TL;DP Reviews: Community Edition (formerly "1 hour in" game reviews)

Space Hulk, 1 hour in (sponsored by Mateo):

This is one of the better video game versions of a board game that I've played. I never played the original, as my Warhammer 40K addiction started with the Dawn of War RTS games, moved shortly thereafter into the many Space Marine books published by Games Workshop, and culminated in the outstanding action shooter and THQ/Relic Swan Song Warhammer 40K: Space Marine. So why if my introduction to the universe was action games am I having so much fun with this simple turn-based board game?

There's really not much to the boards - corridors and rooms laid out in squares tiles with doors, some of which you have to bash open. There's not too much to the game pieces - Blood Angel Terminators vs. Tyranid Genestealers. Pretty straightforward game mechanics, too: you got your various Terminator armaments, flamer, bolter, fist, cannon, hammer and shield, you got your few action points to spend each turn, and your claustrophobic corridors where the action takes place mostly face to face vs the Genestealers.

I think what hooked me is that this game could have been a fairly plain 2D affair with cheesy or no sound effects, but developer Full Control went all out with fantastic voiceovers and alien sound effects, and wonderfully crafted and finely animated 3D models, walls and doors that look pretty much exactly what I would imagine miniatures used to play the board game would look. If they were animated. And spoke.

It has a simple charm and makes a great time-waster of a game, since each map can be finished in relatively short order, and they're all self contained.

After 108 minutes, I'm really not sure how much more I'm going to play it exclusively. The straightforward gameplay doesn't push me very far, and it shows no sign of becoming more complex, engaging or challenging. It may get more so, because I've really only scratched the surface if the campaign progress is any indication. I'll probably leave it in my pile and get back to it when I need a hit of Warhammer 40k deliciousness, because the production values in this game, while relatively simple, are top notch.

RE: Euro Truck Simulator 2

Aaron D. wrote:
doubtingthomas396 wrote:

My only complaint with the keyboard setup is how hard it is to make gentle turns with the digital controls. I may try a game pad to see what that feels like, but I'd miss the mouse look.

Just remember that there's two drop down menus where you select 360 Pad support.

They're both on the Options > Controls menu page. The first is at the top where you pick 360 gamepad. The other in is the next section down under Controller subtype. For some reason, it's defaulted to "Wheel". You'll want to change that to Gamepad, joystick.

Otherwise, your steering on the pad will be WAY oversensitive and squirrely has hell.

L/R triggers: break/gas
L/R shoulder: shift down/up
L stick L/R: steer
L stick Up/Down: cruise control/start engine
L stick (press): horn
R stick: free look
R stick (press): change camera
D-pad L/R: turn signals
D-Pad down/up: headlights/high beams
A button: accept/enter
B button: cycle side mirror displays
X button: cycle GPS views
Y button: center view - interior view
Select: wiper blades
Start: F1: Pause

I'm somewhat partial to my setup. It starts similarly, but abandons stuff I use less frequently to the keyboard. Italicized stuff is different from Aaron's.

L trigger (Joy Z Axis, Centered): Brake (set in "Controls")
R trigger (Joy Z Axis, Inverted and Centered): Throttle (set in "Controls")

L shoulder (button 4): Gear Down
R shoulder (button 5): Gear Up

L stick L/R (Joy X Axis): Steer (set in "Controls")
L stick U/D (Joy Y Axis): unused (it's too easy for me to activate this accidentally)
L stick click (button 8): "Light Horn" (flashes brights)

R stick (Joy X/Y Rotation): Free Look (set in "Controls") - I use a relatively high dead zone for this, about 1/3
R stick click (button 9): "Interior Camera" - resets view forward, very handy

D pad L (joy hat switch left): Left Turn Signal
D pad R (joy hat switch right): Right Turn Signal)
D pad U (joy hat switch up): Map
D pad D (joy hat switch down): Cycle View

A (button 0): Cruse Control, Activate (enter) - multiple settings per button works, provided they are used in different contexts
B (button 1): High Beam Toggle
X (button 2): Cycle Lights
Y (button 3): Wipers

Select (button 6): Stop Engine (hitting the throttle starts the engine)
Start (button 7): Menu (Esc)

Tagging for great justice.

Shouldn't we keep track of the games that were reviewed so we don't see the same games over and over?

PRG013 wrote:

Tagging for great justice.

Shouldn't we keep track of the games that were reviewed so we don't see the same games over and over?

Isn't everyone going to have different reviews?

Great thread! It's a really good idea that gives a little push to fire up those games. I've enjoyed reading each review thus far. They're intriguing because these games may not have otherwise ever been experienced by the gift recipient, either through a perceived lack of interest in the genre, or a simple oversight if not a case of 'too many games'. Awesome.

Tagging because why not?

1 hour in review: FTL

This review sponsored by RNR Clown

Oh death.
Oh death.
Won't you spare me over to another year?

On paper I don't like rogue likes. Theoretically they should be my kryptonite (or whatever the Marvel equivalent is. Because to heck with Superman.) You get one life, you lose all your progress when you lose that life, and you're expected to die over and over and over again. And even if you get really, really good you still die and lose all that progress/exp/loot. Rogue likes are RPGs for masochists.

But I do love a good roguelike. I played Spelunky back when it was free and bought the steam version (both times at the behest of this very community). I have the original Rogue installed on my iphone. When I hear a game is procedurally generated my ears perk right up.

So when I first learned of FTL it went immediately into my wishlist. But I couldn't bring myself to buy it. Because, as I mentioned, on paper roguelikes don't sound like they'd be good for me.

But imagine my delight when I got the green envelope from RNR Clown and FTL was inside. I've finally gotten an hour or so in. Short version, it's as good as I was led to believe by the glowing comments here.

FTL is a roguelike starship sim in which you take your three sophont crew and try to get from point A to point B on a star map through hyperspace jumps. Your jump range is limited. So you must leapfrog from star to star to get where you want to be. Each star you jump to has something going on. Maybe you'll encounter pirates. Maybe rebels (yes, for once you play as a federation member and the rebels are the bad guys. So it's like what Star Wars actually is rather than what Lucas tells us it is. ). Maybe you'll answer a distress call. Who knows? It's randomly generated, like Star Munchkin, which is probably not an apt analogy since so many people hate Munchkin.

You start with and option of one ship, but as you unlock more with different configurations and attributes. Your basic ship has everything you'd expect a ship to have. Shields, engine, cockpit, med bay, security (cameras), life support and automation (to make that cool "whoosh" noise when the doors open by themselves.)

Each system can be manned to increase effectiveness, but since you only have three members of your crew, you have to decide what is most important. You can redirect your crew to any part of the ship you like, which is important during combat, because there your weapons work better with someone working them, and also rooms of your ship can catch fire, and you'll want to get them away from that.

Unless you've got the Rock alien crew, in which case you'll be treated to an animation of a Rock man jumping up and down on the fire to put it out.

All of your ships systems can be upgraded, but upgrades must be powered so you'll need to upgrade your power capacity too. Upgrades are bought with scrap, which is earned through combat or trade.

The hyperjump mechanic make this game play like a turned based board game. Indeed, I could see it being an excellent board game for 2 players. (One player and one DM who runs the enemy encounters)

The real fun is in the variety of encounters. Combat is fun (have I said fun enough? I'm getting paid by the 'u') and since you've got pirates, rebels, drones and slavers each encounter plays differently. The non-combat encounters are interesting too, offering the player moral choices that can be expensive but may or may not lead to rewards.

The real challenge comes when your ship is limping along with a reduced crew and fires everywhere. It's possible to pull off a miracle and escape, but chances are you'll just end up starting over. Such is roguelike.

FTL really nails that Civilization 1-more-turn vibe that makes turn based games so addictive. Indeed, the only complaint I can really level against FTL is that I want to take it with me to play in the bathroom.

Hey! Look at that! We went from FTL to TMI.

Fortunately they make an iPad version, which if I had an iPad would be awesome.

Thanks again to RNR clown! I dedicate my next destroyed starship to you. (I name them all USS Reliant, because that starship gets no respect. Also because it blows up a lot.)

Taharka wrote:
PRG013 wrote:

Tagging for great justice.

Shouldn't we keep track of the games that were reviewed so we don't see the same games over and over?

Isn't everyone going to have different reviews?

Point taken.

1 hour review of bad rats.

Don't. Just Don't.

Infested Planet, one hour in...

Why is this game as good as it is? On the surface, it's a generic-looking RTS game that I would have completely passed over if not for the occasionally-right Tom Chick in his Games of 2014 So Far article (found here). While I think he's crazy some of the time, when he says something is worth a look, I believe him.

The premise is simple: you have five marines tasked with pushing back the ever-encroaching alien hoard. Think Starship Troopers, but with fewer good guys. You have an array of upgrades to give your troops, buildings to build, and research to enhance your force projection. It's a relatively healthy campaign that actually works for a single-player RTS, and has kept me hooked for two hours so far.

I'll try to add more when I'm back from the beach - writing on my phone is harder than anticipated. In the meantime, go buy this game!

Taharka wrote:
PRG013 wrote:

Tagging for great justice.

Shouldn't we keep track of the games that were reviewed so we don't see the same games over and over?

Isn't everyone going to have different reviews?

It'd be awesome, however, if the first post has links to the review posts, though.

This thread is a brilliant idea. I just need to muster an hour to write my 1 hour in review!

doubtingthomas396 wrote:

Indeed, the only complaint I can really level against FTL is that I want to take it with me to play in the bathroom. [...] Fortunately they make an iPad version, which if I had an iPad would be awesome.

Yeah, but then you realize it's been 2 hours, your legs have fallen asleep, and your loved ones think you've pulled an Elvis...

Stylez wrote:

1 hour review of bad rats.

Don't. Just Don't.

You played Bad Rats for a whole hour?!

McIrishJihad wrote:
doubtingthomas396 wrote:

Indeed, the only complaint I can really level against FTL is that I want to take it with me to play in the bathroom. [...] Fortunately they make an iPad version, which if I had an iPad would be awesome.

Yeah, but then you realize it's been 2 hours, your legs have fallen asleep, and your loved ones think you've pulled an Elvis...

HA!

I was a KS backer for FTL, and I bought the Kestrel t-shirt from the dev's official store to further show my financial support, since they released the awesome Advanced Edition expansion for free. If they release an Android version, I would happily but it as well.

1 hour in review: Secret of the Magic Crystal.

This review fabulously sponsored by M0nk3b0y.

So I just noticed that I have almost an hour in Secret of the Magic Crystal, aka Sparkle Ponies.

Yeah. So I'll really be writing this.

The Click and Wait genre is kind of a big deal on the App Store. While the best example in the genre is Make it Rain (a game that gives you several different ways to wait and positively rewards you for waiting as long as possible) I must give a shout out to Secret of the Magic Crystal.

I suppose you already knew this was an iphone app.

Anyway. SotMC is a click and wait game in which you raise magical ponies, train them, and put them to work. They earn money doing jobs while you stay on the farm and tend the land. By which I mean stare at the clock while you wait for your pony to return. Occasionally you get to click on a rainbow for bonus cash. I'm not kidding.

Earning money is painfully slow in SotMC. It takes at least a hundred dollars to buy anything (be it upgrades, pony medicine or new ponies) and the jobs you can do earn you 30 dollars (for a 40 second wait) or 50 dollars (for 140 seconds). If there are bigger, longer jobs with bigger layoffs -- a staple of click and wait games-- I haven't reached them yet. But I have had to heal my sick pony twice at $100 a pop.

When you're not clicking or waiting, there are a few things to do on the magic farm. You can groom your ponies in the stable. This involves clicking on a grooming tool (sponge, brush and hoof polisher) and shaking the mouse vigorously on the area you want to groom. (Sponge for the head, brush for the body, polisher for the hoofs). This will improve the ponies energy bars, one of which is blue and the other orange. I'm not sure what each bar is for because I wasn't paying attention during the tutorial. I've been running with the assumption that full bars equals good.

In the stable you can also feed your pony and give it water, though this doesn't seem to do anything other that show you an animation of the horse eating.

You can also run your pony through drills. These lower your pony's blue and orange bars, but increase your pony's stats. Stats are important for something. They probably affect which jobs are available. Or they provide Facebook bragging rights. "My pony has +2 strength and -1 incontinence!" says Sally Fairweather's Facebook status. "My destrier has +17 imperturbability and a giant horn to impale my craven enemies!" Says Gregor Clegane's status.

The exercises are timed button press affairs where you type an arrow key as a falling arrow enters a detection zone while your pony does something having to do with the training you're doing. Correct arrow presses on the obstacle course make the pony jump over the obstacles neatly. Correct presses during the sledge pull exercise make the pony pull the sledge in a way that I'm sure is appreciably different from how it would pull the sledge if you failed to press the button at all.

Anyway the animations don't really matter because getting good or perfect presses earn you status boosts for your pony. The better you do, the bigger the stat increase.

The really nice thing about the exercises is they give you something to think about while you wait for your pony to return from a job with the same name as the training you just did. You can picture yourself pressing the arrow keys while your pony trots, leaps or drags its way through the environment. Except this time you get money instead of stat points.

But what about the magic crystals? You may well ask. The game is named for the secretive nature if the gems, so what's the deal?

Crystals can be earned through work or by buying them outright.

The crystals can be combined and given to your ponies to permanently boost their stats. You can craft horseshoes out of them, giving the game a Cinderella vibe. How durable are horse shoes made of crystals extracted from meteorites? Apparently so durable they make your pony faster, stronger or more agile. It's like an equestrian Nike commercial.

The game runs really smooth on my computer, even with the graphical settings jacked all the way up to "fantastic!" The ponies do indeed sparkle as they are groomed or leveled up. I have actually been impressed with how stable the game is, given its pedigree as an iPod port.

And here's the really strange thing: the game is kind of fun in a weird way. Watching the stat numbers increase and leveling up the structures on the farm has a certain charm for those of us who understand the draw of what Elysium Sands calls "the really pretty spreadsheet."

I know my daughter, seven years old and not completely devoid of taste, likes the game. Though not well enough to play it herself. No, she lets me do that. Such is fatherhood, and I have no complaint about it.

I may have to get the app for my daughter, because it lends itself better to iPhone style of play than the PC. Load it, click a few things, close it and do other things while you wait for the last clicks to finish their work.

There. Now you know more about Sparkle Ponies than you could possibly have wanted.

You're welcome.

Godzilla Blitz wrote:
Taharka wrote:
PRG013 wrote:

Tagging for great justice.

Shouldn't we keep track of the games that were reviewed so we don't see the same games over and over?

Isn't everyone going to have different reviews?

It'd be awesome, however, if the first post has links to the review posts, though.

That is an excellent idea.

Is that possible from an iphone? Because if it's not the it will have to wait until I'm at my computer next.

Wow, thanks for that, Taharka!! Although maybe we should add the author? For example, we have two (two?) reviews for Sparkle Ponies!!

Eleima wrote:

Wow, thanks for that, Taharka!! Although maybe we should add the author? For example, we have two (two?) reviews for Sparkle Ponies!!

Done and done!

Thanks Taharka!

Divinity: Original Sin
Funded by: Me

Short and Long Review:
Buy. This. Game.

Longer Review:
OK, I'll come clean. Upon writing this review, I have more than 1 hour sunk into the game, however I can say, without question, that I was sold on D:OS well within one hour.
It's an old-school RPG, the kind that doesn't hold you hand, doesn't take any prisoners in combat, and tries to flog you at every turn... yet you come back anyway (Stockholm Syndrome?)
The game plays out somewhat like a Terry Pratchet novel: not too serious, lots of funny moments (perhaps not LOL, but grinning). The quests are many, varied, and don't offer you any help in terms of navigation or what to do next. The combat is brutal, even on normal, and will kill you if you position yourself badly.
There are also many ways to complete most of the quests. There are many ways to fight in combat. Many combinations and synergies.
This is a well thought out, well executed game.
And it's early access.
After playing it for an hour, my thought was, "Why is this still early access? It's a finished, AAA game. It's GOTY material."
Seriously, it's hard to describe the feeling of playing an old-school RPG, but exciting is a good word for now.
If you like RPGs, you'll love D:OS.
And if you need selling, check out the GWJ Thread.

Easy Link for Reviews List: Divinity: Original Sin (Taharka)

MeatMan wrote:
Stylez wrote:

1 hour review of bad rats.

Don't. Just Don't.

You played Bad Rats for a whole hour?!

I needed the cards to sell to buy more cs skins to bet at csgolounge. I sort of regret it.

Taharka wrote:

The game plays out somewhat like a Terry Pratchet novel:

Sold.

I need to wait for my Mana bar to recharge before I can buy anything new. But I do have the original Divinity in my queue which I haven't played yet.

doubtingthomas396 wrote:
Taharka wrote:

The game plays out somewhat like a Terry Pratchet novel:

Sold.

I need to wait for my Mana bar to recharge before I can buy anything new. But I do have the original Divinity in my queue which I haven't played yet.

There's one point in my game where I got a random loot with a description. The description talks about the sword being a gift to (someone) and was made in Japan. It ends with the character remarking, "I have no idea where 'Japan' is. Is it even in this world?"
Made me chuckle.

State of Decay sponsored by Eldon of Azure.

Well... it's a zombie game. Where you and your cohorts beat up zombies. You apparently also collect things so that you can build up defenses and stuff, but I haven't got to that part of the game yet, after 82 minutes. Which I think is a shortcoming - if there's going to be some neat base building stuff, I should at least get a taste of it by the one hour point, no?

Instead I've just been running around investigating things and beating up zombies. First with a stick, which broke pretty quickly, then with a machete, which took a little while longer to break, at which point I had to find another machete. I also have some guns, but precious little ammunition, so I don't know why I would waste it when a couple good whacks takes down the undead.

I've increased some stats, but they don't seem to really be doing that much for me.

I'm kind of disappointed at this point, and I don't know if I can force myself to beat up dozens more zombies to get to the good stuff. Especially at night, when it is REALLY DARK. I mean seriously. You can't see sh*t in the forest at night, which isn't much fun. Some zombies have glow in the dark eyes, though, so I guess that is cool.

I guess what playing this game for an hour did for me was remind me that I'm still really not all that in to zombie games. It was fun beating them up for a while, but after kicking in the head of the 200th pretty much exact same goddamn zombie, I've had enough.

+1 to thinking this thread is a good idea. I actually had the same idea floating around in my head.

Guess I could put one together for Game Dev Story since I spent a 2nd session with it last night.
This one is brought to you by: Budo 99 from out of the blue. It was a non-requested, non-wishlisted game.
I was always mildly interested just to see how the game played. I enjoyed the first couple hours enough to even play it a 2nd session. I think I may be done with the game now, though. Everything is a bit too amorphous for my tastes and the slow drip of the biggest better promises isn't coming fast enough. The whole game seems to boil down to clicking the right check boxes together and a few extra options like whether or not to spend more time training and researching or making games, or the terribly uninvolved contract work options which pays little, and is just a ticker watcher. I guess in some ways it is similar to Candy Box and the like, but this game is starting to grow long in the tooth right about the 4-5 3 hour mark. Ok, I just checked my time on that, and yeah, only 3.4 hours played. It felt like more time for some reason.
This may be a game best served with a small bit of wiki help for those not willing to jump into the deep end of guess what the makers thought was right.

BadKen wrote:

State of Decay sponsored by Eldon of Azure.

Well... it's a zombie game. Where you and your cohorts beat up zombies. You apparently also collect things so that you can build up defenses and stuff, but I haven't got to that part of the game yet, after 82 minutes. Which I think is a shortcoming - if there's going to be some neat base building stuff, I should at least get a taste of it by the one hour point, no?

Instead I've just been running around investigating things and beating up zombies. First with a stick, which broke pretty quickly, then with a machete, which took a little while longer to break, at which point I had to find another machete. I also have some guns, but precious little ammunition, so I don't know why I would waste it when a couple good whacks takes down the undead.

I've increased some stats, but they don't seem to really be doing that much for me.

I'm kind of disappointed at this point, and I don't know if I can force myself to beat up dozens more zombies to get to the good stuff. Especially at night, when it is REALLY DARK. I mean seriously. You can't see sh*t in the forest at night, which isn't much fun. Some zombies have glow in the dark eyes, though, so I guess that is cool.

I guess what playing this game for an hour did for me was remind me that I'm still really not all that in to zombie games. It was fun beating them up for a while, but after kicking in the head of the 200th pretty much exact same goddamn zombie, I've had enough.

That's disappointing. I haven't fired up SoD yet because I was afraid I wouldn't have time to maintain it and all my people would die. Sounds like I needn't worried much.

I'm still intrigued by this one. Will have to give it some time maybe this weekend.

doubtingthomas396 wrote:

That's disappointing. I haven't fired up SoD yet because I was afraid I wouldn't have time to maintain it and all my people would die. Sounds like I needn't worried much.

I'm still intrigued by this one. Will have to give it some time maybe this weekend.

Oh, I forgot to mention the bugs, too. Like... running up to a wall and then warping through it. Or zombies appearing embedded inside walls so you can't hit them or damage them in any way. Walls in general seem to be problematic.

Super Amazing Wagon Adventure, courtesy of both CatPhoenix and Godzilla Blitz. I figured if two Goodjers were nice enough to try to gift it to me, I had to take it for a spin.

[size=6]Also, I might have thought there were trading cards, and I was mistaken...[/size]

Short Review

Weird. Catchy. Hysterical.

Long Review (WARNING: "Spoilers" aplenty, for whatever passes for spoilers for this game)

I haven't put a full hour into the game, but Steam says 0.9 so that's close enough, and believe me, that's more than enough time to understand what this game is all about. The trailer led me to believe it was a fully randomly-generated adventure, that's only a mode which you unlock after completing the main "adventure mode", which is partially random.

And "random" is an understatement. I think best description of it is a cross between Oregon Trail, scrolling shooters like Galaga/Gradius, twin-stick shooters, and hallucinogenic drugs. The scrolling and twin-stick segments alternate, sometimes you get lucky and don't have to do any twin-stick segments. Other times they can get funky. You'll trip the f*ck out on mushrooms and face your inner demons, fight off a horde of zombies, and try to steal eggs from an island full of pterodactyls and velociraptors.

The scrolling segments aren't as surreal (except when the game "glitches out" and you go hunting for upside-down buffalo and your M#7*V2^X%[email protected]$ gets jammed), but your wagon is pimped out. You can freaking drive it underwater!

Even so, it's hard in a "fake difficulty" way. If you don't know what's coming, it's easy to think you're home free only to run into another "stage" of the current encounter. Plus, the randomization means that you'll often get the bad breaks when you absolutely can't afford them. That being said, I have found myself getting farther and farther on each playthrough, which makes dying to the f*cking wolves that much more frustrating.

It probably won't take me much longer to crack the code of the main adventure, but with all the unlockables to get, the randomized nature of the adventures and the Shuffle mode, there's lots more Westward fun to be had. Plus the music is pretty catchy.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to drive my wagon through a Civil War battle somewhere on the Great Plains.

One hour into: Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge
Platform: WiiU
Sponsored By: Myself

The Gist: So when this game originally came out it was met with a lot of negative press. Word on the street was that it didn't even have any real blood content, a move that makes no sense considering how key dismemberment was to Ninja Gaiden 2's gameplay. It was also supposedly way too easy, at least to fans of the franchise. Then Razor's Edge came out on WiiU, and overall impressions were that it was better, but not great.

I figured it was worth grabbing for super cheap, so I did, and I've been in the mood for a hacky-slashy and so I dropped it into the WiiU.

Whelp, the difficulty was certainly fixed as I had to knock it down to Easy, just as I did with Ninja Gaiden 2. It's a more satisfying challenge now, though I can understand why some folks might still find it more easy. It seems the inventory has been ditched, as there are no more healing items to pick up. On one hand this makes it a tad more difficult without having a safety net of healing items, but it also means there are more ways to recharge your health via combat.

Which is... well, it certainly feels different from Ninja Gaiden 2. I recall taking the time to try and learn some of the abilities in NG2, but here it doesn't seem as important. Block when you can, slash at enemies, use the X button when one of them has lost a limb to finish immediately. However, while the first level was a bit meh, introducing the bow in the second level actually started to make things more interesting. Timing when to shoot foes from a distance before slashing at the nearby melee enemies helps make things a bit hectic, and also makes you feel a bit more like a bad ass.

What really helped was shutting off the tutorials, which kept on popping up over and over throughout. Just simple messages like "Press this button to see where your objective is", or "hold these buttons to guard and evade". They never went away until I shut them off...

...but that also removed the button notifications for some of the Quick-Timey events during certain fights, which actually made those feel a lot more interactive. There are only a handful of options (jump button, attack button, or evade) and usually what's on screen will clearly indicate what you have to do, but since you're not being given a specific command it feels like it's more about having an instinct. Of reading the situation and acting upon it. I actually really started enjoying those scenes once I had to figure things out rather than being instructed.

TL;DR: Razor's Edge is a challenge and has plenty o' gore, but after going through the first level and then getting the bow with tutorials on, turn them off and rely on your own abilities for the rest of the game. It's not as good as Ninja Gaiden 2, i can tell you that much, but it's still a fun little action game.

Oh yeah, story is dumb. I don't even understand who the villain is or what it is that they're doing. "You guys have seven days to... uh... what'd we want? Disband their governments? Yeah, that sounds menacing I suppose..." Bluh.

Game: Spintires
Platform: PC (Steam)
Sponsored By: my own personal weakness

TL;DR; Short Review:

If you like ETS2, or getting stuck in the mud, you'll probably love this.

Long Review:

I put about 5 hours into this game over the weekend, and I'm in love. Take the basic mechanic of ETS2 - "drive big trucks around and deliver things", and then replace "things" with "lumber" and change "around" to "through the densest mud ever conceived by man". But stick with me on this - it's actually fun. Yeah, you mind spend 5 in-game hours stuck in one spot, slowly rocking yourself back and forth trying to unstick yourself enough to get nearer to a winch point to haul yourself out.

But that's where this whole thing meshes together. If you get stuck, you don't have to give up. There's a few other trucks on the map you can warp to (at least on "casual" mode), and you can drive out to where you got stuck in the first place, and save yourself.

But really, I don't think anything can sum up this game more than this screenshot:

IMAGE(http://cloud-4.steampowered.com/ugc/47602590650481630/11A616EFDB23E0CF74CA64B8A3C9AC2D3ECA7A0A/)

And since this is GWJ, where we compare everything to Dark Souls, this is basically the Dark Souls of driving simulations.