this is going to be the first in a series where i do short reviews of video games i've played and didn't have too many thoughts on.
easily the best sports game i have ever played. arcadey enough to be fun, deep enough to feel like baseball. i would really love to see someone take the custom franchise mode of a game like this and really run with it in a narrative design sense, but even what's here is more than enough to experience the epic highs and lows of professional baseball.
an entertaining-enough spelunky-like with a lot of good ideas. the graphics suffer in readability compared to spelunky, and the writing is almost unbearable. on the other hand, it feels good to play, and there are lots of wacky items and game modes.
a good time with friends. many of the train upgrades feel almost useless. compared to other yell-at-your-friends multiplayer games like overcooked!, unrailed! is obviously less polished and less well designed, but it does involve trains, which is a big plus.
features the main problem i have with planet coaster: a lot of features that seem designed to "feel" like a detailed simulation rather than to be fun or interesting. for instance: rather than simply buying animals and placing them in your zoo, you have to purchase animals from the marketplace, at which point they are transfered to a holding menu, which you then have to open to put the animals in the enclosure. also, i just hate the way these games look. this kind of corporate cartoon aesthetic will always rub me the wrong way.
what if connor sherlock made a marble game? if you like marble games, this is a great one, with by far the most unique aesthetic of any marble game i've ever played. the surreal alien landscapes recall 70s sci fi novels and new age ambient albums in equal measure.
i eventually had to give up on finishing this one. suffers in comparison both to the contemporaneously released elden ring, and to the zelda games it is borrowing from. i did not enjoy the act of exploration in this game. combat was neither pleasant nor satisfying. if i had to compare it to anything, it would be hyper light drifter, another game which tried to be zelda and failed.
not enjoying this game made me question what it even was i wanted out of a video game. i should have loved unexplored 2. i love its approach to world generation and persistent progression. i don't love how it feels to actually play. walking around in unexplored 2 is not fun. fighting in unexplored 2 is not fun. talking to people in unexplored 2 is not fun. the setting is dull, the characters are flat. there is nothing worth exploring.