In the end, DuckTales Remastered is a great modern take on the now-classic NES game. It embraces its roots while incorporating some modern gameplay mechanics. The changes make it easier for modern audiences while maintaining a difficulty level craved by older fans. The presentation is top-notch, and the inclusion of some of the original voices helps fans revel in nostalgia. It isn't perfect, as evidenced by the frequency of cut scenes and omission of the original title, but when you consider what's here, it's clear that WayForward loved the original title and let that love shine through in this updated version. It's definitely worth picking up for all platforming fans.
Although it wasn't meant to be taken seriously, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is a surprisingly good game. While the abandonment of some of Far Cry 3's deeper mechanics will leave a hollow feeling for some players, the focus on old-school run-and-gun action and mechanics in a more modern setting make the game feel more focused. The humor consists of mostly hits, and the misses aren't so bad. The visuals work well in a quasi-retro sort of way. Even if the nostalgia of the '80s doesn't pique your interest, the satisfying action should, and that's more than enough of a reason to try Blood Dragon.
Pikmin 3 improves on the mechanics of the previous games and includes a good amount of enjoyable content. It's a very easy game to pick up and play for any age group, and it's exactly the kind of sequel you'd expect from the Pikmin franchise. It's a good game that all Wii U owners should try.
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes is one of the most solid entries in the LEGO franchise to date. It has a huge cast of characters, a fun world to explore, and tons of content. It offers a good experience, so it's possible to overlook the lack of major upgrades. Traveller's Tales has made yet another excellent game that is accessible to players of all ages. If you or your kids like LEGO titles, you'll certainly enjoy this trip into the Marvel universe.
Fire Emblem: Awakening is a must-have if you're even slightly into strategy-RPGs. The gameplay is simultaneous simple and deep, and it's a joy to play. Longtime fans who are worried about the alterations to the formula shouldn't be. Awakening is a rare example of a series that works. It throws out a lot of the traditional Fire Emblem ideas, but it's almost always for the better, and the end result is a game that's plain fun to play from start to finish, whether you're a newcomer or a hardened Thracia 776 veteran.
Rayman Legends is one of this year's hidden gems. Originally intended to be a Wii U exclusive, it was delayed and ported to every system under the sun. Like its predecessor, Rayman Legends is a multiplayer platformer heavily inspired by both the original Rayman games and the New Super Mario Bros. series. What makes Legends stand out is the sheer quality and effort put into its level design. It is full of creative, clever and fun levels. It doesn't matter if you're battling a giant dragon or playing a half-platforming/half-rhythm level to a mariachi version of "Eye of the Tiger" — there's always something new and something enjoyable in Rayman's latest adventure. Legends also contains most of the levels from the original Rayman: Origins, making this some of the best value for your money.
Guacamelee! is an impressive effort from Drinkbox Studios. It's a simple, solid and well-made Metroid clone in a time when Metroid clones are nonexistent. It may be a little short, but each moment is packed to the brim with things to do, and it doesn't overstay its welcome. Combine that with a charming art style, engaging combat, and a fun two-player mode, and you've got a recipe for success. It's an excellent game that anyone with a PS3 (or Vita, as the PS3 iteration comes with a free Vita copy) should play.
Dragon's Crown is one of the most impressive beat-'em-ups. While it's not a genre that typically lights up the sales chart these days, Dragon's Crown is going to do pretty well. There's a lot of fun packed into this game by Vanillaware, and it's the best we've seen from the developer since Odin Sphere.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the definition of "more of the same," but that's not a bad thing. You're getting more of the same Animal Crossing, the familiar formula has been improved, and the new features add to the fun. If you've been away from town for a while, New Leaf is easily the best of the Animal Crossing games to date, so it's a great time to return. It's hard to argue with the results.
Pokemon X/Y doesn't necessarily represent a massive leap forward for the Pokemon franchise. There are new features, new moves, and new Pokemon, and they're all polished to a sheen. The annoyances are few, and the charm is plentiful. It doesn't matter if you're a young child playing Pokemon for the first time or a longer-timer who started with Pokemon Blue/Red. Pokemon X/Y has something for everyone and resolves many of the series' long-term issues. It's possibly the best Pokemon has ever been, and it's a must-have for any Pokemon fanatic. Perhaps most importantly, the transparent battle mechanics and general gameplay polish make it incredibly accessible for newcomers to the franchise.
At the end of the day, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance's greatest accomplishment is that that it assures the world that Platinum's bag of tricks is deeper than anyone thought. This game provides a fresh take on the stylish/character action genre, and it comes off as a high-tier entry in the Metal Gear series. People new to both concepts will find a nice, forgiving yet deep action game that doesn't have too much series baggage. Fans of one or the other would do well to broaden their horizons and give this one a chance. Finally, if you're a fan of both, you will be in heaven as you cut all that you see to shreds.