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Martin Robinson

Features and Reviews Editor

Martin is Eurogamer's features and reviews editor. He has a Gradius 2 arcade board and likes to play racing games with special boots and gloves on.

Featured articles

FeatureWe've played the PlayStation Classic, and it's underwhelming

Mediocre emulation and an anaemic list of games - though there's still some magic there.

I first heard of it through a playground rumour; whisperings there was a machine that could run Ridge Racer, the game that had been wowing us all over the summer holidays at whatever low-rent seaside resort our families had dragged us to. And what's more, someone knew a friend of a friend who had one - who'd imported one from Japan and had Namco's polygon-rich racer playable in their own living room.

Having seen through the 60 hours or so of Red Dead Redemption 2's story, I'm now a dozen more into the meat of it all; the idling around a lush open world, picking up threads of stories here and there, tracking the trails of legendary animals in the wilds or following the rumours of supernatural goings on and seeing whatever dark forest they might lead to. It's the part of any Rockstar game I love the most, made all the more enjoyable when everyone's wading through those uncharted areas together, where whispers of strange NPCs or derelict households are shared online like tales around a campfire. It's where the freedom, brilliance and detail of these open world marvels really comes into focus.

Typical, isn't it? You wait an age for some sugar-soaked drum-based rhythm action games to come to the Switch, and then two land on the very same day. Well, actually I couldn't really wait - I've had Bandai Namco's Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum n' Fun on import since it came out in Japan a few months back, complete with the drum kit that brings this arcade classic alive, while I've spent the past week with Gal Metal, the extreeeeeme rhythm action title that's been ushered into existence by Tak Fuji, star of E3 2010.

It's one of those cute ironies that Rockstar Games, most famous for the virtual cityscapes of the Grand Theft Auto series, would create what many consider its masterpiece when working with the dust and dirt of the wilds. When it launched in 2010, the open-world western Red Dead Redemption was as refreshing as a chill blast of mountain air: a bucolic, melancholy counterpoint to the madcap urban caricature of GTA. And so it's fitting that the sequel, Red Dead Redemption 2, makes its greatest strides in its world.

Seven years after it first came out, what is there left to say about Dark Souls? You know that it's harsh but fair; that it's enigmatic yet enriched by the deepest lore; that its combat is weighty and well-balanced, and that it's the most fastidiously dissected, widely praised video game of this generation or the last.

Every year, some of the best drivers in the world - champions from F1, the WEC, NASCAR and the WRC amongst other disciplines - get together to work towards the answer of that perennial motorsport fan's pint-fuelled topic: what if you could put every driver in identical machinery? What if you could strip away the technical side of the sport and find out, once and for all, who's the fastest driver of them all?

There's a dividing line in Resident Evil's history, a fracture that tears the series almost neatly into two. On the one side there's the creeping dread of the original trilogy; slow, sometimes cumbersome but rarely anything short of terrifying. And then there are the later games, where the camp is amped up alongside the action until it's something of a chaotic din. They're both enjoyable, in their own ways, even if the older games have a certain class that sets them apart.

Feature20 years of Level-5

From Layton to Ni No Kuni, a tour of one of Japan's greats with Akihiro Hino.

Back in 2000, the then 32-year-old Akihiro Hino sat down to play Dragon Quest 7 - the latest instalment in a series he, and indeed much of Japan, held dear. It was Dragon Quest that inspired Hino to go into the video games industry, after all. When playing the third entry over a decade earlier, he was smitten, fascinated with how so much was done with so little; how the animation and artwork, so simple in its execution, conspired to make something so touching and moving. It was like, Hino said, being hit over the head.

FeatureThe big Forza Horizon 4 interview

Playground Games on bringing the series back home, selling up to Microsoft and plenty more.

Forza Horizon 4 is here! And what a game it is - I've spent the last few days blitzing through Playground Games' exquisitely crafted composite of the United Kingdom, and marvelling at the beauty of it all. It's not just one of the best racing games in years - it's one of the very best open world games, too.

Want to feel old? Maybe cast a glance over what Mega Man looks like today - or feel how all that muscle memory that held together those older games has atrophied to nothing as you struggle through the almighty challenge posed by this, Capcom's internally-developed revival of its legendary series that arrives a fashionable 12 months late to Mega Man's 30th anniversary. There might be an all-new look to Mega Man, the harsh pixel edges of old buffed out and a dash of cartoon colour injected into its world, but that doesn't mean the challenge has been smoothed off. This is a game that will make your fingers bleed, if you let it, and it takes great pride in doing so.

FIFA hasn't always had the best run on handhelds. A few years back the Vita got a fairly splendid outing around the launch of PlayStation's portable - only for the next Vita instalment to simply offer new kits while still sporting a full-fat pricetag, a trick that, unbelievably, EA tried again the following year. I'll never forget the grimace on the face of EA Sports' David Rutter as he painfully churned out the company line. "It's the same great gameplay," he said, at once resigned and apologetic. "And new kits."

FeatureDante returns: Hideaki Itsuno on Devil May Cry 5

Plus Dragon's Dogma 2 and Rival Schools 3, of course.

Dante is back. And so, it seems, is Capcom, the Osaka-based company on a winning streak the likes of which we haven't seen since its 90s and early 00s pomp. Resident Evil 7 successfully brought the series back to its horror roots while delivering a modern twist, and Monster Hunter World finally gave that series the recognition it deserved in the west, while on the horizon there's the exquisite looking Mega Man 11 and next year's sumptuous Resident Evil 2 remake.

I can honestly say I've rarely been happier this year: walking through a busy Shinjuku arcade, sliding down into an all-new Sega racer and then letting some of the blue-sky goodness and distinguished style wash over me. There's something just right about Sega and arcade racing, and even if it's not exactly been quiet in that regard in recent years - the Initial D series has been bubbling along brilliantly - this feels like a return to an older order, with Sega World Drivers Championship slotting neatly into a lineage that includes the likes of Scud Race.

You don't really associate the day-glo world of Splatoon with a sense of melancholy, so it's been strange these past few days walking around Splatoon 2's lobby and seeing the cloud of gloom that's recently hung over Inkopolis. There, in little sketches that hang over players heads like thought bubbles, were scruffy laments for the imminent end of free online, and the launch of Nintendo's paid service. Last night, as I walked the lobby one last time before paying up the Ł17.99 for a year's subscription, those thought bubbles were absent - another feature, it transpires, that's now behind a paywall.

Even now, all these years later, there remains an air of luxury around the Neo Geo. These were once premium machines, with premium price-tags to boot - as a kid I'd look wistfully at the shelves that contained those gloriously oversized AES clamshell cases with their muscular artwork, wondering if there would ever be a time when I'd be able to sample the pleasures within. They played premium games, too, from the style and swagger of The King of Fighters series through to the impeccably detailed and winningly characterful pixel work of Metal Slug.

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