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My Games To Look For This Summer

Shenmue

Here are five games to look for this summer that I will likely be purchasing on day one.  Based on what I’ve seen so far, these all look like winners.  Of course I’ve been wrong before, but I think they’ll all be worth a try at least.  There’s some pretty good variety here, so I think you’ll be hard-pressed not to find something that interests you too.  With E3 happening all around us, let’s take a moment to look at some games that deserved your hype already:

My Friend Pedro – PC, Switch

I thought the bullet time cliche was dead and gone?  I love The Matrix, but my god did that get old.  Surprisingly, I’m still really into the look of this game.  Anything published by Devolver Digital automatically gets a cursory glance from me at the very least.  Plus, the gameplay looks unique despite it hinging on a tired trend.  I’m not so much into beating levels, then playing them over and over so that you can score higher, but there are exceptions.  Maybe My Friend Pedro will be one of them.  At the very least I think I’d want to play through it once to experience all the fun high-wire acrobatics with guns.

Blasphemous – PC, Switch, PS4, Xbox One

This game reminds me of what Chakan: The Forever Man could’ve been.  I know that only about 10% of you have any idea what I’m talking about, but let me explain another way:  gory side scrollers with gothic art and general horror themes are a decent niche that could be exploited more by developers.  Of course, you have Castlevania and the like, but I’m talking Dante’s Inferno kind of imagery.  That’s what Blasphemous is doing here, and it looks so satisfying.

With enemy designs that look to rival Symphony of the Night and a seemingly no-holds-barred approach to the graphic nature of the game, there is great potential here.  I hate that games like this can’t just be straightforward side scrolling action, and that fans of indies feel as if everything has to be a Metroidvania.  Still, I feel like this game will make it to us sooner than later and be a highlight of summer.  Level design and control will be the big questions.

Shenmue 3 – PC, PS4

Here’s the big “won’t be for everyone” entry on this list.  The original Shenmue is one of my favorite games and the sequel is fine enough.  Shenmue is also a series where if someone doesn’t like it, you kinda have to understand where they’re coming from.  The game was innovative at the time but if the story didn’t grab you and you didn’t like collecting little capsule toys, it’s just an old game that’s not very good anymore.

I’ve gotta see the continuation of the story though.  This is the only Kickstarter campaign I’ve ever participated in, and I am not much of a Kickstarter guy at all really.  This is a series that’s important to me personally.  Now I will say that the character models look straight-up weird.  I don’t mind them going with dumbed down graphics because it reminds me of the old games.  The characters themselves have this weird wax figure look though.  They look like action figures someone held up in front of a TV screen.  This game is still having the finishing touches put on, so I’m still optimistic.

I will play through it and enjoy it if nothing else.  Of that I have no doubt.  If you’re interested in this series you can always buy the Shenmue HD Collection.  It’s fairly cheap and allows you to see what all the chatter is with this series.

***Shenmue 3 has been delayed until November 19th, the same day as Death Stranding.***

Fire Emblem:  Three Houses – Nintendo Switch

I’ve enjoyed all manner of strategy games over the years, and Fire Emblem: Awakening was one of my favorites.  The next and latest installment, Fates, bored me to death with its ho-hum characters, but I eagerly await the next game, Three Houses.  Fans of the series have expressed concern over this game looking like more of a visual novel and the story being a bit of a Harry Potter rip-off.  The more I think about it the more I tend to agree.  For all I know I might enjoy those elements though, and the gameplay will always be classic.  This is a day one buy for me and probably any Switch owner that loves strategy.

Cyber Shadow – PC, Switch, PS4, Xbox One

I’ve got your Ninja Gaiden right here.  I don’t know if there’s a game I’m looking forward to more this summer than Cyber Shadow.  If the developers of Ninja Gaiden entered a time machine to 2019 just before they began creating the game, this is probably what they would’ve come up with.  It is most certainly a contemporary love letter to that game, amped up with all the tools currently available to game devs.  The levels looks creative and the gameplay looks fast.

I’m usually not a huge fan of HD remasters and remakes in general.  If someone can take an old concept and make it new again though?  That interests me, so naturally I want this game.  Cyber Shadow looked like it would be released by the end of May but now it’s looking more like summer.  Level design and control (again) will probably make or break the game, but from what I’ve seen I am 100% confident that this will be an indie darling.  Yacht Club Games thinking enough of it to publish doesn’t hurt either.


So what are your games to look for this summer?  Are any of mine on your list?  Let me know what else I should be looking for in the coming months!

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