So it recently occurred to me that I’ve played a number of games, watched a few movies and read a few things over the last few weeks (er, months) and have never, EEEEVVVEEERRRR gotten around to writing anything about them outside of a tweet or Facebook post here or there.
Looking back on the ever growing stack of entertainment that has gone unreviewed I immediately felt overwhelmed.
In order to alleviate that I’m going to fire off some reviews in a quick and dirty manner to get all caught up and lessen the self-imposed stress I’m feeling right now. These are going to be nothing more than scores and a few thoughts about why I felt that way.
Need a reminder of my ratings system? Look no further than here.
Ready for the barrage?
Resident Evil 7: 9 out of 10
RE7 was an amazing ride that stumbles a little bit in the later 3rd of the game before finishing really strong. For most of the game I was on the edge of my seat as the game did a great job of building tension in the new setting far removed from the old games. This was the perfect way to bring the RE series back to its roots and I hope for more like this from Capcom in the future.
Spider-Man/Deadpool Vol 1: 9 out of 10
The bulk of the volume deals with Deadpool trying to kill Peter Parker (whom Deadpool has decided is an evil genius) while also trying to convince Spider-man to be his partner. Easily the best Deadpool I’ve read since Dead Presidents.
Oxenfree: 7 out of 10
A very solid narrative driven story about teens partying on a remote island and accidentally stumbling upon a malevolent force that seeks to do them harm. Interesting look and dialogue heavy gameplay.
The Lego Batman Movie: 6 out of 10
Initially I thought very highly of this movie but after thinking long and hard about it for several months I can safely say there were more thing I disliked about it than I initially realized. A number of decidedly dunderheaded decisions were made that really bring this down.
The Batman/Judge Dredd Collection: 7 out of 10
There was some really interesting stories in this collection and some lackluster ones. The art was also all over the place, some of it quite good and other parts fairly off-putting. Definitely worth checking it out.
Firewatch : 8 out of 10
An interesting and well constructed FPS game that about a man trying to sort out his life while working in a National Park far away from home. The story is tragic and endearing but admittedly doesn’t quite stick the landing in the end. Still a very enjoyable game with a great look and feel.
John Wick: Chapter 2: 9 out of 10
While far from any sort of award winning, arty masterpiece it does do the very rare thing of being a sequel that is far better than the original. While the first film was a simplistic revenge tail with a twist premise this one fleshes out the crazy secret assassin world in a way that I found inescapably interesting. Easily my favorite film of the year at this point.
Grow Home: 7 out of 10
The game is very short with a simple and odd premise that has you guide a robot on a quest to grow a giant plant to the upper reaches of the atmosphere. Regardless of length I found the game to be quite enjoyable in an off beat kind of way.
The Dumbest Kid in Gifted Class: 8 out of 10 (maybe higher if you are a fan of the author)
Dan Ryckert of Giant Bomb (and formerly Game Informer) has lead an interesting and arguably charmed life and this book is a collection of odd and amusing stories about his exploits before he made his way into the world of video game media. I enjoyed the hell out of this book but as a long time fan I expected as much.
Steve Rogers Captain America Volume 1: Hail Hydra: 8 out of 10
Much controversy arose when the big surprise at the end of issue 1 was revealed last year, controversy I too complained about, but now that I’ve read it I feel it is a much read arc for fans of Captain America.
Mafia 3: 6 out of 10
There is a lot to be said about Mafia 3 but I just don’t have the energy for it. The game was fun and had a great revenge story but the repetitive mission structure and very glitchy gameplay brought this score lower than I would have hoped. Lincoln Clay’s story deserved a better game around it. but there is still a lot of fun to be had if you can look past the flaws.
Blood of Elves (The Witcher book 1): 9 out of 10.
I enjoyed this book more than any of The Witcher video games and can’t wait to dive deeper into the books soon. I am certain a little is lost in translation from the original writings but this is a solid high fantasy read set in one of my favorite fictional worlds (the one part I’ve loved about all things Witcher).
Night in the Woods: 9 out of 10
Yet another narrative driven game, this time about a young cat-woman (literally an anthropomorphic cat person) who drops out of college and returns to her rustbelt hometown and almost immediately stumbles into a disturbing mystery. This was a game that I couldn’t put down once I picked it up and for good reason.
Deadly Class Volume 1: Reagan Youth: 8 out of 10
I’d heard a lot of really good things about this book and decided on a whim to pick it up. Thankfully I was not disappointed. I loved the tale about an elite assassin high school and how the various characters interacted with each other. Once I dig through the rest of the “to read” stack on my desk I’ll definitely be going deeper into this series. My only real gripe is that I’m not in love with the art, but when the story is this good I can get past that.
That does it for this batch. Believe it or not this still doesn’t get me fully caught up but I’m pressed for time right now and just want to get a bunch of these into the wild.
See you next time as I try and whittle down more of the neglected writing I’ve put off for too long.