Game of the Year 2021

WINNER!

DC Super Hero Girls: Teen Power

+: Combat visual effects produce colorful aesthetic mayhem, and it looks super good
+: Very charming & amusing scenarios and a good sense of world progression & world shaping
+: Lot of challenges to dig into ranging wildly in difficulty
+: Very rewarding exploration and mission rewarded unlockable items
-: Boss fights are serviceable to good

Action fans will rejoice to know there is a mission select screen. Easily the best 3D superhero game I’ve played.

2nd place
Metroid Dread

Samus is the coolest character around now. The bosses in this game are much better than those in DC Super Hero Girls. I’d argue that the combat system in Dread may in fact be designed way better for 1 v 1’s, which makes it the opposite of DCSHG’s combat system that flourishes the more on-screen combatants there are. Lot of highs and lows with this game.

3rd place
Shin Megami Tensei V / Ghosts N Goblins: Resurrection

These games gets 3rd because their flaws are very apparent and contrasting; I didn’t get around to beating them either as a result. SMTV has an overworld and fetchquest type system that are boring in comparison to the cool aesthetic design choices of the party demons, the UI in combat, and sleek camera position changes when negotiating with demons or toggling through enemies. GNG: R is overloaded with enemy waves to cut down — all-out action! — but I find certain enemy introductions annoying to deal with and the skill tree system unpleasant. Forced to I’d give the edge to GNG: R.

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