The Y Geek Squad steals a march on the pre-Festive Season rush by putting this lot of games through their paces.
We’re in a gaming landscape that focuses heavily on meticulously fusing video and audio. Therefore, having an action-adventure title like ‘The Quiet Man’, which can shut down the one component that completes a game – its sound – should instil more confidence in developer Square Enix’s gaming franchise.
While the crux of the game revolves around you – a deaf protagonist taking on the underworld – the storyline is drab and overly Hollywood-ised, and the physics engine that envelops the game delivers repetitive sequences that are no more worthy of an Oscar than the 2018 flick, Meg. That said, its gorgeous cinematic sequences and character detailing makes this a great one-time game to kill time as you wait for our next pick… Hitman 2.
This title requires no introduction. It still sits in our books as one of the greatest stealth-based action-adventure games of all time – much like its protagonist Agent 47. Now back on console for round two, the game promises more refined controls, efficient (and more silent) takedowns, better environments, and above all, about 15 to 20 hours of sheer fun. The story crafted around the game is embarrassingly silly – as has always been the case – but the game pits you against a very crafty computer engine that only gives you seconds, sometimes less, to make your move. Still, Agent 47’s willingness to dress up in character, followed by some ultra-realistic milieus to spy around in makes this a must-have for every gamer.
Nothing about Déraciné is conventional. While this harks back to the classical realms of mystical-horror gaming that we’ve missed for so long, you’re not faced with walking through shadowed halls solving puzzles while hoping against all things holy not to run into a white-faced killer ghoul. Instead, you are the spirit – or in this case, a fairy. There’s not much in the way of cheap spooks but your goal is to float around to fix the past and create a more safer and happier present (we wish we had this in our lives). The game begins with mundane missions but slowly progresses into something truly mystical. It’s another Unreal Engine masterpiece except that this time, it’s on VR.
It’s all about superbikes in Ride 3. Back with their third instalment in the series, the makers – Milestone S.r.l. – are touting this as their greatest build so far although we’re keeping our expectations in check for this one. We’ve taken a long enough dig at the pre-release (developer) version of the game and absolutely loved it. It’s not without its flaws, though. For instance, the handling dynamics are a bit unnatural – more so than its previous edition – but the makers are promising to fix that. Also, think about this: you’ll receive a total of 230 motorbikes – all completed in great detail and accurately designed down to the bolt – to ride around in.
It’s a card game by heart but one that’s outdone by a smooth- as-silk engine and a graphical interface to support the cause. It is based on the hit online multiplayer game, Dota 2, so gamers familiar with the Dota universe will find it easy to settle in. This is not the case for others, though: the complex rules system and the character strengths and weaknesses will be a rocky ride for some. But once you’re past the initial phase, it’s expected to offer several hundreds of hours of gaming fun. Just bear in mind that it’s a one-on-one game – and that there are thousands of players in Japan and the US who have dedicated their lives – and we wish we were exaggerating when we say this – to playing Dota. Don’t get your hopes up too high.