While the Cat is away, or at least recuperating from the frozen tundra of Boston, the Mice shall play. We lowly underminers (because no one is beneath us) are approaching The Week Ahead a bit differently this week. Instead of selecting a singular game, we'll each be highlighting a game or group of games that we're looking forward to. We hope that this not only gives multiple games an opportunity to shine, but helps encourage what we love about The Week Ahead most: our community coming together to share what they all happen to be excited about.
Chris 'C' Cesarano: I don't know much about how business years and estimates go, but I'm guessing March is the last month of some financial quarter due to the sheer number of games suddenly getting squeezed out this month. I wasn't even aware a new version of Mushroom Men was being made, though based on its premise I doubt it'll be winning the favor of our Tropes vs. The Recently Released denizens any time soon. Being the staff 3DS fanboy you might also expect me to be incredibly psyched about the upcoming Codename: S.T.E.A.M., a tactical strategy game in the vein of X-Com, but set in an alternate steampunk history. It wasn't until I was granted a full four-person squad that the demo struck a rich vein of joy, granting unique combat and mobile abilities that whet my appetite for the full game. By all rights, Codename S.T.E.A.M. should be my pick for the week. Should.
Instead, my pick of the week is going to a game I've already played before, DmC: Devil May Cry: Definitive Edition. I wanted to own a copy of the game anyway, and getting a high-definition version running at sixty frames per second, with DLC packed in, is just the way to rip cash straight from my wallet. The story and characters may have me face-palming and shaking my head enough to generate neck-cramps in the morning, but the combat is just so much heroin to shoot between my toes. So, like a complete toolbag, I win the Sean Sands Award for Most Disappointing Week Ahead Pick for 2015.
Greg 'doubtingthomas396' Decker: My contrarian inclination is to try and figure out the one that is most likely to be labeled "robbed" and pick that one – which I'm sure would be either Atelier Shallie or Tokyo Twilight.
I feel I owe you all better than that. Instead of playing into the caricature I've created for myself, I'll give you my honest answer which also, as it happens, plays into the caricature I've created of myself. I'm genuinely excited that another Mushroom Men game is coming out.
I played the first one, on the Wii, stem-to-stern with my kids, and we all enjoyed it quite a bit. In fact I still get requests to replay some favorite levels over again. This one looks nothing like the Wii version, being a side-scrolling puzzle-platformer, but the trailer's cheerfully manic tone put me in mind of BattleBlock Theatre, which is another game I loved to play with my kids. It also made my wife laugh, which is still a sound that sets my heart aflutter after all these years. Finally, it gives me the opportunity to say "Nobody knows the truffles I've seen" in a review someday, and you know I won't be able to resist that!
All of this leads me to Mushroom Men: Truffle Trouble as my Game of the Week.
Felix Threepaper: Two particular words in game titles are my kryptonite:
Awakenings Revengeance "Sid Meier's".
Like Metallica, Sid Meier sports a back catalogue so beloved that my interest in his new stuff is permanently set at "piqued".
Sid Meier's Starships has decloaked from completely under my radar. Scanners are picking up strong background readings of the Civ/Beyond Earth formula. The headline feature – "tactical ship combat" – sounds like it may play out like XCom, but on a hex grid. I’m curious whether this new combat system has the tactical legs to stay fresh for the duration of a usual Sid Meier campaign.
So will Sid Meier's Starships be St. Anger or Lulu? I'll probably spend 60 hours finding out, and that's why it is my Game of the Week.
As for runners-up, Hotline Miami was like an autotuned rabid chihuahua: small, vicious, but with a surprisingly great soundtrack. I enjoyed it, but don't need another ticket to that particular freakshow.