RPG 25 July 2017
A unique tactical RPG from independent American studio Supergiant Games. The story of Pyre is set in a mysterious land called Downside, which is a variation on the Christian idea of purgatory. The main protagonist is rescued by a trio of masked travelers, who ask him to help them in unveiling the truth about the so-called Rites – an unusual competition, in which the winners can earn pardon for their sins and be freed from Downside. Pyre’s gameplay contains two fundamental parts. We travel in a special coach that is also used to manage our companions and make decisions that affect the land and its inhabitants. However, there is another and more important part of the game, in form of skirmishes we take part in, which combines features of MOBA and sport titles. A team of three characters must get a hold of a special ball and take it to enemy’s base.
Sonic Mania (PS4)
Arcade 15 August 2017
A 3D platformer that came out as a reboot of one of the most popular adventure game series, featuring the titular Sonic the Hedgehog. This production was created by a SEGA’s subsidiary, Sonic Team, employing people who helped create the series and its most important iterations. In terms of gameplay mechanics, the game is set firmly in the franchise's initial premise, allowing you to play as the main hero (or one of his many friends), and traverse a series of locations where your goal is not only to reach the end of a map, but also to do it as quickly as you can. For most of the time, action is presented in third-person perspective, however, the game features also also some classic 2D levels. Each location is filled with traps and opponents, but also various power-ups that can boost your score or protect you from damage.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole (PS4)
RPG 17 October 2017
Another installment in an RPG series based on the Comedy Central’ cult adult-oriented cartoon TV series. The title is a direct sequel to South Park: The Stick of Truth released in 2014. However, unlike that game, this one was created by an Ubisoft’s subsidiary. Once again you play as the New Kid, whose family just recently moved in to South Park. This tim, Cartman and his group play the roles of superheroes, making up the vigilante group of Coon & Friends. They have to face a new danger, the villainous Professor Chaos. In terms of gameplay mechanics, the game is similar to its predecessor, combining classic RPG elements with turn-based combat, further spiced up with a big doze of nasty humor invented by the creators of the TV series: Matt Stone and Trey Parker.
The Escapists 2 (PS4)
Simulation yesterday, 22 August 2017
A sequel to the 2015 game by Mouldy Toof which was a unique arcade 2D platformer with elements of logic and RPG productions. In The Escapist 2, the players assume the role of inmates locked up in heavily-guarded prisons, and their task is to work out the security system and to escape. To do so, we have to look for allies and items that can be crafted into useful tools while pretending that we tend to our usual prison routines. Compared to the original, the game features a myriad of enhancements such as new ways of spending spare time, a modified combat system, a possibility of creating previously unavailable items, and new ways of escaping. One of the biggest novelties is the introduction of a drop in/drop out multiplayer mode in which up to four players can play on a split screen or over the Internet.
RPG 15 August 2017
An old-school RPG from the independent developer Toby Fox, referencing the Earthbound series. Undertale's story takes place in a world that was witness to a lengthy, cruel war between humans and monsters after a long period of coexistence between both races. It ended with humans driving the monsters underground. Many years later, somewhere in the vicinity of the now-legendary mount Ebott, a little girl looking for shelter from the rain finds a cave and in it a mysterious hole, through which she falls. We play as this girl and explore the underground world, facing various monsters and interacting with various characters. The game’s most characteristic feature is the innovative battle system – we can engage in direct combat in the form of arcade minigames or avoid more difficult fights through talking and complimenting.
Darkest Dungeon (PS4)
RPG 27 September 2016
A dark fantasy cRPG developed by debuting studio Red Hook. The story is set in a dark, medieval-like universe. While exploring ruins of an old castle and its dungeons, you face off against forces of darkness that overwhelmed the land because of the reckless actions of its previous sovereign. As you delve into the depths, you discover the dark history of a family who brought the evil upon the world. The gameplay focuses on dungeon crawling - dungeons filled with traps and crawling with monsters that need to be dealt with during turn-based combat sequences. An original idea is the sanity indicator of your heroes. Each team member has different personality and reacts differently to what is happening around him/her. Therefore, while playing you should keep an eye on their well being and fear levels, alleviating their stress by drinking alcohol or brawling, if needed.
Nidhogg 2 (PS4)
Action 15 August 2017
Nidhogg 2 is an action game developed by Mark “Messhof” Essen, the same person who created the series’ first installment that was released in 2014. The game uses the same gameplay mechanics as its predecessor. We once again get a 2D action game where we take part in duels on vast, tiered levels similar to those from many platform games. We can play against A.I. or other players through online or split-screen mutliplayer. As usual, only a single accurate hit is enough to kill our opponent, but the game also comes with some novelties. The sequel offers a wider arsenal where, among other weapons, we will find bows and axes. We can also use new attacks like finishing off knocked down enemies. The game also offers more maps that are now more interactive, giving us new possibilities of eliminating our opponents.
Worms W.M.D (PS4)
Strategy 23 August 2016
Another major installment in the bestselling turn-based strategy game series that focus on a humorous rivalry between the eponymous worms. In Worms WMD, the basic gameplay principles remain unchanged, and the players still have to eliminate the opposite team using a number of more or less unconventional weapons. The participants make their moves in turns and their actions are limited by a time limit. The game refers to the initial two-dimensional installments of the series, which means that battles are presented from the classical side view. The title does not lack for several enriching novelties, though. These include the possibility to hide inside buildings and to use vehicles that allow us to traverse the battlefield and deal damage to the enemy. Visually, the production features the characteristic cartoonish visual style, although the worms’ appearance and animation were refreshed.
Patapon Remastered (PS4)
Strategy 01 August 2017
A remastered edition of the unusual musical strategy game Patapon, originally released in 2008 for PSP. In the game, you accompany the members of the dying society of little warriors called the Patapons, who embark on a dangerous journey, during which they fight using swords, spears, and bows to earn what they deserve. The gameplay focuses on leading the group of creatures and facing adversities, including enemies big and small. The uniqueness of the gameplay consists of the fact that you issue orders by pressing buttons to the rhythm of music to create a given sequence. Depending on what melody you play, you army can move forwards, assume a defensive stance, attack, or perform a efficiency-boosting combo. As the gameplay pace is quite fast and one false note can mean big trouble, to succeed in Patapon Remastered you need a good sense of rhythm and a quick decision-making skill.
Rayman Legends (PS4)
Arcade 18 February 2014
An action 2D platform game starring a sympathetic creature of a protagonist. The game was developed by Ubisoft Montpellier and is the fifth full-fledged installment in the series created by Michel Ancel. This time the titular protagonist and his friend Globox must face nightmares which have created amazing worlds during the 100 years they have spent in the Crossroads of Dreams. Rayman must also free the Teensies captured by the clone of the deceptive Magician. Gameplay mechanics and the visual style of Rayman Legends are similar to the mechanics and style of the previous Rayman game (Rayman Origins). The new features in the game include musical levels and a system that allows other players to freely join the game in split-screen cooperation mode.
Night in the Woods (PS4)
Adventure 21 February 2017
A combination of adventure and arcade games, created by an independent developer known as Infinite Ammo. The player assumes the role of Mae - a cat with paranormal abilities. The protagonist quits her studies and returns to her hometown - Possum Springs, in order to have some quality time with her old friends. The place has fallen into decline since the last mine in town was closed, because the inhabitants have been left without work. What is worse however, is that a neighboring forest has apparently kept some dark secret concealed. The plot serves the role of an parallel to human existence, with themes such as death, transience of all things or longing for certain moments from the past elaborated on throughout the story. The player is required to explore (by jumping across platforms mostly) a unique in-game environment, solve simple puzzles connected to it, talk to NPCs, as well as engage in joyful activities, such as playing the guitar or having fun with the in-game friends. What distinguishes Night in the Woods from other titles, are its visuals based on an original art style - those were crafted by Scott Benson. The unique soundtrack on the other hand, was created by Alec Holowka.
Child of Light (PS4)
RPG 30 April 2014
Child of Light is a 2D RPG that combines the elements of modern platformers and Japanese role-playing games. It was developed by Ubisoft Montreal, a subsidiary of Ubisoft which also collaborated in the development of Far Cry and Assassin Creed games. Child of Light tells the story of Aurora, a young girl who has to save the kingdom of Lemuria. When playing, we influence Aurora's development and witness her rough journey to adulthood. The game is presented in a perspective typical for platform games, and the turn-based combat system is inspired by the jRPG genre. During her adventures, Aurora explores a vast, living world, where she encounters friendly fairies, gnomes, and sneaky monsters. Child of Light offers single player and multiplayer modes. In the latter, the second player takes on the role of a friendly firefly.
Stardew Valley (PS4)
RPG 13 December 2016
The debut production from the independent studio Concerned Ape. It is a sandbox RPG that focuses on the life of a farmer. Stardew Valley takes place in a fantasy realm filled with magic, where the player becomes a young farmer whose ambition is to transform his small field into a giant farm generating great profits. The main task of the player is to plant plants, gather the crops and expand the farm with new infrastructure and agricultural products. In order to be more interesting, the game also feature some RPG elements. One can also take active role in the life of the nearby village – make friendships and interact with the inhabitants of the settlement. This unlocks new challenges and earning opportunities for the player. As the game progress, the protagonist gains experience and learns new skills such as farming, mining, fishing, or animal feeding. One can also get married and have children in this randomly generated world.
Death's Gambit (PS4)
RPG 19 September 2017
Death's Gambit is an oldschool 2D action RPG developed by White Rabbit, inspired by the classic games like Castlevania or Shadow of the Colossus and newer productions such as Demons' Souls. We play as the Emissary of Death, and our job is to purge the world from the immortals. The game takes place on a medieval planet, where we will have to face numerous knights, undead, and monsters. From time to time we will also encounter gigantic monsters that will require us to climb onto them and find their weak points in order to defeat them. Gameplay focuses on action, battles, and high difficulty level. The game requires us to plan our actions and think outside the box. Death's Gambit also has some RPG elements, like the character progression system, special abilities, or a wide array of weapons and equipment.
Thimbleweed Park (PS4)
Adventure yesterday, 22 August 2017
A point-and-click adventure game created by Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick. The players are taken to the titular Thimbleweed Park - once a prosperous business area, now definitely past its prime. The player takes on the roles of five characters in total throughout this adventure and is capable of switching between them at any time. The characters present are a stronger feature of this game - apart from others, the player assumes the role of Ransome - a clown suffering from a curse which makes him unable to get rid of his stage make-up. Franklin is another of the characters the player will be in control of in this game; one day, he (Franklin) discovers that he has died. The player will also assume control of two detectives investigating a case of a body found nearby; Dolores on the other hand, needs to read the testament of her rich uncle. When it comes to the story, the creators mixed a unique taste in humor with different possible endings. All of this is complemented by visuals modeled after LucasArts' classics, as well as an interface resembling the legendary SCUMM system.
BRUCE: The Game (PS4)
Action 19 September 2017
BRUCE: The Game is a cyberpunk/noir platform game and the debut of the Polish studio Tabasco Interactive. BRUCE: The Game rather clearly refers to the classics like Ridley Scott's cult movie Blade Runner or Frank Miller's comic book series Sin City. The game takes place in a rainy, futuristic world, where Bruce, our protagonist, does many various quests and faces enemies. We observe the action from the classic side-scrolling perspective. Bruce uses all kinds of weapons and special abilities during our adventures, including bullet time, known from the Max Payne series. Gameplay focuses on dynamic and spectacular action and, at the same time, presents a mature, entertaining story with interesting NPCs. The game has hand drawn, noir-inspired visuals.
Darkest Dungeon: The Crimson Court (PS4)
RPG December 2017
The first expansion for the 2016 dungeon crawler RPG Darkest Dungeon by Red Hook Studios. The add-on utilizes the gameplay mechanics from the core game — you complete a team of heroes and set out to explore the eponymous Darkest Dungeon. Your goal is to find enormous riches, with which you can expand a shabby hamlet, also serving as your base. Like in the original Darkest Dungeon game, the characters of The Crimson Court suffer from typical human ailments — some of them may go berserk, while others may panic when surrounded by darkness. The game places a strong focus on blood, which is a theme connecting the items you find and your enemies. The expansion also marks the first appearance of vampires, creatures with a unique set of characteristics and abilities.
Action 28 July 2017
A two-dimensional metroidvania action game developed by independent studio Thunder Lotus Games – the producer of the warmly-received Jotun. In Sundered, the player assumes the role of a wanderer who travels through a ruined, post-apocalyptic world. The story of the game is strongly connected to its mechanics, as the price of the progress of the protagonist is paid with his humanity – what powers the player decides to wield, will have impact on the ending of the game. The protagonist is traveling mostly through randomly generated cave complexes and underground tunnels. On his paths he encounters various enemies, including powerful bosses, defeating which requires using thoughtful tactics. As the player progresses through the game, he obtains better equipment and ancient artifacts that enables him to develop abilities. This unlocks access to new locations, even stronger enemies and better items. Sundered has two-dimensional, hand drawn graphics the style of which is similar to games like Jotun and The Banner Saga.
Serial Cleaner (PS4)
Action 11 July 2017
An oldschool 2D action game with stealth elements and a gangster atmosphere, created by Polish studio iFun4all. Serial Cleaner takes place in America of the 1970s and you play as a seemingly ordinary citizen, who's really the eponymous “cleaner,” specializing in cleaning crime scenes—getting rid of the bodies, evidence, and blood. The missions in the game are based on real crime scenes from the 1970s, and your task is to efficiently clean them without getting noticed by the policemen patrolling the area. The game gives you complete freedom and rewards you for exploring, making quick decisions and experimenting with different methods of solving a problem. Your task is made slightly easier by the fact that the policemen are a rather lazy and not quite clever bunch, and they don't pay much attention to their duties.
Tooth and Tail (PS4)
Strategy 13 September 2017
An arcade real-time strategy game by Pocketwatch Games, featuring old-school pixel art visuals. The action of Tooth and Tail takes place during an animal revolution, modeled to the conflicts of the turn of 19th and 20th century, where several factions comprised of different animal species fight to the death. Gameplay mechanics resemble classic RTS productions—their foundations lay in resource gathering, base building, and tactical combat. In the game, however, we can not issue direct orders to individual units. Instead, we assume control of their commander, who moves throughout the battlefield with a banner in his hand. His task is to designate places in which buildings will be built and show his subordinates their targets. Since we control just one character, the controls of Tooth and Tail resemble a typical action game rather than strategy, and most processes were adequately automated so that the player can focus on pure fun.
Jotun: Valhalla Edition (PS4)
Action 09 September 2016
Set in Norse mythology, an independent action game with an arcade combat system. Jotun is a Kickstarter project. The title was initially released on PC, then published on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Wii U as an expanded edition called Jotun: Valhalla Edition featuring an additional game mode. Players are told the story of a Viking warrior named Thora who died an inglorious death. Before she passes through the gates of Valhalla, she needs to prove her worth to the Gods. Gameplay in Jotun utilizes an isometric view. Players assume the role of Thora who travels through the Nordic purgatory, divided into nine levels in which she has to release and defeat powerful elemental giants known as the jotun. During gameplay, players also come across various secrets and learn about the heroine’s life and the cause of her death. Jotun features hand-drawn visuals, an excellent soundtrack, and dialogues recorded in Icelandic, which emphasizes the game’s Nordic atmosphere.
This is the Police (PS4)
Strategy 22 March 2017
An original strategy game with elements of adventure game developed by independent studio Weappy in cooperation with Team 17 Softworks. You take on the role of a chief of police who is about to retire. However, instead of safeguarding the law and order, he decides to use his authority and influence to make a fortune. To this end, the protagonist deals with the local representatives of criminal underground, while trying to keep his actions in the dark. This is the Police features two-layered gameplay, divided into plot and strategy. The former lets you follow the story of the main hero and build relations with key characters. The latter is about planning and execution of criminal operations, while carefully manipulating the actions of police. Moreover, you have to smartly manage your dirty money – safely laundering it for your private needs and investing some into upgrading the police forces.
South Park: The Stick of Truth (PS4)
RPG 24 November 2016
A cRPG game based on the popular adult animated TV series South Park. South Park: The Stick of Truth was co-developed by Obsidian Entertainment and the creators of the original animated series – Matt Stone and Trey Parker. The player assumes the role of a kid who, together with his parents, just moved in to the titular town and tries to win his peers’ sympathy. Shared LARP (Live Action Role Playing), in which Cartman and his friends take part, gives the hero a chance to prove himself. The plot of South Park: The Stick of Truth is filled to capacity with absurd humor and references to popular culture. The creators applied elements of classic cRPG mechanics, like character classes, turn-based combat, gaining experience, and reaching higher levels. The production features cartoon-like graphics.