Keeping track video game releases isn't as easy as it once was -- the volume of games released each week is constantly expanding, and they're spread over a mind-boggling array of platforms (consoles, PC, Mac, handhelds and mobile).
Well, I'm here to make things a little easier on you. Every week I'll rattle off five games I think you should check out. These articles are not meant to be comprehensive lists of everything coming out that week -- think of them as a nice rounded tasting menu. Each week I'll try to highlight several games from different corners of the gaming landscape (handhelds, consoles, indie, PC, you name it) then finish up with a "Pick of the Week".
Hit the jump for the five games you're going to want to check out this week...
This Week's Handheld Game
Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move (3DS eShop, May 9th)
The latest in the Mario and Donkey Kong series of puzzle games. This one has you using blocks to create paths for toy "mini" versions of Mario and Donkey Kong. The game actually looks pretty fun, and it's a bargain at only 10 bucks (most past Mario and Donkey Kong games have been full-price boxed games).
This Week's Indie Adventure Game
Residue (PC, May 6th)
Residue is an odd looking little adventure-platformer that takes place on the dry bed of what used to be the Aral Sea. The game takes the Maniac Mansion approach of having you switch between several characters, each with unique abilities. It also has a very unique children's book-like art style. It only costs $6.50, so you may as well give it a shot.
This Week's Indie Binder Doodle
Ballpoint Universe (PC & Mac, May 10th)
Do kids still take notes? Like with a pen on notebook paper? Is that still a thing? Well it certainly was when I was a kid, and usually more than half of my pages were filled up with all manner of silly doodles rather than actual notes. Well, Ballpoint Universe imagines a world where those doodles come to life and form the basis of a really beautiful platformer. According to the developers of Ballpoint Universe the entire game was actually drawn with ballpoint pens, so they certainly score points for authenticity. Come May 10th you can download the game here for only 5 bucks.
This Week's iPhone Game
Sid Meier's Ace Patrol (iPhone, May 9th)
So, why am I recommending this somewhat generic looking turn-based World War I dog-fighting sim? Because Ace Patrol is legendary strategy game designer Sid Meier's most hands-on project in years -- apparently Meier got his hands dirty in everything from game design to basic coding on this one. It's rare and refreshing to see a big name game designer still really getting into the nuts of bolts of making a game in this era of massive triple-A productions.
Pick of the Week
Fatal Frame 2: Crimson Butterfly (PSN, May 7th)
This week marks the Playstation Network re-release of Fatal Frame 2: Crimson Butterfly, the best of the fan-favorite Fatal Frame series. This is one of the most legitimately creepy survival horror games ever -- if today's action-heavy, not terribly scary "horror" games are giving you the blues, this is the cure.
So there you go -- pretty slow week, but there's still some interesting stuff coming out if you're willing to venture into the worlds of indie and handheld gaming. Planning to grab any of the above-mentioned games? Any games you're itching to get your hands on that I failed to mention? Hit the comments and let everyone know.