July 4 - 10

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IMAGE(https://www.gamerswithjobs.com/files/pictures/pictures/picture-13445.jpg)   Felix “Deuce” Threepaper

Welcome folks, and happy “1,186th Anniversary of the Pactum Sicardi” week!

As we all know, 4 July is famous for being the day the Pactum Sicardi was signed in 836. It was a treaty between the Greek Duchy of Naples and Sicard, the Lombard Prince of Benvento. It mostly dealt with allowing merchants to travel through each others’ domains and made some minor advances in shipwreck law. Truly, a famous 4 July event. The treaty didn’t even last a year before Naples called in some Saracens and attacked Benvento. You may all celebrate by playing a game when everyone else is playing another game.

Most tennis games have leaned on the arcadey side ever since the Wii. Matchpoint: Tennis Championships is more of a simulator. It’s not from a AAA studio, so it doesn’t have all the big-budget trimmings of an EA Sports game. Instead, it has honed in on making the core, ball-by-ball gameplay feel smooth. So, while the character options are limited to about 16 licensed players and you also can’t play doubles matches, the tennis itself feels tight. The game handles a lot of your movement around the court so you can focus on shot selection and placement. Each shot type has its own stats that you can train up—polish that killer backhand or improve that weak slice. The more you play a particular opponent, you’ll learn about their traits, like that they like to approach the net, and you can adjust your game accordingly. The animations are great and it just looks like playing tennis, without any gimmicks like supershots or exploding balls.

Arcadegeddon is a 3rd-person, multiplayer co-op shooter. It’s got a cartoony, neon, futuristic, sci-fi aesthetic that could be described as “muppet cyberpunk”. One roguelike feature is that you pick up fresh loot for each run, like in Returnal and Hades, while your XP and skill upgrades persist. You can play PvP, PvE, or even single-player. You can choose any platform, since it includes crossplay, but it’s not on GamePass nor free-to-play (yet). It looks good enough, but everything in it looks like it was done better in another game.

Yurukill: The Calumniation Games mashes Ace Attorney-style dialogue, clue hunting, and cross-examinations together with bullet-hell shmup levels. Is it peanut butter and chocolate, or peanut butter and Vegemite?

Cursed Island is a pixel-art, single-player game that switches between top-down shooting and 2D Castlevanioid. There’s also mining and crafting.

Speaking of top-down, Rush Rally Origins is a rally-racing game from a top-down view, instead of from the driver’s seat like all them fancy AAA racing games. Isometric racing has never looked so good, and you don’t need any of them fancy driving wheels to do it. If your favourite GTA is Chinatown Wars, this is for you.

Overrogue is out on the Microsoft platforms. It’s a deck-building roguelite, as is the style of the times. It’s also on the Switch—another example of these small time semi-sclusy deals, where Microsoft and Sony keep games away from each other but Nintendo gets a piece of everything.

Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series is a remake of 2 Klonoa games, which were PS and PS2 games from 1997 and 2001. They’re double-jumping platformers, with collecting, combat, and boss fights, plus pretty heavy on cutscenes and story. They’re 3D-looking, but still side-scrolling. Overall, they look like Sony was trying to create a game series that could take on both Sonic and Zelda at once. New features include co-op and adjustable difficulty modes.

When a game title is mostly in caps, but has that one letter in lowercase, you can guess without Googling that it’s a psychological horror game. Then, when you go to the game website and it’s just a black screen with a countdown in Courier font, you KNOW it’s a psychological horror game. MADiSON is this week’s horror game. You wake up in a spooky, underlit house full of jump scares and all you have is a Polaroid camera. There is no combat! Only jump scares!

Eternal Hope is a port of yet another indie puzzle platformer, from 2020. This is in the subset of “sad” indie platformers, think Limbo. It’s like playing the first ten minutes of Up.

On the Switch, Timber Story is a game where you’re a lumberjack (and you’re OK). Instead of working all day chopping down trees, you wander through flooded, craggy woods. It’s actually quite peaceful—you find ladders for people and such. Otherwise, this week is mostly a flood of cheap, bite-sized titles: from the puzzler Understand to the nu-metal, third-person mage brawler Gansgta Magic.

I’ll give the GOTW to Matchpoint: Tennis Championships. There’s surprisingly few decent tennis sims out there. Nothing has really beat Top Spin 4 from way back in 2011. This game looks like a great time if you want to enjoy a game of tennis, as opposed to cosplaying as your favourite tennis player.

Here's the list, now in release-date AND alphabetical order!

PC

  • 07-04

  • Cafeteria Nipponica
  • Dangerous Degrees
  • Jim The Spy
  • Mega Mall Story
  • Missing Persons
  • Nell Watson's Founder Life
  • One Last Crane - Prologue
  • Pintman:Escape the Lockdown
  • Pool Slide Story
  • The Backrooms: Found Footage
  • 07-05

  • 2D Brick Breaker Game | REMASTERED
  • Entangled (P2 Studios)
  • Fantasy Zoo
  • Last Call BBS
  • Nuts Protocol
  • PH0B0S
  • Project Speed 2
  • Psychoscopy
  • Space Captain McCallery - Episode 3: The Weaponmaster's Challenge
  • To Each of Their Hearts
  • 07-06

  • Far East Front Line
  • Let's Play! Oink Games
  • Placid Plastic Duck Simulator
  • 07-07

  • A Building Full of Cats
  • Britannia
  • Death Bind
  • Festival
  • get REKTorized
  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • Monster Girl
  • Nin Online
  • Overrogue
  • Pop Bowling VR
  • RUINSMAGUS
  • Seven Deadly Dates
  • The Callisto
  • The Kobolds Left Behind
  • The Redress of Mira
  • The Sunny Life
  • The Sword of Rhivenia
  • Witch Strandings
  • YASO
  • Zeta Bit Player Pack 1
  • 07-08

  • Aegis Descent
  • Canterz Paranormies
  • Castaway of the Ardusta Sea
  • Deep Space Salvage Crew VR
  • Elemgate
  • Farmland Realm
  • Garage: Bad Dream Adventure
  • Grid Words
  • Intruder In Antiquonia
  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • Knights of Fate
  • Lodestar
  • Ludo XXL
  • MADiSON
  • Moonphase Pass
  • Project: Eternal Flame
  • Sky in your eyes
  • Spellslinger VR
  • StarFlint the BlackHole Prophecy
  • Super Donald World 2020
  • Swords and Fairy Inn 2
  • Three Kingdoms II
  • Tigerfyre - Cursed Is the Ground for Thy Sake
  • Vowel Movements
  • Who Shuffled My Shapes?
  • Yurukill: The Calumniation Games
  • Yusha vs Dragon
  • 07-09

  • Just A Humble Swordsmith

Xbox Series X

  • 07-05

  • Arcadegeddon
  • 07-07

  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • Overrogue
  • 07-08

  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • MADiSON

Xbox One

  • 07-05

  • Arcadegeddon
  • 07-06

  • Cursed Island
  • Rush Rally Origins
  • 07-07

  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • Overrogue
  • 07-08

  • Eternal Hope
  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • MADiSON

PlayStation 5

  • 07-05

  • Yurukill: The Calumniation Games
  • 07-07

  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • 07-08

  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • MADiSON

PlayStation 4

  • 07-05

  • Arcadegeddon
  • Yurukill: The Calumniation Games
  • 07-07

  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • QUByte Classics: Zero Tolerance Collection
  • 07-08

  • Eternal Hope
  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • MADiSON

Switch

  • 07-04

  • Timber Story
  • 07-05

  • Yurukill: The Calumniation Games
  • 07-06

  • Cursed Island
  • Quintus and the Absent Truth
  • 07-07

  • APICO
  • Color Breakers
  • Doki Doki Family
  • Japanese NEKOSAMA Escape The Local Train
  • Matchpoint: Tennis Championships
  • Overrogue
  • QUByte Classics: Zero Tolerance Collection
  • Railways - Train Simulator
  • Secrets of Magic 4: Potion Master
  • Sticks Collection
  • SuperDuck!
  • Understand
  • 07-08

  • Accident
  • Formula Bit Racing DX
  • Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series
  • Road of Death
  • Super Rebellion
  • 07-09

  • Gangsta Magic

Comments

I am going to buy that darn tennis game.
Demo was good.

Matchpoint went on my wishlist after playing the demo during a Steam event a few months back.

I used to love Virtua Tennis and Top Spin. I've thought about buying the AO Tennis games on Steam but they've just never looked good enough.

Matchpoint, though, is giving me those old Top Spin vibes.

I'm so here for indie studios making the sports games that the loot box studios don't bother with anymore. My #1 Steam wishlist game is eSports Boxing Club, which despite the slightly cringy use of "eSports" in the title, is a Fight Night successor with an absolute metric ton of licensed boxers.

I have such fond memories of playing Virtua Tennis 2 on the Dreamcast, we played it even more than Powerstone I think. It was such an easy-to-learn hard-to-master game. It appears Matchpoint supports local 2v2 play, I might have to invite the old gang