LOS ANGELES—Last week’s Summer Game Fest has been mostly a virtual affair, filled with trailers for video games that may or may not launch in the next 18 months. Still, as the games industry gets closer to convention-preview normalcy, we put out invites for two events in early June with playable games coming.
You may have already seen my biggest insightful glimpses from those events: street fighter 6which is wonderful, and sonic frontiers, which is strange but promising. This article explains the “best of the rest” based on a series of hands-on testing and remote-connection Tribeca Games Festival demos at the Summer Game Fest Play Days event in Los Angeles. The events were missing some of the world’s biggest developers and publishers—arguably because many of their games were pushed to 2023. Despite this list skewed more on the indie side, we stand behind these game preview highlights thanks to how they felt.
Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course
platforms: PC, Xbox, PS4, Switch
planned release: 30 June
Link: steam | Nintendo eShop | Xbox | official site
bullet-hell brutality cuphead $7.99 will be back as a DLC pack later this month. If the sample boss level I played is any indication, this DLC will hit a sweet spot for fans of the series rather than turning it around. cuphead Reverse the formula.
A new playable character Ms. Chalis is available as a “charm” that a player can equip at any time, and she comes with some novice-friendly perks, including an extra point of health, a double-jump , a parry that doubles as a forward dash, and an acrobatic that adds a few frames of invincibility. Her new abilities weren’t necessary in the new boss battles I played—though being awesome. cupheadI was still grappling with the three phases of the fight, which included an abrupt transition to a floating, rotating platform (think.) super mario worldsecond Reznor fight).
She’s available in a new campaign that executive producer Marija Moldenhauer told Ars could be compared to the original game’s third island — which includes seven bosses and two platforming levels. Moldenhauer says the DLC will have six bosses, which she insists are more involved and complex than a selection of standard games, but she wouldn’t otherwise clarify what else will be in the DLC.
Moldenhower also says that the DLC includes almost as many hand-drawn backgrounds and frames of animation as the entirety of the standard. cuphead Campaign. This could mean that the boss battles I haven’t played yet are even more intense or that there’s another big platforming challenge to come. Either way, $7.99 seems like a must-see DLC option for anyone already invested. cupheadThe meticulously hand-crafted 2D action.
platforms: PC, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4
planned release: 28 June
Link: epic | PSN | Xbox | official site
EA and Codemasters hosted a F1 2022 Gameplay demo to showcase the latest feature of the series: VR Racing. Codemaster makers on the site have confirmed that the studio’s joint brain trust has matured enough to add a VR mode F1Thanks for the contribution of those who worked on the VR mode DIRT Rally And DriveClub VR, (The latter was created by Evolution Studios before it was acquired by Codemasters in 2016.)
The game maker’s kiosk bundles Fanatec’s CSL DD F1 bundle with the Quest 2 VR headset. In good news, the result strikes the right balance between fidelity and performance, with consideration for VR comfort when navigating F1– Right straight. The only comforting exception came from moments when particulate-filled clouds filled my gameplay scene, reducing my headset’s frame rate. This problem usually arose after a severe spinout when I disabled all driving assistance; When I leaned on the game’s optional F1-for-dummies, all-assist mode, F1 2022 Felt like a great carnival ride.
Codemasters had nothing more to show F1 2022 Driving was fun enough at SGF, but to excite me to play its VR mode on my PC when it launches on June 28.
platforms: PS5, PC
planned release: early 2023
Link: steam | PSN | official site
At some point, the oversaturation of indie “seek-adventure” games (better known as “Metroidvanias”) has to run its course, right? What else could one do to top the critically acclaimed picks hollow knight, axiom vergeAnd the cave story,
While I’m not immediately convinced that animal well My hour-long demo has me very, very curious. For one, it has fresh, beautiful ideas for rendering pixel art, thanks to its sole designer, programmer, and artist, who built the game’s engine from scratch—and condensed the entire package to a 10MB limit. Huh. The game’s lighting and physics models are some of the most impressive I’ve ever seen in a 16-bit aesthetic, perhaps even surpassing the pixelated, chemical-reaction madness Witch,
Additionally, this adventure has smart ideas on how to skip combat altogether. animal well asks players to focus on tricky maneuvers, puzzle-solving and hidden-path discovery as they uncover secrets that lack dialogue. Instead of wielding weapons, your hero’s eight-pixel blob should make the most of objects like firecrackers—which have lighting effects on a 2D world while intimidating potential foes—and a handy melee whip that can be thrown into crevices to grab an otherwise untouchable. Can be given the world element.
Fast controls and out-of-the-world pixel-art designs make up my demo experience animal well So far so memorable, and I look forward to its eventual release (currently pegged to a vague “early 2023” window).