Tag Archives: Tunic

My Top Games of 2022

Between unemployment and being depressed, I had a lot of time to play video games this year, and while I did play a decent amount of titles only a handful of them really left a lasting impression on me. More accurately, these were the games this year I remember playing and thinking, “yeah, I had a good time with that.” So in no particular order, here are my favorite games that I played this year.


When I think back on my time with Tunic, also known as the cute fox Zelda game, I tend to remember a lot of the negative things first, like how difficult and incongruous the combat felt in comparison to the rest of the game. I remember feeling frustrated at the lack of direction and general ambiguity of everything that was happening. I remember feeling lost and confused, almost like I wasn’t smart enough for Tunic and should just give up and stop playing.

But then I remember the many “Oh shit!” moments I had with Tunic, where I’d figure out how to navigate a seemingly impassable part of the map and felt like the smartest person in the world. I remember finding pages for and utilizing the in-game manual to complete puzzles and shed some light on what the hell was going on in this world. Every low moment I had with Tunic was eventually followed by some satisfying high that would carry me over and past each of these peaks and valleys.

Tunic was a game that genuinely challenged me even after I adjusted the accessibility settings to nullify the challenge of combat. Tunic is filled to the brim with mysterious secrets that lead to wondrous revelations, most of which I pretty much understood. My only complaint with Tunic is that its combat didn’t need to be as punishing as it was, as it detracted from the real treasure of the experience, which was exploring and uncovering every little secret Tunic had tucked away.

Kirby and the Forgotten Land

Kirby and the Forgotten Land isn’t the most difficult or complex game I’ve played this year, but it didn’t need to be. Kirby games are usually a lightweight and breezy experience, and this entry was no different. Kirby and the Forgotten Land was a cozy little 3D platformer that was oozing with charm which is something I needed this year. It was a fun, low-stakes game that I could mindlessly play, stopping to occasionally appreciate its lovely art direction and endearing character design.

There’s a surprising amount of stuff crammed inside of this Kirby game, from some very light upgrade mechanics that alter and change the effect of the powers you suck up, to these challenge levels that test your abilities to control and utilize said powers effectively within a time limit. In addition, each level has a set of challenges or collectibles for you to tackle and collect, granting you additional upgrade resources and currency for the rest of the game.

Kirby and the Forgotten Land isn’t the Mario 64 of Kirby games, but it is a lot of fun and a fresh take on the Kirby formula that’ll scratch that platformer itch I know you’ve got.

Road 96

A setting where a fascist dictatorship violently tamps down on dissent and propagandizes its populace through an overly complimentary ‘news’ network might seem like an odd backdrop for a teenage coming-of-age adventure game, but it actually works surprisingly well.

In Road 96, you play as a series of unnamed teenagers who are hitchhiking their way through their terrible country in the hopes of crossing the border and fleeing into a less oppressive country. On its surface, the game almost presents itself as a roguelike because you’re essentially making runs on the border as different characters, but there is cumulative story that concludes despite which character you choose for each run.

On your journey you’ll run into a reoccurring cast of weird and fairly complex characters, aiding or avoiding them all in service of gaining cash and inching closer towards freedom all while keeping your morality intact. It’s a game about making choices and living with the consequences, and it was one of the more memorable experiences I had this year.

Hardspace: Shipbreaker

Hardspace: Shipbreaker is a game about safely deconstructing and salvaging spaceships with cool laser beams. There’s some other stuff about working in a future capitalism-ravaged hell-scape where you’re paying off a massive debt to the demolition company, but none of that is particularly interesting or necessary to enjoying the simple act of safely demolishing a space ship. It has this zen-like quality where you fall into that zone you get into when you’re doing your job and doing it well, as if it’s second nature to you.

The default mode in Hardspace: Shipbreaker puts some oxygen and fuel restrictions on you that I found to be more restrictive than I wanted, but luckily you can toggle that stuff off or just play in a free-mode with no restrictions, which I’ve found to be the optimal way to play the game. I find that disabling those restrictions lends it a more puzzle game feeling that’s far more satisfying than having to juggle the light survival mechanics.

The pacing in Hardspace: Shipbreaker is a little off, as the first few hours of the campaign don’t really afford you too much variety in ship types or tools to use, but after enough time that eventually starts to change. But aside from that tiny quibble, I’ve got nothing but praise for the slow and methodical gameplay of Hardspace: Shipbreaker.

Sniper Elite 5

Sniper Elite 5 doesn’t reinvent the Sniper Elite formula, but it was one of the most fun cooperative gaming experiences I had this year which is mainly why it’s on this list. While the slow motion bullet-cam is still as exciting and gruesome as ever, but what really made this entry come alive was how flexible it was in catering to different play styles. More specifically, it allowed me to watch from a safe distance as my cooperative partner charged into overwhelming odds and chained knife-takedowns on hostile Nazis, thus obliterating any and all sense of stealth that might be implied in a game called Sniper Elite 5. It was frustrating to watch, but hilarious to experience.

The best thing about Sniper Elite 5 is how much of a perfect platform it was for my friend and I to make each other laugh, which we did a lot of. It’s a game that you don’t have to really think about too much because the objective is simple: destroy all Nazis. Knowing that core mission left ample opportunities for us to perform comedy bits with each other as we bumbled our way through the sprawling levels, completing objectives in our own ways and more often than not, screwing over the other player because stealth was never an option.

PowerWash Simulator

Much like Hardspace: Shipbreaker, PowerWash Simulator is one of those meditative, ‘lose four hours of time’ kind of games that has you doing something mindless yet incredibly satisfying. In this game you blast grime and dirt off of the filthiest structures and vehicles in the world, utilizing stronger power washers, nozzles and soaps. That’s it. That’s the whole game. There’s a story, but who really cares about that? There is something borderline indescribable about PowerWash Simulator that makes it easily one of the best games I played this year.

Aside from its cutting edge dirt-tech, something that I’ve just made up, it doesn’t look especially great nor does it run flawlessly, but it lets you and your friends come together to methodically blast the cruft off of things, and that’s good enough for me.

NBA 2K23

Without question, the games that I end up putting the most time into year after year are in the NBA 2K series, and this year’s entry might be one of my favorites, ever. NBA 2K23 is the latest in a series of basketball simulation games that seems overly eager in siphoning as much cash away from you as it possibly can depending on what modes you play. If you’re like me however and don’t play those modes, opting to stick with the tried and true franchise mode, this is another solid iteration that still has some of the same lingering bugs as it did 3 years ago.

But what really changes everything for me is the ‘MyEras’ mode, which is basically just your standard franchise mode, but you can start it in the ’80s, ’90s or early 2000s. It isn’t a perfect mode, but it is the only thing I’ve been playing in NBA 2K23. The game reskins the courts, jerseys and imports the appropriate draft classes all while implementing historical changes as they happened, such as ripping my precious Nets away from me and taking them to Brooklyn. NBA 2K23 is one of favorites cause it lets me play in the time period I’m most familiar with, which is something I never thought would happen.

Vampire Survivors

I don’t know that there’s a game that I’ve played this year that so deeply sunk its fangs into me like Vampire Survivors did. Never would I have guessed that a roguelike would ever capture my interest for more than a few runs, but Vampire Survivors is the game I keep wanting to play above anything else. Which is crazy considering the only control you have over anything in the game is moving your character and selecting your upgrades.

As you level up during a run, you are presented with a random array of weapons and buffs to choose from, one per level. Combining the right items and leveling them up can create some devastating effects that let you feel like an all-powerful demigod projecting an impassable zone of death around you that vaporizes any enemy the moment they stupidly enter it.

It also takes a lot of weird turns which is a crazy thing for me to say about a game with no real story or lore, but it still found a way to toy with me when I felt like I ‘got’ the game. Ultimately, what I’m saying is that you should 100% try this silly little arcade game if you haven’t, because it’s way better than it has any right to be.

Games to Keep an Eye on in 2019

With 2018 on the out, it wouldn’t hurt to take a quick look at what confirmed 2019 releases I’m interested in, and think you might be as well.  Most of these are games I’m genuinely looking forward to, and some are pure curiosities.

The first part of this list is going to highlight games that I am actually excited to play.  I’m not saying they’ll all be winners, but these ones are things that have really captured my interest.

The Last Campfire

Announced at The Game Awards of 2018, The Last Campfire is being produced by Hello Games, the folks behind No Man’s Sky.  While my feeling on their previous release is mixed at best, I am interested to see what Hello Games does with a smaller, more focused project.  Considering how much I enjoy the aesthetic of No Man’s Sky, it’s no surprise that The Last Campfire has piqued my curiosity.


I’m not entirely sure what Control is or what it’s going for, but it gives me this weird Psi-Ops vibe and I’m okay with that.  The game certainly has a style and looks like it’s going to do some pretty abstract stuff aesthetically.


Maybe you remember Oxenfree, maybe you don’t, but the folks at Night School are making another intensely charming game, yet this time it has an even more unbelievable premise:  You have to beat the devil in a drinking contest to come back to life.  Regardless of whether you think this game would be for you, you have to admit that it has a pretty amazing premise.


I have no idea what is going on in Sable, but I know that I love everything about the way it looks already.  It’s pitched as a “coming-of-age tale of discovery through exploration across a strikingly rendered open world desert.” and I think that sounds pretty exciting.  Plus, just look at it.


You know what would make 2019 an infinitely better year?  More cyberpunk themed games.  Cloudpunk certainly nails the aesthetic, but I’m genuinely curious if it delivers on more than the cyberpunk standard tropes that talk about how evil the corporations are.  Like, yeah, we know they’re evil, but tell me about your cool robot arms.  Hopefully Cloudpunk delivers a fresh take on this well-worn territory.


Every time I see Tunic, I’m reminded of just how impressive it looks.  I really like the style it’s going for, but the game-play looks like it’ll hold up it’s end of the bargain.  But first impressions can be deceiving.  We’ll find out soon, I suppose.

My Friend Pedro

Just look at this darn game.  It’s absolutely bananas and I don’t actually believe that it’s going to be anything more than a “cool moment” generator, but just look at some of the stuff you can do.  I don’t think anything else has been said about the game, but I’m super interested in what’s been shown off so far.


Ooblets looks like the beautiful lovechild between Harvest Moon, Pokemon and Animal Crossing.  It’s such a delight to look at and it just seems like it’s gonna make you feel good to play.  I’m always up for a game that charms me so much that my cheeks hurt from all the smiling.

Body of Evidence

I’ll be the first to admit that Body of Evidence doesn’t necessarily look like a game that’s gonna take the world by storm, but I just really like the pitch that it puts forward.  Cleaning up the evidence from a crime scene?  Count me in.  I already have a weird fascination with these simulation games, so this just seems like a fun spin on one of those.

Untitled Goose Game

Yeah, you know this game had to be on the list.  I aspire to be a horrible goose prankster everyday of my life, and soon there’s going to be a game that allows me to do that?  Yeah Untitled Goose Game, I’m picking up what you’re putting down.  And I sure hope they never change the name of the game.

Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing is so good.  It’s such a wonderful and pleasant game that I wish had a better mobile version than it got.  While in my mind I’ve envisioned a fully realized version of Animal Crossing existing on my iPhone, having on the Switch is the next best thing.  Here’s to hoping it lives up to expectations.

The Zone of Curiosities

Whereas everything you’ve seen up till now are games that I’m actually pretty excited for, the next few are games that I’m still not entirely sure how to feel about.


The first game I’d like to highlight in The Zone of Curiosities is Anthem.  I was not a very big fan of Destiny, and I know this is a different thing, but that’s the comparison that EA has opened themselves up to with Anthem.  I would love for Anthem to be it’s own unique thing and really impress me, but I’m just so weary of multiplayer focused games these days.

Crackdown 3

I want Crackdown 3 to be good, I’m just afraid that the Crackdown formula doesn’t work in modern games anymore.  Even when Crackdown came out on the Xbox 360 it felt a little archaic.  I would love to see a modern take on the franchise, but somehow Crackdown 3 doesn’t seem like it’s doing much to innovate.  But I guess I don’t really know anything about it.

Shenmue III

Even if you aren’t a fan of the Shenmue games, you have to be curious right?  I have no real issues with the Shenmue games, but I haven’t played them in years so who knows how I’d feel today.  But damn, I am so curious to see how this thing pans out.

In the Valley of Gods

I loved Firewatch and that alone is reason for me to be excited for the next game from Campo Santo, but I just feel like I know literally nothing about this game.  It sure looks like it’s got the Firewatch vibe nailed down, but I want to know more.

Psychonauts 2

Psychonauts is one of my favorite games, and for years I’ve wanted a sequel.  It’s actually happening and I’m eager to take a look at what the sequel to a game released in 2005 actually looks like.  Psychonauts was a good platformer that won so many people over because of it’s charm, but I wonder if they can replicate that in a a sequel over a decade later.


Blog: Me3 – 06/13/18

There is so much other stuff that didn’t make conference stages that I’m sure will be in my lane, and I can’t wait to hear about them.  But from what I saw over the past few days, these were some of the notable games that caught my eye at E3 2018.

Battlefield V


I’ve had a weird relationship with Battlefield over the years.  I really enjoy it conceptually, but the actual playing it part usually is hit or miss for me.  Part of why I enjoy it so much has to do with the memories I have of playing past entries with my friends.  Having reconnected with one of my old Battlefield 3 buddies might be the reason why Battlefield V is so enticing to me, but I hope that game itself can stand on its own merits.

Halo Infinite


I have no idea what this game is going to be or why it isn’t called Halo 6, but I do know that as a long time fan of the Halo franchise, I’m excited to see what this one does differently.  I personally wouldn’t mind if this turned out to be an evolving platform for the Halo series going forward, but I’m curious either way.

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit


I really, really enjoyed Life is Strange and am onboard for anything that expands that universe.  I felt that way even before I learned that it was a prequel to the upcoming Life is Strange 2, so knowing that all of these games weave into each other is just icing on the cake.  And honestly, this game looks whimsical as hell and evokes a weird Calvin and Hobbes vibe with the main character losing himself in these imaginary worlds he’s conjuring.  Also it’s free.

After Party


The people behind Oxenfree are making a game about having to out drink the devil to regain their mortality and be returned to the world of the living.  I can’t wait to see more of it and eventually play it next year.



I written about Tunic before, and all of my feeling about it then still ring true.  It’s adorable, it has an awesome aesthetic, and it looks like the combat is going to be challenging and rewarding enough to pull me through the entirety of it.

Dying Light 2


I loved the first Dying Light and seeing the systemic changes they’re making to that game gets me even more excited.  I love concept of being able to shape the world and story based on your decisions, and mixing that with the already great mechanics of the first Dying Light is a home run.  The only thing I wish I could change about these games is the zombies.  I would love this exact game even more if no zombies were involved.  But hey, I’ll take this either way.

Cyberpunk 2077


The reveal trailer alone was enough to solidify my excitement, but the additional details that came afterwards make it all the more tantalizing for me.  CD Projekt Red confirmed that Cyberpunk 2077 is a first person RPG that allows you to customize a character with various stats, “Cool” being one of them.  It’s an open world where you drive around (I’m assuming exclusively in a DeLorean) and shoot people.  There’s more details here that should get you just as pumped as I am.



I don’t know what it is, or when it’s coming, but the concept of a big Bethesda RPG in a sci-fi setting that doesn’t suck (Fallout) is something I’m interested in.

The Quiet Man


I’ll be real here, I mostly included this because the name is so dumb, but the little tiny glimpse of combat we saw was pretty captivating for me.  I’m always down for some good punching and kicking in games.

Beyond Good & Evil 2


Another one of those “what even is this game” games, BG&E2 looks impressive visually and mechanically, I just want to know what I’m doing and what the structure is.  But that world seems pretty cool to me and that’s enough to keep this game on my radar.

Trials Rising


Trials is fun, you should play a Trials game.  That is until you reach the last few levels where the impossible is asked of you.  With alleged better tutorialization, maybe I can finally beat the final levels of a Trials game.  Probably not though.

The Last of Us II


Games are too happy these days.  I need a good ol’ fashioned romp through the morose to bring me back down to Earth.  Nothing like a sequel to the heart-wrenching Last of Us to fill that void.  Seriously, fuck this game for looking so amazing and making me want to play it.  I know how this ends, and it most certainly is in tears.

Ghosts Of Tsushima


Just watch the trailer Sony showed off for Ghosts of Tsushima.  That should be all you need to know about why I want to play this game so badly.



I feel like with the popularity of the Marvel movies over the past few years, I should be up to my ears in good superhero games to play.  Unfortunately, since the Arkham games wrapped up, I’ve only been left with Lego-based options.  Then you got Spiderman over here, shooting his hot webs all over the place, and I’ll admit it – I’m impressed.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate


I think what I enjoy most about Smash Bros. isn’t the actual gameplay, but the absurdity of its roster.  Seeing shit like Solid Snake punching Sonic in the mouth, or Ryu uppercutting Cloud into space just fills me with a joy that I had long forgotten.  Smash Bros. just seems like Nintendo got a hold of a bunch of 80’s and 90’s kids and asked them who would win a fight, over and over.


We Watched The Microsoft Press Briefing | E3 2018

Grab your game passes and get your asses in line, cause it’s Microsoft time.


Halo Infinite

No real info given outside of a trailer.  Seems as if they’re launching a platform for Halo as well as a campaign.  It’s unclear as to what makes this different enough to not call it Halo 6, but I’m definitely intrigued.


Ori & The Will of the Wisps

Following up the tremendous Ori & The Blind Forest is  something that very much appears like its predecessor with enhanced combat and more mobility options.  Not much info was given here aside from a general tone piece and some gameplay.


Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

Initially I thought this was a Dark Souls-esque re-imagining of the Tenchu series.  While I wasn’t too far off, it has a different name and seem to have more exploration and mobility options.  Here we have something that invokes Bloodborne and God of War.  Time will tell if it’s as gross as those games, but it definitely is trying.


Fallout 76

It appears all the rumors were true and this is prequel to all other games.  It’s said to be 4 times the size of Fallout 4 and is a base building focused multiplayer game.  No surprises here.  More to come when we see it at the Bethesda Briefing.


The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit

This is billed as a story in the same universe of Life is Strange, but not featuring the same characters.  With a focus on a young boy and his imagination, it looks like you’ll be seeing a bunch of fantastical stories with different settings, featuring him.  It’s releasing for free on June 26th.


Crackdown 3

Terry Crews is yelling a lot, while a virtual Terry Crews is blowing shit up, and driving up walls.  Nothing else really revealed.  Allegedly releasing early next year.


We Happy Few

We Happy Few seems to have pivoted from its survival roots and has become more story focused.  It shares a weird vibe with the Bioshock series which isn’t a bad thing.  I personally prefer this approach to their original pitch, but I don’t think I’m breaking any new ground with that one.  It’s out on August 10th.


The Division 2

They’re going for it with the setting and story.  Shit went real bad in Washington DC apparently.  It looks really good graphically but didn’t do much to differentiate itself from the original.  From what I gather the end of the trailer sets up the idea that you and your friends can storm other player run bases.




This was just one of those classic “indie game montages.”  I went ahead and picked out the games that looked interesting.

  • Afterparty
  • Outerwilds
  • Below
  • Conquerors Blade
  • Raji
  • Planet Alpha
  • Islands of Nine
  • Harold Halibut
  • The Wind Road
  • Ashen
  • Sable


Shadow of The Tomb Raider

What else can I say about this game?  If you liked the previous games or the Uncharted series, this is probably a safe bet as far as games you’ll enjoy.  If it builds upon the already rock solid formula of its predecessors, we’ll be in for another fantastic entry in the series.



Totally got my hopes up for Skate 4.  But where EA refuses to deliver, smaller studios will step in.  That’s what’s happening with Session.  I’ve played the very early demo they put out a while ago and I wasn’t terribly impressed.  Hopefully there have been big improvements since I’ve played it and it will fill that skateboard shaped hole in my heart.



This game still looks out of this fucking world.  It’s a Zelda-esque, isometric action-adventure game that looks charming as all hell.  I humbly request that Tunic is released this moment.






Dying Light 2

More parkour, more zombies.  Actually they really didn’t show any zombies, there was way more human drama.  I prefer the focus on the people rather than the zombies, honestly.  There’s a big focus on player choice, for example they showed dialogue options that effect your standing with various factions, which in turn, effect the world and missions you do.



No footage to show, but it has 3 player co-op.  So yeah.


Just Cause 4

It’s Just Cause.  You know what this game is.  It might as well be called “Grappling Hooks and Explosions” at this point.  It looked pretty neat, although then again, so did JC3.  They showed a tornado, so that could be fun.


Gears Pop!

What if Gears of war, but Funko Pop and on phones?  Huh?  I guess that’s what this is.  God help us all.


Gears Tactics

Looks like a tower defense, X-Com looking game.  They really breezed through this announcement.

chrome 6/10/2018 , 11:30:57 PM (2) Xbox - Twitch - Google Chrome

Gears 5

No “of War” on these games.  It’s perplexing.  They’re really leaning into the story with this trailer, and as someone who has not finished Gears of War 4, I have no idea what’s going on.  But it looks like a personal journey featuring the lady from Gears of War 4.  It looks nice and has cover shooting.






Cyberpunk 2077

I wasn’t a huge fan of The Witcher 3 mostly because of its setting.  Cyberpunk 2077 seems to be everything I wanted out of the Witcher, but with more guns and neon.  Sign me the hell up.






Blog: Investigative Video Gamesman – 03/21/18

Y’all remember E3 2017?  It seems like an eternity ago, but hang in there.  So last year across all of the press conferences, I made note of some of the more interesting games that I saw.  One of those games was “A Way Out” and since that’s coming out in a few days, I wanted to check in on some of the games I saw.


You can probably already tell why I’m curious about this game.  It was revealed last year, got nominated for a bunch of website awards, and then promptly disappeared.  To be fair, the trailer very clearly says “Coming when it’s damn ready.”  But even looking through the official Twitter doesn’t yield anymore information on the state of development.  The only thing I really want to know is if the game is coming along smoothly.  Hopefully we get a hint of a pulse sometime soon.


In stark contrast to The Artful Escape of Francis Vendetti, Unruly Heroes is a very much in development game that even poises itself as having a release date sometime this year.  I love the entire look of this game mixed with the focus on combat.  On the surface it reminds me of Rayman Legends smashed with Sacred Citadel.  I’m super jazzed about this game and can’t wait for it to come out this year.


Riverbond is the perfect example of “shit I like cause it has a look.”  But like, it totally does have a look, you can’t deny that.  What makes this game notable for me, aside from its already established awesome aesthetic and slick looking combat, it’s also cooperative for up to 4 people which is a huge bonus for me.  It too bills itself as having a release date in 2018, and I can’t wait to check it out.


So I don’t know anything about this game aside from it looks slick as hell.  Most of this trailer is just air combos and juggling enemies.  Literally that’s the only substance.  But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t 100% sold on it just based off of that trailer.  The only thing is that there has been no update that I could find since it was announced at E3.  So, who knows what’s happening here.


Do I need to explain anything about why I’m excited for this game?  Seriously?  After everything you’ve read so far?  Look at it, just look at this game and tell me you’re not smiling?  It’s adorable and looks challenging as hell and I want it.  Tunic is slated for 2019 which, while it sounds far away, isn’t.


Take a look at Ashen.  Look at this game.  Since it was announced at the Xbox press conference last E3 and immediately made an impression on me.  I was excited by the prospect of going on this spooky adventure with a friend but apparently that isn’t how the game will work.  From what I gather, it does the passive online thing in the way that Journey did, which is cool in its own right.  They are currently looking for in-house playtesters and according to their Steam page, are slated for a 2018 release.

So there it is, just some of my standouts from last year.  Hopefully they come out soon and I don’t have to write about this game next March.