I just took two weeks off for the Christmas holidays. While the first week was spent with access to only a laptop with a basic integrated graphics chip — and thus ruled out playing any game less than six years old — my avowed goal for the second week was to finally make inroads into two games that had been on my to-do list for a while: Alien Isolation and Elite Dangerous. I installed them both. Played them both. The idea was that I’d at least finish Alien in that week and have a review of it ready to kick off 2015; that the spot ended up being taken by Shovel Knight says a lot about both games, I think, but principally what it says is that Shovel Knight is really a pretty great game indeed.