Video games!!! They all decided to come out in April. Every game ever. Let's (briefly) talk about them in no particular order!

Cassette Beasts

I haven't played a TON of this game yet but I really like what I've played. It's a Monster Catching game that's been on my radar for a while. The aesthetic and story hooked me immediately. The monster designs are neat - I don't have strong opinions on what my Pokemon look like, to be honest.

The coolest parts of the game are the combat and exploration. Cassette Beasts goes beyond "this attack is super effective on that one." Instead, there's an elemental reaction system. So an air attack might cool down a fire monster, debuffing them. Or you could use an earth move to bury a plastic enemy, lowering their evasion and speed. There's lots of interactions like this, so many that it's initially difficult to keep track, but it's very engaging to play around with. Most battles are 2 v 2, with your highly customizable character being paired up with a party of characters that you build as you progress the game. You can bond with them as you play as well, making it easier to fuse your monsters together and do quests to learn more about their backgrounds. It's fun stuff!

The exploration is also neat, and reminds me of a Game Boy Zelda game to be honest. You can start by dashing, but eventually you unlock more ways to move around the world, like gliding and a few others I won't spoil. They allow you to to access new areas and treasure chests, which makes my brain serotonin go pew pew. The only thing that sucks is the limited stamina bar at the game's start. I get my character washed up on the beach, but come on, their cardio can't be THAT bad.

Dungeon Drafters

This game has been in early access forever, but it came out of nowhere, and holy hell do I love it. Part rougelike, part deck-builder, part strategy game, Dungeon Drafters is ALL goop. You use cards to cast spells to defeat enemies and clear floors of various dungeons. Each dungeon drops different kinds of themed cards, which focus on specific archetypes of play. For example, I'm currently playing with a Raider and Traveler deck, which focuses on aggression and playing with positionals, respectively. There are five archetypes you can use to build a perfect deck, and hundreds of cards to collect.

I love me a good card game - my time with Marvel Snap can attest to that. It's been a blast fiddling around with my cards to get deeper and deeper through the game's dungeons, and it's all accompanied by a baller soundtrack and an absolutely gorgeous pixel art style. Great stuff, no notes, check it out.

Jedi Survivor

Honestly? Don't have much to say here. It's Fallen Order but bigger and better in every way. I loved it, even with the technical problems. If you like Star Wars get it. If you like metroidvania elements in your vidja, get it. If you didn't like Fallen Order because of the lack of fast travel, get this, because yes, they fixed it!

Xenoblade Chronicles 3: Future Connected

Me: No shot Monolith Soft improved on XC3's gameplay flow.

Monolith Soft: Foolish little clown. Watch this.

XC3:FC might be the best Xenoblade game, and it's DLC. I love these games, but for me exploration has always been an afterthought. Future Connected directly ties exploration into powering up your party. Kill enough of an enemy type? Get skill points. Find secret areas? Get skill points. Do quests? Get skill points. Monolith Soft has done the impossible: given me a check list for my open-world game and that I absolutely love.

The combat goes hard, Matthew is the best protagonist the series has had up to this point, it answers the last few lingering plot points of XC3, gives incredible fanservice for XC1 and 2, and blows the lid wide open for the future of the series, all in a neatly packed 20 hour experience. What else is there to say? Whatever Monolith Soft ends up cooking, I'm just going to pick it up. Never let me off of Takahashi's wild ride.

Megaman Battle Network Legacy Collection Vol. 1 + Vol. 2

I can't believe they finally did it. And I know capitalism sucks, but I can't believe it's selling WELL. Is it too pricey? Probably. Unfortunately for y'all, I am the number one Battle Network simp, so I'm extremely happy with this collection. And frankly, there's a ton of content here. BN2 took 20 hours of my life, and I still have 5 more to go. There's really nothing like Battle Network out there right now, and I'm just super excited that it's available on modern consoles again. Check it out, and I'm not just saying that so that Capcom finally pays attention to me and gives us a brand new game.

That's about it! Whatcha been playing? Let me know in the comments or on Cohost!