Our thoughts on the decision-focused horror The Quarry, Neon White, Card Shark and go hands-on with LEGO’s McLaren F1 Race Car.
When it comes to interactive horrors, the team at Supermassive Games are in a league of their own. But while their Dark Pictures Anthology has been a little hit or miss for many, The Quarry channels a lot more of the beloved classic Until Dawn.
You see, there’s a group of teenage counsellors at Hackett’s Quarry who just happen to have the camp to themselves for one final night. But as with all good horrors the night quickly becomes more bloody than boozy as things turn deadly and you try to keep all your cast members alive.
There’s quite lot to enjoy with The Quarry, and while we’re a fan of the game’s vibe and aesthetic, we’re even bigger fans that Supermassive managed to include Dewey Riley himself, David Arquette. That’s in addition to some strong performances across the board – especially Brenda Song.
But while we the ripe setting and interplay between characters pleases, we were a little disappointed by how simple the QTEs actually were to nail – removing a lot of the tension you’re supposed to feel from a high-stakes adventure like this.
That said, decisions and actions will still ultimately lead to some unexpected deaths, leading to the best part of a Supermassive title: the post-game debrief with friends.
If you’re a hardcore horror fan this comes highly recommended.
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The Quarry is out now for PS5, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, XBO and PC.
Also out now…
Neon White (Switch, PC)
You’re likely to not have heard of Neon White before, but you should start paying bloody attention, because this could be one of 2022’s most unexpected hits. We won’t bog you down with the heavenly story, because let’s be honest, that’ not what this game excels at.
What it absolutely nails though is its rock-solid frantic FPS-style gameplay as you attempt to speedrun your way through various courses. There’s a select number of cards carefully placed around environments which grant limited access to weapons and abilities that help you parkour your way around each level as quickly as possible. In motion it’s a thing of beauty and an addictive loop you’ll refuse to put down.
Neon White embodies simple design but contains substantially deep challenge beneath the surface and we’re a big fan.
Card Shark (Switch, PC)
Just when you think video games have done it all before, something unexpected like Card Shark pop up and offers something uniquely special. Interestingly though, Card Shark is less about the actual cards and more about the cheeky deception involved in winning all-important hands amongst an 18th-century French setting.
Whether you’re peering at people’s cards through a mirror or indulging in some shady shuffling, each mini-game-like activity is incredibly tense as you try to nail your grifts without being noticed. There’s also a good variety of grifts to work through on the off chance one doesn’t particularly jive with you. It’s a wonderfully original concept, and it’s incredibly beautiful painterly aesthetic is beautiful on the Switch OLED. Well worth looking into for a change of pace.
Rogue Legacy 2 (Xbox Series X/S, XBO, PC)
The original Rogue Legacy was something of a quiet achiever back in 2013, before rogue-lites seemingly exploded in popularity. But no matter if you’re a long-time fan or total newcomer, Rogue Legacy 2 is a charming delight that’ll offers a balance challenge that’ll keep you smiling all the way through.
Once again you control a randomised character – each death leading you to then play as their descendent. And once again that is the big highlight of Rogue Legacy 2, the weird and wonderful quirks of each new player like a sufferer of vertigo who will literally turn your world upside down for a specific run.
This randomised element means each new playthrough is creative and unique, which compliments the incredible amount of polish on display here. If you’re up for a quirky platformer with a bit of a challenge, you certainly can’t go wrong with Rogue Legacy 2.
Kao the Kangaroo (PS5, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, XBO, Switch, PC)
We don’t blame you if this is the first time you’re hearing about old mate Kao and his adventures – his series starting some 20 years ago. But although it has been a long time between drinks, this modern revival does well to breathe new life into the series. We were mostly taken aback by how good this platformer looks on our PS5 and how enjoyable utilising your slew of punchy-powers is. Granted, some of the puzzles and platforming are a touch on the easy side, but they’re not without their charm. A sloppy script and weak voice acting unfortunately bring things down a bit, but there’s a lot of charm at play here and plenty of potential we hope gets built upon in the future.
Hands on with the LEGO Technic McLaren Formula 1 Race Car
It’s no secret that we’re a big fan of big LEGO builds, so when LEGO announced the McLaren Formula 1 Race Car we got very excited at the end result. Needless to say after going hands-on with the final product it did not disappoint and sits incredibly nicely next to other big car builds like the Lamborghini Sián FKP 37.
Designed in partnership with McLaren’s engineers, this vehicle is a marvellous sight to behold… once you put it all together of course. LEGO’s master builders have done a bloody good job of recreating the vehicle, right down to those chunky wheels. For serious F1 fans, the colour combo will be slightly off, but we’re suckers for a bit of orange flair all the same, so it’s still a win in our books.
It’s worth noting that the build itself may take you a little while – we lost track of the hours in amongst 1432 putting the pieces. If you’re not a fan of technic builds, the McLaren set isn’t likely to convince you, but we’re always impressed with the level of detail LEGO goes into trying to replicate an authentic replica.
Constructing the McLaren’s drivetrain, for example can be something of a fiddly process, but as usual LEGO does exceptionally well to communicate all steps clearly. Having 1:1 diagrams of some parts is also a huge godsend.
At $279.99 the Formula 1 Race Car has a habit of speeding off shelves, but if you can track one down it’s a solid buy for brick-lovers and revheads alike.
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