Thief is an Action/Adventure/Role-Playing/FPS (First Person Sneaker) game, set in a Victorian Gothic world but, with primitive electric lights and machinery typical of the early 20th century, as well as some unique and very imaginative devices. The characters are a blend of aristocracy, soldiers, commoners and beggers, some with British accents and, some who sound like they came from the streets of Brooklyn. The theme casts a hint of paranormal hope in a disease-ridden city of despair. The player is a thief named Garrett, who lost his female counterpart, Erin, in an accident which resulted in Garrett’s near death. After his recovery, amnesia swallowed most of his memories of the past year. So begins his search to find out what happened to him and, to learn Erin’s fate.

Real player with 1322.5 hrs in game

Read More: Best Action Stealth Games.

I really wanted to like Thief - and so, in a way, I did. But it helped not to think of it as a Thief game but rather more Batman - if Batman couldn’t fight and also was a relentless kleptomaniac.

The game is a quick eight chapters, some better than others. For example, one takes place in a brothel, and is so predictable with its silly attempts to be lurid that it’s laughable. Another takes place in an abandoned asylum and is actually unnerving. The deeper into the game you go, though, the more pat the levels are, the less finished they feel, and the less engaging they are. And the less you care because the character development is so lackluster, and the dialog so poorly written, that you cannot get involved in the story, even if you want to.

Real player with 161.0 hrs in game

Thief on Steam

Bionic Commando

Bionic Commando

Let me try to put in to words how I feel about this game.

I wanted this game desperately when it released and was shocked to hear the negative reviews. Though in time the overall view of the game has rightfully improved, at the time it was a resounding “meh.”

As luck would have it, days before it released my console would break down. Being a poor teenager with no income, I wouldn’t have a functioning Xbox for months. And then, when I did get a working console… it was defective and lasted only a few weeks. So did the second and third ones.

Real player with 24.5 hrs in game

Read More: Best Action Third Person Games.

Bionic Commando is clearly a game that was developed and produced with a clear target market. I was very much shocked to find that this game apparently reviewed very poorly upon release, and am even more shocked to find that others would still regret playing this game, as it is, truly, “an underrated gem”.

The most fascinating piece, is that i was actually skeptical about this game upon purchase. It was on sale, however, and also came packaged with the Bionic Commando Re-armed game. I’ve never been a fan of Bionic Commando on the NES. I thought the game was ambitious for its time, and the controls a tad confusing. This game came across at me as another generic third-person-shooter with another gimmick in gameplay, but it is actually so much more. Despite my lack of interest in the original Bionic Commando, i am a huge fan of Capcom games, and this game carries with it the same love and care that most Capcom games have traditionally carried. This game is one of the best games I have played in a long time, and it hasn’t been since i played Mega Man X4 as a teenager that i felt this badass playing a video game.

Real player with 15.2 hrs in game

Bionic Commando on Steam

STRIDER™ / ストライダー飛竜®

STRIDER™ / ストライダー飛竜®

Strider stands as a reboot to an old Arcade series by the same name. The game stars Hiryu, the last remaining Strider to be sent on a suicide mission that involves taking down Grandmaster Meio, the iron fisted ruler of Kazakh City and the Earth and avenging the fallen Striders.

The game’s mechanics are pretty simple, like an old school title should. It’s structured very similarly to some older games like Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Super Metroid and the such as it has a lot of backtracking as well as you gain new powers to unlock new doors and the such - which may lead to new powers, health upgrades, energy upgrades, kunai upgrades, etc. There’s lots to find in the game.

Real player with 18.3 hrs in game

Read More: Best Action Platformer Games.

As a Strider fan, this game was a disappointment.

Compared to other “metroidvania” games, this game is a disappointment.

New and improved review with impressions I wrote up when asked for specifics about why I disliked the game so much.

For the record, I spent somewhere in the neighborhood of 9-10 hours with Strider. It was just enough to get 100% and then delete it from my hard drive immediately.

I can honestly say I will NEVER play that game again. EVER. And here’s a list of reasons why:

(1) There is no variety, in anything. There’s two main types of levels – futuristic cityscape and sewer. Maybe you could count the temple area… maybe… but it reminds me a lot of a blend between the sewer and the city. This makes it feel like you’re never going anywhere.

Real player with 15.3 hrs in game

STRIDER™ / ストライダー飛竜® on Steam

DmC: Devil May Cry

DmC: Devil May Cry

DmC had a lot of unwarranted hate poised against it before it even before release. ‘Fans’ decried the new design, while thrashing the developers for describing the old look in blunt but apt ways. The verdict was in before anyone could get their hands on it, and even when people did, they would only look to reinforce their own idea of what the game is. Scenes meant to be tongue-in-cheek throwbacks and foreshadowing were perceived as slights against the vocal few, while actual flaws went overlooked.

Real player with 45.4 hrs in game

I’ve been stuck in the bloody palace for 6 days now, i’m addicted. (help)

Real player with 24.3 hrs in game

DmC: Devil May Cry on Steam

Rise of the Triad

Rise of the Triad

There are 2 options to follow when a developer decides to do a remake: either it remains true to the original, including (the quite possibly dated and obsolete) gameplay or it gets modernized to today’s standards becoming only slighty reminiscent to its predecessor. The best way to go of course is the successful combination of the 2, something like Doom 3 . The creators of Rise of the Triad chose the first option with all its benefits and risks and while it can’t possibly compete with present day story-driven FPSs, mainly due to the unique nature of the original game, it still manages to remain an enjoyable first-person shooter.

Real player with 37.3 hrs in game

If DOOM (2016) and Shadow Warrior (2013) could be comparable to the success of Shovel Knight by how they deviated from the guidelines of the old-school FPSs, choosing instead to resonate the nostalgic memories into a new game, then Rise of the Triad (2013) is a case of where it adheres entirely to the classic formula with graphical differences. Some might argue that this is to the detriment as the original Rise of the Triad wasn’t without its own share of issues the reboot inherits.

As someone who enjoys the shattered expectations that ROTT brings to old-school FPSs, it has always baffled me how this game never got wide acceptance in spite of its flaws. If people can accept what kind of old-school FPS experience it wants to be, and not what people assume from these games, there is a great experience to be had that keeps true to what people love about these old-school FPS. It’s not a perfect game nor is the foundation it is built upon without its issues; however, most complaints about the gameplay come across as misunderstanding the niche appeal of ROTT and how it manages to stand itself out from the other FPSs of the past as well as the present.

Real player with 27.4 hrs in game

Rise of the Triad on Steam

Shadow Warrior

Shadow Warrior

Story of a demonic incestuous affair that is uncovered by her older brothers and you can kinda guess the rest.

🔸Shadow Warrior’s story is well-written for a AA game. You are in control of Lo Wang, an assassin who is hired by a powerful Japanese magnate to buy an ancient katana -Nobitsura Kage- from a collector for 2 million dollars. However as you may expect, things don’t go as planned and Wang tries to take the katana by force, then he finds out Mr. Mizayaki -The collector- is in contact with a demon named Hoji.

Real player with 50.2 hrs in game

For some reason I decided to go for all achievements in this game, so I had to complete it both on insane and heroic difficulties. Was it worth it? No. Was it fun? No. Was it entertaining? Sort of. But let’s take one thing at a time.

Shadow Warrior 2013 is a remake of a semi-popular old school shooter of the same title. Though I cannot really call this game a remake, because remake usually means a piece that is largely refined to fit modern standards and audience but keeps its original nature. I cannot say that this game doesn’t have anything in common with the original but it also stepped quite far from it. First things first, the gameplay was changed to fit modern shooter standards: most of creative things like using enemy’s head as a major weapon, nuclear rockets, demon heart that creates a copy of you, etc were discarded. They were changed with mainstream pistol, uzi, shotgun, crossbow, and demon heart now just acts as instant-kill bomb, enemy head became an optional thing, which is mostly useless. The shooting itself is very odd: you do not really feel any impact, there is a regular lack of ammo and some weapons are too OP over the others. However, the developers tried to expand the gameplay by adding magic and sword fights. I cannot say that these are bad but they are also far from perfect. Sword acts more like a bat that you have to punch enemies with rather than a blade that slices through them, on earlier levels you tend to run out of ammo and have to poke foes for ages with it, sword techniques are interesting but there is too few of them for the whole game. As for the magic spells, it adds some variety to the gameplay but, just like with sword skills, there are too few of them. Only 2 combat spells, which basically do the same thing – stun enemies – healing, and protection, which you will unlikely use at all if you play casually. The game is also very overloaded with upgrades. Instead of a tree or gradually opening skills you are instantly given 9 different progression screens for the character + 1 for each acquired weapon. Should I say that nobody’s gonna spend 20 min of just reading each and every description? Because of this, I personally missed a useful skill of resurrection just because I skipped reading another bunch of text. If those screens were introduced in the first 3-4 levels instead of the very first one it wouldn’t hurt the gameplay at all but made the introduction to the upgrades much smoother.

Real player with 44.4 hrs in game

Shadow Warrior on Steam

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Ultimate Edition

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Ultimate Edition

First off, I’m a huge fan of the Castlevania series. So that foundation may color my opinion of this game and it’s ensuing interquel and sequel (which I’m currently in the midst of). Something about medieval through Enlightment era Europe with a heavy gothic/baroque aesthetic, corrupted through dark forces that threaten the world? Awesome. Tons of monsters pulling on a multitude of inspiration from the myth cycles of antiquity through the modern Universal monsters? Yes, please.

Konami struck gold initially by creating these dark adventures that took a quite serious tone for the early Nintendo systems, offering a beefy challenge of vintage Nintendo difficulty through several increasingly impressive platformer games. They then evolved into the famed Metroidvanias with the release of Symphony of the Night on the Playstation - trading a bit of the reflex-intensive difficulty for massive sprawling environments that took forever to explore and fully unlock - and followed this formula with several excellent installments on Nintendo’s handhelds where they found their most sustainable home and success through the late 2000’s. Then Konami, sensing the increasingly stagnant nature of the series as it became mired in repeated iterations of SotN’s sprawling platformer/RPG hybrid, started searching for a way to revitalize the series again, just as SotN ignited a sort of Golden Age for the series.

Real player with 98.7 hrs in game

(Important note: This game, for whatever reason, doesn’t like being set to fullscreen + max res on a display other than that which Windows / your video card identifies as Display 1, regardless if it’s your primary display or not. Weird bug but easy to fix.)

Lords of Shadow is a flawed but polished masterpiece and a triumph of artistic direction. It’s shortcomings are forgivable. That said, since you can expect to sink upwards of 40hrs into this, I’ll go into some more detail.

Presentation wise, this game is stunning. Masterful visuals paired with smooth and optimized 4K performance make for an eye-popping experience. The art team went all out on this and it shows. I’ve never taken so many screenshots of a game before. Two major detractors though: 1. Some of the cutscenes were pre-rendered for console are unimproved by modern hardware (they still look passable but they’re jaggy af); 2. Godrays are a weak point. The score is powerful but not iconic; you’ll love it in the moment but try to recall the music later and you’ll likely struggle, for the most part. This isn’t objectively a bad thing, as it simply means it’s enhancing the experience without overpowering it but I was disappointed by the lack of iconic singles and the abscence of a Bloody Tears revamp.

Real player with 47.4 hrs in game

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Ultimate Edition on Steam

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

–-{ Graphics }—

☐ You forget what reality is

☑ Beautiful

☐ Good

☐ Decent

☐ Bad

☐ Don‘t look too long at it


—{ Gameplay }—

☑ Very good

☐ Good

☐ It’s just gameplay

☐ Mehh

☐ Watch paint dry instead

☐ Just don’t

—{ Audio }—

☐ Eargasm

☑ Very good

☐ Good

☐ Not too bad

☐ Bad

☐ I’m now deaf

—{ Audience }—

☐ Kids

☑ Teens

☑ Adults

☐ Grandma

—{ PC Requirements }—

☐ Check if you can run paint

☐ Potato

☐ Decent

☑ Fast

☐ Rich boi

☐ Ask NASA if they have a spare computer

—{ Difficulty }—

Real player with 100.1 hrs in game

Tomb Raider is very much similar to Uncharted, though in some ways better and in some ways worse. Depending on what you want this could be good or bad. Uncharted has better story telling and production values, whereas Tomb Raider has much better variety of gameplay and level design.

In TR there are 4 weapons you can carry on you: bow, pistol, machine gun, shotgun as well as a pickaxe for a melee weapon. Actually, the pickaxe, bow, and technically shotgun are all used in many of the platforming/puzzle elements as well. Very good design. There are also alternate firing modes for every weapon (the pistol is DLC though), skills to be unlocked, and upgrades for weapons. This game is like if somebody took the Uncharted idea, but wanted to add more gameplay elements to make it more fun.

Real player with 51.5 hrs in game

Tomb Raider on Steam

Smart Gecko

Smart Gecko


Real player with 4.3 hrs in game

(This game was received for curation with no promise of a review, positive or otherwise.)

Smart Gecko is essentially a simple variant of the “don’t cross your own path” puzzle sub-genre. It could have been a passable way to spend a little time, but for the fact that zero effort has been made to fix some pretty glaring issues.

It should have been simple: Move your gecko one space at a time in order to eat all the fireflies and finish the board. Yet there are multiple problems, least of all the lack of a tutorial. It seems like that would be unnecessary, but at least two of your losses will be figuring out that turning into a wall makes your gecko explode violently, as does walking into a pillar (in the game’s overhead view, the pillar looks like something you can walk over). There is no way to undo a bad move, which will happen more than you’d like due to the inexplicable lag after pressing a movement key. There is a timer that doesn’t seem to do anything, and no option to play without it. Finishing a level means you have to actually maneuver your gecko to the edge of the screen, and then press another key to move it off the screen. The problem with this (besides the obvious redundancy) is that you cannot tell where the actual correct path is. And since, as I’ve mentioned, there is no undo key, you’ll just have to start over.

Real player with 0.5 hrs in game

Smart Gecko on Steam