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Chris Kavan's Video Game Reviews (456)

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Metro 2033 3.5/5
South Park: The Fractur... 4/5
Sundered 3.5/5
Mass Effect: Andromeda 3.5/5
Life is Strange: Before... 4/5
God of War 4/5
Doom (2016) 3.5/5
Armada 3.5/5
Detroit: Become Human 4/5
Destiny 2 4/5
Horizon: Zero Dawn 4.5/5
Oxenfree 4/5
Murdered: Soul Suspect 3/5
Kirby Star Allies 3/5
Celeste 4.5/5
Dark Quest 2 3/5
Just Cause 3 3.5/5
Guacamelee! 2 4/5
The Incredible Adventur... 4/5
Rise of the Tomb Raider 4/5
Dead Rising 3 4/5
Layers of Fear 3.5/5
Prey 3/5
Zero-K 2/5
Tales from the Borderla... 4/5

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The Yawhg   PC (Steam) 

Choose Your Own Mad-Venture    4/5 stars

Before Steam became a dumping ground for every half-assed mobile port, Chinese piece of garbage and asset-flipping cash-grabs, indie games were something to look forward to. That's right, people spent time, effort and hard work on these little gems and The Yawhg is a great example of what an indie game should be.

Presentation: The game looks great - very distinct in animation, the text and the music. While there is no voice acting, there was a lot of work put into the several different options you get for each choice - the descriptions are amusing, witty and, as far as I could tell, error-free. While it is not a traditional visual novel - there is a lot of reading, but it's never boring with vampires, magic beans, science experiments, ailments and much more to experience. The medieval setting is matched by the excellent soundtrack, pleasant and fitting. It all comes together quite nicely and makes for a unique experience.

Story: We are told straight off that something known as The Yawhg is coming - and it will destroy the village in six weeks. There is nothing you can do to stop it - you can only hope to prepare. Thus each of the four colorful characters (you can play alone, controlling each separately or cooperatively with four friends controlling one character each) can visit one of several locations throughout the week. These raise or lower various traits (Physique, Finesse, Mind, Charm, Magic and Wealth) while you can also trigger events that span several weeks, with more than one player able to influence the outcome based on what they do.

There isn't much else to the story and it can be completed quickly - a game lasts about 15 to 20 minutes and the end game simply has you appointing each character to a specific role (Leader, Smelter, Builder, etc) and the success/failure of said role is based on what attributes you have. If enough characters succeeds in their roles, the town is saved, if not, the town is lost - and the epilogue for each character reflects this (and can be quite depressing).

Gameplay: The game is essentially a choose-your-own adventure game between the different characters. There are several areas on the map (forest, bar, castle, garden, hospital, magic academy, streets) and each has two options to choose from - these options, in turn, affect your traits. There can be random events that can cause a big swing in your stats as well, adding a somewhat rougelike quality to the outcome. Still, even in just three playthroughs our group witnessed some events twice, meaning there isn't a huge amount of choices out there. If anything would make this game better, it would simply be a bigger pool of events (random and otherwise) to just make things a bit deeper. The game reminded me most of stripped down version of Long Live the Queen on an indie level and much more steamlined. It's fun, but could be even better.

Replayability: With the variety of events and endings (even if some are similar), the game has a lot to offer for such a small package. Yes, it can get a bit repetitive, but, overall, you'll get a lot of fun out of it.

Overall: A short, highly fun pick-up-and play party game. A lot of indie games disappoint, this is not one of them. The regular asking price may be a bit steep, but if you catch it on a bit of sale it's totally worth it.

Presentation: 4/5
Story: 3/5
Gameplay: 3.5/5
Replayability: 4/5
Overall (not an average): 4/5



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