Four Game/Movie Releases
My Friend Pedro
My Friend Pedro is a side-scrolling action game about a man who can listen to bananas talk and commit violence. Ever since its reveal at E3 2018, I have been madly interested in this game for its acrobatic combat. You don’t just kill in this game; you kill while gracefully doing flips and spins like a ballet of death. I still don’t know how I feel about the talking banana aspect of the game, but its gameplay has kept me interested in this game, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
Judgment is a third-person action game that is a spinoff of the Yakuza series about a private detective following a serial murder case. There is one reason and one reason only this game has my interest: it plays like a Yakuza game. I am still new to the series, but I have loved every bit of my time with it, so more of that is fine by me. Plus, I think the detective angle to the game is pretty neat. I do want to play through the other games first (which will probably take me five years at this point), but I bet by the end I hope I will still be excited to play this game.
Super Mario Maker 2
The Wii-U hit has finally made it to Switch. Super Mario Maker 2 is a level editor that allows people to make and share Mario levels. I could talk about the improvements and additions over the last game, but none of that really matters to me. What matters is that this game has released on a system I own, and I can finally play the one game that keeps people going back to the Wii-U. I have been on the lookout for a good, long lasting Switch game, and I think this game may be exactly what I am looking for.
Sinking City is a third-person open world detective game that takes place in a drowning Lovecraftian city in the 20s. Ever since Return of the Obra Dinn, I have been wanting to put more time into detective games. Combining that with an open world and a 20s setting sounds right up my alley.
Three News Stories
Etika, a Youtuber who made content around Nintendo games, was found dead after what seems to be a suicide. On June 20th, NYPD put out a post stating that Etika has been missing, and later revealed that some of his belongings were found on the Manhattan Bridge. On the 25th, police confirm that the body they found in the East River was Etika.
Etika has been known to talk about his mental health issues, which includes his last video of him expressing suicidal thoughts and a police standoff back in April for threats to harm himself.
Fans and other content creators have mourned the loss of Etika, and are using this opportunity to raise awareness about mental health. Because of this tragic news, I have linked a suicide hotline for the U.S. as well as a website for hotlines from around the world down below. If you are feeling suicidal, don’t be afraid to reach out for help.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
The International Bipolar Foundation offers a list of suicide hotlines from around the world.
Steam Summer Sale
Every year, Steam launches a sale that is unlike any other video game sale. Steam Summer Sale happens every summer for two weeks, offering impressive deals on pretty much everything. Also during this time, Steam likes to add in a little mini-game surrounding the sale. Last year was all about aliens, and this year is all about the Grand Prix.
With these mini-games, Steam likes to give out games for participating. This year is no different, but the result of this has been a complicated mess. How the mini-game works is that you choose a team, and selected people from the winning team win games each day. While it may sound simple, the game has been buggy and the games selected for winning have proven so unclear, developers started seeing mass wish list deletion. Steam has fixed these issues and now offers clearer rules to their game.
Summer Sale is a great time to pick up new games and maybe even win something. The sale will be running until the 9th, so there is still some time to act.
Masters of Doom, the book about the creation of Doom, is being adapted into a TV show. Recently, USA Network has ordered a pilot, and James and Dave Franco are going to be involved in the creation of the show. Also, Tom Bissell, who will be the writer of the series, has worked on on other video games as well as co-authored The Disaster Artist, which is the movie the Franco brothers made together. If successful, the show will turn into an anthology, with each new season focusing on another big moment in video game history.
For years, I have talked about my distaste for video game movies and shows. Despite that, I actually see potential with this show. This show is about the creation of a game instead of the game itself, and I think the story they can tell with Id can be interesting enough to drive the show forward. I still think this show has a chance of failing because of the curse on the merging of video games and movies or TV, but I am more hopeful for this than anything else, and I am actually interested in the subject matter of the show.
After all of the craziness of E3, the first blog I put out was on a game I was playing during that time. Roller Champions is a multiplayer sports game that is about rolling around a rink with a ball and trying to score. In other words, think Roller Derby mixed with Rocket League. Though the alpha was only four days long, I found my time with the game to be a blast. It didn’t take long for me with a group of friends to get a handle on the mechanics and start learning strategies. A lot of great games are going to be releasing in 2020, and the Roller Champions alpha made sure I remember this one along side the rest.
Keeping with the trend of playing alphas, I also got my hands on The Cycle, a first-person competitive multiplayer shooter about completing objectives. I have played a lot of shooter betas and alphas throughout the years, and it doesn’t take long to see how similar a lot of them are. A lot of new shooters fall under a few categories, and it has been increasingly frustrating for me. Fortunately, The Cycle feels fresh, offering a different kind of game mode. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t do a great job at putting me into a competitive mindset, and the game feels like it is going to be a free-to-play game. My time with the game is positive, and I am glad it is doing something new, but I don’t think this game stands up to other multiplayer games (like Roller Champions).
The only game I have picked up during the Summer Sale so far is Supraland, a game that encompasses many different inspirations. This first-person game is part puzzler, part metroidvania, and part adventure, taking inspiration from Portal, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid, and more. It’s a genre bash of a game, but Supraland does a good job at blending all of these together into a solid package. The world design is incredible, and every tool I pick up shows just how important every piece of that world is. The tools themselves are a lot of fun to use too, and each tool offers multiple different uses. Plus, I like the look of the game, which is all based in a kid’s sandbox and has people made of clay. There are still five more months until the end of the year, but I think Supraland will make my top ten games of the year list.