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The Week in Video Games – May 21, 2017

This week in video games: free games, free-to-play games, VR games and another Kickstarter controversy. Here’s our round-up of the week’s best stories.

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Sonic Forces

This week in video games: free games, free-to-play games, virtual reality games and another Kickstarter controversy. Here’s our round-up of the week’s best stories.

Play Phantom Dust for free

The HD remaster of classic 2004 Xbox game Phantom Dust is out now on Xbox One and Windows 10. And the best news is, it’s free. The updated remaster features a 16:9 screen ratio, 1080P/4K resolution, revamped online multiplayer, and cross-platform support. If you’re new to the game, Heather Alexandra at Kotaku has put together a video that shows just why it’s still worth playing. You can pick up the game on the Xbox Games Store.

So near, yet so far

PlayStation VR received a welcome new game last week in Impulse Studios’ sci-fi shooter, Farpoint. Critical response has been cautiously positive, with many critics feeling that the sense of immersion – helped by the new PS VR Aim controller – offsets the rather rote gameplay experience. Eurogamer’s Ian Higton strikes a more critical tone in his review, saying “The Aim controller lifts the gunplay above the mediocre but once that novelty wears off it’s hard not to notice just how basic everything is.”

On the subject of VR…

The high retail price of VR technology is often cited as a reason for the slow uptake of Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. With a full bundles coming in at around £800, that’s no huge surprise. HTC are launching a new initiative to attract new customers to the Vive by offering a series of finance options Europe. GamesIndustry.biz has all the details

Is Zelda coming to Mobile?

Somehow the news that Nintendo might bring The Legend of Zelda to mobile has surprised many people. Nonetheless, with Breath of the Wild likely to be picking up a few game of the year awards, there probably isn’t a better time for Nintendo to cash in. We only mention this news again as we have one request of Nintendo: Make it a Tingle game. That rupee rascal is perfect for micro-transactions.

Letting off some Steam

Tim Colwill, writing at Polygon, takes a look at Valve’s ‘good guy’ reputation, and asks if it’s really deserved. It’s in-depth and enjoyable analysis of the current landscape of PC game marketplaces.

Daniel the Hedgehog

Finally, we can create our own terrible looking Sonic characters. Sega have announced that the upcoming Sonic Forces will include a Custom Hero feature. Picking from one of seven animal types – each with different abilities – players can play dress-up with their creations, who will then play an integral part in Sonic Forces‘ story. Here’s the trailer.

E3 press conferences and picnics

Ubisoft have confirmed that their E3 press conference will indeed be held at 1PM on Monday, June 12. And if you’re heading to E3, you should also make a note to visit Devolver Digital’s Indie Picnic, which is being held across the street from the main show.

Let it download

Grasshopper Manufacture had a busy week. Firstly, they announced that free-to-play PlayStation 4 game Let it Die has been downloaded over 3 million times in its first six months. Then on Friday, they revealed via Twitter that The 25th Ward: The Silver Case – a sequel to, surprise, The Silver Case – is now in production. Our own James Sweeting will be pleased as punch at that news, being a huge fan of Suda51’s original.

It is your Destiny

On Thursday Activision finally lifted the lid on Destiny 2. You’ll have most likely seen the trailer and gameplay footage by now, and impressive it looks too. The response from fans has been enormously positive, with one exception. The PC version of Destiny 2 will be exclusive to Battle.net (or whatever it’s called these days). That said, and as Glixel reports, Bungie have ambitious plans for the series on PC, so it might be the way to go.

Project Rap Rabbit

Masaya Matsuura’s NanaOn-Sha studio, and Keiichi Yano’s iNiS, have launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund Project Rap Rabbit, the spiritual sequel to rhythm-action classics PaRappa the Rapper and Gitaroo Man. The campaign has not been short of controversy with an extortionate $4.95 million stretch goal for a Nintendo Switch version swiftly reduced to $1.5 million. At the time of writing the campaign has raised just over $100,000 of its initial $1.1 million goal.


Don’t forget, you can check out the latest video games coming to Xbox, PlayStation and Nintendo consoles on our New Releases page.

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Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Dragon Quest XI, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Transistor.