Continuing our regular new feature with quick-fire reviews and impressions of what I’ve been playing this week, old and new and a bit of both…

Not giving a monkeys about frames per second meant that there was never any hesitation about sticking Forza Horizon 5 straight into Quality mode and enjoying what is possibly the best-looking game ever created! I reckon it might be one of the best driving games ever created too, striking a perfect balance between simulation and outright arcade racing, and the amount to get your teeth into is as gloriously bewildering as the attention to detail absolutely everywhere you look. Mexico plays the perfect host this time too!

Hypnospace Outlaw on Xbox Game Pass has become more than the stylish point-and-click detective and early internet tribute game it began as. Still doing that, but it’s evolved into a more complex and multilayered puzzle narrative that really suits dipping in now and again. Did have a go at Kill it With Fire on there too, a first-person spider hunting game that has you ransacking various locations to find spiders to kill in fiendish ways. It’s a lot like Untitled Goose Game, and finishing the first chapter confirmed that like that, this wasn’t really for me. Same for River City Girls, about to leave Game Pass – I like a beat ‘em up, but I’m not listening to that crap for hours!

The Alto boarding games on iOS are about as good as it gets on mobile, and my right thumb has spent dozens of hours playing both. Alto’s Odyssey: The Lost City is an Apple Arcade take on the sequel, and it’s great, but for even more hours spent playing it this week, I can’t really say what’s new except I’d lost all of my progress and unlocks! Thumper+ on there has all the bells and whistles too, but as much as I tried I just couldn’t get into its bombastic rhythm-action, which is set to an absolute visual feast. Taiko no Tatsujin Pop Tap Beat was a lot easier to get into, being a massive fan of that bonkers Japanese rhythm game series, and it’s eclectic mix of new tracks coupled with being perfectly suited to a phone screen makes it the winner so far on my second trial.

I’ve still got some shooters on the go – an old arcade one in Deathsmiles, a new PC one in Schildmaid MX, and a new old one in Gynoug, the classic Mega Drive shooter just rereleased on Switch and elsewhere that we reviewed here a couple of days ago! Oh yeah, I’m sneaking a small confession in here where no one will notice it… I predictably caved in at 5pm on Saturday (still sat in a football stadium for some extended injury time) when pre-orders of the brand new Collector’s Edition of the brand new Cotton game, Cotton Fantasy, went live! Finally, as always, a quick preview of what’s coming on the site, and next week we are rediscovering 2000A.D.’s very own Celtic Conan, Slaine on ZX Spectrum, including its very unique game mechanics!