Arts & Entertainment
Now that the holiday season is over and people’s wallets have mostly recovered, some big gaming titles are set to launch this February.
Releases this month range from a new installment in a classic series, “Fire Emblem,” from Nintendo and a completely different take on the “Far Cry” format with “Far Cry Primal.”
A notable title that came out last week was “Gravity Rush Remastered,” which came out on Feb. 2.
“Gravity Rush Remastered,” a title that was originally released on PlayStation Vita in 2012, gets a reboot on the next generation console, the PlayStation 4. It’s an action-adventure game that allows the player to manipulate gravity to navigate throughout the digital experience.
“Gravity Rush Remastered” is available now on the PlayStation Store, as well as exclusively featured on Amazon as a physical copy.
“XCOM 2” comes to players after a three-month delay on Feb. 5, its release limited to PC. “XCOM 2” is a turn-based strategy game and is the second installment in a series reboot.
It also boasts one of the highest ratings of the year so far, getting a 94 percent from PC Gamer, and a 9.3/10 from IGN.
“Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 4” (PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC), “Firewatch” (PlayStation 4 and PC) and “Unravel,” (PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC) are released on Feb. 9, and have different gameplay mechanics that can appeal to many different players.
“Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 4” will denote the final installment in the six-part “Ultimate Ninja Storm” series. The game will cover the final arc of the “Naruto” manga series.
The game is a fighting title, with 3D arenas and a wide character selection, featuring some slight changes to gameplay from the previous titles. One of these changes is the ability to wall run, which hasn’t been seen since the original “Ultimate Ninja Storm.”
“Firewatch,” is described by its developer Campo Santo as “a mystery set in the Wyoming wilderness, where your only emotional lifeline is the person on the other end of a handheld radio.” The trailer for the game shifts from a lighthearted tone to serious danger within a matter of moments.
“Firewatch” is a first-person game with adventuring and survival elements intertwined within the narrative, written with charming dialogue. Indie games bring unique elements to the table, and “Firewatch” may be no different.
“Unravel” captured the hearts of many at E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, in 2015 when Martin Sahlin, the creative director of Coldwood Interactive, brought out his real version of Yarny, the protagonist for the game, onstage in the form of a yarn-and-wire figure.
“I think that games are really powerful things,” said Sahlin at E3. “They have the ability to grab you and move you in a way that few other art forms can.”
Sahlin’s speech swayed many gamers to his side and to “Unravel” as a title. The game features Yarny and his adventures through many puzzles and challenges using his yarn to support himself.
On Feb. 16, “Street Fighter” makes its return with “Street Fighter V” (PlayStation 4 and PC). As an iconic fighting game that requires a great deal of skill to become competitive, this return is well-received.
The fighting game sticks to the side-scrolling format and will feature four new additions to its roster: F.A.N.G., Rashid, Laura and Necalli. Another new feature to the game is the “V-Gauge,” which fills up as the player gets damaged, and once filled, will allow players to use “V-Skills,” “V-Reversals” and “V-Triggers.”
“V-Skills” are special attacks that are different for every character. “V-Reversals” are essentially counter-attacks, and “V-Triggers” allow the player to use a special ability unique to the played character.
“Fire Emblem Fates” (Nintendo 3DS) to release on Feb. 19 rides off the coattails of “Fire Emblem Awakening,” a game that brought the series back into the spotlight.
“Fire Emblem Fates” comes in three parts: “Birthright,” “Conquest” and “Revelation” (the last of which will be available as downloadable content only).
The main character, which will be a customized avatar, is thrown into a war between the kingdoms of Nohr and Hoshido and forced to choose a side. Nohr is their adopted family, and Hoshido is their birth family.
This choice is made when players buy the game, “Birthright” being Hoshido and “Conquest” representing Nohr. “Revelation” is the downloadable content that allows players to choose neither side, instead uniting them.
The game follows the same format as previous titles, with turn-based strategy oriented on a grid.
“Far Cry Primal” (PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC) will be released on Feb. 23, and it spins the “Far Cry” series on its head. It sends the player back to the Stone Age and follows the narrative of a character named Takkar.
Players can tame animals, hunt and work their way up to become the leader of their own tribe.
Guns are replaced with traditional weapons such as spears, clubs, axes and bows. Each weapon must be crafted, which adds another dimension to the game.
Finally, the latest big release from PopSugar is “Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2” (PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC). It is being labeled as a third-person shooter, which is similar to the previous title. It gives players six more playable classes, new game modes like “Graveyard Ops” and “Herbal Assault Mode.”
Online modes can support up to 24 players.
Unlike its predecessor, all of the game modes can be accessed in single player, so Internet is not required.
The Troy GameStop will be open at 9 p.m. for the releases of “Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 4,” “Street Fighter V” and “Far Cry Primal.”
For each of these games, various tournaments will be held for people who have pre-ordered the game. If the game is paid in full by that night, customers will be able to enter the tournaments and compete for a chance to win a free copy of the game.
At 11 p.m., the games will be distributed to customers.