By Hunter Heilman
The biggest video game news this week is that I finally got a PlayStation 5.
That’s all folks. I’ll see you next time.
Okay, fine. Maybe there are some bigger releases than that coming out this week, but god knows “Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart” and “Returnal” are about to be my big games coming up as I revel in finally being able to experience next-gen glory. Let’s see what’s new on the pipeline this week.
Microsoft Flight Simulator: Console Edition
It’s no secret that I am a huge “Microsoft Flight Simulator” fan. I currently have over 1,300 hours logged in the Steam version of “Microsoft Flight Simulator X” from 2006 (and probably another 500 hours in the physical version I had before), but the graphically intensive, mind-blowing reboot that released to PC’s last August is getting its first chance to shine on consoles, and it’s the first thing that ever made me think “Should I get an Xbox instead of a PlayStation?” Obviously, I didn’t do that, but taking such a detailed, expertly crafted world (literally, it’s the entire earth) at your fingertips to do almost whatever you want in it behind the seat of every type of aircraft you can think of on a console, and doing it well, is mind-boggling. This is truly a showcase of what next-gen console gaming can do, and I’m glad more people get to experience its magic.
“Microsoft Flight Simulator” is out on PC, and releases on Xbox Series X/S exclusively on July 27 for $59.99, or on Xbox Game Pass.
Neo: The World Ends with You
Talk about a cult classic. Square Enix’s uber-popular Nintendo DS title has finally received a proper sequel after more than 14 years lying dormant. Taking on a new protagonist in a new story, it’s a new player friendly installment if you haven’t played the first game and are looking for some good ole action RPG goodness. The comforting art style, engaging combat, and truly iconic musical score is what took the world by storm with “The World Ends with You” back in 2007, and these elements are on full display here.
“Neo: The World Ends with You” releases on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch on July 27 for $59.99, with a PC release coming later in 2021. You can also play the original “The World Ends with You” on Nintendo Switch now for $49.99.
Samurai Warriors 5
Musou games aren’t really my cup of tea. It’s taken all of my effort to push past that to make it through “Persona 5 Strikers,” but there is an audience for them, and for those looking for something a little more serious and less anime-y or kids-y than “Persona 5 Strikers” or “Hyrule Warriors,” “Samurai Warriors 5” has you covered. A spin-off of the standard “Dynasty Warriors” series, “Samurai Warriors 5” transports players to that of Feudal Japan as opposed to Dynasty-era China, and follows the similar play structure as most other Musou games developed by Koei Tecmo. There is one of you, and about 1,000,000 enemies for you to kill. Luckily, these enemies are all rather weak and you can take them out in waves, but Jesus Christ there are a lot of them. It seems that the “Samurai Warriors” franchise is honestly in a better position than the mainline “Dynasty Warriors” franchise, but as long as those who celebrate are pleased, I’ll be watching happily from the sidelines like a proud parent, knowing I will never play these games, but you are valid if you do.
“Samurai Warriors 5” releases for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC on July 27 for $59.99.
Tribes of Midgard
This one kind of surprised me. I had never actually noticed this game’s development until its time of release, but color me intrigued indeed. “Tribes of Midgard” is an action role-playing survival game and it follows you in an isometric, procedurally generated Nordic-themed world where you must build and craft materials for survival as you fight off the monsters that come to attack at night. Artistically, it definitely feels very much like “Diablo” meets “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild,” and while it can be easy to criticize for that, there’s a reason so many games want to replicate that Zelda magic, because it is….well, magic. There’s a wonder to the cell-shaded goodness of it all and it breathes life into what could be a dull-looking game. I’m not sure the dense gameplay will be as effective in grabbing a massive audience, but “Tribes of Midgard” looks like a perfectly good time for its target audience.
“Tribes of Midgard” releases for the PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC on July 27 for $19.99.
The Forgotten City
This one is interesting in principle alone. “The Forgotten City” started off as a “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim” mod that added an entirely new story and world for players to explore made entirely from fan creations. Now, it’s being made into its own next-gen RPG before Bethesda could even think about making a new Elder Scrolls game that isn’t immediately followed by the words “Online” and ruining the vibe. Set in an ancient Roman city, “The Forgotten City” is a time-loop game where our protagonist must save the city from itself as when one person sins, everyone dies. Using some combat, but mostly careful dialogue options, you must traverse the city to solve a violent mystery while also keeping the citizens safe in your own ways of going about it. It’s an interesting dialogue-based RPG that has many elements of “Skyrim,” but in its own unique, standalone package.
“The Forgotten City” releases for the PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, and PC on July 28 for $29.99. A Nintendo Switch port is scheduled for release later this year.
Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Series
Literally eat me, Square Enix. No one wanted this. Please just release these games on consoles like every person on Earth wants. No one plays RPGs on their phone.
Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Series releases for PC, iOS, and Android on July 29, for $74.82 via Steam for the whole collection, but don’t bother.
Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales (PS4 and PS5): $34.99 (MSRP: $49.99)
Returnal (PS5 exclusive): $49.69 (MSRP: $69.99)
Demon’s Souls (PS5 exclusive): $49.69 (MSRP: $69.99)
Mass Effect: Legendary Edition (PS4): $44.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4): $24.59 (MSRP: $59.99)
Final Fantasy XIV Online (PS4 and PS5): $23.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Friday the 13th: The Game (PS4): $3.74 (MSRP: $14.99)
Yakuza: Like A Dragon (PS4 and PS5): $38.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne – Master Edition DDX (PS4): $37.49 (MSRP: $49.99)
Call of Duty: Black Ops – Cold War (One and Series X/S): $29.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Halo: Master Chief Collection (One): $19.99 (MSRP: $39.99)
Far Cry 5 (One): $8.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Battlefield V: Definitive Edition: $14.99 (MSRP: $49.99)
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Game of the Year Edition (One): $9.99 (MSRP: $49.99)
Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum ‘n’ Fun!: $9.99 (MSRP: $49.99)
Amnesia Collection: $2.99 (MSRP: $29.99)
Dragon Ball FighterZ: $9.59 (MSRP: $59.99)
Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King: $3.74 (MSRP: $14.99)
Persona 5 Strikers: $38.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana: $19.99 (MSRP: $59.99)
Graveyard Keeper: Ultimate Collector’s Edition: $27.99 (MSRP: $39.99)
The Outer Worlds: $19.79 (MSRP: $59.99)
Dragon Age: Inquisition: $9.99 (MSRP: $39.99)
Planet Zoo: $20.24 (MSRP: $44.99)
Cloudpunk: $9.99 (MSRP: $19.99)