Staff Picks: Rectify, a handheld game, and two helpings of Star Trek: Voyager

Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight

The Etrian series of dungeon crawls for Nintendo’s DS and 3DS handheld systems are the only games that I buy without reading reviews or waiting for critical consensus to build up. I know I’m going to dig whatever that team puts together, because I know it’ll always include three things: One, the series’ signature map-making system, which rewards cautious exploration, even as the simple pleasure of sketching my map puts me into a happy, nerdy trance. Two, battles that take my time and interest seriously, presenting me with thoughtful challenges instead of the rote button smashing and grinding that characterizes the fights in so many Eastern RPGs. And three, a feeling of innovation that arrives like clockwork with each new iteration; every Etrian game has fresh mechanics to explore, whether that takes the form of exploration-based mini-games, novel quests to …

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