Blades of Time
I originally attempted to play X-Blades before tackling this one, but then I gave up after 3 stages. Why? Easy; because it sucked. Horrible weightless combat and a series of arenas with no exploration and no sense of adventure, but just wave after wave of enemies, till either the computer was bored of sending waves (eventually), your character died (no way, because the enemies dealt pathetic damage), or you died from boredom (the most likely outcome). Thus, I uninstalled that piece of shit and decided to instead go instantly for Blades of Time, this time a bit more wary after the suckage of X-Blades. Thankfully, Blades of Time is an enjoyable game, unlike SuX-Blades.
You take control of the hot treasure hunter, Ayumi, in a nice adventure that will take you across all manners of gorgeous-looking environments, while fighting a variety of menacing-looking monsters and solving puzzles through the power of time. Yes yes, it sounds like Sands of Time, but it's simpler both in terms of combat and in the kind of time powers you can use. Combat, specifically, consists of a single sword combo, a kick (which is useful against enemies with shields), a rifle to attack enemies from afar (when you use it, it switches to an over-the-shoulder camera view, similar to other third person shooters and you can deal more damage with headshots), some magic to help you with crowd control, and a dodge move to avoid attacks. You also have a rage meter, which is used to cast magic, but can also be for used for healing, and that's it. Honestly. No complex combos, no air-juggling, no blocking, no counter-attacking. As you progress through the game, you'll be finding chests that give you new equipment that grants a bonus, whether it is increasing the damage of a specific type of magic, increasing your health points, reducing the amount of rage you are using when casting magic, etc. The interesting thing about the equipment is that later loot isn't stronger than earlier loot; just different. You can totally complete the game with the earlier loot you find without any problem at all. You'll also find statues that, in exchange for souls you gain by destroying enemies/objects, will grant you new abilities (like dashing in mid-air) or enhance your magic. Unlike other games dealing with souls (like God of War), the process is automatic and you get no option to select the ability you want.
As for the time mechanics, they are also pretty simple. You can only rewind time (not slow it or move it fast-forward), but only if you are alive (thus, no coming back from the dead like in Sands of Time). Rewinding also doesn't undo any damage you might have received. In fact, what rewinding does is repeat the previous seconds for the enemies, as well as creating a clone of yourself that also repeats the actions you previously partook. Huh... I had no idea that rewinding time could work like that. You can also have more than one clone active at a time (yes, by rewinding when one clone is present, you can create a second one!) and they can be used for puzzle-solving (like putting a clone and yourself in two different pressure plates to open a door), distracting enemies (who will be attacking your clone instead of you, but do note that they will attack you if you attack them while they are distracted by a clone), or even killing specific enemies (like shooting a shielded enemy with many clones or killing an enemy who has been grabbed by a clone).
But how does it fare as a game overall? Well, it's gorgeous-looking and enjoyable, but it could have been better. Less linear exploration with secrets (you are a treasure hunter after all!), more weapon options and some combos or extra combat options would have both made the game more engaging and prevented its combat from being too repetitive, because at the end of the day, you'll be either shooting enemies, or hitting them till the finishing move prompt appears and then move to the next one and rinse and repeat. OK, maybe you also toss some magic here and there, some necessary use of the time rewind ability to combat shielded enemies, as well as lots of dodging, but you'll still feel that the way you are fighting the enemies doesn't really change all that much from beginning to the end. At least, while the game is not brutally hard, it can still be a challenge, as enemy attacks cause quite a bit of damage. Fun, but it does leave me wanting for more. Full list