The Latest

New Releases: February 14th-20th, 2019

With high-profile titles like Far Cry: New Dawn, Metro Exodus, Crackdown 3, and Jump Force incoming, consoles are primed for a bountiful week. But readers won’t want to overlook a number of notable niche titles. Beyond a pair of Steins;Gate titles, games like Death end re;Quest and Code: Realize: Wintertide Miracles, are anticipated, potentially putting the hurt on wallets.

Header image: Heart of the Woods, PC

PlayStation 4
Code: Realize: Wintertide Miracles (physical and digital, $49.99)
Death end re;Quest (physical and digital, $59.99)
DreamWorks Dragons: Dawn of New Riders (physical and digital, $39.99)
Far Cry: New Dawn (physical and digital, $49.99)
Jump Force (physical and digital, $59.99)
Metro Exodus (physical and digital, $59.99)
Steins;Gate: Linear Bounded Phenogram ($TBA)

Switch
ACA NeoGeo Puzzle Bobble 2 (digital, $7.99)
Alvastia Chronicles (digital, $12.99)
Astrology and Horoscopes Premium (digital, $8.99)
BlazRush (digital, $11.99)
Captain StarONE (digital, $9.99)
Cinders (digital, $19.99)
Commander Keen in Keen Dreams (digital, $9.99)
Degrees of Separation (digital, $19.99)
DreamWorks Dragons: Dawn of New Riders (physical and digital, $39.99)
Final Fantasy IX (digital, $20.99)
Guess The Word (digital, $1.89)
Hexa Maze (digital, $19.99)
KYUB (digital, $5.00)
LOVE (digital, $2.99)
Mega Mall Story (digital, $12.00)
Mimic Hunter (digital, $4.99)
Modern Combat Blackout (digital, $19.99)
NEKOPARA Vol. 2 (digital, $14.99)
Nice Slice (digital, $1.99)
OlliOlli: Switch Stance (digital, $14.99)
Pet Care (digital, $1.49)
Pinball Breaker (digital, $6.99)
The Rainsdowne Players (digital, $3.99)
Space Lift Danger Panic! (digital, $4.99)
Steins;Gate Elite (physical and digital, $53.99)
Strikey Sisters (digital, $8.99)
Tales of the Orient – The Rising Sun (digital, $14.99)
Tetris 99 (digital, free to play)
Touhou Sky Arena – Matsuri- Climax (digital, $29.99)
Trine 2: Complete Story (digital, $16.99)
Tokyo School Life (digital, $14.99)
V-Rally (physical and digital, $59.99)

Xbox One
Conarium (digital, $19.99)
Crackdown 3 (physical and digital, $39.99)
DreamWorks Dragons: Dawn of New Riders (physical and digital, $39.99)
Far Cry: New Dawn (physical and digital, $49.99)
Jump Force (physical and digital, $59.99)
Metro Exodus (physical and digital, $59.99)

Wii U
Sinister Assistant (digital, $3.99)

PC
Crackdown 3 ($59.99)
Devotion ($TBA)
Far Cry New Dawn ($39.99)
Heart of the Woods ($13.49)
Metro Exodus ($59.99)
Steam Prison ($31.49)
Steins;Gate: Linear Bounded Phenogram ($TBA)

Robert’s Pick: There’s a good chance you’ve played Steins;Gate, a visual novel that somehow manages to intertwine hard science, romance, comedy, and tragedy into an amazingly captivating experience. This week the release of Steins;Gate Elite revisits the original game, using visuals converted from White Fox’s animated adaptation to endow the narrative with freshness.

A transition across mediums probably shouldn’t work. Yet, somehow Elite succeeds, reiterating self-proclaimed ‘mad scientist’ Rintaro Okabe’s journey. Between spending time tinkering with friends in the Akihabara apartment that doubles as a laboratory to taking the time to visit maid cafes and cat-girls, Steins;Gate is uniquely Japanese. Play this before Netflix attempts a slipshod Americanized version that obliterates any future enjoyment for the consistently delightful Science Adventure series.

Ryan’s Pick: Too-too roo! Get out your metal upas! This week count me in as a lab member under the quirky yet infinitely loveable Hououin Kyouma in Steins; Gate Elite. For me the Steins: Gate series represents one of the best anti-harem visual novels and stories out there. I put it on the same level as the Monogatari short-novel/anime series in terms of character variation, likeability, and story. I call it an anti-harem VN in that it still has all of the same components that a normal harem visual novel has, but it does not shove fan service in your face. Instead, it offers you deep character development, mystery, and suspense that really helps weave everything and everyone together.

I <3 CRT. This is an excellent time to get into the series as this new version is fully animated. With multiple endings and plenty of choices to make, you definitely will be using your Reading Steiner through multiple playthroughs to see all the different outcomes. In general, if you are a fan of Akihabara culture and anime, send yourself a D-Mail to grab this wonderful VN on your Switch!

Matt’s Pick (Editor, DigitallyDownloaded): Steins;Gate really is that good, and Steins;Gate Elite takes what is arguably the best VN ever made, and improves on it. Substantially.

Everyone knows that VNs are characterised by a lot of static imagery and text to read through, but Steins;Gate Elite does something special by merging the text of a visual novel with high-quality, properly animated scenes taken from the anime. The result is vibrant and always interesting, even for people who are well familiar with the story.

With a cleverly labyrinthine plot that takes players through time travel through Akihabara culture, comedy though tragedy, one of the most impressive things about Steins;Gate is just how detailed it is, and how clever it is about defying your expectations at every turn. Every single time, just as you’re starting to settle into the narrative, Steins;Gate does something to throw you, and it’s impossible to put down as a result.

Jay’s Pick: In terms of game releases, some weeks are overwhelmingly good, some are bad because there just aren’t really any notable games but this might be the first week in a while where there are so many borderline (or outright) bad games that were actually trying to be good; I’m looking at you Crackdown 3, Jump Force, and Far Cry: New Dawn.

Hell, even Metro Exodus turned out to be a little disappointing. It’s no wonder we’ve got the three amigos above me talking about Steins;Gate Elite. It certainly deserves to be talked about but it isn’t the only high quality visual novel being released this week.

Code: Realize ~Wintertide Miracles~ is not going to be for everyone, even fans of visual novels mightn’t have delved into the Otome side of things. Rather than my regular fantasy of having 20 cute anime girls chasing after you, you play as a cute anime girl who has many eligible male suitors. So many, in fact, that there is a weird love triangle date mechanic in this entry.

All the guys are veritable dreamboats too, it’s not like being a cute girl walking into a club full of drunken one-liners, and even though I don’t find men desirable, my self-esteem is low enough that I’ll gladly take a compliment from anyone; boy, girl, chicken, you name it.

 

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.

11 comments

  1. Lovely art this week. Glad to hear Jay is into otome!

  2. “my self-esteem is low enough that I’ll gladly take a compliment from anyone; boy, girl, chicken, you name it.”

    We love ya!

    I will pick up Jump Force….

    ….when it hits $20

  3. No one picked Nekopara which is odd but then Steins;Gate it out this week so it kinda makes sense.

    But catgirls.

  4. I love how you all ignore Metro Exodus and Crackdown 3. I think Jay’s dead on about this one. Lots of missed opportunities.

    • Sadly I wasn’t so lucky to have the opportunity to ignore it. I had the “pleasure” of reviewing it, and because I dared to not enjoy a big-budget open world shooter, for the rest of the week I’ve been reminded a few dozen times about that game thanks to the comments I’ve had to delete <_<

      • So here’s the thing. Back when the original game created by Realtime Worlds came out in 2007, it was kind of cool. But then Ruffian Games really screwed up the sequel.

        Fast forward to MS showing Crackdown 3. It didn’t seem like they knew what direction the game was going. Cloud-based destruction? Uh sure, that’s a thing I guess. Delays hit and it was obvious this was going to be average at best.

        • Oh, sorry, I was talking about Metro <_<.

          I don't think anyone's out there giving people who didn't enjoy Crackdown 3 a hard time. I don't think anyone has actually enjoyed Crackdown 3 :-P.

          I did not like what they did with Metro. It's like no one on the dev team read the book. Or if they did, they didn't understand it.

          Which is odd because the first two absolutely nailed the tone and rhythms of the book.

  5. I got my eye on Tokyo School Life.

  6. Ryan, your Steins;Gate references made my day.