Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Most Overlooked Current Gen Games - Part Seven

It's been a bit of a homecoming of sorts here at SuperPhillip Central. We had a new edition of a longtime SuperPhillip Central favorite series of articles with Best Boss Battles in Gaming History's 20th outing, and now we have one of the longest running article series with "Most Overlooked" getting another entry. These upcoming Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Nintendo 3DS games flew under the radar for most system owners, but here's hoping that I can spark some interest in these otherwise enjoyable games.

Take a glimpse at all six past parts with the following links, and then get ready for Part Seven to follow!

Current Gen - Part One
Current Gen - Part Two
Current Gen - Part Three
Current Gen - Part Four
Current Gen - Part Five
Current Gen - Part Six

The Crew 2 (PS4, XB1, PC)

We begin this installment with a duo of Ubisoft games. The first of which is The Crew 2. The original game had an open-world United States where you could drive anywhere you wanted. Of course, this version of the States wasn't 1:1 compared to the real thing, but it was an exciting playground all the same. The Crew 2 expanded upon the driving of the original game while offering brand new flight and boat options. A multitude of event types were available for proficient players to pass and master, and the story took itself far less seriously than the rather irksome tone of the original. One possible bump in the road for The Crew 2--much like the original Crew--was its need for players to always be online in order to play the game. This brings up the concern of how useless will your copy of the game be when the servers finally go offline whenever they do? Still, driving cross-country with your own crew of friends and randoms online was a rush of a ride that I hope more players try out.

Starlink: Battle for Atlas (NSW, PS4, XB1, PC)

Ubisoft was rather late to the party on the whole toys-to-life game genre. In fact, the genre is pretty much dead aside from Nintendo's amiibo line, and that's more for collection purposes anyhow. Even the Nintendo Switch exclusive addition of Star Fox to Starlink: Battle for Atlas couldn't do much to stop the game and its bundle from approaching bargain pin pricing mere months after launch. Better pricing means it's all the more easier to dive into the galaxy of Starlink, visit and explore mysterious planets, soar through the stars, and tackle engaging missions--all the while progressing through the  overarching story. The toys that come with Starlink aren't even required to enjoy the game, much less even play it. They're merely optional and are there more for the young'ins out there. The Nintendo Switch version of Starlink receives even more Star Fox-related content this April, so for Switch owners, there's no better time to enter the cockpit and brave the stars than now. For every other platform, the low price for the games in both physical and digital make for a worthwhile purchase today as well.

Valkyria Chronicles 4 (PS4, XB1, NSW, PC)

The strategy RPG series Valkyria Chronicles returned to the battlefield this past fall, but it certainly didn't receive a hero's welcome. In fact, it didn't receive much of a welcome at all. Though critics and fans who played this tactical game enjoyed it and it reviewed well, Valkyria Chronicles 4 got lost in the shuffle and the hustle and bustle of the packed holiday gaming season. Unfortunate, for sure, as the new and refined gameplay systems in Valkyria Chronicles 4 make it one of the best entries in the franchise. The new "Brave" system, for instance, added a fresh spin on the series, and the return to a more serious tone in nature made for a game in VC4 that had some intensity and high stakes to it. Whether we'll see a Valkyria Chronicles 5 is up in the air, but if we don't, at least the series will have ended (or at least put on hiatus) on a remarkably high note.

The World Ends With You: Final Remix (NSW)

From a tactical RPG to an action RPG, we gaze upon an overlooked high-definition remaster of a cult favorite Nintendo DS game with The World Ends With You: Final Remix. No doubt the gaming world is insanely focused on Kingdom Hearts III, but director Tetsuya Nomura also had a hand in creating this DS-born series. Containing an additional, long-teased story chapter, new gameplay elements, touch screen or Joy-Con-based controls, and other updates to the game, The World Ends With You: Final Remix was a Switch exclusive that didn't gain much traction with the audience. No doubt the October release date didn't do this remaster any favors, nor did the bad press regarding the control scheme gameplay changes in comparison to the Nintendo DS original. Still, if you've never played The World Ends With You and are looking for a new Switch game to play (if the releases will let up, that is), then Final Remix is a great entry point.

Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido (NSW, 3DS)

A June 2018 release that was simply overlooked completely by the Nintendo Switch and 3DS audiences--including Nintendo itself by the understandable lack of promotion--Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido is a fast-paced puzzle game where rows of different color sushi dishes roll across the various conveyor belts. As you link similarly colored sushi dishes together, you create combos. The higher the combo you obtain, the more plates you get in your arsenal to throw your opponent's way, causing damage. Beware, however, as if you get greedy and hold your combo chain for too long, it'll break and you'll get nothing for your efforts. A myriad amount of rules and variables are introduced in Sushi Striker's rather lengthy campaign, offering things like Sushi Spirits to add to your arsenal, items, and much more. The anime cutscenes and lovingly done voicework make for a puzzle package that is heavy on charm and humor. It doesn't matter which version of Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido one chooses, as it's guaranteed to find a cozy place in one's palette--if you can overcome the incredibly crazy concept that is matching and then flinging sushi plates at opponents.

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