Review: Back to murder school in Danganronpa V3

A new Danganronpa is here! While we’ve seen a steady stream of releases in the franchise in recent years (especially in the West), Danganronpa V3 marks the first release that isn’t a port or spinoff since the 2012 PSP release of the second game. It’s been long enough that the development team has had time to breathe and regroup, delivering a new adventure that’s similar enough to past titles without relying on their lore for plot and tension.

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Review: Soldam: Drop, Connect, Erase offers colorful Reversi-like puzzling

The Switch is a great platform for Japanese obscurities as well as puzzle games, so it’s not as surprising as it would normally be to see a revival of Jaleco’s Soldam pop up on the dockable handheld. But localized? That’s a true surprise, as new publisher Dispatch Games popped up to bring the game to the West. So it’s great to see! Is it great to play?

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Preview: Project Octopath Traveler explores the different sorts of duty

There have been many games that explore multiple characters’ storylines and paths. The SaGa series is known for it. Now, with Project Octopath Traveler, another is about to appear. Square Enix is about to tell the tales of eight more heroes and heroines. But, Nintendo Switch owners do not get to see all that just yet. For now, all we get to see are samples of the tales of Primrose the dancer and Olberic the warrior.

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How to make the most of Love Nikki

Can a mobile game about playing dress-up be complicated? Why yes, yes it can. Especially when said game requires you to craft and evolve clothing, complete challenges with varying guidelines, devote time to an in-game guild and keep up with special events within monetary and stamina limits. I’m talking about Love Nikki, of course. Fortunately, it is not difficult to excel. You just need to keep up with activities and play smart.

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Review: Drive Girls crashes and burns

I like weird games. Nothing makes me happier than a game like Katamari Damacy, Car Battler Joe, Pocket Card Jockey, Duel Love or Chulip. Naturally, I wanted Drive Girls to be good. It is, after all, a game about women who also happen to be cars and both fight and race giant, invading robot bugs. Instead, it squanders a novel premise and takes you on one of gaming’s worst road trips.

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Review: Mononoke Forest is a soothing strategic simulation

Every once in a while, you come across a game where the whole reason for its existence seems to be as cute as it can possibly be. Maybe, if you are lucky, the rest of the game will have a sense of purpose and offer actually engaging gameplay. With Mononoke Forest, we have a game that nails that balance. This eShop exclusive is absolutely precious, but it also has compelling gameplay. It is a thoroughly pleasant thing.

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Review: Mary Skelter: Nightmares involves some rather risky (and risque) business

The PlayStation Vita is rife with dungeon-crawling JRPGs. Traversing expansive spaces in the first person with a group of characters you are able to customize and organize in some way is commonplace. This means new games need to try something different to stand out. Enter Mary Skelter: Nightmares. In this Compile Heart and Idea Factory International release, players follow characters inspired by fairy tales as they attempt to escape a sentient jail. Sound weird? It totally is.

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Review: Ys VIII is all about community and combat

For as long as the series has been around, it’s a bit weird that we’re only now getting to the eighth numbered Ys release. The series takes its time, not necessarily to build grander worlds but to give its grounded adventures more time to breathe. Ys games are about engaging combat and a long but fulfilling grind, story and systems surrounding fights that are designed to enhance that core play. Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana is the most focused on its strengths the series has ever been, keeping players in comfortable fun for dozens and dozens of hours.

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