Hello! Welcome to another edition of the Geeky Brummie Gaming Roundup!
This week, we talk Death Stranding, Pokémon, Call of Duty’s confusing name and all the latest release highlights!
DEATH STRANDING GETS A RELEASE DATE
This week, Sony and Kojima Productions gave a hands-on look at Death Stranding. With literal hands. If you’ve not been keeping up with this game, it’s Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima’s latest title. It features CGI renditions of The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus and Hannibal’s Mads Mikkelsen and is insane.
Based on the latest trailer, it’s become a little clearer what Death Stranding is about. Something devastating has happened to the USA, possibly the world. People have connections to “the other side” but it’s not clear if this is an alternate dimension or the afterlife. There are invisible supernatural beings called BTs that show up during rainfall, which appear to be the main threat. And there’s a lot of talk about the bonds between people and how the crisis can only be overcome with the power of friendship.
I am still so confused, but I’m totally on board. I can’t think of any game like this one, and I’m intrigued to unravel this mystery. And the good news, the wait won’t be that long. Death Stranding will be out on 8 November as a PS4 exclusive, as announced this week. I look forward to figuring this out then!
POKÉMON WATCH YOU SLEEP NOW
The day before Death Stranding’s live announcement, The Pokémon Company did a presentation of their own, revealing four new Pokémon products.
First up, a sequel to Detective Pikachu, only for the Switch this time, not 3DS. It sets out to continue the story told in the first game and will finally reveal the fate of Tim’s father. If you think you know this already from the movie, then you’re wrong, because they’ve stated they have a different ending planned. Which is very interesting.
Next up is Pokémon Home, which is an extension of the Pokémon Bank service they had on 3DS. This service allowed you to transfer Pokémon between the 3DS games, and Home carries on this service. It will connect to Pokémon Bank, the Pokémon Let’s Go titles, Pokémon Go on mobile, and the upcoming Sword and Shield. No news on subscription fees yet, but it wouldn’t surprise me if it links with Bank’s subscription somehow.
Then there’s the vague Pokémon Masters for mobile, which looks like a gacha game featuring various trainers from across the series. Not much else to say about this right now.
But the most interesting announcement was a new app called Pokémon Sleep.
Like Pokémon Go turned walking into a game, Pokémon Sleep aims to do the same with sleep. Yes, really. It’s a sleep tracker app, tied in with an updated Pokémon Plus device, suggesting strong links with Go. Niantic are celebrating the announcement in Go too, with sleeping Snorlax everywhere.
I have no idea how sleep will translate into Pokémon training, but I’m intrigued.
If all this is a silly distraction and you only want news on Sword and Shield, then next week will have all you need. Nintendo have announced a special Pokémon Direct for 5 June at 2pm, so tune in then!
CALL OF DUTY IS CONFUSING EVERYONE
Another year, another Call of Duty. But what’s this year’s subtitle? It’s not another Black Ops. Will it be a new title like Ghosts? A variation on Modern Warfare? Oh it is that? Are you sure?
Yes, this year’s Call of Duty is Modern Warfare. No further subtitle, no number, just…Modern Warfare. Good luck not getting that confused with Call of Duty 4 or the more recent remaster.
It’s standard Call of Duty fare. This one has a campaign again, promising returning characters such as Captain Price (no relation). This one’s got crossplay, which is neat. This one’s not getting a season pass, instead alternate models of content distribution are being considered. Seems like Activision are pushing for a return to the glory years and end the gradual decline of the series. We’ll see if they succeed.
Still, that name. I’d have gone with Contemporary Warfare. Or wait! Post-Modern Warfare! Let’s make the world’s most meta military shooter! Maybe I’d take an interest then!
E3 IS COMING
E3 is right around the corner, and the leaks and previews are already coming. Here’s what to expect from the show so far.
EA have revealed a livestream schedule for their EA Play show (although EA swear it’s not an E3 thing). A lot of updates for existing games (although, notably, Anthem is completely absent), but the main draw will be Jedi: Fallen Order. If you want more Star Wars in your life, keep an eye out on 8 June at 5:30pm UK time.
Rumours are circulating that THQ Nordic will be revealing a new Darksiders. More interestingly, they may also be set to revive the Destroy All Humans franchise. Would be interesting to see.
Ubisoft look set to reveal a roller derby game called Roller Champions. The key art we’ve seen so far has shown some very male characters as its focus, despite the sport being female-centred in the real world, so that’s odd. We’ll know more at their conference on 10 June at 9pm UK time.
Square Enix have confirmed that they will be showing off the new Avengers game. Which is about time, because news of this has been floating around for years with no news. Their conference is at 2am on 11 June for us, so have fun staying up late for that.
Despite persistent fan expectation, Bethesda will NOT be showing Starfield or The Elder Scrolls 6. Exactly what they’ve got in store that’s as big as this is unknown.
Couple of notable releases this week. PlayStation are pushing their latest VR title, Blood and Truth. I’m not a VR fan, but this one looks like it could be fun for those who are. It’s a London gangster romp that started life as a small heist game on the VR Worlds compilation, now expanded into a full game. No doubt it’s a tale of betrayal, murder and lots of people shouting “OI LEAVE IT AHHHHT”. So if you’ve been desperate for a new Getaway game, this might be the closest you’ll get. It’s out for PS4 (VR only).
This week saw three major indie releases. The first two are Void Bastards and Draugen. Void Bastards is a roguelike with elements of System Shock and a comic book aesthetic. You play as a prisoner rehydrated onto a trapped spaceship, and you have to solve absurd objectives to get the ship to listen to you. It’s out for PC (via Steam and Humble Store) and also for Xbox One.
Draugen is a calm mystery game set in the Norwegian fjords from the people who made the Longest Journey series. You play as Edward, a man looking for his lost sister. It’s a slow, puzzle-based game that resembles Gone Home, and likely has an excellent narrative based on the team’s Longest Journey experience. Worth a look. It’s out for PC (via Steam).
GAME OF THE WEEK
Game of the Week this week has to be Gato Roboto, a game I only discovered in the last few days. It’s Metroid, but you’re a cat. Meowtroid, basically. You’re Kiki, an astronaut’s cat who has to help her owner through the help of an upgradeable robot suit. Combine this suit with your natural feline abilities to navigate an alien world and reach your astronaut buddy. It’s exactly my sort of game, so enjoy your Game of the Week for a second week in a row, Devolver Digital! It’s out for PC (via Steam) and Switch.
And that’s it for this week! It’s a shorter one this week because everyone’s holding off for E3, but we’ve still had fun, right? I’ll see you again next week when no doubt I’ll be trying to assemble something from limited scraps of information, while the following week will be an avalanche of E3 news.
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