A week (ish) of catch-up reviews as we scale this year’s backlog.
Hello! This week, we’re playing a bit of overdue catch-up. You’ve heard this a million times by now, but the past year has been a weird one for games, with a landslide of indies and off-beat gems filling the triple-A void. At times it’s been tough to keep up, and because of that we’ve missed a few that deserved our attention at the time.
We do have some excuses! There are lots of reasons why we might not review something, some of which are quite boring: there’s too much in the schedule, it stealth-launched at the wrong time, we got code a bit too late and the next thing – and a dozen more next things after that – are already on top of us. Sometimes, this year especially, there are bigger priorities: people need time off work and a proper work-life balance, and that comes before hitting an arbitrary embargo. Sometimes it’s just on us, because you can miss a sleeper hit when making a snap choice on what to cover – and we can always get better at finding more great games ourselves.
That said, sometimes it’s a conscious choice: a piece of critical writing doesn’t have to have the word “review” on it to do much of the same job. Chicory’s one that stands out there, a wonderful game that we still aren’t reviewing this week because we feel the original article deserves to stand on its own. In this case, the job for us is to signpost those bits of non-review criticism better – we’re working on it.
Like I said: lots of excuses! The main point is we’ve done our best to try and rectify that this week, by heading back to as many of the apparently really-quite-good games that we’d originally missed. With sincere apologies to the people who made these games and didn’t get to see them reviewed at the time, here are the Games That Got Away in 2021, starting with Vikki Blake on the fascinating hand-drawn horror, Mundaun. You can view them all in our Games That Got Away hub as the next week or so unfolds.