September Releases

September has a few oldies but goldies and lots of sports. Nothing is setting my world on fire, but maybe something will set yours ablaze. On to this month’s releases:

Microsoft Xbox One

Week of September 6th
The Elder Scrolls Online: Gold Edition

Week of September 13th
Dead Rising – I normally don’t like listing re-releases in the monthly releases, but Dead Rising is in my top 10 of favorite games of all time and I think everyone should play it at least once.
Batman: The Telltale Series
Pro Evolution Soccer 2017
Pac-Man Championship Edition 2
NHL 17
ReCore – Developed by some people from Retro Studios (Metroid Prime series)? You officially have my attention.

Week of September 20th
NBA 2K17

Week of September 27th
FIFA 17
Forza Horizon 3
XCOM 2


Nintendo Wii-U

Week of September 27th
Tumblestone


Nintendo 3DS

Week of September 13th
Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past

Week of September 20th
Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse

Week of September 27th
YO-KAI WATCH 2: Fleshy Souls
Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice


PC

Week of September 6th
Mother Russia Bleeds – I think I saw someone get hit in the face with an accordion, so, day one purchase?
Police Tactics: Imperio
Divided We Fall
Ember
Calm Down, Stalin – I had to link this game on the strength of the gameplay trailer. It looks like it would get old after ten minutes, but those first ten minutes would be hilarious.
Project Highrise
Line of Sight
Outbreak: Pandemic Evolution
Escape The Past

Week of September 13th
RIVE
Spaera
Mystery Chronicle: One Way Heroics
DEAD RISING – Frank West on my PC? *clicks buy button*
Avadon 3: The Warborn
Pro Evolution Soccer 2017
Dispatcher: Revoke

Week of September 20th
King Oddball
Cossacks 3
Klang
The Uncertain
Agenda
Pankapu
NBA 2K17

Week of September 27th
Lance A Lot
Quantum Break
FIVE: Champions of Canaan
Rogue Wizards


Sony Playstation 4

Week of September 6th
The Elder Scrolls Online: Gold Edition
Touhou Genso Rondo: Bullet Ballet

Week of September 13th
NHL 17
Pro Evolution Soccer 2017
Batman: The Telltale Series
PSYCHO-PASS: Mandatory Happiness
NBA 2K17

Week of September 20th
Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters Daybreak: Special Gigs!

Week of September 27th
XCOM 2
Reus
Tumblestone


Sony Playstation Vita

Week of September 6th
The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II

Week of September 13th
PSYCHO-PASS: Mandatory Happiness
MeiQ: Labyrinth of Death


What are you picking up this month?
(Note: As always, all Amazon.com links have our affiliate code embedded in them. If you purchase something through our link, we get a little commission. It’s appreciated.)

Weekend Gaming, circa 2008

Did you hear that the video game weblog, buttonmashing.com, is now on Twitter? So, in honor of finally getting involved in some Serious Social Media (follow us, why don’t ya!), this weekend’s gaming is a throwback.

While the Twitter account represents the site as a whole, our Managing Editor Nick has been running the Twitter account to great effect. Earlier this week, he tweeted about a minor issue I had with my PC — the power supply went kaput:

So I made the pilgrimage to Nerd Mecca, Micro Center. I picked up a new power supply (an EVGA 650 GQ) and started tinkering under the hood. Prior to the power supply failure, I had been dealing with issues with a hard drive I installed when I first built the PC. Might as well try to solve that problem while working on the power supply.

I think some cabling was loose, so after the power supply was installed and I got everything buttoned up, I booted the machine up and lo and behold the issues with the hard drive were gone. My precious gigs, which I thought were lost to the ages, were suddenly there. (They were empty gigs, but I have plans for them!). To test out the hard drive and make sure everything was copacetic, I picked a title out of my steam library that I knew wouldn’t need the speed and horsepower of the SSD that I could install to the old-school hard drive. I settled on reinstalling Recettear: An Item Shop Tale

recettear

I won’t bore you with the details of Recettear, only to say it’s a mashup of a simple hack-and-slash RPG and a Shopkeeper simulator. It’s very Japanese Cutesy and that’s all I’m going to say about that. I’m addicted and I’m not ashamed to say so. I think a good portion of this weekend’s gaming will be going towards making my Item Shop the Best Item Shop.

With all systems GO!, I decided to reinstall Spelunky on the newly fixed hard drive as well, inspired by one of Nick’s recent streams. I don’t quite rage like Nick can, but Spelunky is still a never ending stream of rage-inducing moments.

So welcome to 2008 this weekend! I’ll be your host, introducing you to such wonders as Indie Darlings Spelunky and Recettear, and give you an introduction to this new fangled social media site, Twitter dot com. Why won’t you join us on this trip down recent memory lane!

What will you be playing this weekend (2008 or not)?

August Releases

August is usually a Sports Gamer National Holiday, as the Sports Gamer’s Christmas comes with the release of Madden. That usually means most companies don’t drop titles to compete with Madden. But this August is more than just Madden, which is a welcome change for the rest of us (my sports gaming days died with NCAA Football [RIP, brutha]). On to this month’s releases:

Microsoft Xbox One

Week of August 16th
F1 2016

Week of August 23rd
Madden NFL 17 – I first played “John Madden Football” on the PC. That was TWENTY EIGHT YEARS AGO. A new world of video games opened up for me when I designed my first running play and I wore that game out playing it so much.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided


Nintendo Wii-U

Week of August 30th
Tumblestone


Nintendo 3DS

Week of August 16th
Metroid Prime: Federation Force – This is how far removed I have been from the world of Nintendo: I had no idea a new Metroid Prime game was being released. I have a bad taste in my mouth from Metroid Prime: Hunters, but I’ll always give a Metroid Prime game a fair shake.

Week of August 30th
Corpse Party: Back to School Edition


PC

Week of August 2nd
Selma and the Wisp
Lethe – Episode One
System Crash – See Nick’s review of System Crash here.
This Is the Police
Rising Islands
Might and Magic: Heroes VII – Trial by Fire
Extreme Forklifting 2

Week of August 9th
No Man’s Sky – Ya’ll can have your Madden Foosballs, No Man’s Sky has my attention this month.
The Uncertain
Hexoscope

Week of August 16th
Typoman: Revised
F1 2016

Week of August 23rd
Obduction
Worms W.M.D
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Week of August 30th
Ira
Tahira: Echoes of the Astral Empire
The Turing Test – I’ll file this one away in the “when it goes on sale” column.


Sony Playstation 4

Week of August 2nd
GalGun: Double Peace

Week of August 9th
No Man’s Sky

Week of August 16th
F1 2016
Among the Sleep

Week of August 23rd
Madden NFL 17
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
The King of Fighters XIV

Week of August 30th
God Eater 2: Rage Burst
Tumblestone


Sony Playstation Vita

Week of August 2nd
GalGun: Double Peace


What are you picking up this month?
(Note: As always, all Amazon.com links have our affiliate code embedded in them. If you purchase something through our link, we get a little commission. It’s appreciated.)

Guy’s Weekend 2015

Last August, a group of us got together for what is becoming an annual event — the “Guys Weekend”, a time when we get some time away from the family to hang out and do what we love best — eat greasy food and play games. Lots and lots of games.2015-08-21

We decided this year to kick things off with lunch at the Columbus greasy spoon Icon Thurman’s Cafe, home of the world famous Thurman Burger. After stuffing our face with burgers and wings, we headed back to Buttonmasher HQ for some serious board gaming.

The king of Board Games (Mr. Board Gaming Deals Himself) decided that in addition to the games being played, we’d hold a sort of meta-contest with a traveling trophy. He kept track of wins and losses for each game played and compiled ranking that changed as games were won and lost.IMG_1453

What follows are the games that were played and who ended up in possession of the traveling trophy (spoiler alert: The Guys’ Weekend Champion is devastatingly handsome.)

The Game Champion

The Game Champion Trophy

Games:
King of Tokyo has become a family favorite in the Buttonmashing household. You play as one of six Monsters, vying to be the King of Tokyo. You can do this by defeating the other monsters in a fight to the death or peacefully achieve victory by way of victory points. You increase your monster’s powers by buying cards. There are numerous expansions, and we brought in the King of Tokyo: Power Up! expansion, which gives each of the monsters a set of unique powers as the game goes on. KoT has the potential to be over quickly or drag on far too long, but it’s an enjoyable game that balances luck with good planning and strategy.

Dixit was probably my favorite game of the weekend. Each player is dealt a number of cards corresponding to the number of players. Each card is a beautiful piece of artwork, depicting a scene or a portrait or something evocative. The player chooses a word or phrase to describe his card, and everyone else chooses a card from their stack that best matches the description. Then all cards are shuffled and revealed, and players choose which card they think the player’s card is. The card is revealed and points are dealt out according to the outcome. What makes Dixit so enjoyable is the ambiguity that is needed to describe your card enough to obfuscate it within the other cards but not distinguish it.

DC Comics Deck-Building Game was another game that got some attention, similar to Ascension, and if you’ve read this site for any length of time, you know my relationship with Ascension. It also led to a few early disagreements over who were truly your friends and who were dirty rascals out to ruin your fun and your life.

2015-08-25Relic is a variation of the classic game Talisman, set in the Warhammer 40k universe. Relic probably had the biggest turn around of any of the game played. Jason and I seemed to be more or less headed for a showdown while James and Nick struggled to get a foothold. But as my chances started dwindling, Nick made a push through the final tier of challenges and his assassin’s perk, an extra die roll on explosions (rolling two sixes), gave him the extra oomph to claim victory. It was an unbelievable string of dice rolls, capping off a hard fought game of Relic.

This is just a sampling of games we’ve played. Other games included Forbidden Desert, Sushi Go, Family Business, and Formula D. (Others played, but I did not, Great Heartland Hauling Co and Lords of Waterdeep). I really liked the co-op nature of Forbidden Desert and I loved the cutthroat Family Business and the accompanying threats that flowed freely. Family Business should be called Friends and Family Relationship Ruiner. The less said about the things that were said during Family Business, the better.

Computers were set up for some PC gaming and of course there was Dota 2 to be played. While computer gaming usually takes a backseat to tabletop, there’s always time for Dota 2.

In the end, the results were tallied and a champion was crowned:

IMG_1434

This bad boy looks beautiful displayed on the top of my new gaming PC.

IMG_1453

In My Hand (Literally)

razer_deathadder

Decided it was time to up my mouse game for the Gaming PC Workhorse (even though it’s been in service for over a year). For the longest time, I’ve been running a vanilla Logitech M510. While a perfectly serviceable mouse, it is wireless and I never could find an optimal place to plug in the little USB wireless nub. It might be totally psychosomatic, but I blamed any hiccup I noticed on the placement of the dongle. It’s been nagging me even more acutely lately when the mouse seems to lag slightly or outright not react to my movements. When you’re as bad as I am at games, every mis-click and mis-movement is amplified by my initial lack of skill.

So after some research at my favorite Recommendation Engine (The Wirecutter) and some PC Gaming reading, I decided on the Razer Deathadder. It’s not the “Chroma” version the Wirecutter recommends, but it’s just a minor stepdown from it. I had also considered the Cooler Master Mizar but my local PC Mecca (Microcenter) was out of stock, so Razer it is!

So far, so good. This mouse is definitely a +1 to movement smoothness and a 25% increase in point-and-click efficiency.

July Releases

July is usually light on the Triple-A titles (or just titles in general) so it doesn’t seem that there will be much action, except for a couple outliers. That being said, on to this month’s releases:

Microsoft Xbox One

Week of July 5th
Carmageddon: Max Damage

Week of July 12th
Ghostbusters


Nintendo Wii-U

No Nintendo Wii-U games for the month of July.


Nintendo 3DS

Week of July 12th
Monster Hunter Generations
7th Dragon III Code: VFD


PC

Week of July 5th
Frost – “Inspired by deck-building board games like Dominion, Ascension and the like, it’s an unique take on the genre as it puts you in charge of a group of people struggling against a restless, lethal storm.” You officially have my attention…
Cavernus
Furi
INSIDE – This game has been getting a tremendous amount of buzz recently. Definitely one I’ll be looking into.
Leviathan: the Cargo
Hero Zero
Haven Moon

Week of July 12th
Last Will
Song of the Deep
NECROPOLIS: A Diabolical Dungeon Delve
Tumblestone
Dead Age

Week of July 19th
Dreambreak
I am Setsuna

Week of July 26th
We Happy Few
Obduction
Industry Manager: Future Technologies


Sony Playstation 4

Week of July 5th
Carmageddon: Max Damage
Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIII

Week of July 12th
Ghostbusters

Week of July 26th
GalGun: Double Peace
OlliOlli: Epic Combo Edition
N.E.R.O : Nothing Ever Remains Obscure
Fairy Fencer F: Advent Dark Force


Sony Playstation Vita

Week of July 26th
Shiren The Wanderer: The Tower of Fortune and the Dice of Fate
GalGun: Double Peace


What are you picking up this month?

(Note: As always, all Amazon.com links have our affiliate code embedded in them. If you purchase something through our link, we get a little commission. It’s appreciated.)

In My Hands

Actually, it’s a little too big to actually be in my hands, but yesterday I picked up a new Xbox One console and brought it home the only way that seemed fit:

Nice and safe in the front seat.

Nice and safe in the front seat.

Readers of the site will know that I recently picked up a Surface Pro 4. Not for gaming, per se, but gaming was going to (and has) happen with it. I’ve been extremely happy with the Surface Pro 4 for non-gaming tasks (it has worked nicely as a laptop, which I was worried about initially) but now I’m even more happy — the purchase of the surface has facilitated even more gaming in a very round-about way.

Recently, Microsoft announced a whale of a deal where you could get a Surface Pro 4 and pick up an Xbox One for a cool zero dollars.

So being with in the window of the return policy, I asked if I could return my Surface Pro 4 and take part in the deal, and the great folks at my local Microsoft Store were more than happy to help me walk out with a new Xbox One, an extra controller, a copy of Watch_Dogs and a cool 50 bucks to spend at the Microsoft Store in the future. (There’s a better than zero chance that it will go towards an Elite controller)

I had sort of decided that I was going to sit this console generation out, content with a screaming PC and the Wii-U. But this opportunity was too good to pass up, so I’m a next generation gamer I guess. Sure, I’m two and a half years late to the party, but that just means I have a nice big backlog to dig in to.

Any recommendations for what I should check out? I imagine Halo 5 will be my first foray into the Xbox One Universe.

Unsolicited Mental Objects – Fallout 4

(Unsolicited Mental Objects are a series of posts that we started as a sort of stream of consciousness to talk about whatever was on our mind, gaming-wise. I am currently making an effort to write everyday, so these should start popping up with regularity, along with other content.)

fallout_4After an extended break, Fallout 4 is back in heavy rotation. With the first two solid DLC packs having already dropped, I wanted to get through the main quest line before diving in to the DLC. That’s been my SOP for most games like this — finish the main game, then play the DLC the way the Lord intended (in the order it was released). I feel like there was a distinct order the developers had in mind and I want to stick with that.

Unfortunately for me, I put my playthrough on hold and the first two DLCs dropped before I finished the original storyline. No big deal, I’ll knock out the main quests and then work my way through the add-ons later.

So I’m working my way through a quest and it sends me to a randomly selected location to clear out some ghouls. I flip on my Pip-Boy and the quest marker is in the upper right corner of the map, a place I have never been.I dutifully head up there to find the “Eden Meadows” drive-thru. But I get up there and Eden Meadows is nowhere to be found.

It’s just a couple buildings, a dock and an older Asian couple looking for their run-away daughter.

Wait a second. This sounds like a quest that mysteriously appeared in my queue when I started playing regularly again. I talked to Detective Valentine about it and realized it was the Far Harbor DLC. I stashed that quest away to come back to later and now this randomly selected location was smack-dab in somewhere I had no intention of going until I finished the main story.

(I’ll reserve judgement on whether this was a good design choice or not for another post. Fallout 4 is massive and a marvel of development and programming. I’m not going to accuse Bethesda of not squashing a potential bug. I was helping out some Synths and Far Harbor fits that description anyway)

But this presented a dilemma, one that I have grappled with before. Do I sully my experience with the DLC, something I had been saving, to continue on with this quest? I have to further the story of Far Harbor just so I can make progress in infiltrating The Institute. I like to think my way of playing through content is the right way and now I’m forced to do something against the grain.

So I went to Far Harbor, ignored anything that might trigger another quest line, made my way to Eden Meadows, handled my business and got back to The Commonwealth. But in doing so, I still had to further the Far Harbor story a little and now it will wait, fallow, as I continue my quest to get answers from the Institute.

Sorry Mr. and Mrs. Nakano, your daughter’s disappearance will have to wait. I have some revenge to exact for my dead wife and lost son.

In my Hands (Gaming on a Surface Pro 4)

IMG_2174

So I didn’t pick this up for the express purpose of gaming (I built a new PC for that last year (I should probably write a post about that)) but I do expect to do some gaming-on-the-go when the opportunity arises. I don’t expect to pump out the eff pee esses at an alarming rate, but I do plan on putting this Surface Pro 4 through its paces.

So far, I’ve installed Steam on it and I’ve installed Dota 2 (Because of course that’s what I’d do).

IMG_2178

I spectated some of the Manila Major and it did just fine. I was running it at its native resolution (2736×1824) and it looked great. (Seriously though, the screen on the Surface Pro 4 is FANTASTIC. I can’t stop raving about it). I haven’t tried playing Dota 2 on the Surface Pro 4 yet, so I can’t comment on in-game performance yet, but I anticipate having to back down the resolution and tone down the settings. That remains to be seen.

The other test I was able to try so far was using Steam In Home Streaming. This harnesses the power of my gaming PC (Seriously, I need to write about that) and play anything in my Steam library on the Surface Pro 4.

IMG_2179

For this test, I hooked up an Xbox 360 controller to the Surface Pro 4 and streamed some Fallout 4. Aside from a slight (but noticeable) input lag, the game ran fine and looked pretty good on the little screen. I’m not sure what resolution the game was playing at but it looked fine. This will probably prompt me to buy a new wireless Xbox One controller, as this can be synced directly with the Surface Pro 4 (and I could eventually stream Xbox One games to it (if I ever breakdown and pick up and Xbox One)).

So my initial impressions are that it’s not going to replace my PC anytime soon but for gaming, the Surface Pro 4 seems like it’s going to be a competent little machine.

(And yes, this post was written using a Surface Pro 4)

June Releases

June brings with it warmer weather, school breaks and some decent video games. On to this month’s releases:

Microsoft Xbox One

Week of June 7th
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst

Week of June 14th
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition

Week of June 21st
The Technomancer
MXGP2
Mighty No. 9

Week of June 28th
7 Days to Die
Prison Architect


Nintendo Wii-U

Week of June 14th
Minecraft: Wii U Edition

Week of June 21st
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games
Mighty No. 9

Week of June 28th
TerrariaTony The young buttonmashers in our household will be excited by the idea of Terraria on the Wii-U. It fits great with the gamepad but Terraria is five years old at this point. It might have been better to wait and release the new Terraria game when it’s ready.
LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Nintendo 3DS

Week of June 7th
Kirby: Planet Robobot

Week of June 28th
Zero Time Dilemma
LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens


PC

Week of June 7th
XCavalypseTony Zombies and excavating equipment! Repeat: Zombies and excavating equipment!
Stranger of Sword City
UFO Online: Invasion
Ghost 1.0
SteamWorld HeistNick A PC release for this title is much-welcomed. I enjoyed Steamworld Dig more than I probably should have. Steamworld Heist looks to be a fun new concept within the same universe.
Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Daughter

Week of June 14th
Dead by Daylight

Week of June 21st
Mighty No. 9

Week of June 28th
LEGO STAR WARS: The Force Awakens
The Technomancer


Sony Playstation 4

Week of June 7th
Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book
Paragon – Essentials Edition
Toki Tori 2 Plus

Week of June 21st
Grand Kingdom
Umbrella Corps

Week of June 28th
LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Star Ocean: Integrity and FaithlessnessTony I’ll take Non-Sequiturs for 600, Alex.


Sony Playstation Vita

Week of June 7th
Odin Sphere Leifthrasir

Week of June 21st
Grand Kingdom

Week of June 28th
Zero Time Dilemma
LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens

What are you picking up this month?
(Note: As always, all Amazon.com links have our affiliate code embedded in them. If you purchase something through our link, we get a little commission. It’s appreciated.)