September 25 – October 1


IMAGE(   Greg “DoubtingThomas396” Decker

We first heard about Cuphead years ago, and the art style is eye-catching enough for me to remember it. It evokes classic Popeye cartoons with, apparently, hand-drawn cel animation, but reading that it’s heavily influenced by Contra pushed it over my bar into Game of the Week territory.

I’m also interested to see if the character design has any gameplay implications, because a character based on earthenware is one of those head-scratchers. Do the enemies represent people before they’ve had coffee in the morning? Do the weapons have to do with diners somehow? Was the game written in Java?

I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to finding out. Cuphead gets my pick of the week.

IMAGE(   Chris "C" Cesarano

So there's a game called Hentai coming out this week on the PC release list. I'm sitting here, teeth dug firmly into my bottom lip as I find myself compelled to open a new tab and search Google for what this game could possibly be. That it will be releasing on Steam likely means it's "pretty tame" compared to what I can imagine, but that very fact is largely what stays my hand. The other being a worry that the FBI are watching me simply because I know what "hentai" is.

If you missed out on SteamWorld Dig 2 on Switch because you're a fun-hating Nintendo boycotter, you can get your hands dirty this week on PlayStation 4. Or on Vita. That's right, you in the back. The only person here that bought one. [Ed. Note: We'll see you at the bike rack after school in the comments!]

Otherwise I'll have to join my compatriot in giving Cuphead the nod for Game of the Week. This is one example where I'm uncertain if development took so long due to programming and polish or because the artwork was so laboriously and lovingly crafted. I have no doubt I'd be awful at this game, and due to my lack of an Xbox One I won't be playing it anyway. But jinkies gang, ain't that a gorgeous game?

IMAGE(   Felix “With great power … yada yada yada” Threepaper

Blue Reflection is the latest in an increasingly long line of school-based RPGs. If you played Persona, you know the drill: day/night cycles, doing school stuff, helping friends, battling monsters in some Other World. The difference is that this one is self-consciously for, about – but notably not by – women. I don’t have the chops to appraise it properly, but it was well-reviewed in Japan, and the devs have a truckload of those paving blocks they used on that road to Hell.

Hob almost made the podium on pedigree alone. Sure, there are already plenty of cute, puzzle-platforming adventure games (and probably another 20 coming out on Steam this week) but THIS one is made by Runic Games, the people who did Torchlight. Runic was able to keep pace with Blizzard in dungeon-clickers, can it do the same in adventure games with … err, Sierra? I’m too tired of adventure games to find out.

My vote goes instead to Megaton Rainfall. It’s a first-person superhero game, and when it says it’s “open world”, it means literally the whole world. Yup, you fly around Earth, looking for invading aliens to fight. Later you can unlock Moon and Sun! What gets me is its beauty and scale: You can dive deep into oceans or ascend to the stratosphere. In cities, you swoop between skyscrapers, battle behemoth alien craft, and if you miss a shot, you can cause just as much block-levelling mayhem as the visiting team. I hope it has an interesting power tree. Oh, and strap on your chuckbuckets, goggle-heads, because it’s also VR-enabled.

This week:


  • Ablepsia
  • About Elise
  • Access
  • Achievement Hunter: Thief
  • Adventures of Heroes
  • Airport CEO
  • Airstrike One
  • aMaze Achievements : forest
  • aMaze Achievements: darkness
  • Apocalypse: The Game
  • Artania
  • Assassination Station
  • Asteroid Hunter
  • Aw Nutz
  • Azure Sky Project
  • Bad Government
  • Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 2: The Pact
  • Bloody Glimpse
  • Blue Reflection
  • Bones game online
  • Box Maze 2: Agent Cubert
  • Burger in Hyperland
  • Catistry
  • Cicadas
  • Crazy Mob
  • Crimson Sword Saga: Tactics Part I
  • Cuco
  • Cuphead
  • Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony
  • Devil in the Pines
  • Doodle Jamboree
  • Dragon Drop
  • Druid's Tale: Crystal Cave
  • Duel of Summoners: The Mabinogi Trading Card Game
  • Duped
  • Eared Hero
  • Elisa: Seduce the Innkeeper
  • EVE: Valkyrie - Warzone
  • Eventide 3: Legacy of Legends
  • Fall of Light
  • Fallout 4: Game of the Year Edition
  • FIFA 18
  • Fish's Trip
  • Fruit Sudoku 2
  • Fruit Sudoku 3
  • Fruit Sudoku 4
  • Galactic Field
  • Glitch Simulator 2018
  • Good Eggzample
  • Helium Skies 2
  • Helltown
  • Hentai
  • Hex: Origins
  • Hidden Object - Tools
  • Hidden Object: Food
  • Hob
  • Hoo-Boy
  • Idle Bouncer
  • In The Shadows
  • Iron Knight
  • Kaet Must Die!
  • Lance A Lot: Enhanced Edition
  • Learn Japanese Kana The Fun Way!
  • Legend of Egypt: Pharaohs Garden
  • Linench
  • LOGistICAL: Chile
  • Loot Collection: Mahjong
  • Lost in the Forest
  • Machinegun Geometry
  • Make a word!
  • MarZ Rising
  • Microsoft Allegiance
  • Mr. Jumpington 4
  • Nudist Beach Survival Simulator
  • Operator Overload
  • PaperCat
  • Parking Cop Simulator
  • Pass The Time
  • Pass The Time 2
  • Pembrey
  • Petrichor
  • Photon Flux
  • Pinball FX3
  • Pins 4
  • Placement
  • RageBall
  • Raid: World War II
  • Redwall: The Warrior Reborn
  • RemOOve
  • RemOOve 2
  • Resurgence (Pixel by Pixel Studios Inc.)
  • Romance with Chocolate: Hidden Object in Paris
  • Ruiner
  • Sevgilim Olur musun ?
  • Shopping Simulator Multiplayer
  • Space Live: Advent of the Net Idols
  • Square Head Zombies
  • Staplers! 4
  • StepX
  • Stick Fight: The Game
  • Sticks
  • Sum Sketch
  • Tarim
  • The Armament Project
  • The Great Wobo Escape
  • The Guild 3
  • The jungle
  • The Painscreek Killings
  • The Power Factory
  • The Unseen
  • The Walking Vegetables
  • Throne of Lies The Online Game of Deceit
  • Tinge
  • Tinge 2
  • TOREj 3
  • Total War: WARHAMMER II
  • Tracks: The Train Set Game
  • Trials of the Illuminati: Amazing Wildlife Jigsaws
  • Twickles
  • Unblocky 2
  • Unblocky 3
  • Unblocky 4
  • Valnir Rok
  • Vampires!
  • Vaporum
  • Where They Cremate The Roadkill
  • Winged Sakura: Endless Dream
  • You Doesn't Exist


  • 100ft Robot Golf
  • Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 2: The Pact
  • Blue Reflection
  • Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony
  • Don't Starve: Mega Pack
  • DreamWorks Voltron VR Chronicles
  • Fallout 4: Game of the Year Edition
  • FIFA 18
  • Gundam Versus
  • Hob
  • Light Tracer
  • Lightfield
  • Megaton Rainfall
  • Nioh: Bloodshed's End
  • Pinball FX3
  • Ruiner
  • Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash
  • Splasher
  • SteamWorld Dig 2
  • Summon Night 6: Lost Borders

Xbox One

  • Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 2: The Pact
  • Battle Garegga Rev.2016
  • Cuphead
  • Don't Starve: Mega Pack
  • Fallout 4: Game of the Year Edition
  • FIFA 18
  • Forza Motorsport 7
  • Hob
  • Lightfield
  • Pinball FX3
  • Ruiner
  • Splasher


  • Arcade Archives: Mario Bros.
  • Conga Master Party!
  • FIFA 18
  • INVERSUS Deluxe
  • One Piece: Unlimited World Red - Deluxe Edition
  • Picross S
  • Shantae: Half-Genie Hero
  • Sine Mora EX

Wii U

  • Hive Jump


  • Yo-kai Watch 2: Psychic Specters


  • Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony
  • SteamWorld Dig 2
  • Summon Night 6: Lost Borders


  • Cloudborn
  • DreamWorks Voltron VR Chronicles
  • Dronihilation VR
  • Gurugedara
  • Megaton Rainfall
  • Skyfront
  • Skyfront
  • Voltron VR Chrinicles


  • Bobbi of Cities
  • Cloudborn
  • DreamWorks Voltron VR Chronicles
  • Dronihilation VR
  • Skyfront
  • Toy Goblins


YW2 Psychic Specters is this week? For some reason I thought it was October. Oh well, first ever pass from me with Yokai Watch. Not enough time, I'll wait for YW3 next year.

Ruiner, however, is going to be had.

Chris C Cesarano wrote:

So there's a game called Hentai coming out this week on the PC release list.

Given the list of achievements ( and the reviews, I suspect it is terrible. I mean, if the name didn't tell you that. (The game seems to have nothing to do with Hentai; it's probably just to catch searches.)

Ruiner is the only one this week getting added to my backlog. I just hope I can get to it sooner rather than later...

Hmm...didn't realize that Summon Night 6 was releasing this week. The backlog is heavy but definitely looking into this one.

beeporama wrote:

Given the list of achievements ( and the reviews, I suspect it is terrible. I mean, if the name didn't tell you that. (The game seems to have nothing to do with Hentai; it's probably just to catch searches.)

The irony is that, after struggling to research a lot of these games with very bland and unhelpful names, the odds of discovery are actually pretty low.

I agree, it's likely gonna be terrible. But God damn if I'm not curious anyway.


EDIT: thread pimpage

Also, another Nioh dlc already? Sigh

Oof. There's got to be a more reasonably curated list of PC stuff available somewhere.

For a start, you can remove anything with "achievements" in it's name.

In fact, I'll go one further, you can generally remove any of the following safely...

- Anything with "achievements" in the name
- Anything that mentions or contains "memes"
- Anything that releases two or more versions of the same game on the same day
- Pretty much anything with Simulator in the name that doesn't involve a vehicle or farming equipment.

pyxistyx wrote:

- Anything with "achievements" in the name

But think of the SallyNastys!

- Pretty much anything with Simulator in the name that doesn't involve a vehicle or farming equipment.

But this would also remove things like Goat Simulator, which many I imagine would claim to be very much a game and one that is quite enjoyable.

I mean, personally I largely agree, but we've got a community that's outside the forum members as well, and honestly we have no idea what their preferences are one way or the other. That's a lot of unheard voices that might have objections. The odds are slim in regards to some of these things, but honestly you just never know. And that's where it comes back down to having to do the research (even of the things with silly and awful names), and... quite frankly it's probably less collective time than everyone (EVERYONE) scrolling right on past it all.

I’m so old I remember when people were complaining that I was leaving games off the list.

I’m beginning to see this as the “Steam Curation Debate Writ Small.” I’m also developing a lot of sympathy for Valve and why they haven’t “just fixed” their curation difficulties yet.

I don’t want to make value judgements about games before I’ve played them. It’s easy to say “just get rid of anything with X in the title,” but those games exist because there’s a market for them. I wouldn’t be surprised if there are people reading this that like them, but don’t bother to comment (either they’re embarrassed for some reason, or they just don’t want to add yet another argument about personal preferences to the internet, or some other option)

The other problem is you can’t judge whether a game is worthy based on a text-search algorithm. Without a Human-type person to check the output of the search you risk deleting something important or good. With Human vetting, you get bias that skews in favor of the personal tastes of he Human in question.

For example, I’m a big fan of Duke Nukem Forever, Wet and Farming Simulator. I also prefer Battleborn to Overwatch, Fallout 3 over New Vegas and anything at all over Red Dead Redemption. Do you want that person in charge of deciding what games you get to see?

I wouldn’t. Nor would I want someone with opinions opposite to that person deciding. Because every game has value to someone, and even if only one person reading The week ahead cares about the release of Achievement Hunter games, I think they deserve to hear about it.

Short version: someone cared enough to make those games, and someone else cares enough to buy them. If they care enough to make and buy those games, I care enough to put them on the master list.

I am, however, open to suggestions about adding to the Week ahead. Maybe I don’t pick only one game, maybe I pick two or three or ten, depending on how the week strikes me. That way people who like Duke Nukem and Farming Simulator have a short list they can refer to, but everyone else can still check the full release list.

Steam just pulled 176 "fake games" from their store. Apparently eighty-some had been released in the past two months alone by one guy running a number of different dev studios. The games were a bunch of clones, I guess. Anyway, he was giving the games away and reaping "profits" from the card sales.

ccesarano wrote:
pyxistyx wrote:

- Anything with "achievements" in the name

But think of the SallyNastys!

The thing is , these don't even use achievements properly. You boot up an incredibly basic platformer with one or two levels (which is probably pre-made assets) and then sit and watch as thousands of achievements unlock in a row, most of which don't even have anything except the default [achievment number] value text.

It's the latest thing from the whole fake game / asset flip 'developers' . No idea WHAT they actually get out of it but for some reason they think offering thousands of free, useless, achievements is getting them some sort of monetary reward. Or maybe it's all about the cards for those, too.

No Conference Call this week?

You have chosen the hero image correctly!
Also, one's chance of being gifted Cuphead rises immensely if one is on my Steam friends list.
Also, holy f*cking sh*t that's a lot of games on pc.

Poor Hob. You landed when I have 5,000 hours of XCOM2:WoTC and D:OS2 ahead of me :/
I clicked follow, but I just can't justify buying you right now. Much sad. All the best to Runic.

doubtingthomas396 wrote:

I’m also developing a lot of sympathy for Valve and why they haven’t “just fixed” their curation difficulties yet.

garion333 wrote:

Steam just pulled 176 "fake games" from their store. Apparently eighty-some had been released in the past two months alone by one guy running a number of different dev studios.

The reason the number of titles being released on Steam every week is so ridiculously high is completely of their own doing. The underlying source for the problems is that Valve refuses to do actual curation/QA with human beings, preferring instead to automate things and write algorithms that attempt to do everything for them. Also, the more obvious and recent source for this problem is the launching of Steam Direct, which allows "developers" to add as many "games" as they want to Steam with zero quality control.

So yeah, I have absolutely no sympathy at all for Valve. It's their own fault that the list of new releases is such a sh*tshow.

Don't worry Meatman, they'll do something about it in a couple of years.

I don’t think the problem is as easy as just hiring people to do pick through the releases and decide what’s a “real game” and what isn’t. In order to keep the process fair and impartial, a lot of formal processes and guidelines need to be set up. If you don’t do that, you risk having a capricious system where a handful of “tastemakers” wield the power to kibash any given game based on their personal preference.

For it to work, it has to be according to rules that are easy for developers to understand abd comply with, and if you’re going to do that you might as well automate t because then you don’t get the bad press associated with a worthy game getting blocked because someone didn't like it. The challenge then becomes finding ways to prevent unscrupulous developers from gaming the automated system. That’s a question of refining the rules, not just hiring people and saying “block anything that doesn’t look legitimate. You’ll know it when you see it.” I don’t want Valve to become that, and I don’t think Valve wants to become that. That’s why they’re trying to crowdsource and automate, not simply because they’re too lazy to do the work to just do it right.

For my preference, I’d rather a hundred Achievement Hunter games get released than a Farming Simulator get blocked because someone didn’t consider it a “real game.”

As for the games that got removed, I don’t see that as an indictment of Valves approach so much as an indication that they need to work on their criteria. LeapingGnome jokes that they’ll fix it in a few years, which may actually be true and is perfectly fine by me. I’d rate see Valve take their time to do it than rush out something half baked and I’ll-conceived, which they certainly had done before.

I disagree. I am ok with one legitimate game having to go through an appeals process to get on so we can prevent 100 junk games from getting to Steam and polluting everything. I think Valve's decision to open up automated publication was a mistake.

Hell, I'd be okay if Greenlight went back up. It could be gamed but nowhere as easily as the current policy.

Was the game written in Java?