Games of the week – Ghost of Tsushima, Iron Man VR, Neon Abyss and Beyond A Steel Sky
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Ghost of Tsushima
Platform: PlayStation 4
A samurai epic
Open-world action adventure meets the film-making of Akira Kurosawa in this samurai epic. You play as Jin Sakai, who is fighting to save his home, the island of Tsushima, from a Mongol invasion in the 13th century. The world built by Sucker Punch is truly stunning – one of the best looking on PS4 – and it's a real treat to explore. The combat too is fun to begin with – the epic stand-offs, where two fighters face-off before a duel is a highlight in what is an otherwise very familiar open-world game combat system. This, ultimately, is what holds Ghost of Tsushima back. The combat and missions (known as Tales) are too generic and repetitive to keep you truly hooked, even if you don’t want to leave the beautiful setting.
Skip to the end: A beautiful world let down by a lack of imagination within it.
Iron Man VR
Platform: PlayStation VR
If you’ve ever fancied becoming a superhero, Iron Man VR is as close as it gets, putting you in the virtual place of the Marvel legend, complete with flying, powers and all the rest we’ve come to expect. There is no doubt that lifting your arms and interacting in such an immersive world is fun – and overall, it is well executed. However, as games go, the story doesn’t excite, and levels become repetitive. It is also setback by too many loading screens. For Marvel fans, it’s an absolute must despite the shortcomings, but this is yet to show what VR is truly capable of.
Skip to the end: Fun, technically well-executed VR title let down by uninspiring story and repetitive levels.
Platform: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC
Genre: Side scroller / rogue-like
Step into the Abyss
Neon Abyss is yet another rogue-like title to enter the arena, which sees you recruited to a team called the Grim Squad, on a mission to infiltrate the Abyss and defeat the New Gods. The story doesn’t really hold up when you get into the action, it gets forgotten amid all the run and gun action. Each dungeon contains various enemies to defeat, as you work towards the boss, which, if you overcome, will reward you with a gem. There is a huge amount of gear, ranging from badges to gun upgrades, which keep the game fresh. It’s very easy to control and easy on the eye in artistic terms, but levels can feel uneven in terms of how challenging they are, as well as repetitive at times.
Skip to the end: Entertaining but repetitive rogue-like title lacking originality to stand up to others in this crowded genre.
Beyond A Steel Sky
Platform: Apple Arcade, PC
Genre: Cyberpunk adventure
Price: From £4.99 per month with Apple Arcade subscription
Beyond A Steel Sky serves as a sequel to 1994’s Beneath A Steel Sky, set 10 years after the events of the first game. Sadly, we haven’t played the debut game but we can tell you it is possible to enjoy this new offering without feeling like you’re missing anything important. After a 26-year wait, Beyond A Steel Sky is in 3D and features comic book-style cutscenes. The plot of this adventure – finding an abducted child – holds up with some intriguing missions and puzzles along the way, as you ask people dotted around Union City for clues. Carrying out movement from an iPhone can be clunky but we imagine it may fair better on PC.
Skip to the end: An adventure return with all the usual thriller trademarks that will surely capture the nostalgic hearts of those who played the first game.