Tag Archives: PS5

2024 in Games

2024 in Games

A bit late with the round up I think, but here we are.


Top 5 played in 2023

Octopath Traveler II - PS5

1. Octopath Traveler 2 – PlayStation 5

Didn’t quite finish Octopath Traveler 2 in 2023 but almost, and I was playing it for most of the year. It improves on the first, already great, game in every way, but without changing anything too dramatic. At some point I’ll be revisiting that All Time Top JRPG post again…

Also available on PC and Switch, but I played this PS5 version*.


Dead Cells Bundle

2. Dead Cells & DLC – Xbox Series X

I didn’t see this coming at all. When I first tried Dead Cells I bounced off pretty hard. I don’t have a great track record with roguelike/lites (or at least I didn’t until the Vampire Survivors model appeared). However, when the Castlevania DLC got announced I knew I’d want to play that so I tried again. It really hooked me, and I ended up playing over 80 hours and all 4 DLC packs.

I played on Xbox, where the base game was on GamePass and I just purchased the DLC. These multiple platform versions here* on Amazon contain the base game and all 4 DLC packs up to and including the Castlevania one.


Forza Horizon 5: Rally Adventure - Xbox Series X

3. Forza Horizon 5 – Rally Adventure

Once again Forza Horizon puts in an appearance. This didn’t have as long a tail as previous versions though. The janky multiplayer is a continuing disappointment, don’t really understand what the problem is there. Anyway I really enjoyed the new content, and played until I’d done 100% of the additional stuff.

Best way to get Forza Horizon is still to buy GamePass* then the premium DLC bundle. It might be cheaper to buy from the Xbox Store direct, but you can get it from Amazon*.


Street Fighter 6 - Xbox Series X

4. Street Fighter 6 – Xbox Series X

This might be my favourite Street Fighter, I’m just not sure if it’s surpassed Street Fighter IV though. I haven’t played as much as I’d expected to, but Octopath is to blame for that as much as it is for everything else I didn’t play. I am very happy with the new arcade stick* I bought to play it with though, so all good.


Humanity - PS5

5. Humanity – PlayStation 5

I almost didn’t pick this up, as so much fuss was made about it as a VR title (exclusive to PSVR2) that I thought it would be a waste trying to play before I had that. Fortunately I was able to try it at someone else’s house, and discovered that it’s a great game even playing on a television. I’ve since tried it in VR, and to be honest, I think I prefer it flat.


Also mention:

Vampire Survivors - Tales of the Foscari

Vampire Survivors – Xbox Series X

My favourite game in 2022, almost appeared in the top 5 again for 2023. There were two more DLC packs for it, as well as a bunch more free content, and I played it all. There are quite a few good clones of the game appearing now and I expect to be playing more of those as well as anything else that gets added to Vampire Survivors during 2024.


10 games for 2024

As usual I like to set out a few games I intend to play over the coming year, so that I can mostly ignore the list and fail entirely. From last years list, I did play (and still expect to complete) Octopath Traveler 2. I also played Harvestella and Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, but ended up abandoning them. I’ve kept 3 others on the list below, and scrapped the rest for now.


God of War: Ragnarok - PS5

1. God of War: Ragnarok – PS5

I did buy this last year as planned, but I ended up spending most of the year playing Octopath Traveller 2 and never getting round to starting it. It’s definitely up soon though, not starting another 40+ hour game until after I’ve played this!

It’s come down a bit since launch, Amazon* does have a few quid off RRP atm.


Alan Wake II - 2024 in Gaming

2. Alan Wake 2 – PS5

At time of writing I’ve actually made a start with this one, but only started in January so I’m counting it. I adored the first game, and most of what I have heard of this sequel has been positive so I’m on board.


Spider-Man 2 - PS5

3. Spider-Man 2 – PS5

I didn’t get round to picking this up last year, I was still playing Octopath when it came out. It’s firmly on the list for 2024 though. I’m pretty certain I’ll manage these first 3 games, regardless of what happens to the rest of the list…


StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void - 2024 in Gaming

4. StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void – PC

Thanks to Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, and the subsequent exiting of Bobby Kotick I feel a little bit better about reinstalling Battle.net, and playing their games again. As such, it’s time to dust off the final part of this campaign trilogy, and actually play it this year.


Llamasoft: The Jeff Minter Story - 2024 in Gaming

5. Llamasoft: The Jeff Minter Story – PC or PS5

Only just found out this was a thing due out in 2024, but as a collection / tribute to my favourite games developer I am definitely in. This is coming from Digital Eclipse, who put together the excellent Atari 50 compilation. I’m currently leaning towards getting it on PC, but it may be another PS5 titles. We’ll see.


Half-Life - PC

6. Half-life – PC

After all the years I’ve played this, I don’t think I’ve ever actually completed the campaign. Last year Valve released a free update for the game, adding support for modern hardware and higher resolutions. Last year I finally completed Quake 2, so I think it’s time to finally see the end of Half-life and tick off another classic.


Sea of Stars - 2024 in Gaming

7. Sea of Stars – Xbox Series X

In my JRPG era, it seems I should definitely have one on the list. Considering Octopath Traveler 2 was over 100 hours long and derailed last years plans, I’ve gone for something that should be a bit shorter. At least until my little gaming group settles on a new communal JRPG to play anyway.


Axiom Verge 2 - 2024 in Gaming

8. Axiom Verge 2 – PC or PS5

Considering how much I enjoyed the first one it’s amazing I never got round to trying this. I’ll almost certainly pass over it for Silksong if that comes out. That’s highly unlikely though so let’s go for it.


I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream - 2024 in Gaming

9. I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream – PC

Another from the back catalogue that has been kicking around forever. Obligatory that I put a point and click game on the list, and thought I’d change it up since I didn’t play the last ones I chose.


Hollow Knight: Silksong

10. Hollow Knight: Silksong – Xbox Series X

Popping this on the end of the list, it’s become a bit of a joke as to whether it’ll ever get released. Going to play it when it does come out though, so we’ll leave it here and hope for the best!


Other 2024 releases I’m looking forward too

Simon the Sorcerer Origins - PC

Simon the Sorcerer Origins – PC

Something else I only just spotted as due this year (the release calendar for 2024 so far looks a bit sparse for things I’m actually interested in) but I am up for a new Simon the Sorcerer. Apparently due to be a prequel, I’ll take a look!


*these are affiliate links, I’ll get a small commission if you buy something.

2023 in Games

2023 in Games

Time for the annual round up of the previous year’s games, and a plan for which games I think I’ll play this one (but probably wont).


Top 5 played in 2022

Vampire Survivors - Xbox GamePass

1. Vampire Survivors – Xbox Series X

No prizes for this appearing at the top of my list, it took over my life in a big way at the end of 2022 and I’m already wondering if we’ll see more content. The couple of clones I’ve picked up since haven’t really captured me in the same way, but I am also open to something new scratching the same itch. Vampire Survivors is a masterpiece of pure gameplay demonstrating that you don’t need fancy graphics to create a great game.

This is only £3.99 on Steam or Xbox, but also included on GamePass*


Tales of Arise - PS5

2. Tales of Arise – PS5

As I rattle through JRPGs these days, it seems likely that another refresh of the All-time JRPG list could be in order. As it stands I don’t think Tales of Arise breaks into the top 5 but I did really enjoy it, and until Vampire Survivors late appearance in the year, I expected this to be my favourite game of 2022. Tales of Arise was also the only major PlayStation 5 game I played this year. Hopefully the PS5 will see more use in 2023. It was off the back of this game that we also played the definitive edition of Tales of Vesperia, but I think some of the older trappings of RPGs held that one back. I may try some others in the series, but not for a while.

At time of writing the PS5 version isn’t in stock, but multiple platform versions are here* on Amazon.


Forza Hot Wheels - Xbox Series X

3. Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels DLC – Xbox Series X

Always interesting putting a DLC on the list, but it feels fair with these as I did 100% complete all the new content. I think I prefer these Hot Wheels expansions to the LEGO one that was in Horizon 4, but it’s close. I’m excited to see what they have in mind for the other planned expansion for Horizon 5. On previous form we’d expect this to be more ‘traditional’ content.

Best way to get Forza Horizon is still to buy GamePass* then the premium DLC bundle. It might be cheaper to buy from the Xbox Store direct, but you can get it from Amazon*.


Guardians of the Galaxy - Xbox GamePass

4. Guardians of the Galaxy – Xbox Series X

I wasn’t expecting too much from this after the travesty that was the Marvel Avengers game, but I was pleasantly surprised to hear it review positively. Even better it came to GamePass so I was able to play it “for free”. It is a great game, nicely captures the characters and manages to deliver them well despite not being the MCU versions that people may be more familiar with. It is it’s own thing, but as a single player, squad based action game, it is very well done and the writing manages to capture the humour of the comics.

I don’t think it’s on GamePass any more, but the Xbox version seems to be much cheaper* than on PlayStation currently.


Life is Strange True Colors - Xbox GamePass

5. Life is Strange: True Colours – Xbox Series X

I wasn’t sure about this after not really enjoying Life is Strange 2. Pleased to report that this is much closer in tone to the first two games, and I had a great time with it. Think it’s still on GamePass too.


Also mention:

Turtles - Shredder's Revenge - Xbox GamePass

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge – Xbox Series X

This was almost my number 5, but as I only really find these games fun in co-op, Life is Strange edged it out. Shredder’s Revenge is a fantastic brawler though, up there with Streets of Rage 4 showing there is still life in the genre. Was something else I played on GamePass too.

GamePass in general

As well as 4 of the 6 games mentioned above, this year I also played and enjoyed enough to complete all of the following on GamePass. I don’t think I would have played any of them otherwise. Very pleased with the value I’ve had out of my subscription this year and it continues to feel pretty essential.

  • Boyfriend Dungeon
  • Soccer Story
  • Escape Academy
  • Coffee Talk
  • Gorogoa
  • HUE (technically part of Games with Gold, but that’s included in GamePass now)

10 games for 2023

As usual I like to set out a few games I intend to play over the coming year. A few of these aren’t out yet but I’m optimistic will turn up. I’ve added on the end a couple of others that are due out in 2023 that I’m potentially interested in playing too.


God of War: Ragnarok - PS5

1. God of War: Ragnarok – PS5

It did come out in time that I could have played it in 2022, but it was towards the end of the year so I decided to hold it over. It was originally my plan for my January game, but I think number 3 on this list may get in first.

Firmly in the premium pricings of PS5 games, but Amazon* does have a few quid off RRP atm.


MYST 3 Exile - 2023 Games

2. Myst III: Exile – PC

One of the games I’m bringing forward from last year’s list, it was on there the year before too. I am still intending to play through all the MYST games. Though they have also announced a fancy new remake of Riven: The Sequel to MYST, so I may end up playing that before I get to Exile.


Harvestella - Nintendo Switch

3. Harvestella – Switch

Possibly the next game my JRPG group is playing. Well one of them at least. I played the demo and am suitably intrigued so I think this will be my next game. (I have now bought it, but yet to make a start)

I picked my copy up in the closing down sale of my local GAME, the price isn’t bad on Amazon* though.


Castlevania Advance - Switch

4. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon – Switch

Another one from the list last year. I still really want to make the most of this collection so hopefully I’ll get on it, may depend on when the next game in this list comes out.


Hollow Knight: Silksong

5. Hollow Knight: Silksong – Xbox Series X

Optimistic that 2023 is the year this finally comes out. It feels like forever since it was first previewed. I think it was on my list for 2020. They did announce in 2022 that it was going to be day one on GamePass so I’ll definitely be on it as soon as it does appear.


Octopath Traveler II - 2023 in Games

6. Octopath Traveller 2 – Switch (or Xbox)

Very much enjoyed the first game, it did make number 5 on my list when I updated the All-Time Top 5 JRPGs post. Interested to play the next one. I’ll probably play on Switch again, unless it turns up on GamePass or something dramatic.


Oxenfree II: Lost Signals

7. Oxenfree II: Lost Signals – Switch or PS5

This was supposed to come out in 2022 but the release date got pushed back to 2023. The first game was great though so looking forward to this sequel. Although I played the first one on Xbox and this appears to only be coming to PC, Switch & PlayStation. Not sure which I’ll go for, probably decide based on price.


C&C Remastered - PC

8. Command & Conquer Remastered – PC

Again, I’ve kept this from last year as I do still want to go back to it. I don’t think I’ve played any RTS games since so at least I haven’t replaced it with something else. Half the problem here is getting round to gaming on the PC.


Spider-Man 2 - PS5

9. Spider-Man 2 – PS5

Assuming this comes out towards the end of the year as planned, I’ll definitely be playing this. The first game was great, although I preferred the Miles Morales spin-off, I’m very much ready for a new one, and it wouldn’t hurt to have another PS5 exclusive that I actually want to play.


Return to Monkey Island - 2023 in Games

10. Return to Monkey Island – Xbox Series X

I do enjoy a good point & click game, and I think I missed that this was on GamePass. Providing it doesn’t disappear from there too soon, I think I’ll play this during 2023.


Other 2023 releases I’m looking forward too


Street Fighter 6 - 2023 in Games

Street Fighter 6 – PS5 or Xbox Series X

Never any doubt that I’d be playing this, especially after getting to preview it at EGX and loving the demo. Only question is which platform. If the crossplay is good enough that I can play on PS5 and play properly with a friend on Xbox then that’s the way I’ll go. Otherwise it’ll be an Xbox purchase. My good fightstick is on the PlayStation though, and I’d rather not need to buy another. Ouch.


Forza Motorsport - 2023 in Games

Forza Motorsport – Xbox Series X

It’s been a while since Forza Motorsport 7, and although they’ve got increasingly ‘stale’ since FM3, I have still found enjoyment in most of these. What they’ve shown so far of this new version looks incredible though, and I am keen to get back to it.


*these are affiliate links, I’ll get a small commission if you buy something.


March Games 2022

March Games

Ticked off the first game from the 2022 playlist this month, and made substantial progress into a second. Also Game Pass continues to prove the best deal in videogaming.

Games completed this month

Tales of Arise - PS5

Tales of Arise – PS5

Fully completed this now, both with the main story “credits roll” at around 58 hours, and then with the optional extra stuff at about 90. Had a great time, but not sure it’ll break into the Top 5. I did even manage to pick up the Platinum Trophy, which is rare for me too. Think I have 8 so far spread across PS3, Vita, PS4 and PS5…

Thanks to my bout of Covid-related isolation in February I ended up finishing this ages in front of my friends (they’re still going now) and I want them to hurry up so we can find the next one to play.

I played on PS5, my friends are on PS4 and Xbox though and it seems like it’s great on them all. All formats are on this link*.


FAR: Changing Tides - March Games

FAR: Changing Tides – Xbox Series X

This was a nice surprise coming straight to Game Pass. I played the original FAR: Lone Sails on the PC back in July 2020. I really enjoyed that one but found it difficult to recommend at full price given the relatively short experience. As with Unpacking and Gorogoa recently though, Game Pass is perfect for this new one. The game is about 4 hours long, and is very much more of the same but with new systems to drive the vehicle along. Definitely worth a try if you have Game Pass.


Games played during March

Forza Horizon 5 - February Games

Forza Horizon 5 – Xbox Series X

Haven’t got as heavily back into this as I expected but I am still playing on and off. I imagine it’ll be when the first expansion pack arrives that I really get back on it.

Easiest way to play, Game Pass*


Destiny 2 Witch Queen - Xbox Series X

Destiny 2 Witch Queen – Xbox Series X

I finished the content up to where I needed to pay for the expansion and stopped. It was fun and I think I would like to carry on but couldn’t justify spending the money when I have so much else to play. I might come back to it later.


Animal Crossing - April Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Nintendo Switch

I took part in a book launch event that took the form of a treasure hunt on an Animal Crossing island. Was a pretty original idea and really good fun. The book itself is in the Young Adult genre, and if you’re interested it’s here from Waterstones – The Girl With No Soul.

https://twitter.com/kayjoon/status/1499114000495353858?s=20&t=vC2Ab44-jhpKl7sHblkSIw

It Takes Two - March Games

It Takes Two – Xbox Series X

After playing through A Way Out back in 2020 with my friend Phil, I had been intrigued to hear It Takes Two had a similar approach to co-op gaming. Once again the game showed up on Game Pass so we gave it a try. I think we’re only a couple of hours in but it is great fun so far, hoping to get back on it next month.

Easiest way to play, Game Pass*


Guardians of the Galaxy - March Games

Guardians of the Galaxy – Xbox Series X

Another game from my 2022 plan, although I originally intended to pick this up for the PlayStation 5. It came to Game Pass though, so a no-brainer to play on Xbox instead. I’m about 2/3 of the way through now so hopefully I’ll be including it in my completions next month. It’s an excellent game, really captures the characters well and manages to separate them from their MCU counterparts nicely. Kind of feels like a middle ground between the movies and the comics.

Easiest way to play on Xbox, Game Pass* but if you fancy it on another format or generally prefer a physical edition, they’re here on Amazon*


Mario Kart 8 Booster

Mario Kart 8 – Nintendo Switch

After my preorder last month, the first 8 of the new tracks came out in March. I haven’t spent a lot of time with them, but I played through the 2 new cups. I am most happy to have Coconut Mall from the Wii version back in there.

This is still a bargain from ShopTo, currently less than £17.


What’s been on the arcade?

Arcade Speakers

Not played much on the cabinet this month, mostly down to being heavily into Tales of Arise, and because In the Hunt turned out to be stupidly difficult. Jury is still out on the new Ten Pence Arcade game Solar Fox too.


March Pick-ups

Blacksad - March Games

Blacksad: Under the Skin – PS4 / PS5

I didn’t know this was a thing until I spotted the Xbox version on the shelf in Game. I really like the Blacksad comics so was intrigued about the game. A bit of a google has it being something of a 6 or 7 out of 10, but the gameplay elements sounded like a mix of the Sherlock Holmes games with the control system from Grim Fandango. That is my cup of tea, and it was on sale for around £6 on the PlayStation Store, worth a punt at least.

Available here* for PS4, Switch and Xbox


Tempest 4000 - March Games

Tempest 4000 – PS4 / PS5

Although I bought this when it first came out on PC in 2018, I hadn’t spent so much time on it, preferring to stick to TxK on my PlayStation Vita (the greatest game of all time). Tempest 4000 is essentially the re-released version of TxK but with approval from Atari. There are some gameplay changes but it’s fundamentally very close. Anyway, fast-forward to 2022 and I was scrolling the ‘coming soon’ section on the Nintendo Switch store, where I spotted Tempest 4000 was being brought over. The Switch is definitely a good place for it if unlike me you actually play it handheld, and I bet it looks amazing on the new OLED screen version.

However. Much more exciting to me was then remembering that the game came out on both Xbox One and PS4, and playing that on the newer consoles would mean Tempest upscaled to 4K with auto HDR. A quick online search later, and I found the PS4 edition for £9.99 so I went with that. I think I’d have preferred the Xbox one, but for some reason that is still quite expensive. It’s a real treat playing this on the PS5, and I’m looking forward to spending more time with it.

This is the one* I picked up, still on sale for a tenner at time of writing. Easy recommend.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

February Games

February Games

Poor impulse control strikes again in the pick ups, but still plenty of games played so I’ll count it as a win anyway.

Games completed this month

Blood & Truth PSVR - February Games

Blood & Truth – PSVR

Finally connected the PSVR up to the PlayStation 5, and went back and finished the Blood & Truth campaign. Still one of the best action games in VR, and looks even better driven by the PS5 rather than my old stock PS4. Using the PSVR with the PS5 is annoying though, I am definitely considering the PSVR 2 and its single cable connection.

I bought it digitally, but available from Amazon*


Dagon - PC VR

Dagon – PC VR

While I was in a VR mood I remembered hearing about this free VR game / experience on Steam. It’s only half an hour or so long, and is a mildly interactive retelling of the H.P. Lovecraft short story, Dagon. It was fun and nice to use the headset I have for my PC too. You can play it without VR as well, so worth a look for free if you’re interested.


Games played during February

Tales of Arise - PS5

Tales of Arise – PS5

Fully caught up in this now. Approaching 60 hours in and maybe nearing the endgame, although it’s a JRPG and it looks like I’ll still have a few things to do after. I appear to have gotten quite ahead of the JRPG support group though, and I could do with them catching up so was looking to play other things for a bit. Is the excuse I tell myself for spending a lot this month.

I’m playing on PS5, my friends are on PS4 and Xbox though and it seems like it’s great on them all. All formats are on this link*.


Tetris Effect Connected - February Games

Tetris Effect Connected – PSVR

Seemed rude not to play a bunch of this while I had the headset hooked up to the PS5. I still haven’t tried the new multiplayer modes though. I’ve heard good things about the Switch version of Tetris Effect, but I can’t imagine playing it not in VR.

I have this edition* although it is still on GamePass and playing on PC supports VR there too.


Rocket League - PS5

Rocket League – PS5

This has joined Worms W.M.D. as a regular multiplayer session, and while we continue to be dreadful, we still have a lot of fun. We tend to stick to casual matches though, those people on ranked are taking things too seriously…


SEGA Picross - February Games

SEGA Picross – Switch

Had a long weekend away in February and took along the Switch. Got back into this a bit but the puzzles are getting a bit trickier now. I think I’ll still drop into it from time to time, but gone are the early times of smashing through 10 puzzles in half an hour.


Sine Mora EX - Switch

Sine Mora EX – Switch

The other game I played while traveling, it was quite nice to get back to Sine Mora. I last played this when it first came out on Xbox Live Arcade for the 360. It’s an interesting shooter, although in handheld mode some of the enemy bullets feel almost invisible. Not sure I’ll play much of it now I’m back, but I might return to it for future holidays.

I’ve got this physical version*, but it goes on sale digitally for less than a couple of quid.


Forza Horizon 5 - February Games

Forza Horizon 5 – Xbox Series X

Bit of a spoiler for my pick up this month, but now I have the Series X I was keen to get back to Forza Horizon 5 and enjoy it in 4k at 60fps. Still my favourite racing game and now looking even better.


Destiny 2 Witch Queen - Xbox Series X

Destiny 2 Witch Queen – Xbox Series X

I haven’t bought the expansion yet, but did feel like checking it out on the new Xbox. So far I’ve just been enjoying the new story quests they’ve added to Free to Play but I may grab the DLC.


What’s been on the arcade?

Arcade Speakers

The Ten Pence Arcade podcast extended the previous month’s game into February. I’d gone off “Up N Down” though so I had been playing a bit of 1942 on the cab. The new podcast game was announced towards the end of the month as “In the Hunt” though, so I’ve had a few credits on that too. It’s just as brutal as I remember it being on the Saturn. Maybe I’ll improve enough to make the leaderboards.


February Pick-ups

Xbox Series X

Xbox Series X

Here we are, the latest impulse purchase. Had got so used to them being impossible to find at RRP that when I spotted Currys had stock I just jumped straight in. I mostly went for the upgrade from my Series S because I haven’t been gaming much on the PC. The PlayStation 5 has become my platform of choice but I think that’s because everything just looked better than on the Series S. Decided to get the X to put them more on a level pegging. Pretty pleased with it so far and a friend bought the Series S from me which offset the cost a bit.


Pre-orders

Mario Kart 8 Booster

Mario Kart Booster Pass

I couldn’t resist the prospect of more tracks for Mario Kart, and ShopTo have a good discount on the pre-order. Although this content is included in the Nintendo Online Expansion Pass, none of the other content appeals to me so for now this seemed the better option.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

Tales of Arise - Cover Image

January Games

First of these for the New Year, and we’re off to a pretty good start. I completed some stuff. Granted, not as many as I did in December but still good going by my standards.

Games completed this month

Gorogoa - GamePass

Gorogoa – PC

Heard about this on a podcast a while back, I was interested in the idea of “solving puzzles by sliding pictures over each other”. Didn’t really visualise how it would work in practice though, and I forgot about it. Once again though, GamePass* to the rescue, the artwork is gorgeous and the puzzles very well designed. I think it might be best to play on a mobile device or a Switch with the touch screen, but I found it worked well enough on PC with a mouse. The whole game is only around 2 – 3 hours long which makes it a perfect fit for GamePass.


Unforeseen Incidents - Nintendo Switch Title

Unforeseen Incidents – Nintendo Switch

As evidenced by my Unforeseen Incidents review, I also completed this last month.


Games played during January

Final Fantasy VII Remake - PS5

Final Fantasy VII Remake – PS5

Until I got distracted by the next game on this list, I was making decent progress on Final Fantasy VII Remake. I don’t have too much nostalgia for the original Final Fantasy VII, since back in the day my memory card corrupted not long after I made it onto the world map. However the characters and story are familiar, and it looks great. I’m probably only around 10 hours in, but I do want to come back and finish the game as it is on the list for 2022.

Available on Amazon*


Tales of Arise - PS5

Tales of Arise – PS5

It seems my 2022 blog did the job and my ex-wife picked this up in January as planned. I immediately dropped Final Fantasy as this is the game I wanted to be playing. Another of our friends is now playing as well so we have a JRPG support group. Enjoying it so far although the characters are a bit grumpy. Lots of owls though.

I’m playing on PS5, my friends are on PS4 and Xbox though and it seems like it’s great on them all. All formats are on this link*.


Animal Crossing - July Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Switch

Played on and off during January, still failed to catch a lobster and I think they’ve gone now till April. Oh well.

Traditional Amazon link*.


Aliens: Fireteam Elite - PC

Aliens Fireteam Elite – PC

Prime GamePass fodder. Difficult to call this a great game, particularly on PC where it feels like a clunky console port. However, playing online with a couple of friends was good fun. We’ll probably play a couple more times before we move on to something else.


What’s been on the arcade?

Arcade Speakers

In January my arcade play was mostly on SEGA’s Up N Down, the Ten Pence Arcade podcast monthly game. As much as I sort of enjoyed this, I really couldn’t get to grips with it and never really progressed beyond the second level. Next!

At the start of the year though I did pick up a proper amp and speakers* for the cab and fitted those. I got them from Arcade World* who supplied most of the components when I built the machine. The sound is much better now, although it does have a slight hum that I need to eradicate. Plenty of people seemed to have a similar problem with the Pi, so confident I can deal with it next time I have the cabinet open.


January Pick-ups

MYST and More Bundle

MYST & More Bundle – PC

Couldn’t resist grabbing this bundle of MYST goodness. Yes I did own all the games already, but my Steam library was missing MYST 3, 4 and Obduction, so at least I have them all in one place now…


Snowball! - PC

Snowball!

My one purchase from the latest Steam sale, saw someone mention this little indie pinball game, would have been rude not to for 49p. It’s not on sale any more, but even full price it’s only £1.99. Worth a look if you dig Video Pinball like me.


SCUMMVM - RetroPie

ScummVM & RetroPie – RaspberryPi 3b+

Okay so this isn’t really a pick up as I owned it already, but I wasn’t sure where else to put it. As I mentioned in my Unforeseen Incidents review, I had intended to play the classic Point and Click game Discworld this year. As an alternative to using the Saturn version (which I found out doesn’t support the mouse) I decided to use one of the RaspberryPi 3b+ models I had spare so I could still play on my TV using a mouse.

I’ve basically just installed the usual RetroPie and setup ScummVM to play Discworld and a selection of other games supported by the engine. As a bonus I’ve also started configuring DosBox to run a some other games of a similar era, mostly other Point and Click games not otherwise supported by ScummVM. And Jazz Jackrabbit, because why not.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

2022 in Games

2022 in Games

Later than planned with this, mostly because I was having trouble finding 10 games I wanted to play this year. The struggle is real.

From the 2021 plan I only managed to complete 3 of the games. I did at least play Shadow of the Tomb Raider, but it was terrible so I gave that one up. For the 2022 list I’m going to keep Myst III Exile and The Last Express on there for another year, but I’m parking the others.

Super Metroid and Call of Cthulhu can just return to the backlog. Hollow Knight: Silksong seems to be never coming out, but if it does I’ll want to play it immediately anyway. Finally, I did almost get to StarCraft: Legacy of the Void, then the ongoing and awful revelations about Blizzard Activision as a company left me feeling unable to buy or play their games.

Before we get to the new playlist for 2022 though, time for a quick look back at the highlights from 2021.


Top 5 played in 2021

Forza Horizon 5 - December Games

1. Forza Horizon 5 – Xbox Series S / PC

No surprises here, could have almost called this a year in advance. The series just keeps getting better in my opinion. At some point I need to update my All-Time Top 5 Racing Games list, although I’d probably just lump all the Forza Horizon games together at the top.

Best way to get this is still to buy GamePass*


Bravely Default 2 - Switch

2. Bravely Default 2 – Switch

Forza Horizon may have been a given, but I did not see this one coming (or its friend lower down). I think it turned up at the right time, and playing alongside my ex-wife to compare progress with no doubt helped, but I had a great time with this.

At time of writing you can still get it with the stickers and things* from Amazon like I did too.


Spider-Man: Miles Morales - PS5

3. Marvel’s Miles Morales – PS5

I think I enjoyed this more than the main Spider-Man game. Granted it is much shorter, but also had a lot less of the open-world ‘busy work’ that I find tedious. Also helped that it’s all set in a snowy December. Probably the first time I’ve really been impressed by ray-tracing, the night levels look great.

This* is the edition I picked up, it’s a bit more expensive than I found it for on eBay though.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

4. Ori and the Will of the Wisps – Xbox Series S

As disappointed as I was that the Hollow Knight sequel, Silksong, didn’t come out in 2021 for me to play, this was a worthy alternative. The original Ori didn’t quite make my Top 5 Metroidvania games, but it was a near miss. I think the Will of the Wisps is a better game than the original, I’d still suggest playing them both in order though. Excellent and I was delighted / surprised that my Xbox Series S was able to play it in 4K at 60fps. Lovely.

As I played on the Series S, there is no point linking a physical copy to buy. Think I played on GamePass anyway. You can pick it up here* on Switch though, and Metroidvanias are always a good fit for that.


Octopath Traveler - Switch

5. Octopath Traveller – Switch

The second JRPG I completed last year, and caused me to update my All-Time Top 5 JRPG list too. I don’t think it’s as good a game as Bravely Default 2, but the art style is fun and there are a lot of good gameplay mechanics to it.

Realising two of the best games I played in 2021 were JRPGs, I’ve put another two on my list for 2022. Whether I play them both partly depends on convincing my ex-wife to join in too.

Sometimes difficult to find in stock this one, if Amazon have it, it’ll be here*. I ended up buying it digitally anyway when I couldn’t get a physical edition.


Also ran:

Control Ultimate Edition - PS5

Control: Ultimate Edition – PS5

I almost let this pass me by but I’m glad I gave it a go. Sort of X-Files the action videogame, I enjoyed Control quite a bit. Very much liked the various nods towards Alan Wake too.

This* is the edition I played. I had it free with PS Plus though, so check you don’t already own it before you buy.


10 games for 2022

The Last Express - PC

1. The Last Express – PC

Last time I’m allowing myself to keep this on the list. If I don’t get round to it this year it goes “back on the shelf”.


Myst 3 Exile - 2020 in games

2. Myst III: Exile – PC

The other game I’m taking forward, I do still intend to progress my way through all these. However long it takes. I did dabble a bit last year with the MYST remake on PC and Xbox but it had a few stability issues that I hope will be fixed with updates.


Final Fantasy VII Remake - PS5

3. Final Fantasy VII Remake – PS5

I did suggest I’d consider this one when I updated the All-Time Top 5 JRPG list. Sony gave the PS4 edition away free with PS Plus a while back, but it was exempt from a free upgrade to PS5. However, over Christmas they relaxed that and I was then able to upgrade for free, so I thought I’d give it a go.

The PS5 edition is available here on Amazon*, if you missed it on PS Plus.


Castlevania Advance - Switch

4. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon – Switch

In the continued absence of Silksong, I wanted a Metroidvania for the list. Since I’ve banished Super Metroid back to the backlog, I thought I’d try to make an effort to play the Gameboy Advance games I never finished. I’ll play them on the recent compilation for the Switch, starting with Circle of the Moon and see how I get on.


Guardians of the Galaxy - PS5

5. Guardians of the Galaxy – PS5

Haven’t bought this yet but I intend to pick it up early 2022. I’ve heard lots of good things and I am a fan of the characters.

Available here* but at time of writing it’s back at full price. Has been discounted a few times already so I expect to pay no more than £35.


Tales of Arise - PS5

6. Tales of Arise – PS5

Another I haven’t bought yet but I do want to play. I think my successfully playing this may be dependent on convincing my ex-wife to play too, so fingers crossed.

Available here*


Discworld - SEGA Saturn

7. Discworld – Sega Saturn

Haven’t played anything through fully on my Saturn for a while, and I had been thinking of replaying this game too. I’ll pop it on this list, it’ll be a good excuse to get the Saturn Mouse out.


C&C Remastered - PC

8. Command & Conquer Remastered – PC

I did get part way through the GDI campaign on this and get stuck. However I’d like to go back and finish that as well as play through the NOD one. Seems I should have an RTS on this list and since I’ve abandoned StarCraft now is the time.


Doom Eternal - 2022

9. Doom Eternal – PC

Almost forgot this existed, still haven’t got round to playing. I think I will play this year but I’m not completely set on what platform. Too much choice. I’ve set it for PC for now, but may change it up during the year.


Uncharted 4 - PS4

10. Uncharted 4 – PS4

Another one I forgot I never played… Happy to put this on the list as I think it should be nice on the PS5.


2022 releases I’m looking forward too


God of War: Ragnarok - PS5

God of War: Ragnarok – PS5

Can see this getting delayed again, but I’m keen to play it if it does come out. The first game was great.


Oxenfree II: Lost Signals

Oxenfree 2: Lost Signals

Again, loved the first game so was pleased to hear we were getting another. Not sure what platform I’ll play it on yet. Think the first one was on GamePass.


*these are affiliate links, I’ll get a small commission if you buy something.


December Games Header

December Games

Rounding out the year by finishing 4 (well more like 3) games. Finished with a more respectable total.

Games completed this month

Spider-Man: Miles Morales - PS5

Spider-Man: Miles Morales – PS5

Think I enjoyed this more than the main Spider-Man game. Granted it is much shorter, but also had a lot less of the open-world ‘busy work’ that I find tedious. Also helped that it’s all set in a snowy December, probably the first time I’ve really been impressed by ray-tracing, the night levels look great.

This* is the edition I picked up, it’s a bit more expensive than I found it for on eBay though.


Forza Horizon 5 - November Games

Forza Horizon 5 – Xbox Series S & PC

I think I ‘finished’ this in November, but forgot I’d achieved the Hall of Fame space that marked the end of the story. Wanted to include it so it didn’t get missed altogether, but I will be spending more time with the game anyway.

Best way to get this is still to buy GamePass*


Unpacking - PC

Unpacking – PC

A pretty short game, took around two hours to play through in one sitting. It’s a very satisfying “putting things away” sim, but with a lot of heart. Very much enjoyed my time with it, and it is definitely worth a look. Specially if you have GamePass.

Again, buy GamePass*


Cthulhu Saves Christmas - Switch

Cthulhu Saves Christmas – Switch

After finishing Miles Morales I was ready for another Christmas themed game and this was on sale on the Switch eShop for less than a fiver. Another short one at only 4 or so hours, but it was a lot of fun.

Games played during December

Animal Crossing - July Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Switch

Played quite a lot throughout December, enjoying the snow and festive activity. After only managing one perfect snowman out of 5 attempts though I gave up on that part.

Traditional Amazon link*.


Duke Nukem 3D - Vita

Duke Nukem 3D: World Tour – PS Vita

Had a bit of an itch to play the Christmas expansion pack for Duke, Nuclear Winter. I’d forgotten that it’s missing from the “Megaton” edition that came out a few years after this World Tour – 20th Anniversary one. So after firing up my Switch and discovering the version I have on there doesn’t have Nuclear Winter, I dug out my PS Vita and played a bit on there instead.


Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - December Games

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – Switch

Of course it wouldn’t be Christmas without some local multiplayer and a few rounds of Mario Kart. Essential.

You don’t have this* already? For shame.


What’s been on the arcade?

March Games 2021

With all the Christmas going on, I haven’t been on the cabinet as much. I did play a fair bit of Super Pang for the Ten Pence Arcade game of the month, which is excellent. However I didn’t play enough to really improve my score so I’m going to be disappointed by the leaderboard I think.


December Pick-ups

Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol 1 - Switch

Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol 1 – Switch

A Christmas gift from my sister, I’ve had my eye on this for a while. I loved my Neo Geo Pocket Color, receiving it for Christmas the year it launched in the UK. This compilation plays perfectly with 10 of the games that are not available to play anywhere else. The fighting games and Metal Slug ports are worth it, but had been available separately from the Switch store. The real star here for me is Neo Turf Masters, one of my favourite ever golf games.

Amazon link* if you were interested in this one, it’s a solid collection but it’ll help if you have some familiarity with the system already.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

November Games

November Games

Well look at that, I finished something, and also unsurprisingly played an awful lot of Forza Horizon 5.

Games completed this month

Control Ultimate Edition - PS5

Control: Ultimate Edition – PS5

Pleased to say I managed to push on and finish this. There were only a couple of times I got stuck on a fight and they didn’t last for too long. There is still plenty to do if I want to go back, but for now I’m happy to have finished the main story. I do at least want to play through the Alan Wake content in the DLC, but that will be for the New Year.

The physical edition of the version I’m playing is available here from Amazon*, although I have it digitally. I think the Xbox and PC editions are solid too, although I heard the older consoles struggled a bit with the framerate.

Games played during November

Animal Crossing - July Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Switch

Played a bit with the new content to open my coffee shop but not the hours I was expecting. Bring on snow.


Back 4 Blood - November Games

Back 4 Blood – Xbox Series S – GamePass

This was oddly disappointing. While it is no doubt a good game, and a worthy spiritual successor to Left 4 Dead, it’s so close to Left 4 Dead, that I felt like I’d seen it all before. Glad I didn’t need to buy it, in no rush to play any more of it.

Here* for all the main platforms if you want to buy it. I wouldn’t though.


Quake 2021 - November Games

Quake – Xbox Series S – GamePass

This has been great fun. Playing through the expansion packs in online co-op with a mate. Still remains one of the best games of all-time.


Forza Horizon 5 - November Games

Forza Horizon 5 – Xbox Series S & PC

This turned out to be almost everything I hoped for, and once again replaces the previous entry as my favourite yet. I’ve put quite a lot of time in already, my only disappointment (and I think many are sharing this) is that the multiplayer is still broken. It never really worked that well in Horizon 4, I hope it gets a robust update to repair that. I should push on and do the last couple of big races though to ‘complete’ the story.

Best way to get this is still to buy GamePass*

What’s been on the arcade?

November Games - Arcade

A fantastic month on the arcade. The game of the month from Ten Pence Arcade was Lode Runner, which turned out to be great so I played that a lot. Also my buddy Ross managed to visit for a few hours, and along with taking it in turns for Lode Runner credits, we also played a few other games including Robotron 2084 and some two player Raiden II.


November Pick-ups

Spider-Man: Miles Morales - PS5

Miles Morales – PS5

Found a bargain copy of this on eBay, so I could play it once I finished Control. Looking forward to getting onto it next.

This* is the edition I picked up, it’s a bit more expensive than I found it for on eBay though.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

October Games 2021

October Games

Another quiet month, although I did play quite a bit of a couple of games.

Games played during October

Animal Crossing - July Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Switch

Mostly just checked in with the Halloween event, expect to play a bit more in November with the new content. Looking forward to the coffee shop opening. Because Brewster.


Destiny 2 - October Games

Destiny 2 – Xbox Series S & PC

A friend brought me back to Destiny 2, and with all the expansions included on GamePass it was nice to have fresh content to play. Had a lot of fun for a couple of weeks getting through the new story parts while it feels like you’re making some progress. My appetite for the MMO grind appears to have left me behind though. Can’t bring myself to invest the hours.


Control Ultimate Edition - PS5

Control: Ultimate Edition – PS5

Only just started this as something else to play on my PS5. Seems really good so far, but there have been a couple of frustrating fights. Very much enjoying the world and all the X-Files style story elements though. Hopefully I’ll stick with it but concerned I’ll get pulled away by other games soon.


What’s been on the arcade?

MAME Cabinet - Finished

Another shocker from Ten Pence Arcade, the game was Frenzy and it was dreadful. I therefore just played some more Joust. Started planning a bit of an upgrade for the system. Mostly want to sort out the power solution, but also going to have another look at the sound system, maybe get a proper amp and speakers rather than the PC Speaker setup it has currently. Ideally I’d like to mount an external volume control too. Likely to be a January project I think.


October Pick-ups

Destiny 2 - October Games

Destiny 2 Season Pass

Mostly bought this as an incentive to keep playing. It worked for a bit but then I started playing Control, and Forza Horizon arrives 5th November. We’ll see how that goes.


Llamasoft

Llamasoft: Everything, Everything Bundle – PC

Find myself less excited by Steam sales these days, but this was a nice drop. I already had 3 of the 5 games in the bundle, so it meant I could grab the two games I was missing, Moose Life and Minotaur Arcade, for £2. Bargain, and some more VR content for my PC.

Retired during October

Metro Exodus - October Games

Metro Exodus – PS5

Well I tried, again and again. I did get much further than on any previous attempts but the open world just kills it for me. Found I didn’t want to play it, and was actively avoiding my PS5 as this was the game I had in progress. Oh well, hopefully I’ll stick with Control.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.

September Games

September Games

Pretty small update this month, not much gaming.

Games played during September

Animal Crossing - July Games

Animal Crossing New Horizons – Switch

Didn’t play a lot of this during September, but just enough to make sure I caught all the fish and bugs that were new for the month.


Pac-Man CE2 - September Games

Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 – PS4 / PS5

Stumbled across this in my PS4 games while browsing the PS5 library for something to play, put a couple of hours in. It’s great fun but a bit overwhelming with the content which seems a bit wrong for pac-man. Think I preferred the more streamlined original Championship Edition.


Everybody's Golf

Everybody’s Golf – PS5

Visited my mate for a week at the end of the month, we mostly played card & board games, but we did get in the obligatory couple of rounds of Everybody’s Golf.


What’s been on the arcade?

MAME Cabinet - Finished

My patience for the Ten Pence Arcade monthly game change was rewarded, and this month we were playing the Williams classic from 1982, Joust. Love that game so have played a fair bit of it. Might keep playing for a while though, I’m so close to cracking 60k points (I’d really like to put up more than 100k).


August Pick-ups

Castlevania Advance - Switch

Castlevania Advance Collection – Switch

A bit of a surprise release when this came out, it’s a collection of the three Gameboy Advance Castlevania games, and the adequate SNES version of Dracula X. It’s very much worth the cost of entry just for Aria of Sorrow, but as I have never completed any of the GBA games I thought now could be the time. I have at least played them all before, and discussed on the Castlevania episode of the Maximum Power Up podcast.


Puyo Puyo Tetris 2 - PS5

Puyo Puyo Tetris 2 – PS5

More of the same from one of the greatest puzzle games of all time. I had intended to get this on Xbox as it’s the only platform I don’t own the original game on, but it was 1/4 of the price on PS5 for a physical copy. Some new multiplayer stuff though so was happy to pick it up. Also amused me that this is my first physical PS5 game. Wonder if it has ray-tracing…

Not particularly cheap on Amazon atm, but you can get it here*. The do have it cheap on Xbox* at time of writing.


*As usual, these links are affiliate ones, which may earn me a small commission if you buy something.