Not in Love w/ the Pokemon Combat in Ep 4
Overall, I really enjoyed the Rain-Slick games. I just finished Ep 4 and I think Ep 3 and 4 did a decent job of continuing the franchise. I'm not really a big fan of 3 and 4's art style, i.e. the pixelated retro look; but, if that's the direction the new developer wants to take it in, they're certainly entitled to do that. I like these games enough to look past the art style. Again, I think you guys did a pretty good job w/ Ep 3 and 4, below is just my personal criticism.
I really intensely disliked the Pokemon-esque way in which you deal w/ combat in Ep 4, specifically having monsters stand in for the characters while the characters themselves act as trainers. I understand why they did this, to bring something new to the franchise and open up tons of new avenues for exploring tactics and party setups, etc. Similarly, I think it's important to offer your audience new things in sequential games, but this setup just did not work for me at all. I felt really detached from the characters in Ep 4. I felt like the characters themselves were narrating the story, rather than participating in it. Rather than seeing Gabe's desire to always punch things acted out in combat and having that connection b/w the narrated character and this guy I'm seeing in combat, I got to see him talk about punching things and then a rodent w/ sunglasses stepped in to do it for him. Everytime I entered combat, I felt really disappointed that I had to deal w/ the personality-less weapons platforms again, rather than getting to use the characters I know from the previous episodes. The rare exceptions occured when Tycho joins your party, those were my favorite bits of Ep 4.
Maybe I'm in the minority here, since Pokemon is so ridiculously popular right now; but I absolutely did not care for this aspect of Ep 4 and I really hope it doesn't pop up in any potential Rain-Slick games in the future.