Welp, it’s still the Summer, and the new games are still pretty much nonexistent. I mean, that’s not fair, hundreds of people worked on most of these titles (except 30XX), and they’re probably very excited to have them hit store shelves and whatever digital storefront you like the best.
What do we have then, eh? Our top game of the week is the third person action/adventure game Atlas Fallen from developer Deck 13, who are best known for making the game Lords of the Fallen. While that game was a fantasy “soulslike” game, Atlas Fallen is a bit more futuristic…I guess? It also plays more like the recent God of Wargames, instead of Dark Souls, so that might be neat. Oh, who am I kidding? Atlas Fallen looks boring as hell and incredibly generic. I’ll get it for free on PlayStation Plus in 4 years and never play it.
You know what game I am excited for? It’s Wrestlequest, brother! Merging the worlds of turn based RPG’s and pro wrestling, Wrestlequest is chock full of nostalgia for both WWE’s late 80’s/early 90’s and SNES era RPG’s. Moving over to a different kind of RPG, the more talkative kind, we have Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical. In this kinda/sorta visual novel, players take on the role of Grace, a newly created muse, who will mix and mingle with all sorts of Greek gods & monsters.
Finally, we have a free expansion for Broforce called Broforce Forever, which adds in a bunch of new characters based on 1980’s action film anti-heroes, and the former PlayStation exclusive Stray is hitting Xbox consoles, in case you’re one of those rare Xbox-only owners.
Atlas Fallen (PC/PS5/Series X|S) – Releases Aug. 10th
Developed by: Deck13
Published by: Focus Entertainment
Wrestlequest (PC/PS4/PS5/Switch/Xbox One/Series X|S) – Releases Aug. 8th
Developed by: Mega Cat Studios
Published by: Skybound Games
Stray Gods – The Roleplaying Musical (PC/PS4/PS5/Switch/Xbox One/Series X|S) – Releases Aug. 10th
Developed by: Summerfall Studios
Published by: Humble Games
Broforce Forever (PC/PS4/Switch/Xbox One) – Releases Aug. 8th
Stray (Xbox One/Series X|S) – Releases Aug. 10th
Woah, we actually have enough new games this week to do an “Everything Else” section, how about that? Anyway, check out the Mega Man inspired 30XX, made entirely by one dude (I think). If fast paced, action/arcade games aren’t your thing, maybe give Pups & Purrs Pet Shop a try. It’s from Aksys Games, one of the premier localization publishers in the West, so it’s gotta be at least KINDA good, right?
Notable Releases from 10, 20, and 30 years ago:
Like the last few weeks, the notable titles are far more interesting than most of the new games coming out, go figure. Starting us off is the 2013 title Papers, Please, a workplace simulator where players take on the role of a border checkpoint agent. Working for the country of Arstotzka, an obvious brutal dictatorship heavily modeled on the Communist countries of Eastern Europe in the 1980’s, players must observe documents handed to them by people, and decide of they can enter the country or not. Players must comb over every inch of every document, meticulously trying to spot errors and discrepancies. If too many errors are missed, players will be fined and, potentially, jailed, or worse, executed. There’s an entire subplot about a group of resistance fighters that are trying to over the Arstotzka government, and they are enlisting your help. With multiple endings to see, Papers, Please is an endless playable, brilliant, satire with biting political commentary. If you’ve never given this game a chance then I would strongly suggest checking it out this week, it’s one of my all-time favorites.
Going on a much sillier satirical route, we have 2003’s Futurama for the PS2 and Xbox. Based on the animated series, Futurama is a 3d action/adventure game that is, essentially, a puzzle platformer with shooting elements. Sadly, the camera is terrible and gives no option to invert it, meaning that my poor brain couldn’t handle it and I had an hours long headache after playing it for twenty minutes. The game was woefully under printed and, as such, fetches an insane amount of money on the secondary market; just emulate it if you feel the need to check it out but, be warned, it kind of sucks.
Finally, we have the thirty year old title, Jurassic Park for the Sega Genesis. With the film releasing in theatres at the beginning of the Summer, Jurassic Park fever was sweeping the nation. Programs related to the making of the film were all over television, especially E! (owned by Universal, imagine that…), merchandise lined every store shelf you could imagine, and Weird Al had released a parody song about the film. It was only natural that a video game tie-in would come out, and boy did I love this game as a kid. Well, love/hate, I guess, because it was so incredibly difficult. Taking on the role of either Alan Grant or, get this, a Velociraptor, players make their way through the Isla Nublar, the home of the Jurassic Park theme park, and very loosely follows the plot of the film. In a neat little bit of trivia, the game features both a scene from the novel, in which Grant rides a boat down a river through a Pteranodon enclosure, and uses the film’s original ending, in which Grant manipulates the T-Rex skeleton in the visitor’s center to kill the velociraptor’s chasing him.
Notable films, well, Elysium is a movie that my buddy and I endlessly mock for it’s depiction of cholos being saved by white ass Matt Damon as they try to get to the floating city of Elysium, vato. Uh, I also saw S.W.A.T. with the same buddy in 2003 and we both probably talked shit about the way they treated minorities in that movie too. 1993’s film, The Fugitive, oh man, THAT is a fucking great movie. If you haven’t seen this Harrison Ford classic, I implore you to watch it in a gas station, farm house, hen house, dog house, out house, anywhere, because it’s that good.
Our notable albums probably aren’t the biggest albums of all time (August isn’t just a slow month for video games), but I am a big fan of the UK band White Lies, who put out a pretty good offering with 2003’s Big TV. While it didn’t make them a household name in the U.S., that cool indie girl you had a crush on in college probably likes them. Our 20 and 30 year old albums find the punk genre in two different, but similar places. Pennywise’s 1993 album Unknown Road found punk just kind of entering the mainstream. We weren’t at Green Day & Offspring levels yet, but we were getting close. Our 2003 notable album, Rancid’s Indestructible, came out in a time when punk rock was some of the biggest music on the planet thanks to bands like Blink-182 and the aforementioned Green Day, but the genre was changing. The 90’s punk sound was about to be overtaken by a more emo-tinged sound with bands like Fall Out Boy and My Chemical Romance, and Rancid was accused of being caught up in it with their 2003 single “Fall Back Down” and got labeled with the dreaded “sell out” moniker (gimmie a break).
Papers, Please (PC) – Released Aug. 8th, 2013: Wiki Link
Notable Film Release: Elysium – Starring Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, Alice Braga, Diego Luna, Wagner Moura, and William Fichtner
*Click here to watch the trailer*
Notable Album Release: White Lies – Big TV
*Click here to listen to the album*
Futurama (PS2/Xbox) – Released Aug. 12th, 2003: Wiki Link
Notable Film Release: S.W.A.T. – Starring Samuel L. Jackson, Colin Farrell, Michelle Rodriguez, LL Cool J, and Jeremy Renner
*Click here to watch the trailer*
Notable Album Release: Rancid – Indestructible
*Click here to listen to the album*
Jurassic Park (Genesis) – Released Aug. 10th, 1993: Wiki Link