Shadow 2005 is an unfinished mess of a game. Most of the weapons in this game suck, the multiple endings add nothing but padding and the only polish this game has is on the ground causing Shadow to slip and slide everywhere
But I also love it. It is one of my favorite games, hands down. The gameplay is simple enough to enjoy, music is terrific, sometimes the story is actually decent and gosh darn it I love all the try-hard edgynes! I especially love all the ending names which are just so emo, like Galaxy's Requiem or At Vagrancy's End
This game is a bad game and I do not think you will enjoy it, but gosh dang it, I love it to bits

House of the Dead is not a perfect game, but a lot of what holds it back is its nature as a quarter eating arcade game. A lot of the time there is no way to avoid damage, save survivors or get the precious few helpful items in the game without replaying it over and over again
But if you can get past that (such as with a home port) it is a blast to play. Action is fast, shooting zombies feels fun, there are tons of creative moments in the game, and the voice acting & story is so bad that it's awesome. I love this game to bits.

A Hat In Time is nearly everything I wanted from a collectathon. Fun, imaginative, full of surprises, a move set you feel in control of, secrets around every corner, a variety of different costumes to unlock and an overall positive vibe to the whole experience
It's not a perfect game by any means. It can feel very unpolished & the majority of the other characters are weirdly hostile to Hat Kid, but I can forgive that. I enjoy going through the world, I enjoy collecting all the items & that's enough for me: This is a game I enjoy

If I had to describe Super Mario Sunshine in a single word, it would be "tragedy." It is one of the most beautiful games out there with great core gameplay, but the missions are more often than not repetitive tasks with little to no variation despite seeing them over & over
The games biggest flaw is how the end game can only be unlocked after beating every level's 7th mission, effectively making making a collectathon where half of the collectables feel meaningless. Sunshine is proof you should never judge a book by its cover, because sometimes that's the best part

It's easy to oversell a Mario game, especially the mainline system sellers. With that in mind it is hard to convey how much I loved Odyssey. Part of it was how easy it was to go at my own pace and never feel I was cheating myself out of an experience
The world is big, beautiful & bursting with things to find around every corner. The multiple creatures to possess made things exciting throughout (my favorite was the sunshine style gushen). And what flaws this game has feels like necessary evils rather than oversights or bad design
I don't like most Mario games, but I really do love Odyssey

Mario + Rabbid Kingdom Battle is a game filled to the brim with love. Every corner of this world has something in it, whether it's a collectable item, a battle, or a joke. Its tactic gameplay is fluid and easy to master, while being a consistently enjoyable experience that manages to throw in a decent story and some fun surprises
And even though I do have some gripes with the game (3 character teams with an unswitchable main character will always be a pet peeve of mine) it doesn't detract from the overall package, which is excellent. It is absolutely worth your time getting

Blasphmous is an absolute gem of a game and one of the best Soulslike out there. Its aesthetic of gothic Catholicism permeates every inch of this game. Every enemy in agony, each ruined background, its subdued, haunting soundtrack and so much more forms a cohesive, memorably world
The combination of side scrolling platforming, the precision of soulslike combat, and the exploration of metroidvania create a unique experience that makes it a joy to move and fight through the trials this game inflicts upon its players

While lacking the magic of the Dark Souls games it tries to emulate, Code Vein is still a solid entry into the soulslike genre. Its anime aesthetic is appropriately over the top, and I often think back fondly of its stylish assortments of weapons and skills.
And the one area it does surpasses FromSoft's titles, the character creator, it absolutely knocks it out of the park. There are so many options to tweak little details here & there. It's become one of my favorite creators ever and other games should take ques from it.

The fun of Deadbolt comes from formulating a plan & seeing just how well you can stick to it. Deciding what enemies to take out first, what items to grab, figuring out what areas you can use to your advantage & when to reveal yourself to enemies
And what makes this game a true triumph in the stealth game genre is its best levels are the boss fights, because Deadbolt understands that stealth bosses are at their best when they're a well guarded target the player needs to figure out how to take out. All and all, Deadbolt is fantastic

Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne is perhaps the closest thing we'll ever get to a Silent Hill RPG. A foreboding, atmospheric other world. A genuine sense of unease when fighting monsters. And characters that aren't so much good as trying to define their own path, for better or for worse
The highlight of the game is the battle system, which incentivizes hitting enemy weaknesses with more than just bonus damage. And being able to add nearly any enemy to your party & customize their skills to your heart's content, I'd recommend this game to everyone if it weren't so long

Encore Mode is where Sonic Mania finally hits its stride. The mode is barely different, most notably all the levels having a new palette. But the big difference is you can play as any two characters, swap between them, and rotate through the whole cast. This is Mania at its best
Everyone finally feels useful since some characters are better in certain areas, incentivizing you to change your team. And when you have the wrong characters it feel truly challenging. Despite my misgivings of Mania, Encore Mode is a delight & I'd love to see the idea expanded upon

Sonic Mania Plus is quite the improvement over the original Sonic Mania, which is funny because almost nothing changed in gameplay. But Mighty & Ray, characters that have been MIA for years, kind of solve the problem I had with Tails & Knuckles offering nothing to the game
Ray is an expert speed-run character, difficult to get a hang of but can get across the stage faster than any character when used right. And Mighty being immune to spikes once per jump makes him an idle for those who hate all the spikes in Mania (ME). Overall solid improvement

You can feel the love put into every pixel of this game. You can tell this was made by people who love Sonic. Sadly it's marred by frustrating level design. It's not just the death traps you seem to keep speeding into; Tails' & Knuckles' abilities feel wasted in Mania.
In S3&K you could find new paths & items by flying & climbing, but that doesn't happen here. Levels seem designed only considering Sonic, which sucks. There's also a lot that is cute in theory but annoying in gameplay (THE BOSSES). There's a good game here, but I can't say I enjoyed Mania as much as I wanted

Everything about Bioshock Infinite is awful. As a gameplay experience it's bland at best & soul suckingly tedious at worst. As a story its use of real issues is indefensible. And the story is put together with a hackish lack of finesse that it'd be a mess even if it wasn't racist
Everything from mechanics, to theming, to visuals, to characters, to its writing from its macro level story beats to its micro level dialogue & exposition is atrocious. And it ends on a note so devoid of meaning that it bottoms out farther than I ever thought it could

Not a game I'd recommend unless you want to experience a very important moment in gaming history. It's an esoteric game, one that encourages you to figure things out on your own. This is charming when you're online and can read player messages. It's less charming when you just want to know how many souls an item gives your, or how many more you need to level up
The interconnected world is very cool, where you can open a door and behind it you find an area you were in hours ago. But without warping it gets tedious quick. The main defense I hear of this is it makes you memorize the areas you enter, but I only need to go through an area once or twice to keep it in my mental map, and this game wants me to go through them 50 times. It also didn't help when I found a secret area you were supposed to warp out of before gaining the ability to warp, so I had to climb back out on my own
Character building is a lot of fun, tho it feels like the things that make you functional, not even over powered, are hidden away or gated behind arbitrary walls. I wanted to get great lightning spear near the beginning of the game, but I need to either play online (not an option) or grind enemies that are in an area I can't enter until more than halfway through the game. The breaking point was learning the armor set I wanted was inaccessible because I killed a boss that caused the enemy who drops the armor to disappear from the world because ?????. So it was either continue on and get it in NG+, start a new file after killing after I had just finished killing all the great lords, or just shelve the game. In the end, I chose the later
I sincerely think that a lot of Dark Souls is very cool and unique. I just don't think its rough edges are worth slogging through it. It's an important game in the history of gaming, but it's not a fun one