En masse, the stories and ephemera piece together like a jumble of puzzle pieces clicking one-by-one into the story of the Tacoma crew — and your purpose.The latter reveal is more of a button than a fulfilling denouement, and so I wrapped eager for a sequel or an expansion.
It’s a melodramatic soap opera with violence that has the sensory pleasure of popping bubble wrap or cracking open a can of beer.
Even when it loses its footing, it never loses its way.
I’ve whined for years about action games that star the same bald dude fighting the same one-dimensional villains, using the same rocket launcher and machine guns.
Critic Matt Patches only catalogs the stuff he can recommend 100 percent. You, a young woman named Amy, have been sent for unclear reasons to the titular empty space station to collect said artificial intelligence. Everything — your stride, the downloading of data, the indie rock soundtrack — progresses with the urgency of a hot cup of coffee that must be sipped to be enjoyed.
The format is inspired by ’s ongoing list of the year’s best movies. And it kindly asks you to consider its characters as humans rather than targets or embodiments of capital-B, capital-I “Big Ideas.” What a relief.
“No mixed-bags,” he writes, “[or] interesting train-wrecks.” My list won’t be quite as definitive. I’ll be updating my list as often as I can — hopefully I’ll have plenty of games to add. I’m opening the comments so you, dear reader, can share your favorite games as the year goes on. If you feel something is missing, please recommend it in the comments. The intentional slowness is for the better, not just because it draws a favorable contrast with action-oriented contemporaries, but also because it encourages the savoring of the craft’s singular and incredible parlor trick: moments from the lives of the vanished staff can be played, fast-forwarded, and rewound in augmented reality.