Luckily, what Overwatch lacks in story development, it more than makes up for in gameplay. Each of the game's more-than-20-strong roster feels like a complete and unique character. Plus, by allowing you (and even encouraging you) to swap out characters mid-match, there's more than enough opportunity to find the heroes or villains who fit your particular style of play. The basic controls are easy to pick up and quick to learn, but figuring out the best tactics to use, both for your character and as a part of a team, adds a layer of complexity that will take plenty of time to master. There are plenty of reasons to keep coming back to Overwatch as well. Outside of the main 6-vs.-6 multiplayer matches, you can test your skills in the Practice Range or solo against AI-controlled heroes. There are also weekly "Brawl Modes," which add a host of special rules to matches that guarantee to mix things up. One week you might only be able to play as Tank-class characters, and the next you might only be able to use headshots against the competition. While some fans might be upset that there's no offline component in Overwatch, the game isn't the first to require an always on-connection to the internet. The upside of this is that it gives Blizzard more flexibility when it comes to updating the game on the fly and dealing with any toxic players roaming around because of its unmoderated play


From a technical and design perspective, Grand Theft Auto V sets new bars. The world it presents is unrivalled in authenticity and vibrancy. It feels fluid and alive. Time passes organically, characters' lives progress, and there is a simply astounding quantity of side activities in which to engage. It's quite possible to explore the state of San Andreas for hours without moving the main story forward a stitch. In fact, that's part of the fun. And it's all been polished to a glossy sheen. The controls feel great, the visuals are lush, and a brilliant graphical interface empowers players, giving them all the information they need -- and only the information they need -- exactly when they need it. However, the writing isn't quite as sharp as it has been in previous installments; the humor is a bit broader and less sophisticated, and the main characters aren't as well developed (probably because there are now three), but this only impacts the overall experience a little. It remains a very impressive game. Keep in mind, though, that much of the content is unequivocally geared for adult audiences. And even then it will not be for all tastes. Grand Theft Auto V puts players in the roles of criminals who show little remorse for their evil actions, and often even take pleasure in them. It's a dark fantasy with the potential to prove immense fun for those who are mature enough to properly appreciate its adult humor and able to clearly distinguish between right and wrong. It is not a game for younger players with developing psychologies. And adults who don't have a taste for role-playing a life of crime should probably give this game a wide berth.


This action-adventure game does an amazing job of encouraging players to find their own way to play, which makes it very special. Right from the start, the game not only
challenges players to make the hard choices but to live with the consequences of those choices. After the game's opening sequence sets events in motion, players must choose whether to continue as either Corvo or Emily, each having their own unique set of skills. This choice is permanent for the playthrough, so if you want to see both characters' perspectives, you'll have to play from start to finish more than once. And whether you play stealthy and nonlethal, aggressive and deadly, or with or without powers, the game never lets you forget that there are consequences to your choices. It's a struggle to get the best results, but it's also a challenge to players to find creative solutions rather than just charging in, guns and blades blazing.Speaking of creative solutions, there's plenty in Dishonored 2's toolbox for players to get creative with. Both Emily and Corvo might have powers from the same source, but they're different enough that neither feels like a copy of the other. Corvo's Bend Time skill sees the former bodyguard slip in and out of well-guarded areas in the blink of an eye, while Emily's Domino ability can turn a guard into a sort of human voodoo doll, spreading whatever damage he takes to others. As diverse as the two heroes are, it's almost a shame that you'll completely miss out on experiencing one of them until you finish your first playthrough. Still, even though the game can take anywhere from 15 to 20 hours to complete, there are so many ways to play that each time feels different from the last. And while Dishonored 2's plot can be a bit predictable, that never stops it from being engrossing. Even though you have an idea where the story is going, you can't help but be eager to see how it gets there. It's not just Corvo and Emily's struggle that catches your interest either but also the supporting cast with their own stories to tell. Even the random NPCs in the background have conversations that feel real and expand on their daily lives in this fantasy realm. You get invested not only in the heroes but in the world as a whole.

Even as 47's interactions with Nika apparently change his routine, the secret agent, like the film and the video game, is all about the violence. Scene after scene (many rendered in slow motion and accompanied by "Ave Maria") shows him shooting, knifing, kicking, and fighting his opponents -- including the big bad Russians (Mikhail's brother is even more debauched) and very dedicated Interpol agent Mike Whittier (Dougray Scott). If Mike says it once, he says it four times: He's been chasing 47 for three years, "knows him better than anyone," and still can't keep up with 47's virtuoso scheming.For all his choreography, 47 remains awkward, especially around Nika. This might have made him sympathetic, but the film doesn't grant him much chance to speak, let alone put down his weapons. Dressed in a suit, his bald pate shiny under the harsh lights of railroad stations and hotel foyers, he tends to stand out, which repeatedly puts him on the run from authorities. True, he's good at what he does. But he also looks awfully tired.