Review
45 Comments
7.0

The Wolf Among Us episode 4: In Sheep's Clothing review: dark side

We're trying something new with episodic reviews on Polygon. What follows is something of a hybrid between recap and review and, as such, should not be read by anybody worried about spoilers. You've been warned. OK, The Wolf Among Us, you win. It took me until In Sheep's Clothing, the penultimate episode of the Big Bad Wolf's hunt for an elusive serial killer, but I finally gave into my animal instincts. After being figuratively spat upon by nearly every member of Fabletown, I finally stopped giving a crap about what any of them thought and started bloodying a few noses. I'm having a lot more fun now, and that's kind of a shame. On Episode Three: A Crooked Mile At the beginning of A Crooked Mile, we find Bigby in a pretty dark place. Literally. In a...
Review
27 Comments
7.0

Among the Sleep review: sweet dreams

Among the Sleep seeks to answer a question that I imagine is pretty common for parents. I have a nine-month-old child myself, and when he wakes up in the middle of the night sobbing and shaken, I cannot help but wonder what it is that could be torturing the dreams of someone so young. Among the Sleep posits an answer by letting players journey through its two-year-old protagonist's darkest nightmares. Those scary dreams aren't always the smoothest. Among the Sleep is riddled with bugs and small problems. But the novelty of playing as a two-year-old and the game's powerful atmosphere overcome those issues. what could be torturing the dreams of someone so young Among the Sleep opens with the unnamed main character's mother offering them a slice of cake for their second...
Review
297 Comments
8.0

Watch Dogs review: spook country

Watch Dogs was announced with more fanfare and anticipation than most new properties. First shown at E3 just shy of two years ago as the first "next-generation" video game, developer Ubisoft Montreal's newest title missed the next-gen console launch last fall. Now, after a six month delay, Watch Dogs has finally come out of the shadows. In many ways, Watch Dogs feels like a synthesis of some of publisher Ubisoft’s flagship series, mixing the open-world and navigation of more recent Assassin’s Creed games with the shooting and modern environments of series like Splinter Cell. There’s a sense of trying to be all things, all under the umbrella of modern day paranoia of surveillance and privacy. But Watch Dogs is at its best when it’s the most fenced in.   undefined   ...
Review
27 Comments
5.0

DreadOut review: old ghosts

Ten years ago, DreadOut would have seemed like a copycat. It feels like it's been plucked from a different era, a time when consoles were flooded with survival horror games about naïve protagonists wandering into creepy ghost towns. And it's been just long enough since that genre has dried up that DreadOut's adherence to outdated conventions almost comes across as novel. My nostalgia for that style of game initially pulled me into DreadOut, but it wore thin, even with the game's very short running time. DreadOut builds a great atmosphere on the back of Indonesian ghost stories that haven't been mined to death in a million other games. But its gameplay is old, dusty and eventually just not very good. DreadOut's adherence to outdated conventions almost comes across as novel ...
Review
99 Comments
8.5

Transistor review: a girl and her sword

Transistor is not afraid to step out of the shadow of its famous sibling. The latest from developer Supergiant Games, Transistor shares plenty of DNA with its predecessor, the popular indie game Bastion. Both are isometric action games, set in colorful, stylized worlds. Both emphasize combat. But Transistor's world and story feel unique. And its combat is fine-tuned, deep and dynamic. Transistor put me in the shoes of Red, a gifted and popular musician living in the cyberpunk-fantasy city of Cloudbank. The game begins dramatically, with Red pulling a giant sword — the Transistor — from the body of a man on a rooftop. The Transistor isn't just a regular weapon, though; it has a personality and a voice, and it quickly becomes Red's partner. The storytelling is...
Review
52 Comments
7.0

Drakengard 3 review: personality conflict

Drakengard 3 refuses to make concessions in its brashness. It hits the ground running with dirty humor and liberal use of swear words. It stars an angry, unlikable protagonist whose goal is to kill her own siblings. Every line of dialogue is either a shallow threat or blatant innuendo. There wasn't much I liked initially. But despite its rough start, Drakengard 3 won me over. The combat options expanded significantly, forcing me to strategize more throughout battles. And though the story remains strange, it starts taking itself more seriously in a way that I appreciated. It's like a friend who is loud-mouthed and offensive in public, but every time you're alone, you realize they have a heart of gold. Drakengard 3 — which mercifully doesn't require previous...
Review
159 Comments
9.0

Wolfenstein: The New Order review: machine gun

Wolfenstein: The New Order is the product of an unexpected marriage. On one side, there's Wolfenstein, id Software's oldest franchise, which came before Doom to define an era of first-person shooters. On the other side is new developer Machine Games. Composed of veterans of the studio Starbreeze, responsible for 2004's sleeper hit The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay and 2007's The Darkness, their games are known for strong narratives and effective characterization. The result is a game at the mercies of both old-school blast-em-up first-person shooters and the storytelling ambitions of its new stewards. It shouldn't work. Numerous other shooters have tried and failed. But Wolfenstein: The New Order doesn't fail. Its bizarre love triangle of traditional shooter...
Review
178 Comments
9.0

Mario Kart 8 review: shell game

With Mario Kart 8, Nintendo has mastered the easy-to-pick-up, fast-paced fun that it's been developing for over 20 years now. It would be easy to write off that accomplishment, because not a lot has changed, even going back to the original Super Mario Kart on SNES. Nintendo has added tons of characters through the years, increased vehicle customization options and even tried a couple of weird experiments such as the co-op focused Mario Kart: Double Dash. But through it all the core of high-speed racing and drifting around corners for boosts has remained the same. It's a damned good core, though, and it's as good as it's ever been in Mario Kart 8. Though it lacks hooks to hold players in, Nintendo's years of experience perfecting this style of game are mixed with the HD visual...
Review
28 Comments
7.0

Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure review: hardboiled

Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure is about a man out of time. I mean that literally — as the game begins Tex has lost all memory of his last seven years — but it's also true in a figurative sense. These sort of games, these sprawling FMV adventures, simply aren't made any more. While Tesla Effect probably won't serve as a clarion call for a large-scale FMV comeback, it's a soothing, nostalgic balm for those who miss the glory days. Seven have passed in the post-World War III city of San Francisco (that puts us at 2050 if you're keeping track). With Tex's aforementioned memory wipe, the brilliantly hapless (haplessly brilliant?) detective believes it's just the day after he and girlfriend Chelsee Bando were abducted at the end of 1998's Overseer. With few leads, Tex has...
Review
24 Comments
8.5

Walking Dead Season 2: Episode 3 review: heroes and villains

The Walking Dead Season 2's third episode proves just how much a great bad guy can add to a story. Aside from some short-lived antagonists, most of Telltale's first season of The Walking Dead didn't have a singular villain. The "evil" in this world was more insidious — it was the hordes of the undead and the desperation that can push humans to do terrible things. There was no easy face for players to direct their expertly toyed-with emotions toward. That all changes with "In Harm's Way." A feared and hated figure who has been in the background of previous episodes of Season 2 takes center stage here. And Telltale has figured out the perfect ways to make me hate this bad guy — and hate myself in the process. (Editor's Note: We've tried to steer clear of major spoilers for The...
Review
51 Comments
8.5

Super Time Force review: total recall

After almost three years of teases, Capy Games' Super Time Force has finally appeared in our timeline. Though the game was teased in late 2011, it wasn't given a name until 2012. Since then, it's undergone transformation after transformation as Capy played with the thing that sets Super Time Force apart from the retro-crazed re-imaginings of a now departed console generation: time itself. On the surface, Super Time Force is a familiar mix of old-fashioned aesthetics and elbow-jabbing nostalgia. But Capy has found more than a life raft with their clever implementation of time travel and cause and effect. They've mined a barely touched vein of originality. Even when jokes aren't sharp enough to cut, they're heavy enough to bludgeon towards a chuckle Super Time Force follows a team...
Review
49 Comments
8.5

MLB 14 The Show review update — PS Vita

The PlayStation Vita version of The Show 14 is useful mainly as an adjunct to the console experience. I knocked out two full months of games on a couple of long flights recently and came home to a start in the All-Star game. The Vita edition is essentially identical to the PlayStation 3 version, mainly lacking the Online Franchise and Online Challenge modes. Yet if all things are equal, I would have played those two months of games on a console, not in seat 21D on American Airlines. The small thumbsticks are part of the trouble — the relative distance they travel is still so short that analog hitting, which uses a gesture on the right stick, is not recommended (buttons are better.) Precision pitching also is difficult to execute with the left stick, and pulse pitching — in which a...
Review
9 Comments
7.5

Full Bore review: deeper and deeper

Full Bore is no joke. At first glance, it looks like a generic indie puzzle-platformer. With a pun title — you play as a boar who gets caught up in a pig-run mining company — and 16-bit aesthetic, the first hour or so convinced me that I was in for a game I've basically played many times before. All of these factors obscure what is, at its heart, a deep, difficult, massive game, less a platformer than an open world stocked with challenging puzzles. Full Bore began with my porcine heroine stepping onto a literal minefield and subsequently finding herself in the employ of the Full Bore mining company. The story is surprisingly good — it starts with this goofy premise and turns into a dystopian narrative, told through computer log entries and lost tomes. It touches on...
Review
74 Comments
4.0

Bound by Flame review: cold as ice

At first, Bound by Flame was just generic. Those were the good times. Bound by Flame's dark fantasy draws clear inspiration from the adult themes of popular franchises like Game of Thrones and The Witcher. But its approach to that supposed maturity quickly proves itself just as shallow as its approach to gameplay. A great RPG gets deeper as it progresses. Though it has the individual pieces — character development, relationship building with party members, tactical combat — Bound by Flame never expands on these elements past their surface-level introduction. It's less an epic hero's journey and more a foul-mouthed kid playing make-believe with wooden swords. The story of Bound by Flame follows the seemingly hopeless plight of a group of mercenaries...
Review
49 Comments
8.5

MLB 14 The Show review update — PS4

Released on PlayStation 4 a month after its PS3 launch, MLB 14's next-generation offering was expected to be little more than a better-looking version of its sibling, and that's what Sony has delivered. It's good that the two versions share all of the core features and improvements described above, but the PS4 edition doesn't add enough to make it feel like a distinctly different game. Worse, those who were hoping the added computing power of the PS4 might improve the online experience are going to be sorely disappointed. That's if they can even get in the door. Launch-day online support for MLB 14 on PS4 was just as much of a disaster as it was on PS3, with hard freezes common before matchmaking even could begin, and the Online Franchise still functionally useless. Worse, it also...
Review
14 Comments
8.5

Republique: Metamorphosis review: the castle

Republique's second chapter eased my doubts about stealth gaming on iOS. Republique's first episode, Exordium, introduced a unique brand of touch-based stealth action when it launched last year. Metamorphosis improves subtly on the stealth mechanics, making for a smoother experience that better allows Republique's narrative and fascinating world to shine. Metamorphosis starts moments after episode one's dramatic cliffhanger. Once again, I directed main character Hope through Republique's dark world, helping her avoid guards along the way. I controlled cameras with the suite of hacking tools at my disposal, but I never controlled Hope directly. Instead, I tapped on the screen to guide her toward places to hide, doors to open, and other objects to interact with. M...
X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.
Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_5353_tracker