Five games you missed while you were playing Titanfall

While you've been obsessed with big name games like Titanfall, there's plenty you've missed. The Herald's gaming staff assess the best of the smaller releases that might have passed you by.
Check out these great games you may have missed while you were playing Titanfall. Photo / AP
Check out these great games you may have missed while you were playing Titanfall. Photo / AP

Tearaway


Platform: Playstation Vita
Read the Herald's review: Four-and-a-half stars
I'm not sure there's a good descriptor for Tearaway that isn't the word 'delightful'. Tearaway, developed by the studio behind LittleBigPlanet, is one of the first Vita games to take full advantage of the Vita's touchpad, accelerometer and camera without doing an annoying hack job of it. Tearaway is also the best native Vita game available. The beautiful, faux-papercraft art, amusing story and fluid controls make it a production of the highest quality. Sadly, while it's at least as good as the LittleBigPlanet games, the fact that it's Vita-only means it's unlikely that Tearaway's main character, the Messenger, will ever reach Sackboy levels of fame.
- Siobhan Keogh

Fez

Platform: Playstation Vita
Read the Herald's review: Four-and-a-half stars
Fez should be famous for more than being the Best Supporting Actor in Indie Game: The Movie. It's seen the light of day on multiple platforms, won widespread industry acclaim, and racked up a tonne of sales since 2012- but people still talk about Animal Crossing and Flappy Bird. It's criminal. This year it arrived on the PlayStation Vita, the home of awesome handheld games that few people play because few people own one.

Grab a Vita and grab Fez. Lose yourself in level after level of addictive puzzle-platformer gameplay and allow yourself to be smothered in all that sweet nostalgia - starting with that subtle Zelda shout-out at the start.
- Troy Rawhiti-Forbes

OlliOlli

Platform: Playstation Vita
Read the Herald's review: Three-and-a-half stars

I've smashed my face into walls more times than I can remember. I've crashed onto steps, done the splits over hand rails and cracked my knees and ankles so many times by rights I shouldn't be able to walk. Yet I keep coming back for more. That's because OlliOlli provides all of the thrills of skateboarding with none of the risks. Yes, the graphics are basic and blocky, the gameplay is simple and the ridiculously complex control system can take weeks to master. But once you get the hang of things, you'll find OlliOlli is nearly impossible to put down. I never leave home without it. Heck, it's almost enough to make me take up skateboarding again. If only my knees were up to it.
- Chris Schulz

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

Platform: Nintendo 3DS
The direct sequel to the most inspirational Zelda adventure - 1991's A Link to the Past - arrived at the same time as the next-generation consoles, and it went straight under the carpet. It says a lot for the struggles that handheld games have to get attention that this faithful recreation of ALTTP's Hyrule and its delicious new twist on the classic Dark World didn't turn gaming on its head like a console-based Zelda would. The clever new weapons rental system helps deliver the least linear Zelda yet, which might help keep cynics from feeling that they've seen it all before.
- Troy Rawhiti-Forbes

Dark Souls II

Platforms: PS3, XBox 360, PC
Read the Herald's review: Five stars

It's not a good idea to play Dark Souls II in the same way that it's not a good idea to take crack cocaine. It's great at first. Then all of a sudden months have passed, you haven't eaten for days, there's cardboard over your windows and you're waking up on the floor of your lounge craving another fix. There aren't many, if any, games out there with the depth, breadth, intricacy and difficulty level of the Dark Souls sequel. It'll hook you in a way that the Titanfalls and Halos of the world never could. But if you're going to start playing, make sure you clear out your calendar and kiss your loved ones goodbye. It's going to be a long ride.
-Hayden Donnell

- nzherald.co.nz

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