*Breathes heavily into brown paper bag, anxiously awaiting the results of Tuesday’s nationwide election*
“How can I even write this?” Andy thinks as he sits in front of his computer, knowing full well that if the Democrats don’t take at least the House of Representatives our country is one step closer to losing its identity as a democracy. “Is this really the right time to be talking about games,” he ponders, “I mean, we’re talking about the possibility of the loss of voting rights nationwide, the possibility that a woman will lose her right to choose, that healthcare could be taken from millions who need it. We’re just going to be sitting here talking about Tetris, The Walking Dead, fucking Leisure Suit Larry. I think I’m going to throw up”. Andy grabs the nearest trash can so he can vomit into it. After cleaning off his face with a nearby tissue he starts to feel tears stream down his face. What the fuck are we going to do?
Tetris Effect (PS4/PSVR) – Releases Nov. 9th
According to Wikipedia, Tetris Effect has been in development since 2012. Director Tetsuya Mizuguchi, famed designer who has worked on Rez, Lumines and Space Channel 5, has had this idea floating around in his head for years; a musical Tetris game. “But wait, isn’t that what Lumines is?” you might be asking, but really what you should be asking yourself is WHY YOU ARE STILL READING THIS AND NOT VOTING!
Woah, VR from the studio behind Dark Souls, I bet that game is hardcore! Wait, you’re saying it’s a narrative based adventure game that is getting middling reviews? Damn, but I mean, this is all just bullshit anyway, right? I mean, Ruth Bader Ginsberg is going to retire soon and we’re truly fucked at that point. We’ll be lucky if From Software even gets to import games to the U.S. once we start putting tariffs on anything not made in America.
OVERKILL’s The Walking Dead (PC)
TellTale (probably) isn’t going to finish their Walking Dead game, but if you want a Left 4 Dead clone then why not check this out before our planet dies because of our government’s inaction on climate change. VOTE. Seriously though, is anyone still into The Walking Dead? The show is in the toilet, I have no idea if anyone reads the comics anymore, are we at the point where only the die hard fans are still around? TWD isn’t nearly as great as Oingo Boingo, but I’m pretty sure the only people who like Oingo Boingo anymore are the hardcore fans of Oingo Boingo. I watched The Nightmare Before Christmas the other night, it still holds up. Please vote.
Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry (PC) – Releases Nov. 7th
Oh jesus, fuck you. I can’t even with this game right now. Hacky jokes about Apple, hipsters, Tinder, smart phones, lootboxes. I need to throw up again.
11-11: Memories Retold (PC/PS4/Xbox One) – Releases Nov. 9th
Wow, this game looks beautiful, what’s it about? A Canadian soldier and a German soldier both want to escape WWI with their humanity intact and reunite with their loved ones? Cool, when do you think World War III is going to start, and when are we getting nuked? Someone hold me.
Ports and Re-releases:
Rogue Legacy (Switch) – The popular rogue-like is finally making its way to the Switch. Spend generation after generation gaining traits that will help you and your descendants advance further into the castle. It is up to you to do something TODAY that will help impact the lives of the people you love TOMORROW. You really need to vote.
World of Final Fantasy Maxima (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Released last November, this Pokemon-esque game is getting an update for existing releases, and a first time release on Switch. The update will add brand new heroes and monsters for you to collect and fight with, and here is a link to a page that will find your polling place for you: Vote.org
Valiant Hearts (Switch) – Like Child of Light, this game was developed by Ubisoft to be a kind of “indie” game. This four year old puzzle game takes place during WWI. I really wonder if my daughter is going to live in a world that is safe for her.
Hitman 2: Gold Edition (PC/PS4/Xbox One) – Releases Nov. 9th, Standard and Silver edition out on Nov. 13th. Technically this game comes out next week, but if you shell out $100 for the Gold Edition then you get to play four days early and get a shit load of extra stuff, including extra missions and digital swag that no one will pay attention to when you play online. Oh god, net neutrality, when is that shit going to bite us in the ass?
Carnival Games (PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – The Wii, er, classic, I guess, is getting a new edition for modern consoles. Originally announced for only the Switch, EA let slip that this was also going to come out for XBone and PS4. I’m not saying that EA still hates Nintendo, but they sure do seem to treat Nintendo like Republicans treat their constituents; badly.
The Shapeshifting Detective (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – I think it’s safe to say that FMV games are back, don’t you? We’ve had probably a dozen come out over the last year or two. In this game you play as, well, a detective who can shapeshift. You can use your powers to gain access to various people and get them to spill their secrets. The Russia investigation is still happening, imagine what would happen if congress stayed Republican, we’ll probably never get the answers we need.
Swords and Soldiers II: Shawarmageddon (PC/PS4) – This is the first of many terribly named games coming out this week. SaS II: S is a side scrolling RTS, and who doesn’t love that genre? God, I’m so tired. Sometimes I look at my hands and I wonder what good they’ll be in the future. Will any of this even matter? I guess we’ll find out around 8:00 pm pacific.
Transpose (PSVR/Rift/Vive) – Another VR game for the PlayStation 4, and it boasts an eight hour story; and I thought I was only going to barf because of the election, now you want me to spend eight hours in a VR headset? Yikes.
Fluffy Horde (PC) – Releases Nov. 7th. Another stupidly named game, and another side scrolling RTS game. I had never heard of this genre before and now we get TWO new games that use it? I hope everyone is happy that they shamed Steve Martin for saying Carrie Fisher was beautiful in a Tweet after she died, remember when that happened? You’ll be reminiscing for those days of blissful moral outrage when you’re stuck living in an oppressive oligarchy and we have actual, real problems worth being outraged over. Go vote.
Holy Potatoes! A Spy Story?! (PC) – Releases Nov. 7th. Stupidly named game number three. You know what, I’m not going to say anything about this game. What’s the fucking point? These are the titles we deserve. This is stressing ME.THE.FUCK.OUT.
Kursk (PC) – Releases Nov. 7th. The creators of this game are billing it as the first adventure/documentary video game. Okay, fine, just add it to the cart, I don’t care anymore.
Steel Rats (PC, possibly PS4 and XBone as well) – Releases Nov 7th. Stupid title number four, and the game doesn’t even look that bad either. I just can’t see myself saying “Hey man, have you played this rad new game Steel Rats? It’s sick, you ride a motorcycle and fight robots. I love Steel Rats”. Please don’t let MAGA hat wearing dickbags say that they “Owned the Libs”, go out and vote.
Rage In Peace (PC/Switch) – Releases Nov. 8th. Spend your day avoiding perilous obstacles as you try and get home so you can die peacefully in your sleep. Is this the second adventure/documentary game to ever be released, because after a day like today it sure seems like it is.
Notable Releases from 10, 20 and 30 years ago:
Ten years ago I was crying with joy when we got our first African American President, twenty years ago I thought I would be a Republican forever, and thirty years ago my grandma probably called Michael Dukakis a p***y. Alright, so which video games kept young people from going to the polls on Election Day? Let’s find out!
Gears of War 2 (Xbox 360) – Released Nov. 7th, 2008: Wiki Link
The previous week the PS3 had an exclusive shooter in Resistance 2, but this week it was Microsoft’s turn to shine as the highly anticipated Gears of War 2 released. Two years earlier, the first Gears of War game exploded on the market and gave many people a real taste of the power that Xbox Live had to offer, and with the release of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare in 2017, the power only increased. With the second Gears game we were shown more of the life and structure of the Locust, giving us a glimpse of their home and the other menacing hordes that populate it. Marcus and Dom came back and they did their best to help save humankind from extinction. You can help too, by voting.
Rush 2: Extreme Racing USA (N64) – Released Nov. 10th, 1998: Wiki Link
I had a hard time finding anything big that came out this week in 1998, just Rush 2, which is really kind of surprising. I think most companies must have been trying to steer clear of Ocarina of Time, which would have been slated to come out in just a few weeks on Nov. 23rd. For those not familiar, the Rush series was made up of four games; San Francisco Rush, Rush 2, San Francisco Rush 2049 and L.A. Rush. Each of these games was an arcade style racer that took more than a few ideas from the other Midway arcade racing game Crusin’ U.S.A. These games were really fun for what they were, however I don’t think they’ve aged very well and probably best belong in the past, like most of the ideas Republicans have. You really need to vote, and I really need to have another drink.
Phantasy Star (Sega Master System) – Released Nov. 1988, maybe?: Wiki Link
I really don’t know why I have this listed in my notes as coming out in November. From what I can tell, no one really has any idea when this came to North America because, like almost every other game from this time period, no one bothered or cared to write it down. In any case, it’s a fascinating launch story. When Phantasy Star launched in the U.S. in 1988 it was one of the most expensive video game titles of all time at $80.00 (US) (adjusted for inflation that would $170 in 2018). The game was so expensive that it was only $20 cheaper than the MSRP of the Sega Master System itself, which is pretty nuts. Can you imagine buying your PS4 Pro for $400 and then having to shell out $380 for Spider-Man? Phantasy Star is considered by many to be the defining console RPG, with many of its elements used in subsequent series such as Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior. The series would go on to spawn four sequels, a popular MMO (with a recent Japan-only port for Switch), and multiple spin-offs and compilations. As an added treat, this game is supposed to be coming out on Switch very soon, Nov. 15th to be exact, that’s exactly 9 days after we vote. You voted, right?