We have compiled a list of games that we enjoyed in the month of March, including The Princess Guide, Outward, MLB The Show 19 and Generation Zero.
The Princess Guide
Available for PS4 and Nintendo Switch
This latest in the line of Nippon Ichi Software games blends the intrigue of a visual novel with the satisfaction of hacking your enemies to bits. In its storyline, you take on the role of an instructor and choose one of four starter characters: Alpana, Liliarte, Veronica, and Monomaria. Each of these princesses approaches the game’s universe with her own battle traits and personality quirks. Once you’ve learned the three main types of attacks in tutorial mode, you’re able to choose a princess from the ranks of four.
Gameplay mixes and matches three main attack types. The first, direct attack, is the one you’ll use most often. Whereas the direct attack is most useful when you’re facing one enemy at a time, each character also can perform more rapid attacks for when you’re lined up against a slew of enemies. It can get overwhelming at times because certain moves require double-taps, and to use skill attacks you’ll have to navigate drop-down menus. For experienced gamers, though, the battle mechanics should pose no more an obstacle than first-level opponents.
Princess Guide stands out for its storyline’s seamless inclusion of emotional intelligence. In response to certain dialogue frames, the player is asked to choose one of two, sometimes more responses, such as 'Praise / Scold.' As you progress through a variety of scenes, your choices build up towards an ending tailored to your own personality (with the princesses acting as mediums). Pro tip: you can upgrade your instructor from the Base Menu under 'Training Grounds.'
All in all, it’s an interesting storyline with adequate enough gameplay, and we recommend it to anyone interested in waifus and anime storylines generally.
Available for PS4, XBOX1 and PC
For the survival title Outward, think Kenshi, another game which features a storyline revolving around the 'death is not the end' theme. In Outward, your character likely will get knocked unconscious, and you then will awaken stripped of most of the gear you’d acquired.
It’s an experience at once freeing and demoralizing. It’s a scenario where you ain’t got nothin’, and nothin’ to lose. It’s gameplay where your character recovers from the knockout blow gradually and then suddenly bursts across the terrain (freed of the weaponry and foodstocks that were such a weight before).
Reddit users are comparing this game to FFXI for graphics and Risen for gameplay. More optimistic gamers hope Outward stacks up with Breath of the Wild for its minimal storyline and emphasis on exploration. Those with the highest standards may complain the graphics seem a few years dated, and while that’s true, it’s a drawback that in no way should weaken the deserved hype surrounding Outward.
MLB The Show 19
Available for PS4
Renowned for its Road to the Show journey, the only video game licensed for Major League Baseball returns with a new featured gameplay mode. Called 'Moments', this mode hearkens to other sports games' tendency to draw from the past. Different games have succeeded to different degrees on that score. NBA 2K11 comes to mind for its slick Jordan Challenge mode, as does the now-defunct NCAA College Football series for its endlessly replayable 'College Classics'.
In 'Moments', you take control of this or that past baseball legend in a historical setting. Options range from Willie Mays in the 1950s playoffs to cover athlete Bryce Harper in his 2012 rookie season. Because baseball fans tend to obsess over historical details, the attention to detail in these historical settings makes this a standout mode.
The game also includes modes oriented towards the 2019 season and beyond. In Road to the Show, you create a player and work your way from the minor leagues to the starting lineup of a major league team. This year's Road to the Show mode has been fixed from last year’s rigid and rushed-seeming offering. It’s good news for diehards who depend on the game for their MLB fix.
Available for PS4, XBOX1 and PC
Though most of landlocked Earth has been explored, its geography is so diverse that it's nigh impossible to keep it all in mind. For example, you may have heard of the city New Orleans at the southern tip of Louisiana; but who has thought to visit the north of Louisiana? What strange or familiar topographies await you, if you’ve never seen so much as a photograph of the place?
The developers of Generation Zero play upon this concept in choosing the setting for their first-person shooter: it’s an island, within the territory of Sweden, in the 1980s. In other words, it’s a place only a fraction of gamers have ever thought about, much less imagined or even lived through.
In the game, you and three other 1980s Swedish youths fight crude cyborgs reminiscent of the Imperial Walkers from Star Wars. These robots move with much more agility, though, and what’s more, they move strategically. Because the opponent moves with purpose, the gamer is tasked with taking over hot zones in a guerrilla war for survival.