The Indie Update: Smaller Games I’m Currently Playing

Well friends, lately my gaming time and attention has been solely focused on Destiny 2, a fact that I’ve gone over before. However, as I’ve nearly caught up on all Annual Pass content and have finished one set of Solstice armor for my Hunter (halfway done with my Warlock set), I’ve begun to check out some games that have been buried in my backlog.

Namely indie games. There’s still plenty I’m looking to get to (like the meaty Moonlighter DLC which just came out a few weeks ago), I wanted to provide some thoughts on the games I’ve been able to try out.

So without further adieu, here are some of the smaller games I’ve been playing recently:

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Gears 5: Hands on with Arcade Mode

I’ve always been a fan of the Gears of War franchise. It’s never been my favorite franchise, but it’s a series that I’ve always enjoyed playing none the less. Gears of War 4 was certainly entertaining and left more than a few big questions lingering once the credits rolled. Gears 5 was a certainty and seeing it officially revealed at E3 in June wasn’t all that surprising.

gears 5 logo

What was surprising was that the multiplayer tech tests would be open not just to pre-order players, but those with an active Game Pass subscription as well. Thank you E3 2019 Game Pass Ultimate $1 deal!

Considering I had automatic access, how could I not check it out, right? Here are some thoughts on the new Arcade mode.

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Now Arriving: Games of August 2019

I don’t know about you, but for a month without a ton of major releases, July flew by. We’re now creeping towards the typically very busy Fall/Holiday game release schedule, so I hope you’ve been saving up. September is already looking unreal for new games, but let’s save that for another day.

For now, let’s turn out attention to August, the month I like to call Summer’s Last Hurrah. This month, we’ve got a good mix of major names and some interesting smaller titles. While sports fans can finally get their Madden fix, there’s a few unique titles releasing this month that could be something special.

The first game that caught my eye comes from Remedy, oh you know, the guys behind Max Payne, Alan Wake, and Quantum Break. Unchained from Microsoft this time around, their latest title is Control. Admittedly, I don’t know much about the game as the marketing budget must be tiny but from what I’ve seen, it looks to combine elements from their past games. The supernatural story mechanics from Alan Wake, the quality gunplay from Max Payne, and the interesting abilities of Quantum Break. Here’s hoping it all coalesces into something great.

For those looking for something different, perhaps Platinum Games has you covered this month. Astral Chain. The surprising reveal earlier this year pairs the likes of big name developers Hideki Kamiya and Takahisa Taura, with character designs by Masakazu Katsura. Set in a near future, Astral Chain looks to continue the stylish action gameplay Platinum is known for.

While August isn’t likely going to break the bank like September will, there’s more than a few games for your consideration this month. So, hit the jump to see the complete list of August 2019 video game releases. Enjoy!

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Destiny 2, Matchmaking, and Looking For Groups

Oh, hello there! I know, it’s been a while, much longer than usual since I last updated anything. Sorry for that, it’s not like me. Had a lot going on recently and to be honest, the unplanned mental break was kind of nice. Anyway, back to the writing and stories!

If you’ve been reading my stuff for any length of time, you may be quite familiar with my stance and semi-frustration with the Destiny franchise’s lack of matchmaking for some of the premium, end game content.

Granted, I’ll fully give credit to Bungie as they’ve gotten a lot better with the more recent additions like the Menagerie and other seasonal events, but for the standard content like Nightfalls, it remains just baffling. I’m part of a clan, but most of the members have migrated to PC or have simple stopped playing altogether, further deepening my issue.

destiny 2 arcstrider

As a majority solo player, it makes things harder on me to complete a lot of things. Even many useful items, exotic quests, and seals/titles/triumphs, are that much harder to achieve as they require me to participate in game modes that don’t support matchmaking. I know there are websites you can use, but I’ve always felt like the game shouldn’t force players to actually leave the game in order to organize and use in-game features.

Let’s be real, it’s just not ideal and is a bit of a hassle to try and coordinate.

If you’re like me and have grown frustrated, disappointed, or perhaps feeling a little of that FOMO, I may have a solution for you.

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Gamer Crash Awards: My Favorite Games From The First Half of 2019

With E3 in the rear view mirror and the summer months in full effect, I figured it’s a good time to look back on the first half of 2019 before the insanity of the fall and holiday season consumes us. That’s why I figured it’s time we pause the action to discuss some of the notable games we’ve seen in 2019 so far. Consider this a mini Gamer Crash Awards.

As it stands, you’ll likely see at least some of these games mentioned again later in the year when we get to the actual awards. For this mini-edition, I’ve decided to create a bunch of off the wall categories in addition to naming some of my favorite games of 2019 so far. I’m also including at least one thing that disappointed me as well.

Gamer Crash Awards

Better yet, this list is absolutely going to help me remember what I actually played earlier this year. I don’t know about you but by the end of the year, my brain is overwhelmed by new releases and games I’ve played over the past few months. It’s hard to remember all the games I enjoyed at the start of the year.

So without further adieu, here are some of my favorite (and not so favorite) games from the first half of 2019:

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Destiny 2: Shadowkeep and My Thoughts on What’s Next

One topic that I’ve been dying to get to but haven’t due in large part to the media blitz of E3 2019, is Destiny 2. Prior to the big show, Bungie held a reveal stream of sorts for what it plans to do with Destiny 2 at the conclusion of the Annual Pass content as well as the future of the franchise now that Activision is completely out of the picture.

I had no idea what to expect going in. As a big fan of the franchise, even if I was currently on a semi-break from Destiny 2 at that point, I was curious to see where the company was going. Would it add another season of content to the annual pass? Would it announce a full fledged Destiny 3?

destiny 2 shadowkeep

Well, not only did we get answers, but the studio seemed unchained from previous PR practices and gave us an unprecedented amount of detailed information.

Let’s discuss:

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Now Arriving: Games of July 2019

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the summer months!. This is typically the time of year when major game releases come to a grinding halt as companies prepare themselves for the coming Fall/Holiday release blitz.

However, 2019 seems to be a bit different. While companies typically know you like to go on vacations, enjoy the summer sun at the beach, or generally like to be outside rather than spend it inside in front of a TV, it isn’t preventing some big names from launching this month.

Bethesda and Machine Games are bringing Wolfenstein back in July. The budget friendly Youngblood advances the narrative into the 1980s, letting players control BJ Blazkowicz’s twin daughters against the Nazi oppression in Paris, France. It’s up to them to track down their missing father and unravel what’s going on.

The Switch is pretty big this month as well. Two big names in particular, Fire Emblem: Three Houses and Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order arrive in July, both of which promising to eat up a ton of your time.

Surprisingly, there’s more than a few video games launching this month. So, hit the jump to see the complete list of July 2019 video game releases. Enjoy!

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