way too much grinding throughout the game that may turn off players who aren’t fans of the genre. But as a whole Monark does present some great ideas that will intrigue newcomers to the genre but nothing groundbreaking for JRPG veterans.
Rise of The Third Power is a charming retro-inspired JRPG, that offers an entertaining plot, a great cast of characters and a unique battle system. However as good as it is, it doesn't offer something new within the genre and borrows a lot from its predecessor. But fans of the genre should still look to pick up this 35-hour rollercoaster as it's a solid JRPG.
Outside of the boss rush mode and speedrunning there just isn't much replay value I'm afraid. However, Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth is a great homage to the source material and fans will relish the experience.
Monster Rancher 1 & 2 DX retains all the features and content that made them such unique titles when first released. However, after the long wait, I feel this revival is slightly half-hearted as it still features dated graphics, dated audio and the lack of aspect ratio options is a big miss. It's great that they have been revitalised after so long, but I feel this one is solely for the fans as there is too much choice within the monster tamer genre for this to stand out.
It's a stunning homage to the original comics that will excite fans whilst being a great way to introduce newcomers to the series. The game is lacking some much-needed depth, and even though it's a good length, there are still many missing features that are synonymous with the beat 'em up genre.
A Boy and His Blob retains all the charm that made past games such precious titles. There's a good amount of replayability with this title, especially for newcomers, but there really isn't anything new other than the portability for returning fans. The Nintendo Switch version improves the performance of the Wii version, so this is probably the best way to play the game.
Other than the flashy combat there isn't really enough here to attract non-fans with something different from what's already out there. But fans will relish being able to play as the Senran Kagura characters after a long time even though there aren't a lot of them they are well realised.
The story and music are the best standout points with the amazing attention to character development only matched by the genius sound design. Although The Caligula Effect 2 doesn't really sway from its roots or present many new ideas within the genre, if you're a fan of JRPGs, it's a solid title.
The Hinokami Chronicles isn't complex enough to challenge fighters like Dragon Ball fighterZ or Guilty Gear, but it is a fun title that will really please fans of the series. The stunning cutscenes, filled with original music and voice actors have led to one of the most faithful video game adaptations of any anime. I really look forward to any future games that come out from this series.
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is a fun fighter that still requires some fine-tuning. Outside of the fun combat, the game really falls short with dull unlockables and the lack of voiceovers that were really needed. The developers do have a strong foundation for a great follow up game.
There are a few issues that stop it from being an amazing experience like the huge difficulty spikes or lack of quality of life features that JRPG fans have come to expect from the genre. But Astria Ascending for the most part is an exhilarating experience that could be the starting point for something spectacular.
There is also a wide range of modes in NBA2K22 that will allow players to do more than just play basketball and experience the different aspects of the NBA. But the game is plagued with a lot of microtransactions that may not fully hinder your experience but should just be toned down and not shoved constantly in your face.