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I’m not sure how to feel about the Metro Exodus trailer

To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about the Metro series in general, but Metro Exodus looks like something else entirely.

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Metro Exodus trailer

To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about the Metro series in general, but Metro Exodus looks like something else entirely.

On the one hand, they’re wonderfully crafted games, absolutely drenched in atmosphere and tension. But on the other hand, I’m not sure anyone really enjoys them, because – now, how do I put this delicately? – they might just make you shit your pants.

Based on the Metro series from Russian science fiction author, Dmitry Glukhovsky, Metro 2033 and its sequel, Metro: Last Light, capture their source material beautifully. They’re a terrifying glimpse into the future of Russia, a bleak, dystopian tapestry where humans live in the old metro stations of the Moscow underground, hunted by screeching, clattering demons, swathed in darkness and teeth and hatred.

And they’re really, really good games. The level of detail is exquisite, from the little fiddles and jams of Artyoum’s ancient, bedraggled arsenal, to the gasping hiss as a light goes out and you’re plunged into the oppressive, deadly murk. But they’re just too good at what they do. There’s research in the growing field of neurocinematics – which examines the measurable and specific responses elicited in the human brain when watching film footage – into the sorts of visual stimuli that provoke a strong or extreme response in the amygdala, the part of the brain that reacts to fearful stimuli.

I’d be willing to wager that the Metro series is up there with the best of horror movie direction in scaring the pants off you or I. And Metro Exodus? Well, that just takes the formula of the Metro series and puts it into a bigger setting, and I’m sure I’m happy about that.

The map is a bit of a red herring. It’s not open world as it appeared from the trailer reveal at the Microsoft conference, but Metro Exodus, as the name suggests, is making use of advancements in hardware – and the ambition of developer 4A Games – to take the terror out of the tunnels to expansive and varied new locales.

I was cool with it being in the Russian metro system, because I never have, nor will I ever probably spend a great deal of time down there (and by the same logic, 28 Weeks Later’s London Underground escalator scene therefore scares me immensely). But because Metro Exodus is out and about, in settings that are a bit more familiar and real to your average player, then it’s really going to get the amygdala twitching.

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Tom is an itinerant freelance technology writer who found a home as an Editor with Thumbsticks. Powered by coffee, RPGs, and local co-op.

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New PlayStation 4 releases (June 1-5, 2020)

Here’s our guide to every new PlayStation 4 video game released on the PS Store over the next week.

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New PlayStation 4 game releases
Sony / Thumbsticks

Here’s our guide to every new PlayStation 4 video game released on the PS Store over the next week.

At the time of writing, there’s just a handful of new PS4 games confirmed for release. It’s not unusual for the time of year – typically E3 would only be a few weeks away – and many PS4 titles may have made way for The Last of Us Part II, which, at one point, was due last week. In any case, here’s what we know. We’ll update this page as more titles are confirmed.

Fans of retro-style platformers can look forward to going on another perilous adventure in Awesome Pea 2. It looks like another simple but lovingly crafted game from developer Sometimes You. The sublimely executed Game Boy style visuals are also very appealing.

If you miss the great outdoors, Tour de France 2020 and Pro Cycling Manager 2020 give fans of lycra and velocipedes the chance to race across France at reasonable speeds.

We were also expecting Game Freak’s Little Town Hero to be released on PS4 this week, but it seems the game has been bumped to June 23. Likewise, Rock of Ages III: Make & Break appears to have been pushed back to June 21. Again, we’ll update this page should things change.

Here’s the full list of new PlayStation Store releases for the PS4, PS VR, and PS Vita as it stands.

New PlayStation 4 releases: June 1-5, 2020

Monday, June 1, 2020

  •  No releases

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

  • No releases

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

  • Strawberry Vinegar
  • Awesome Pea 2

Thursday, June 4, 2020

  • Tour de France 2020
  • Pro Cycling Manager 2020

Friday, June 5, 2020

  • Tcheco in the Castle of Lucio
  • The Sims 4: Eco Lifestyle (Expansion)

Catch up with next week’s new Xbox One releases.


Bookmark the Thumbsticks new releases page for the latest games. You can also follow us on social media via Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter.

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New Xbox One releases (June 1-5, 2020)

Here is next week’s lineup of brand new Xbox One releases. One title is quite literally awesome.

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New Xbox One game releases
Microsoft / Thumbsticks

Here’s the full lowdown on next week’s lineup of brand new Xbox One video game releases. One title is quite literally awesome.

There isn’t a huge amount to be excited for on Xbox One next week, but we promised you an awesome game, so let’s talk about one.

Awesome Pea 2 is the follow-up to Sometimes You’s enjoyable 2018 retro-platformer. The original was a slight, but occasionally tricky game, starring a heroic vegetable. The sequel promises a larger serving of everything, including dungeons, enemies, and loot. The pea-souper visuals also return, beautifully recalling the dingy display of the Nintendo Game Boy.

Other new releases include Strawberry Vinegar, a quirky visual novel about making food to save your soul, and We Were Here Together, a mysterious puzzle adventure set in the wastes of Antarctica.

The latest addition to the Thumbsticks ‘Big Book of Bland Game Names’ is called Cyber Protocol. It’s a fun retro-style puzzler. Finally, the long-awaited Eco Lifestyle expansion comes to The Sims 4.

Each new release can be purchased from the Xbox One digital games store and Microsoft online store. Here’s the full lineup.

New Xbox One releases: June 1-5, 2020

Monday, June 1, 2020

  •  No releases

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

  • No releases

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

  • Strawberry Vinegar
  • Depth of Extinction
  • Awesome Pea 2

Thursday, June 4, 2020

  • Tour de France 2020

Friday, June 5, 2020

  • Tcheco in the Castle of Lucio
  • Outbuddies DX
  • The Sims 4: Eco Lifestyle (Expansion)
  • We Were Here Together
  • Rigid Force Redux

If you’re looking for some video game bargains, read our roundup of this week’s rockin’ Xbox One sales.


Bookmark the Thumbsticks new releases page for the latest games. You can also follow us on social media via Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter.

Enjoyed this article?

Found it interesting, entertaining, useful, or informative? Maybe it even saved you some money. That's great to hear! Sadly, independent publishing is struggling worse than ever, and Thumbsticks is no exception. So please, if you can afford to, consider supporting us via Patreon or buying us a coffee.


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New Super Lucky’s Tale is coming to PS4 and Xbox One this summer

New Super Lucky’s Tale is on its way to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One later this year.

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New Super Lucky's Tale is coming to PS4 and Xbox One
Playful Studios

New Super Lucky’s Tale is on its way to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One later this year.

Playful Studios and PQube have announced that the super okay New Super Lucky’s Tale is breaking free from its Nintendo Switch bastille and will be released on Xbox One and PS4 this summer.

Pitched as a love letter to classic 3D platformers, New Super Lucky’s Tale was first released as plain old Super Lucky’s Tale in 2017, where it was an Xbox One X launch title. The revised and expanded “new” version debuted on Switch in 2019 to warm reviews and nods of moderate appreciation.

The foxy 3D adventure platformer is getting a physical and digital release on PS4 and Xbox, but there’s no news on if the game is being updated to take advantage of the increased hardware power.

You can see Lucky in action in this accolades trailer. If you own a Switch, you can also download a free demo to sample it for yourself.

Summer is a slightly vague release window, so we’ll make a prediction and see how close we end up being. Let’s lick our finger and stick it in the air… June 25, 2020? That’s our entirely random hunch.


Bookmark the Thumbsticks new releases page for weekly updates on the latest Xbox One, Switch, and PS4 games. You can also follow us on Facebook, Google News, Twitter, and Flipboard.

Enjoyed this article?

Found it interesting, entertaining, useful, or informative? Maybe it even saved you some money. That's great to hear! Sadly, independent publishing is struggling worse than ever, and Thumbsticks is no exception. So please, if you can afford to, consider supporting us via Patreon or buying us a coffee.


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June’s free PlayStation Plus games are War-full

Sony confirms the two free PS4 games coming to PlayStation Plus in June 2020.

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PlayStation Plus
Sony / Thumbsticks

Sony confirms the two free PS4 games coming to PlayStation Plus in June 2020.

June’s free PS Plus games are perfect for players who would like to shoot things, with the choice of a historical epic, of a futuristic, erm, even more historical epic.

First up is Call of Duty: WWII, the ‘boots on the ground’ FPS from Sledgehammer Games. The 2017 game is as subtle as a sledgehammer, but it’s one of our favourites from the franchise’s recent history. And it’s available to download right now.

It’s joined by the infamous Star Wars: Battlefront II, the game that caused millions of voices to cry out in terror at its microtransactions. With two-and-a-half years of changes and content updates under its belt, the game is much improved and probably the second-best Star Wars adventure of the generation.

June’s free PS Plus games are available to download from June 2 – July 6, 2020.

PlayStation Plus free games – June 2020

  • Call of Duty: WWII
  • Star Wars: Battlefront II

May’s PlayStation Plus games – Cities: Skylines and Farming Simulator 19 – remain available to download until next Tuesday.


Bookmark the Thumbsticks new releases page for weekly updates on the latest Xbox One, Switch, and PS4 games. You can also follow us on Facebook, Google News, Twitter, and Flipboard.

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Found it interesting, entertaining, useful, or informative? Maybe it even saved you some money. That's great to hear! Sadly, independent publishing is struggling worse than ever, and Thumbsticks is no exception. So please, if you can afford to, consider supporting us via Patreon or buying us a coffee.


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Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is free on the Epic Games Store

Grab Borderlands: The Handsome Collection from today through Thursday on the Epic Games Store.

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Borderlands: The Handsome Collection
Gearbox Software

Grab Borderlands: The Handsome Collection from today through Thursday on the Epic Games Store.

Handsome Jack. You love him or you hate him. He has a diamond unicorn called Butt Stallion. You think that’s funny or deeply stupid. He’s a smarmy prick, with a hidden tragic backstory. That either makes him sympathetic or just a smarmy prick with a hidden tragic backstory.

How you feel about Handsome Jack will likely determine how you feel about this week’s Epic giveaway. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection includes Gearbox’s Borderlands 2 and the 2K Australia-developed spin-off, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel. Both star the titular Hyperion President. In Borderlands 2, Jack is a villain and constant voice in your ear. Pre-Sequel, though — which, confusing title aside, is just a prequel — charts Jack’s fall from grace.

Both games are worth checking out if you haven’t already. The original Borderlands defined the loot-shooter, fusing solid FPS mechanics with RPG progression and procedurally generated loot. Borderlands 2 refined everything the first game did, expanded it, and did a significantly better job of telling a story.

Pre-Sequel transplants the action to a moon of Pandora, the lawless desert planet that served as setting for the first two games. The new environment brings new mechanics with it. The moon’s lower gravity means that gunfights and traversal have a vertical component. And, the lack of oxygen will push you between conveniently placed domes of air.

I never finished Pre-Sequel but I enjoyed the bits that I played of it. It’s a shame that 2K Australia closed shortly after its release.

The meme-y humour of Borderlands 2 and Pre-Sequel doesn’t hold up especially well (you can go ahead and use “Butt Stallion” as a litmus test for whether you’ll think it’s funny or not). But, they’re still a blast with a few friends at your side.

And, given that both are free right now, it should be pretty easy to round-up a co-op party. Here are Tom’s impressions of Borderlands 3 if you’d prefer something more current.

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Found it interesting, entertaining, useful, or informative? Maybe it even saved you some money. That's great to hear! Sadly, independent publishing is struggling worse than ever, and Thumbsticks is no exception. So please, if you can afford to, consider supporting us via Patreon or buying us a coffee.


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