New Game Releases 10/23/18 – 10/29/18

This quote originally appeared in an article by renowned journalist Stephen Glass:

“The polishing, rewrites, and reedits Andy does are immense. ‘I was working 100-hour weeks’ several times in 2018, Andy says. The finished Tuesday New Games column includes 9 new games, 2 ports, and many more games and DLC that people may or may not care about”.

Andy later issued a clarification to YouTube personality Filip Miucin, who posted it to his channel:

There seems to be some confusion arising from my interview with Stephen Glass. The point I was trying to make in the article was related to how the narrative and dialogue in the Tuesday New Games column was crafted, which was mostly what we talked about, not about the different processes of the wider family. After working on the column for a few hours on Monday, the senior writing team, which consists of three people, me, myself and I, had, as we always do, 3 to 4 hours of intense work when we wrapped everything up.

More importantly, I obviously don’t expect anyone else to live this way. Across the whole apartment, I have a wife and daughter who live very well purely because they’re passionate about an oekaki logic puzzle, or a particular episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, and I believe that passion shows in the Tuesday New Games column I release. Lots of other people live in an entirely different way and are just as fulfilled – I’m just not one of them! No one, wife or child, is ever forced to live hard. I believe we go to great lengths to run a family that cares about its people, and to make the apartment a great place for them to live”.

 

Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4/Xbox One) – Releases Oct. 26th

The time has come. After an eight year wait we finally have the follow-up to Red Dead Redemption, one that I would personally consider Rockstar’s greatest game of all time. However, instead of being a sequel to that masterpiece, we get a story that takes place BEFORE the events of the first RDR game (and also, like that game, it has zero connection to Red Dead Revolver). You play the game as Arthur Morgan, an outlaw who is part of the Van der Linde gang, on the run from bounty hunters and law enforcement after a bank heist gone wrong. As with previous Rockstar open world games (GTA, Bully) you operate on the opposite side of the law, but your criminal exploits can be as tame or as wild as you decide. With RDR 2 there is supposed to be a greater emphasis on reputation, with people either loving or hating you based on your past behavior. I’m really not sure what more I need to say about this game; it’s going to be everywhere and talked about by everyone. This is, by far, the biggest game release of the year. If you know someone in their early 20’s to late 30’s you should prepare to not see them for a few days; send water.

Just Dance 2019 (PS4/Switch/Wii/Wii U/Xbox 360/Xbox One)

Need some counter programming to Red Dead Redemption 2? Why not a rhythm game! It’s been 9 years of annual releases in this Ubisoft slumber party staple, and guess what, if you were dancing to this game on your Wii at age 9 you can keep on dancing at your high school graduation with the same Wii! That’s right, Just Dance 2019 is still being made for Wii, Wii U and the Xbox 360; way to keep those consoles alive!

Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales (PC) – Coming to PS4 and Xbox One later this year

Are you a fan of Gwent? If so then have I got a game for you! Set in the universe of The Witcher, you will travel the world doing, whatever it is you do, getting into trouble and slaying monsters. However, it seems that you are really just going from one Gwent match to another (a game that makes zero sense to me, please explain it). I’m a bit reminded of Puzzle Quest, in which you basically move around a map going from puzzle fight to puzzle fight, however this does look a bit more involved than that game. I don’t know, could be a lot of fun if you’re a fan of The Witcher.

My Hero: One’s Justice (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Oct. 26th

Damn, this is coming out on exactly the same day as Red Dead Redemption 2, talk about guts. Would you expect anything less from Midoriya, though? Going up against foes bigger than himself is kind of his M.O., the only question is will he triumph over the big guy or end up getting crushed under the weight of his own hubris? I guess you could also just wait a few weeks to buy it after beating RDR 2.

 

 

Ports and Re-releases:

Castlevania Requiem: Symphony of the Night & Rondo of Blood (PS4)Releases Oct. 26th. What do you do when the biggest game of the year is coming out? You release a 2 for 1 pack of arguably the greatest Castlevania game of all time, and another that hardly anyone has played. Rondo of Blood originally came out on the PC-Engine (Turbo Grafix 16) in 1993, and only in Japan. After two years a remake named Dracula X came out for the Super Nintendo, as it was leaving the market, to generally unfavorable reviews. According to Wikipedia, Symphony of the Night was also poorly received by the public when it was originally released on the PlayStation back in 1997, but unlike Dracula X, word of mouth helped it gain popularity, and it was eventually regarded by many as the Castlevania series’ crowning achievement. If you missed this when a similar collection came out for the PSP back in 2007, now is your chance to snatch it up.

Windjammers (Switch). This strange sports title was originally released on the Neo Geo back in 1994. Now with a sequel on the way, we are getting a re-release of the game on Switch. The game appears to play like pong but with Frisbees, on the beach; tight.

 

 

Expansions:

Spider-Man DLC 1: The Heist (PS4) – According to this Polygon article, the first Spider-Man DLC pack is called The Heist and will cost $9.99. You can also opt to buy the season pass, called The City That Never Sleeps, for $24.99 and, I assume, save five bucks on all three pieces of DLC. The Heist seems to focus on Black Cat, the sultry cat burglar that has been an on again/off again love interest for Peter Parker. There are also three new suits included, and I understand that they recently made an update to the game that added a ‘new game+’ mode and added a bunch of new features to picture mode. I’m still crossing my fingers for a good price on Black Friday.

 

 

Everything else:

Nickelodeon Kart Racers (PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Mascot filled kart racing games have been around for so long that it’s basically a genre all on its own. In this one you can race around brightly colored tracks as all four Ninja Turtles, Spongebob, Patrick, and Sandy, Arnold and Helga, and Angelica, Tommy and Reptar. There’s no Chucky though, so that’s lame.

PAW Patrol: On A Roll (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releasing to the delight of every 3-6 year old, as well as lame 7-10 year old’s, comes PAW Patrol: On A Roll! The title is a line from the show that I totally get the meaning of because I have a toddler who would probably give her last goldfish cracker to be able to play this game. The good news is that she has no idea it exists, and we’re going to keep it that way. DO NOT BUY THIS FOR HER FOR CHRISTMAS, MOM!

Lethal League Blaze (PC) – Releases Oct. 24th. Not content to let Windjammers be the only weird sports game to come out this week, indie developer Team Reptile appear to be releasing their first game, called Lethal League Blaze. The art style is pretty nice, has an anime vibe to it and, from what I can tell in the trailers, seems to be a mix of Smash Bros. and tennis. Could be a lot of fun, and I predict it will be released on the Switch next year.

Eternum EX (PC/ Switch) – Releases Oct. 25th. Created as an homage to classic 80’s arcade games, Eternum EX has a purposeful scanline look to it. As in those classic arcade games, all the action seems to take place on one screen, or at least a single arena, in which you must collect treasure and defeat evil monsters.

Halloween Pinball (Switch) – Releases Oct. 26th. EnjoyUp Games has been steadily releasing digital pinball tables on the Switch over the past few months. Usually I ignore them because they look kind of cheap and uninteresting, and this one still does, BUT it’s going to be Halloween soon and in the spirit of things I thought it would be nice to highlight this table. If you want even more Halloween themed pinball tables from EnjoyUp Games you can pick up Mummy Pinball and Werewolf Pinball.

 

 

Notable Releases from 10, 20 and 30 years ago:

Time to take a dive into the past and see what games you were playing as the leaves were starting to change color and mom was baking sugar cookies in the oven, you know the ones. She’d whip up some frosting, or get a can of the Betty Crocker stuff, and make little pumpkins, bats and witch’s hats. I miss my mom, she lives in another state now and we barely see each other anymore. Hey, do you guys also love your grandma’s? I do too.

Fallout 3 (PC/PS3/Xbox 360) – Released Oct. 28th, 2008: Wiki Link

After finding success with their Elder Scrolls series, Bethesda took their engine from Oblivion, re-worked it, and crafted a universally loved sequel, well almost. The first two Fallout games had developed a big cult following in the ten years between the release of parts 2 and 3, and they didn’t really find the changes Bethesda made to be inspired or realistic. The web forum No Mutants Allowed was the most vocal of the detractors and took offense to the fact that a game taking place in a post-nuclear wasteland contained unspoiled food, wooden structures that were still standing, guns and ammo just lying around in massive quantities, and full first aid kits. For people like me, I could have cared less. Fallout 3 is an amazing game with tons of replay value. No two games are exactly the same, and even if you try and follow the same path every time, something will be different. Bethesda did to Fallout what Rockstar and the Houser brothers did to Grand Theft Auto, updated it for modern hardware and introduced the series’ world and concepts to the mass market. After Fallout 3 we got the (superior) New Vegas, Fallout 4 and this fall’s Fallout ’76. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for this franchise, but honestly, you could pick up any of the modern Fallout games and have a blast with them, as they have aged remarkably well and offer an almost endless amount of stuff to do.

F-Zero X (N64) – Released Oct. 26th, 1998: Wiki Link

While the amount of time between F-Zero games wasn’t as long as the ten years between Fallout 2 and 3, there was still a pretty lengthy eight year gap between F-Zero and F-Zero X. With no sequel on the Super Nintendo, fans had to wait until the N64 was three years into its life cycle before they got a new F-Zero game. However, the wait was absolutely worth it. Apart from the graphical upgrade (which was panned at the time), the game now boasted a roster of 30 racers, 26 of them being brand new to the series. With 24 tracks to race on, and so many characters, you could play the game endlessly for hours. As time went on we got one more F-Zero game on the GameCube, and a version for the Game Boy Advance (two if you count the Japan only exclusive), and then…POOF, gone. I’m always baffled by Nintendo’s seeming disregard for certain franchises. They’ll pour a bunch of time and effort into making a new franchise like Arms, but won’t release a game from an already established series like F-Zero, Pilotwings or Wave Race. Well, at least we’re getting a new Animal Crossing.

Donkey Kong Classics (NES) – Released Oct. 1988: Wiki Link

Surprisingly, when the NES launched in 1985 they did not release Donkey Kong, Nintendo’s most well-known game, as a launch title. It wouldn’t release for another 8 months, when it would come out with their other classic arcade titles Donkey Kong Jr., Donkey Kong 3, Mario Bros. and Popeye in June of 1986. With the release of the NES Action Set in 1988 (the one that came bundled with Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt and the zapper) there was renewed interest in the console, and Nintendo decided that after two years since their initial release, they would package Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong Jr. in one cartridge and call it Donkey Kong Classics. Released around the same time as Super Mario Bros. 2, it was perfect as a quick add-on item at the register, a chance for people to both see where Mario came from and to remember why they loved Nintendo in the first place. It would be far from the last re-release of Donkey Kong, but it could perhaps be the most remembered.