September kicked off the start of the fall season with some highly-anticipated big-name titles and annual sports franchises, but the month still managed to provide gamers with some lesser known games that offer fun and unique gameplay experiences.
In our ongoing monthly feature, we take a look at some of last month’s biggest games as ranked by Metacritic score.
10. FIFA 19
Metacritic Score: 80 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 3.5 (Averaged across platforms)
The FIFA franchise returns once again, bringing with it the prestigious UEFA Champions League in a brand-new game mode. While the popular title has hit well with critics, the same cannot be said about gamers themselves, who have it ranked with an unimpressive User Score of 3.5.
9. Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Metacritic Score: 81 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 7.3 (Averaged across platforms)
Lara Croft returns in the final act of her origin trilogy that began in 2013, pushing her to her limits in the darkest, grittiest chapter of the series. Shadow of the Tomb Raider successfully commemorates the legacy of the of the entire Tomb Raider franchise, while giving one of gaming’s strongest female characters a proper sendoff.
8. NBA 2K19
Metacritic Score: 83 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 3.0 (Averaged across platforms)
NBA 2K19 boasts itself as a solid portrayal of “real-life basketball excitement and culture.” Like FIFA 19, critics appear to agree, but its User Score indicates that there is plenty left to be desired. In fact, while rival game NBA Live 19, from Electronic Arts, received a lesser critic score, its 7.2 User Score says that – at this point – basketball fans may in fact prefer it to the NBA 2K series.
7. NHL 19
Metacritic Score: 83 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 7.0 (Averaged across platforms)
Take the ice against current players and hockey legends alike, competing on frozen ponds and state-of-the-art arenas as you and your team make your way to the top. NHL 19 takes top honors as the only sports game on the list that did reasonably well with both critics and fans.
6. Valkyria Chronicles 4
Metacritic Score: 83 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 8.1 (Averaged across platforms)
Despite minor issues that enthusiasts of the series can overlook, Valkyria Chronicles 4 gives fans the sequel that they have been waiting for. The art style alone has enough to pull players into the immersive setting that takes place during a world-at-war state.
5. Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age
Metacritic Score: 83 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 8.5 (Averaged across platforms)
Even though Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is the eleventh main title in the longstanding Dragon Quest series, the game is a completely standalone experience. Newcomers will be able to pick up the game and its mechanics immediately, while new characters and an immersive story will keep longtime fans of the series engaged and satisfied.
Metacritic Score: 83 / User Score: 8.6
In the mood for some gaming nostalgia? Look no further than CrossCode, available for PC. The retro-inspired 2D Action RPG takes cues from its 16-bit predecessors, creating a fun and challenging game with smooth graphics and fast-paced battle, amidst an enthralling sci-fi storyline.
3. Dust: An Elysian Tail (on Switch)
Metacritic Score: 86 / User Score: 8.5
In Dust: An Elysian Tail, players take control of Dust as he attempts to liberate an oppressed village. Dust: An Elysian Tail is a game that caters to the full spectrum of its gaming audience, providing a solid storyline for casual players to enjoy, and allowing more seasoned players to take on challenges to gain special rewards. Regardless of the type of player, all can enjoy the beautifully hand-painted characters and backgrounds.
Metacritic Score: 86 (Averaged across platforms) / User Score: 8.6 (Averaged across platforms)
In the whimsical platformer, Wandersong, players take control of a bard who uses music to save the world. The graphics are almost hypnotizing with a unique gameplay experience that is definitely worth checking out.
1. Marvel’s Spider-Man
Metacritic Score: 87 / User Score: 8.9
Marvel’s Spider-Man provides a fun and refreshing story that properly pays tribute to all that is “amazing” about the Spider-Man universe. Web swinging through the city alone is enough to make the game worth your time.