Now that it's March, Four in February is done for the year. On the games I planned this year... I didn't beat a single one. I didn't even play any of them except for a little bit of Shantae and the Pirate's Curse.
What I did do however, was beat a different set of 4 games, some of which probably not many have heard of. Figured the games might be worth talking about a little bit.
Game #1: Alwa's Awakening
A game that actually came out during Four in February (it released February 2nd), this one was on my radar for awhile. It's essentially a slightly easier, more fantasy-themed Battle Kid - a new platformer styled like - and as difficult as - most classic NES games. The difficulty part deserves some emphasis, as there's a bit of a difficulty spike after the first half, mainly in a combination of hazard setups and a small amount of checkpoint starvation. It's not a complete deal breaker, but anyone coming into the game casually might not like it so much.
As someone who really likes 8-bit art/music style and metroidvanias in general, I personally loved playing this one. Hoping the semi-setup for a potential sequel can turn into something later.
Game #2: Kirby's Star Stacker
This one was entirely on accident, cause I didn't know the game could really be beat. I always thought Kirby's Star Stacker was an endless game (there is an endless mode though). Once I found out it's just 5 runs in Round Mode though, I ended up getting through it rather quickly.
The game's super simple - trap stars between 2 of the same animal to catch them, and collect a certain number to clear the round. It was simple enough that I beat Super Hard difficulty in minutes without losing once. The only real challenge I had was near the end of Insane difficulty, and that's only cause I never knew the mechanic for pressing up to swap blocks without rotating.
As a cheap Virtual Console game, it's not too bad, though I'd recommend getting it at a discount.
Game #3: Bleed 2
Bleed 2 went by so quickly I forgot it even released in February. It was a short and sweet game, so I didn't think of counting it, but never the less it was a game I beat in February. There's not much to say outside of what's shown in the trailer. I haven't tried co-op, but it sounds like a good way to shake things up a little. The game's easily worth picking up.
Game #4: English Country Tune
Probably the game not many have heard of in this list, English Country Tune is... interesting.Probably one of my favorite puzzle games in recent memory from how it's set up. Simple ideas are shown - push a ball into a goal, push a cube off the map - but the ways to pull off the tasks get more complicated over time. With a couple small exceptions, the puzzles changed relatively well enough that nothing felt overwhelming. Even the exceptions, once figured out, made future puzzles easier to understand.
This was easily one the best random game I've gotten from the many game bundles I've purchased over the years.
Game #5: Wario Land 3
...yeah, I actually beat more than 4 games this time. Good thing too since Bleed 2 and Kirby's Star Stacker were on the quick side.
I hadn't planned on playing Wario Land 3 for awhile, mainly because I still haven't played 2 of the games before it (I actually have the Virtual Boy one, but no system to play it on). Watching the game on a stream recently though made me want to pick it up sooner. It's hard for me to say what I think of the game mainly because of how different it felt from other platformers I've played. Being essentially immortal for the entire game - while not completely new to me (Bit.Trip Runner also has that mechanic) - felt so unnatural, yet it worked so well. The powerups were well spaced out, and the levels were well made to use them. This felt worth picking up, and makes me want to play the rest of the series sooner rather than later.
Game #6: Castlevania
Castlevania was the one game in my list last year that I never beat. I reached Death, but couldn't beat him no matter how much I tried. This year, I decided to fix that.
There's not much I can really say on this one except... I honestly didn't like this one as much as I thought I would. Maybe it's because I was into the later games more. I will say, I do appreciate the game for what it is.
While my original Four in February plans didn't pan out, I'd still say this year was an overall success. There's still plenty to do for the backlog overall though. Even with 6 games down last month, there's still nearly 850 games left, with quite a few more coming in the next few days. With that in mind, I'm considering a couple games for what's dubbed More in March. For the moment, I'm planning on playing through Horizon Zero Dawn, Hollow Knight, and Blaster Master Zero. Time permitting, maybe I'll get through Breath of the WIld and Super Bomberman R, the latter supposedly being pretty short overall. For now though, I'll at least take some comfort in knowing I made some progress on the backlog.