52 Weeks of Gaming: Week 24 (6/10-6/16): Clear Your Mind

Tetris Effect: I have heard a lot of good things about Tetris Effect and have been interested in picking it up at some point. I think I was hesitant to play it since I didn’t have PlayStation VR and I knew that was the best way to play it. Last weekend, I picked up the game and a new PlayStation controller during their Days of Play sale. And after playing this game throughout the week, this is probably the best Tetris game I have played (sorry Tetris 99).

With headphones on and the lights off, playing Tetris Effect this way is probably the best Tetris experience I ever played. The sound design is perfect, with the sound effects of moving blocks that fit into the current song playing, while the song picks up the more lines you clear. Not only does the tempo of the song pick up, the drop speed also picks up with the music. The music itself was very emotional and relaxing that I was absorbed into the gameplay. I had a few stressful days this week, and playing this game helped me clear my mind and relax.

The background also responds to you clearing lines and changes after you get halfway through the level. With all of the cool visuals, I am interested to play it with PlayStation VR. If I can think of 4 more games that I would play in PlayStation VR, then I will pick it up.

GRIS: I picked Gris up a few weeks ago during the Devolver Digital sale on the eShop and I finally decided to try it out this week. When the game first came out, I was pulled in by the visuals since I thought it looked beautiful, although I was a little unsure about the gameplay. If you don’t think that video games isn’t an art form, I guarantee you that you’ll change your mind after playing Gris.

Gris has a beautiful art style, with water color background and smooth hand drawn animations. I like that the game uses color to show emotion, as you unlock different colors as you progress. The music fits the mood of the game, ranging from relaxing to suspenseful.

If you are looking for a challenging 2D platformer, this is definitely not the game for you. Gris is more of an artistic experience, since the story being more metaphorical than straight forward. At first, I though the platforming was too basic, but as you progress further into the game and unlock more abilities, the level design and gameplay was solid.

 Even though it only took me 3-4 hours to get through the game, I really enjoyed what I played and felt like it was a unique gaming experience. If you are looking for a game to wind down and relax, I highly recommend you give this game a shot.

Crypt of the NecroDancer: When Cadence of Hyrule was shown off a while ago, I was intrigued with its rhythm-based gameplay and Zelda aesthetic. While the game came out this week, Crypt of the NecroDancer was on sale for $4, so I thought that it would be perfect way to get myself ready for Cadence of Hyrule.

Every action you do, whether you’re attacking or even moving one space, is done on the beat of the music. At first, it took a while for me to get the rhythm down and maintaining it while moving. Being a roguelike game, I think the gameplay fits, although I didn’t like that the level ended when the song of the stage ends. I’m definitely intrigued and will play this in the coming weeks and eventually I will pick up its sequel Cadence of Hyrule.

Wargroove: This was one of my anticipated games of the year and I finally picked it up this week when it was on sale. Although I haven’t played that far into the game, I can tell that I will enjoy it especially being a fan of Fire Emblem. Units have more gameplay depth than Fire Emblem, with different skills (like attacking with the same type of unit adjacent you yours allows you to deal more damage) and a more complex weapon triangle. Animations are smooth for pixel art and the writing seems fun so far. Maybe next week I’ll have more to say about Wargroove.

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