Released in January to a pretty varying set of opinions, Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team’s Rise & Shine hasn’t exactly set the gaming world alight but it’s still an excellent side-scroller all the same. Featuring gorgeous visuals and a clear adoration for geek culture, it may just scratch an itch for those who are yet to try it.
Incredibly testing at points, Rise & Shine’s charm offsets its difficulty spikes, which when combined with its unique puzzles and endearing comic book style makes a game that is perfect to dive into during a lull in the gaming calendar. I may be in the minority, but I was utterly smitten with it:
“A love letter to gaming that has more than enough to stand on its own merits, Rise & Shine could be a dark horse for one of the best of 2017.”
7. Friday the 13th: The Game
Available on: Xbox One, PS4, PC
You’re going to be hard-pressed to find anyone who claims that Friday the 13th: The Game is the finished article, the sentiment a lot of its reviewers shared as they picked it apart. It’s buggy and feels like it may not yet be the game it was supposed to be, but when IllFonic and Gun Media’s 7v1 multiplayer is at its best, it’s irresistible.
Playing as either Jason or one of the besieged counsellors, Friday the 13th: The Game is perfect with friends, co-ordinating how to take down the seemingly superpowered serial killer or as the man himself, dishing out ultraviolent kills. Its initial hype may have worn off, but with a lot of post-launch support promised, this may just last longer than a bunch of horny teenagers at camp.
8. Dead Cells
Available on: PC
We’re hardly going through a famine for quality roguelikes these days – it seems nigh on impossible to make an outright bad one. With so much competition from its peers, though, Dead Cells had to do something to stand out and it certainly did when it hit early access earlier this year.
Quite possibly one of the most complete in-development titles ever made, Dead Cells soft launched with heaps of content that more than tided players over until the full release. As you might expect, Motion Twin insist on leaving the player to their own devices so there’s a steep learning curve to overcome here. When you do overcome it, however, and slash and dash through enemies like a knife butter, there aren’t many better game to make you feel godly. Here’s an excerpt from my first impressions:
“It’s a maddeningly addictive blend of smooth combat, sumptuous style, and replayability, which is good because you will meet your end a lot. A lot lot.”
9. Disc Jam
Available on: PC, PS4
A free PlayStation Plus game that looked like it might share some DNA with Rocket League, Disc Jam’s biggest problem is that very same comparison. There is only one Rocket League and anything that even looks like wanting to get in the same ballpark is going to struggle. But that doesn’t mean you should write off Disc Jam.
While the “hook” may not initially be there for a lot of players, Disc Jam is a game with more going on than a lot of people give it credit for. It offers moments of high intensity -particularly if teaming up with friends- thanks to the precision required when throwing discs and leaping to make those final second catches. Disc Jam is essentially a futuristic game of badminton and one that you should take another look at if you wrote it off first time around.
Available on: PC, Xbox One
Another roguelike, but another one that seems underrated. As everyone calmed down from one of the most hectic starts to a gaming calendar, the release schedule went quiet with only a couple of gems. One of those gems was Everspace: ROCKFISH’s successful launch out of early access and into outer space.
As excellent as it is, it may not feel like Everspace is for you straight away – it routinely throws up brick walls that it just expects you to keep hitting. Persevere, however, and you will become engrossed in the combat and its constantly sardonic humour. If you give any game on this list a chance to impress you, it might be a good idea to start with Everspace. Here’s Nick with the verdict:
“Everspace’s rewarding and beautifully presented playground is further bolstered by engrossing background lore and a dedication to keeping its rogue-like elements entrenched within the game’s universe, resulting in perhaps the least-meta game of its kind I’ve ever played. What it lacks in content variety and originality where story is concerned, is made up for by its sheer ability to keep me going for hours – “just one more run.””