For a lot of gamers with demanding jobs, marriages and/or families, the excitement of reading good reviews for games like Red Dead Redemption 2 and Assassin's Creed Odyssey is tempered by the sinking realization that they'll never have time to play them. How do you make time for a 60+ hour game when you have a busy life?
Red Dead Redemption 2 is a profound, glorious downer. It is the rare blockbuster video game that seeks to move players not through empowering gameplay and jubilant heroics, but by relentlessly forcing them to confront decay and despair. Rockstar Games' new open-world western opus is exhaustively detailed and exhaustingly beautiful, a mammoth construction of which every nook and cranny has been polished to an unnerving shimmer.
The fourth installment of Treyarch's Black Ops series might be the first Call of Duty to forgo single-player. But after a spate of less-than-fully-satisfying entries, putting full efforts behind multiplayer has paid off: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 finds the perfect middle ground between classic COD and the "jetpack" era, reviving the franchise's fun in many ways.
Is there anything so satisfying to watch as a well-played Mario speedrun? What makes an expert run of Super Mario Bros. so eminently watchable, and how do the players master their moves so perfectly? It turns out that the answer to both questions could be "music."
Mega Man 11 is a fine game, and a worthy eleventh entry in a series that once set the bar for tricky platformers. It also feels oddly shallow, the latest iteration of a formula that has gone largely unchanged for decades. Mega Man 11 is great at being a Mega Man game. Maybe that's why it didn't do much for me.
I started reviewing these two games together all the way back in 2012, but six years in, I feel like this double-review is in danger of settling into just the kind of repetitive drone it was designed to counter. Now, more than ever, each series' pros and cons are so established, so settled into routine that it's almost a waste of everyone's time to dredge them up once again.
In Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Lara Croft ventures from Mexico into the jungles of Peru. It's fun and beautiful and is a lengthy adventure full of enjoyable Tomb Raidery things. It's built on the sturdy traditions of the 22-year-old franchise and uses most of the same smart systems that were introduced in 2013's Tomb Raider reboot and refined in 2015's Rise of the Tomb Raider.
Blizzard has spent the past six years transforming World of Warcraft from a tired massively multiplayer online role-playing game into something fresh and new. Between 2014's Warlords of Draenor and 2016's Legion, World of Warcraft today feels like a completely different game.
Dead Cells is a Castlevania-inspired side-scrolling action game from the French developer Motion Twin. In addition to having unusually progressive payroll policies, the indie studio is evidently very good at making video games. Yes, Dead Cells is a winner.
The latest sports games are not always the best. There's an obsession with incremental changes and bullet-point features, one which challenges fan's ability to take a step back and assess each game as its own title. It's something I try to do and I'm taking to its logical conclusion here in this Quixotic attempt to pluck one game out of hundreds and call it the "best."
While Nintendo is setting the world on fire with its 90s nostalgia trip, let's say your 16-bit desires are more unconventional. Perhaps you enjoy your games with a bit more violence and/or hedgehogs. Then the Sega Genesis Flashback HD may have you covered.
This new God of War is an excellent game, lovingly crafted and engaging all the way through. But much has changed. It's not merely the drastically revamped combat, with its over-the-shoulder angle and its emphasis on evasion. It's also the story, and the way it tells that story, with an emphasis on family relationships and quiet, low-key moments.
Just because you don't have access to the fanciest gear around doesn't mean you have to play subpar games. Even if you're on a potato computer or low-end PC, there's plenty out there for you to enjoy. Here are some of Kotaku's top picks for quality games that should run on almost anything.
The bulk of Far Cry 5 feels like gonzo camping trip that permeates the rest of the game. Yes, people are being kidnapped, tortured, and brainwashed, but in-between fighting to liberate the residents of Hope County from this b-horror movie plot, I also spent plenty of time skydiving, swimming, hiking, hunting, fishing, and rampaging through cedar forests on 4-wheelers at night like an idiot.
It's been nearly 14 years since Blizzard launched the world's most popular massively multiplayer online role-playing game. You've had plenty of time to get your affairs in order before finally taking the plunge into Azeroth. Don't worry, the World of Warcraft hasn't passed you by. You just might need a little help getting started. We got you.
In the 20+ years since the Fallout franchise was introduced to the world, all of the games have been met with praise---which means that ranking them isn't easy. It's especially difficult to pit the games against each other when you consider that the post-nuclear franchise underwent a genre change.
It took Civilization V two full expansions to become the classic it's regarded as today. Civilization VI is halfway there. There's lots of new stuff on offer in this expansion, from UI tweaks to new factions, but I'm not here to rattle off bullet points. I'm instead going to be talking about R&F's three main additions, and how they all work together to change the way each game of Civ VI feels.