The eternal return of monsters to collect, the reference agricultural simulation, a great adventure for the chef and the king of Japanese RPGs in remake and in book: this is our fun pick of the week.
Two cult episodes of the Pokémon series return to Switch with a makeover, while Farming Simulator 22 lives up to the series’ reputation for wealth and excellence. In Epic Chef, the role-playing game is reinvented as a culinary epic while Final Fantasy, a mainstay of the genre, celebrates its past on screen and in print.
Shiny Diamond / Shiny Pearl Pokémon
It’s the same song, but why complain if it’s good? Often accused of repeating itself, Pokémon does not hide it this time, since Sparkling Diamond and Sparkling Pearl are remakes of episodes released in 2006 on DS that today benefit from the superior power of the Switch. It’s not a real surprise, then, but a kind of homecoming that we may also find comforting. Because there is something reassuring in the chorus of images and sounds in this adorable diptych that reaffirms the series’ founding convictions: adventure awaits us at the bend of every country road, living constitutes fascinating terrain. Studying and discovering is a pleasure in itself. The Pokémon exercise is always profitable.
South Switch, The Pokémon Company / Nintendo, around € 60
Farming Simulator 22
A former surprise hit that has become an annual bestseller, Farming Simulator does not miss its 2022 edition, as always richer than the previous one (with a new seasonal cycle, a construction method, new vehicles, production lines, etc. .). More than a professional simulation, Farming Simulator is a total game: a Minecraft for adults, a pacifist and country GTA in which it is at the wheel of a tractor that we rush to the sound of music. It is, above all, the very essence of video games: a work that celebrates the pleasure of making, discovering its effects and settling in time. The niche game has become a monument.
Sur PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X / S, Mac, Windows et Stadia, Giants Software / Koch Media, from € 40 to € 50
Common heir to Stardew Valley and Top Chef (or Overcooked to remain in the gaming world), Epic Chef challenges chef RPG. In addition to completing various missions and cultivating our garden, it is by winning fights in the stoves that we advance in its history. But since it’s a video game, everything is quantified, measurable, including the success of a dish, which makes the whole thing as spicy as it is exhilarating. But not as much as the eccentric outbursts that the Barcelona-based study Infinigon gives us (at random: the encounter with “Jesus the carpenter” who swears to “save our wallet”) and that, despite their slowdowns, are the best reason to continue the adventure.
Sur Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X / S et Windows, Infinigon Games / Team 17 Digital, around € 25
Final Fantasy V: Pixel Remaster + Final Fantasy: Ultimania Memorial Official Encyclopedia (Volume 3)
In video games, “remastered” can mean a wide variety of things. In the case of the Final Fantasy reissues, which have been released since the summer, it is a process close to the restoration of the pictures in question, with redesigned sprites without betraying the originals, reworked colors (and music) … Clearer narratively than Episodes IV, VI or VII but just as exciting, Final Fantasy V comes out transfigured. We could not recommend too much to delve into the last volume of the Official Encyclopedia of the saga dedicated to parts I to VI, which masterfully combines the functions of an art book, guide and, to some extent, making of. It also helps to dream, whether or not we have spent dozens of hours in games or not, because these drawings, screenshots and various texts have in themselves an incredible power of evocation.
Game: Square Enix, on Windows, iOS and Android, around € 18; book: Mana Books, 336p., € 39.90
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