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4 Dec 2021

REVIEW: Assassin's Creed Freedom Cry

Review by GamingCouchPotato.co.uk Staff
Assassin's Creed Freedom Cry is a stand-alone game that was originally a DLC addition for Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag.

Set between the years of 1735 to 1737, you play as Adewale, a man who was born a slave but later found freedom as a pirate on Edward Kenway's ship, the Jackdaw.

Fast forward 15 years and Adewale is now a trained Assassin, shipwrecked in Saint-Domingue, off the coast of Haiti, with no weapons and no crew to help him, he has to find a ship in Port-au-Prince, and gather a brand-new crew, so he can free the slaves, and kill those who enslaved them.


Although a short game at about 3 hours, considering this was a DLC addition, that is a fair amount of gameplay you get without having to purchase Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, and enough to give you the taste of the main game, and perhaps help convince you to purchase that.

The storyline in Freedom Cry is pretty good, as you would expect from any Assassins Creed game, lots of conspiracies to uncover, different gameplay modes including fighting enemies with a ship, the usual on land Assassins Creed activities, as well as deep dialog and cut scenes.

I am a big Assassin's Creed fan, and I have most of the games, except Assassin's Creed IV, so when the cance came to get Freedom Cry I jumped at it, as to be brutally honest I still have a lot of other Assassin's Creed games to finish, so being able to play a 3 hour game was just about perfect.


The Good
Excellent Graphics that you come to expect from any Assassin's Creed game, the high quality of everything in this franchise is something that should be appreciated. The story on this game is great, and the gameplay itself is top notch.

The Bad
If you are a fan of the Assassin's Creed Franchise then there is no bad here.

Overall
Want a taste of the Assassin's Creed Franchise as a newcomer, then this is a perfect short introduction, experienced in the Franchise and want to play them all, then you cant miss this.

I score Assassin's Creed Freedom Cry a strong 9/10

Out Now on Steam

3 Dec 2021

REVIEW: 6Souls on Nintendo Switch

Review by GamingCouchPotato.co.uk Staff
6Souls is an old school platform game on Nintendo Switch.

You play as Jack, along with his dog Butch, you are on an exciting journey to find and explore Clifford Castle, find out the truth of why the entire Clifford family disappeared, as well as unlock all of its secrets.

There are over 80 levels to play through, in 8 specific and different locations. Each area as its own mysteries to uncover, enemies to beat and secrets to find.


Not only will you have boss fights to overcome, but there is also a strong storyline element as you will meet various residents of the castle and talk to them.

Although most of the time you will control Jack, there are certain areas that Jack cannot reach, and that is where you get to swap control to Butch the dog. Whereas Jack as the ability to traverse walls, and slash at enemies with a sword, butch has only his agility and guile to see him through. Butch has the ability to double jump, which is helpful for those high to reach areas.

6Souls really is a surprisingly good little platform game, that plays perfectly on a Nintendo Switch Lite. Very addictive, quite challenging, and plenty to see and overcome. There are collectables for each level, so a need to replay a level to find a missed coin, or a piece of bacon for the dog, is a huge factor to keep you coming back. And you can even scan around the level using the binoculars, which will help you make the correct jump to an off-screen area.


The Good
I am a fan of retro style graphics at the moment, and this game does the job really well. The gameplay is easy to pick up, hard to master. Controlling the dog for parts of a level is a nice touch, and works well.

The Bad
Despite being able to look around a level, sometimes you will find yourself making leaps of faith, which can be frustrating when you know what you need to do, and where to go, but lack of patience (my big problem) causes you to repeatedly die. Luckily if you die, you restart from a checkpoint, so it is not the end of the world.

Overall
A fun old school platform game, with plenty of levels, and plenty to see and do.
I score 6Souls a very solid 8/10, I really enjoyed this title.

6Souls is out now on Nintendo Switch



2 Dec 2021

REVIEW: Clockwork Aquario on Nintendo Switch

Review by GamingCouchPotato.co.uk Staff
There are not many games that you can really call "lost" but Clockwork Aquario truly is one.
30 years ago, Clockwork Aquario was being developed for the Arcade and specifically for the Sega System 18 Arcade System Board.
This was the pre-cursor to the Sega Megadrive. If you have played the original Super Mario Bros. or Wonder Boy 3 then you will instantly feel at home playing Clockwork Aquario.

Here is what Ryuichi Nishizawa (chief publisher, and co-founder of Westone) has to say about the release.
"In the 90s, when game centers were dominated by fighting games, there was one title which had never been released, even though it was completed after more than two years of development and repeated changes. This title is Clockwork Aquario. Who would have thought that it would be restored and playable again? I would like to express my heartfelt respect and gratitude to those who have worked so hard to restore it. I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that this work is a great piece of 2D art, where the pixel artists of that time put their hearts and souls into. I'd be happy if people would appreciate and enjoy it." –


Clockwork Aquario is a classic 2D side scrolling action platform game. Large on-screen characters, fantastic pixel graphics, great animation, this game really does take me back to the early 90s and going into an arcade and putting my 10p coins in a machine.

When you first start up the game, you can choose from a difficulty level, which translates to how many lives your character will have.

You can play as one of three characters, Huck Londo, Elle Moon, or a giant robot called Gush.


Played over 5 levels, your ultimate aim is to stop the evil Dr. Hangyo. Gameplay consists of the usual platform elements as well as punching enemies, or picking up and throwing them. You will face off against the usual mini bosses, who are controlling large machines. Watch what they do, how they move, and you will soon figure out how to beat them.

You can pick up health potions that bring you back to full health, gems that will eventually give you an extra life, and stars that make you invulnerable for a short period, that also allows you to shoot out Triple Stars as a weapon.

As this is an arcade game, it is relatively short, but the extra difficulty settings as well as unlocking new modes after completion, including a mini game. This does give a replay-ability factor to the game.


The Good
A proper old school arcade game, that perhaps the younger gamer won't appreciate. Easy to play, tough to finish.

The Bad
A short game, which when played on a Nintendo Switch Lite looks a bit "busy" on screen, and would definitely look better on a larger screen.

Overall
A nostalgic feeling game, that will give plenty of enjoyment.

I score Clockwork Aquario on Nintendo Switch a decent 7.5/10



NEWS: The First Tree - Limited boxed editions available for pre-order

Strictly Limited Games has announced that beloved indie title The First Tree will be available in a very special boxed release. 

Let yourself be guided through an emotional story through beautiful atmospheric gameplay and uncover the interconnection between dream and reality.

The First Tree will be available for Nintendo Switch, as a Limited Edition and Special Limited Edition, with pre-orders launching on Sunday, 5th of December at 12 AM CET (midnight), only at Strictly Limited Games.



About the game:
In The First Tree, a narrator guides you through his dream. What starts as a mother fox's search for her lost cubs evolves into the narrator's memories of his own story and you experience two emotional stories interconnecting. The further the game progresses, the more is revealed. And all the more it becomes clear that the lost cubs symbolize another tragedy in the narrator's life. Besides the strong story, the game offers many other features that make it a very special experience:

Roam through different, uniquely designed landscapes
Accompanied by amazing atmospheric music and sound design
Beautiful 3D artstyle
Captivating yet relaxing gameplay
An emotional journey with a valuable message


Strictly Limited Editions coming with amazing extras

To celebrate this special Indie gem, Strictly Limited Games offers two unique limited editions of The First Tree in their Online Shop for pre-order.

The Limited Edition for Nintendo Switch will be limited to 2,200 copies, at a price of 29,99€, including a colorful manual of the game.

The Special Limited Edition will be limited to 1,800 copies for Nintendo Switch, for 49,99€, including lots of additional physical collectibles:

Game for Nintendo Switch with reversible artwork cover
Beautiful Special Limited-Edition box
The First Tree Acrylic Standee
Original soundtrack on CD
Reversible artwork poster (DIN A3)
Set of 6 Art Prints (A6) with gorgeous game artwork
Notepad
The First Tree sticker (7,4 cm x 7,4 cm)
Colored game manual
Special edition contents
Besides the boxed editions, there will be a beautiful aluminium art card with the game's artwork available for €9,99 - limited to 99 copies.

1 Dec 2021

REVIEW: Beyond A Steel Sky on Xbox

Review by GamingCouchPotato.co.uk
Beyond A Steel Sky is the sequel to classic cyberpunk science fiction point-and-click adventure game Beneath a Steel Sky, released on the Amiga in 1994.
It has only taken 27 years to be made! So, it better be good.

You play as Robert Foster, you live in a community in the desert wastelands, a child had been taken after a brutal attack, and it is your job to tracking them down and bring them home. You find yourself travelling to Union City, one of the last mega cities on the planet, a planet that has been ravaged from war and political strife.

Union City is a seemingly perfect utopia, controlled by AI, everyone seems happy, everything seems wonderful, but with anything that seems so perfect, when you scratch beneath the surface, you find out that things are not at all what they seem.


Instead of a 2-dimensional world, that the previous game lived in, the modern point and click adventures takes on a much more 3-dimensional appearance, and a feeling of more freedom with that. Beyond a Steel Sky is very much a cyberpunk thriller, but within the point and click genre, whereby you will have to solve puzzles, speak to people, find out what is really going on, and try to solve the abduction of a child. And while that is a very serious subject, the game does have a humorous side within its Cyberpunk world. One of the achievements you will want to get is to make a robotic butler fall over, to do this you need to hack into the laundry machine, and change some settings so that the water over flows. You then return to the butler, and ask him to do the laundry, follow him downstairs, stand back and enjoy the hilarity. Many of the puzzles will need you to hack machines, but often you will need to engage in a lot of dialog with people, to find out the information you need, sadly this can sometimes feel a bit tedious, when you just want to get on with the game, and not just listen to seemingly endless dialog.


Early puzzles include helping people, who in turn reward you with things that will help you to solve the next puzzle. Similar in game mechanics to the Telltale games like Batman: The Enemy Within and Tales from the Borderlands, if you have played those games, you will instantly feel comfortable playing Beyond A Steel Sky. Although Beyond A Steel Sky does feel much grander in scale than those games.

The Good
The graphics are superb, everything looks and sounds great, and despite a few dodgy voice acting, overall, the acting and graphics are top quality. The game is easy to play, the puzzles are logical, and never too difficult. 

The Bad
A relatively short game, and as mentioned earlier, some of the dialog can be a bit tedious.

Overall
If you are a fan of point and click adventures, or the Telltale series of games, then you will instantly fall in love with Beyond A Steel Sky, and feel right at home as you play, it is far from perfect, and a little short, but even so, it is a game you should consider adding to your collection.

I score Beyond A Steel Sky a very strong 8/10

Out now on PC
Release date 07/12/2021 on Xbox