August is upon us and with it a whole new batch of video game releases.
We’re inching our way out of the slow summer season and racing headlong toward the much busier holiday season. Where one ends and the other begins is a blurry line that grows blurrier by the year.
In any case, there’s quite a few new video games releasing on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC in August. It’s still not what I’d qualify as a truly busy month, but there’s some big titles coming out for players of Japanese games, MMOs, RPGs and sports fans.
Let’s take a look at the release list and then touch on a few of the highlights.
- Yakuza 0 (PC)
- WarioWare Gold (3DS)
- Overcooked 2 (PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)
- Dead Cells (PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)
- Okami HD (Switch)
- Monster Hunter World (PC)
- Madden NFL 19 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- We Happy Few (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- Death’s Gambit (PS4, PC)
- The Walking Dead: The Final Season Episode 1 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth (PC)
- State of Mind (PC, Mac, Switch, PS4, Xbox One)
- Shenmue I II (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- F1 2018 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- Little Dragon’s Cafe (PS4, Switch)
- Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate (Switch)
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2019 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- Yakuza Kiwami 2 (PS4)
- Strange Brigade (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- Blade Strangers (PS4, Switch, PC)
- Victor Vran: Overkill Edition (Switch)
- Divinity: Original Sin 2 (PS4, Xbox One)
- Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
What To Play
So obviously we’re heading out of the slow summer season and into the busy holiday season. Sure, August is still summer and we’re still a long ways off from Black Friday or Christmas, but this is when things start to heat back up in terms of video game releases.
August is still relatively slow compared to the coming months, but there’s quite a lot of good stuff worth checking out on this list—or at least stuff that looks good; I haven’t played all of these (though I have played some of them.)
Let’s take a look at a few August highlights:
Yakuza 0 (PC) – August 1st
I keep telling myself to get into these games and maybe now I will. Yakuza 0 is a prequel to the other games in the Japanese crime series and is set in the 1980’s. It has an 85 PS4 Metacritic score, which is nothing to sniff at. Hopefully the PC port is just as good.
Death’s Gambit (PS4, PC) – August 14th
A ‘hardcore’ 2D action-platformer with RPG elements, Death’s Gambit has a cool pixel-art-style and looks fairly brutal. Fans of tough action-RPGs like Dark Souls should enjoy this, so long as they don’t mind the transition to 2D. There have been quite a few of these types of games that seek to capture some of that Souls magic in 2D, and some of them have been quite good. This looks like a lot of fun.
The Walking Dead: The Final Season Episode 1 (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – August 14th
The final chapter of The Walking Dead narrative game series from TellTale Games will bring Clementine’s story to a conclusion. These were the games that put TellTale on the map, and hopefully they end on a strong note. Like the show and comics, the games have been a mixed bag so far.
World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth (PC) – August 14th
The rather massive Battle for Azeroth expansion for World of Warcraft proves that Blizzard’s MMO is still in fighting shape, even if it’s seen continued drops in player count over the years. The expansion includes two new continents and 8 new player races, and revives the long-standing feud between the Alliance and the Horde. It almost makes me want to play the game again, though I was never a huge WoW player in the first place. Then again, the expansion is very controversial to hardcore players.
I always love this game’s cinematic trailers, so let’s include this one:
As always, this looks way more fun to me than the actual gameplay you get in WoW, but then again, like I said, I just never managed to get all that into the game.
Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate (Switch) – August 28th
The Switch version of the 3DS game (hence “Ultimate”) sees improved graphics, controls and other new content and gives Switch players some monster-grinding since they were left out of the Monster Hunter World craze.
Monster Hunter World (PC) – August 9th
Speaking of Monster Hunter World, the PC version of the game lands this August. That’s many months after it came to PS4 and Xbox One where it sold like gangbusters. The PC version should be the version to beat (unless Capcom somehow screws up the port.) I still find these games a bit too grindy, but lots of people love them and I do understand why. Hunting dino-dragons is cool, even if they are damage sponges.
Strange Brigade (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – August 28th
From the makers of the excellent Sniper Elite series, Strange Brigade is a 1-4 player third-person action-adventure game that’s set in a world of exploration and magic. Set in the 1930s, you play as explorers diving into the mysteries of ancient Egypt and finding a world of horrors and monstrosities to shoot and kill (and treasure, of course.) I’ve played just a tiny bit of the game during last year’s E3 and I think it has a lot of potential, especially since Rebellion has a solid reputation.
We Happy Few (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – August 10th
I’m not sure what to make of We Happy Few. It’s been in Early Access for a while and is getting a Mostly Positive review from players. It’s a weird game set in the “retrofuturistic” city of Wellington Wells, where everybody is doped up on a conformity drug called Joy. The game takes place in an alternative 1960s England and looks really fascinating. It’s a first-person survival game with nods to dystopian fiction like Brave New World and Brazil.
Dead Cells (PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC) – August 7th
Dead Cells looks fantastic, though I haven’t played it yet (it’s also been in Early Access for some time.) The developer describes the game as a ‘RogueVania’ with Souls-like combat. It’s a 2D action-platformer with elements of Roguelikes, elements of Metroidvania games and some Dark Souls inspired action. So basically, get ready for permadeath, tough-as-nails combat and a world that gradually opens up as you unlock new areas and so forth. I’ll have further thoughts soon as I do have the game and now that it’s close to launch, I’m eager to fire it up.
That’s all folks!
Other cool games include the Switch port for Okami HD and the PS4/Xbox One launch of the excellent RPG Divinity Original Sin 2 which you should absolutely play if you enjoy RPGs.