The Latest

New Releases: January 7th-13th, 2021

With new arrivals like Arcanoid Breakout, Top Gun Air Combat and Space Aliens Invaders, a few of this week’s releases are hoping to evoke comparison to gaming classics. But look past a trio of familiar titles, and you’ll find some original efforts. From the action role-playing antics of Skellboy Refractured to Werewolf: The Apocalypse — Heart of the Forest’s amalgam of visual novel and role-playing elements. Some might also be delighted by the monochromatic puzzling found in Iris.Fall.

Header image: Sakura MMO Extra, PC

PlayStation 4
Five Nights at Freddy’s: Core Collection (physical & digital, $39.99)
Iris.Fall (physical & digital, $39.99)

Switch
Arcanoid Breakout (digital, $4.99)
Dead Ground (digital, $9.99)
Epitaph (digital, $12.99)
Galactic Trooper Armada (digital, $5.99)
Gorilla Big Adventure (digital, $4.99)
Grand Prix Racing (digital, $5.99)
Hed the Pig (digital, $3.99)
Iris.Fall (digital, $19.99)
Kingdom Tales 2 (digital, $9.99)
Mahjong Adventure (digital, $7.99)
Radio Commander (digital, $14.99)
S.U.M. – Slay Uncool Monsters (digital, $5.99)
Sense – A Cyberpunk Ghost Story (digital, $19.99)
Space Aliens Invaders (digital, $4.99)
Stardash (digital, $9.99)
SuperMoose (digital, $7.99)|
Table Soccer Foosball (digital, $4.99)
The Pillar: Puzzle Escape (digital, $9.99)
Top Gun Air Combat (digital, $9.99)
Werewolf: The Apocalypse — Heart of the Forest (digital, $13.49)
Wrestling Empire (digital, $19.99)
Yumemidori Nostalgia (digital, $19.99)

Xbox One
Blacksmith of the Sand Kingdom ($19.99)
Five Nights at Freddy’s: Core Collection (physical & digital, $39.99)
Glitch’s Trip (digital, $12.99)

PC
Hero by Chance ($TBA)
Heroes of the Three Kingdoms 8 ($TBA)
Iron Conflict ($TBA)
Sakura MMO Extra ($TBA)
Skellboy Refractured ($TBA)
Street Cleaner: The Video Game ($12.74)
Subterene ($0.99)
SuperMash ($TBA)
Wigmund: The Return of the Hidden Knights ($TBA)
Yaga ($TBA)

Rob’s Pick: Recently, Matt and I appreciated Wingspan’s adaptation from table-top to video game form. This week’s release of Werewolf: The Apocalypse — Heart of the Forest offers a looser reworking of Mark Rein-Hagen’s pen-and-paper role-playing game, but I truly appreciate the liberties developer Different Tales have taken.

Heart of the Forest feels like a fusion of visual novel and role-playing game, but that description doesn’t quite do the title justice. In execution, there’s a lot of variables affected by players, with decisions influencing everything from how characters feel about the protagonist to the trajectory of the plotline. I also welcome the idea of diasporic characters drawn to locales in an effort to understand more about their family history and themselves. It certainly helps that lead Maia Boroditch isn’t the archetypal horror protagonist. If you relish some of the cultural explorations that games do so well, Heart of the Forest’s dive into Polish folklore is worth pursuing.

Ryan’s Pick: Wrestling games at least for me have always been about just purely beating the living daylights out of your friends so much that they can’t even stand up. They were also very much about swinging your friends around by their feet over and over again so they have to watch the same cut scene in Tecmo Wrestling for NES. This comical violence always made me laugh, and I’m always open for an over-the-top wrestling experience. This said, if you are looking for an eclectic experience and enjoy wrestling games, then I highly suggest MDickie’s Wrestling Empire for the Switch. Now at first glance, you’ll notice that the graphics are on par with say PS2 era games. Before you give it a hard pass however, the allure of these games is in the fun content, depth, and absolute weird mayhem that can happen within them. MDickie makes all his games solo, and has been doing so for almost 20 years.

If his previous releases are any indication, wrestling fans are in for a treat as not only is it a wrestling game, but it actually is a simulator as well. You can negotiate your contract, take paycuts, leave for a better paying company, and experience other relatively realistic wrestling industry happenings. While the games are violent, it’s more weird violence if that makes any sense whatsoever. I think the eccentricity of the game with the strange violence really is what is drawing me towards it, so I am definitely looking forward to letting things get weird.

Matt C’s pick (editor, Shindig): I’m also intrigued by Werewolf: The Apocalypse — Heart of the Forest. I’m coming from a place of no familiarity with the tabletop game whatsoever, but the concept of a visual novel by way of pen-and-paper RPG systems sounds wonderful. A supernatural horror twist on a tale of cultural exploration and digging into a dark family history is always going to pique my interest, and the comic-style illustrations in Heart of the Forest look remarkable.

I’m also taken with the look of Iris.Fall, a surreal puzzle game that seems to blend MC Esther-style architecture with puzzle mechanics built around light and shadow, and a gorgeous monochrome art style. It’s been kicking around on PC for a couple of years now, but it’s finally making its way to consoles, and it seems like a perfect play-on-the-go game for Switch.

Matt S. (Editor, DigitallyDownloaded) has no pick this week.

About Robert Allen

With over 35 years of gaming experience, Robert 'DesertEagle' Allen is Tech-Gaming's resident worrier/warrior who spends his days teaching at three colleges and his nights devoted to JRPGs.

3 comments

  1. How is it possible for a game to be called “Top Gun Air Combat” and not be affiliated with the movie or game series?

  2. You can never really go wrong with maids. 😉

    I managed to get a PS5 after a metric shit ton of work. Now it’s here I’m playing PS4 games that look like PS4 games with no real framerate improvement. At least they load 4 seconds faster. $500 well spent, hahahaha

  3. Wrestling Empire looks like N64-era wrestling. Does anyone know if you can create your own look-a-like wrestlers?