Keeping track of all the games arriving each week on PC, handhelds, consoles and mobile is no easy task, but don’t worry, I’m here to help. Every week in Five Games, I separate the wheat from the chaff and pick the titles you need to pay attention to.
We recently freshened up the Five Games format a bit. The Pick of the Week is now listed first, and the rest of the games are filed under headings that will hopefully be more helpful for you. Looking for the latest indie hotness? Check the Steam picks. Want to download something for your Xbox One or PS4 on a Saturday night? Hit up the Console Downloads section. So, without further ado…
Pick of the Week
LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens (PC, Xbox 360, PS3, PS4, PS Vita & Wii U, June 28)
Well, it had to happen! We have a new Star Wars movie, so that means we need another LEGO Star Wars video game! LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens doesn’t just cover the events of the movie, it actually introduces new elements to the Disney Star Wars canon. In particular, a number of missions will bridge the gap between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens.
In addition to the storyline stuff, the game also introduces some new mechanics to the LEGO series. You can now build certain sections of levels in different ways to unlock hidden paths, and shooting elements have been added to the usual brawling. It looks like LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens could be a must-have for Star Wars and LEGO fans alike.
This Week on Steam
The Technomancer (PC, June 28)
The Technomancer is a new action-RPG from Spiders, the developers behind well-liked adventure games like Gray Matter and The Testament of Sherlock Holmes. The Technomancer, which takes place on a futuristic, human-settled Mars, looks to be more action-based than past Spiders games, but there still seems to be some solid world building going on. Here’s the game’s Steam page.
This Week in Console Downloads
Inside (Xbox One, June 29)
Inside is the new puzzle-platformer from Playdead, the creators of the acclaimed indie hit Limbo. Inside treads somewhat similar ground as Limbo, as you play a young boy who infiltrates a shadowy dystopian factory where creepy operations and mind-control experiments are being carried out on people. Inside looks to be another memorably bleak adventure.
This Week in Handheld Gaming
Zero Time Dilemma (PC, 3DS & PS Vita, June 28)
I’m not exaggerating when I say Zero Time Dilemma is my most anticipated game of the year. The Zero Escape series, which started with 2010’s Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors has developed into possibly the most complex narrative in video game history. Time travel, space colonization, ancient history, horror, conspiracy theories, strange science – somehow Zero Escape mixes it all into an unforgettable brew, and Zero Time Dilemma is supposed to be the series’ grand finale. How they’re going to tie this all up, I have no idea.
Aside from the crazy story, the Zero Escape games are just really good locked-room adventure games, where your choices and solutions to puzzles decide who lives and dies, and which of dozens of possible endings you get. At this point the Zero Escape series isn’t terribly accessible, which is why I didn’t make it Pick of the Week, but if you’re already into these games, you’re guaranteed to be pretty hyped about Zero Time Dilemma.
This Week in Retail Releases
Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness (PS4, June 28)
The long-running Star Ocean series returns from a seven-year hiatus this week. Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness looks very pretty, and ought to deliver the sci-fi/fantasy goodness followers of the series expect. If you’re a JRPG fan looking for something to consume your free time this summer, this might be your best bet.
A pretty solid week. Savor it! We enter the summer doldrums next week. Any interesting games that I missed? Feel free to shout ’em out below.