Not a whole lot this week, folks. In fact, your top title originally came out on PC back in 2019, so maybe take some time to polish off that back catalog a bit, or maybe get some rest before you stay up all night playing next week’s Persona 5 Strikers.
With so few titles coming out I’m just going to speed run these and show off the ones that looks the most interesting; enjoy!
Anodyne 2: Return To Dust (PS4/PS5/Switch/Xbox One/Series X|S) – Releases Feb. 18th
Speed Limit (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Feb. 17th
King of Seas (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Feb. 18th
Warhammer 40,000: Dakka Squadron (PC) – Releases Feb. 18th (Released on mobile devices in 2020)
Gravity Heroes (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Feb. 19th
Ports and Re-releases:
SNK v Capcom: Match of the Millennium (Switch) – Releases Feb. 17th
I really dig SNK’s commitment to releasing the best games from their library, something Nintendo could learn a lesson from when adding games to the NES/SNES Switch apps.
Tales From The Borderlands (PC/PS4/Xbox One) – Releases Feb. 17th
This isn’t so much a re-release/remaster, but instead it is welcoming the game back to digital storefronts. After the shuttering of Telltale Games back in 2018, some of their titles started to disappear from all of the digital game stores, sadly. Now, fans of the Borderlands series must be feeling a little happier today as the very well received Tales From The Borderlands is finally back in stores! Although, if you were a Borderlands fan then you probably already owned it, meaning you could still download it whenever you wanted, so I guess this is for new fans and procrastinators, whatever, this blurb is already too long.
Azur Lane: Crosswave (Switch) – Releases Feb. 16th
30XX (PC) – Releases Feb. 17th in early access
Void Gore (PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Feb. 17th
Voyage (PC) – Releases Feb. 19th
Notable Releases from 10, 20 and 30 years ago:
Killzone 3 (PS3) – Released Feb 22nd, 2011: Wiki Link
Hey, remember motion controls and 3D television sets? Man, those were going to be the future of entertainment, right? All of us gamers, living in a utopia where the living room became our holodecks, allowing us to fully immerse ourselves into the games, and live out our wildest fantasies. Hahahahahaha! Ignoring all that bullshit, Killzone 3 is a decent first person shooter that is too self serious, even though it tried to be less serious than its far, FAR, too serious predecessor, Killzone 2. Developer Guerrilla Games, now best known for the Horizon series, wanted Killzone 3 to be bigger, better, and more coherent than their previous title, and in fact, they even made it a point to have their characters swear less in Killzone 3, a departure from the, “You fucking fuckers and your mother fucking, piss & shit faces are fucking getting on my fucking nerves. I can’t fucking wait to fuckin’ kill all you stupid, bitch-ass mother fuckers, and shit…fuckers” dialogue from Killzone 2, going instead for the more subtle, “You are getting on my nerves you FUCKING BASTARDS!“, see, subtle, and much more striking. As we were entering a new decade, the generic space marine with big gun fighting bad aliens trope was starting to wear thin, but that didn’t stop game outlets from overpraising the game, decrying that 3D video games (like 3D movies, not 3D polygons) and motion controls were ABSOLUTELY the 100% future of video games and we’ll never see any serious, AAA games that don’t incorporate one or the other into their titles, and I think this dog & pony show clouded their judgement, because while Killzone 3 has some okay moments, it’s an ugly game that does nothing new in the FPS genre. None of the characters are interesting, and aren’t nearly as three dimensional as their actual three dimensional models (both stereoscopic and polygon wise), leaving players with a sense of “why am I doing any of this“. Still, at only about 6 hours long, Killzone 3 can easily be played over the course of a week or a long weekend, that is if you can pull yourself away from all those 3D television programs you watch every day, or all the brand new motion controlled games you so desperately crave.
Star Wars: Starfighter (PS2) – Released Feb. 19th, 2001: Wiki Link
1999’s Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace was a bad movie, not just because it was poorly written, acted, and directed, but because it was also such a huge disappointment for not living up to the expectations of fans. Despite this, the movie was still a box office smash and aroused the curiosities of the let down fans, particularly as they wondered what this world was like when people weren’t fighting over trade blockades and debates in the space senate. The extended Star Wars universe has always been ripe with some of the best content in the series, including comics, books, and of course, video games. Flight simulators and Star Wars had been a good match over the years, being rivaled only by chocolate and peanut butter, with classic titles like X-Wing and Rogue Squadron, so with a new flight sim coming to the brand new PS2, fans must have been stoked, but they should have remembered what happened back in ’99. Star Wars: Starfighter is a bad game, with terrible controls and boring game play, sorry. While previous flight sim games set in the Star Wars universe had been slam dunks, this new title suffered most for being associated with Episode I, having players shoot their way through a series of missions that lead up to the most boring planetary blockade in film history. However, like the movie it is based on, fans lost their minds and snapped up as many copies as they possibly could, making the title one of the best selling games of the year and prompting the creation of a sequel, Jedi Starfighter. Being a Star Wars fan is tough sometimes, and I wonder if we’d all have been better off with just those first three movies and nothing more.
Double Dragon III: The Sacred Stones (NES) – Released Feb. 1991: Wiki Link
Rounding out this week’s slate of disappointing notable titles, we have the NES’ Double Dragon III: The Sacred Stones. I will say, though, that what makes Double Dragon III so disappointing is the hardware it is made for, as it is a game with too many ideas for the NES, a system that was still generating tons of cash for Nintendo and its licensees, but was now starting to show its flaws when compared to the new 16-bit systems (including the SNES in Japan). While the Double Dragon games had always had a reputation for being a tough game for only the most hardcore players, the previous two entries at least gave the player a chance, and it also kept the combat straightforward and fun. In DDIII, combat and game play was made much more complicated, with players having to input various button combinations to make special attacks, something that would be more easily done on an SNES of Genesis controller, made much more cumbersome with the NES’ A/B button configuration. I am also not the only one who felt that Double Dragon III was a step down from its previous entries, as the game is the worst selling cart in the franchise’s history, up to that point. Critical and commercial reception was very poor, having left publisher Acclaim with half a million unsold copies. It probably didn’t help that when the game was brought to North America, it was actually made MORE difficult, giving players less health and increasing the number of enemies in each stage. Even playing this game on the Switch with save states is difficult, as you are given no lives, meaning that you must beat the entire game in one sitting without dying, a fucking impossibility. Maybe this was done to dissuade kids from renting it from Blockbuster and finishing it in a weekend, but the gamble didn’t pay off because it, well, sold really, really poorly. Oh, one final note, this is where the name “Bimmy” comes from, a long time Double Dragon in-joke. The characters names are Billy and Jimmy, and while playing as a single player, Billy is named correctly. Yet, when you fire up two player mode, Billy is improperly translated as Bimmy, giving us one of the all time great video game jokes; classic localization mix up. Thankfully, Double Dragon did not end here, with part IV releasing back in 2017, a brilliant throw back title that looks and plays like a classing NES title. It is far superior to this piece of garbage, and is well worth your time and money, go check it out.
If you like what I’m doing here consider supporting me on Patreon: