This Week In Games Australia: Virtual Reality, Russian Robots, And A Samurai Story For The Ages

This Week In Games Australia: Virtual Reality, Russian Robots, And A Samurai Story For The Ages

Welcome back to This Week In Games Australia, your at-a-glance look at all the games you’ll be playing in the week ahead.

This week sees another wave of major February titles arriving at once — Atomic Heart, Company of Heroes 3, and Like A Dragon: Ishin! all arrive within days of each other, to say nothing of the major hardware launch that is the PlayStation VR 2. And that’s before we get to Sons of the Forest, Kerbal Space Program 2, Octopath Traveler 2 and Kirby’s Return to Dreamland Deluxe.

The indies make up the rest of the roster, with creative new games like Apollo: A Co-Op Game and Planet Cube Edge stealing the spotlight from their more expensive contemporaries.

There’s a lot coming out this week, gang. Here’s what you’ll be playing in the next seven days.

February 21

Apollo: A Co-Op Game (PC)


Apollo: A C0-Op Game is a game about landing the Apollo lunar lander on the moon’s surface. It’s just one player at the helm, with several other players back at mission control. They can only communicate via radio. The pilot will have to relay systems information to mission control, who can advise on a course of action. I love this idea. In practice, it will be incredibly chaotic. I would love to play this with friends.


Atomic Heart (PS5, XSX, PC, PS4, XBO)

Atomic Heart is a first-person shooter that appears to sit somewhere between Fallout and Bioshock. After a Russian scientist invents a new liquid substance called Polymer in the 1930s, the USSR becomes one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world, making pioneering leaps in robotics and AI science. In 1955, a new temple-worn device that allows humans to control the neural network of robots and AI has its rollout sabotaged, and the whole country goes Itchy & Scratchy Land at once. It’s up to you, and your sentient robotic hand, to put a stop to the madness. All your superpowers flow through the robotic hand, from kinesis to blasts of freezing ice.


Like A Dragon: Ishin! (PS5, XSX, PC, PS4, XBO)

If you’re not 100% psyched to play Like A Dragon: Ishin!, I’m afraid we’ll never be friends. Reviews are already out, and I’m working on my own, but the gist is this: Sega made a period version of its beloved Yakuza/Like A Dragon series and cast its two most famous characters — Kiryu and Majimain historically significant roles. The game is has been available in Japan for many years, and because of this Like A Dragon: Ishin! may feel dated to newcomers. But a fresh coat of paint may help you get over that, remaking the game with the gorgeous graphics the Dragon Engine is known for. If you love a great crime drama (and are also a fan of occasionally very silly Japanese antics), you should not miss this.


My Dream Setup (PC)

My Dream Setup is an isometric design game about building your perfect room. This isn’t about functionality or feng shui, just aesthetics. There’s a dreamlike quality to games like this, the kind of thing you throw on after a long day in the office when you need a little No Thoughts, Head Empty time. Great stuff. It’s out on Steam this week.


Super 56

Super 56 is a party game, call it a Warioware-like, that throws a series of short, fast, single-button minigames at you. Try to rack up all the references to other games among the minigames in the trailer. It’s a lot. Super 56 is doing the absolute most and I feel like Ruby’s going to lose her mind over it.



Image: Small Indie Studio

XXX_CYBERRAT_XXX is a game about hackers and cybercriminals. You play as an infamous hacker, fallen from grace, attempting to find their way back into the cybercriminal underworld, a nest of vipers, blackhat hackers and druglords. You’ll need to gather intel and hack your way to success as you race against a deteriorating mental state and growing hallucinations. Just a really interesting angle on this one. If I can off the developers one piece of advice, naming the game with not one but two XXX strings in the title, makes Google return nothing but porn when you search for it. Just something to consider.


February 22

PlayStation VR 2

In a week with some fairly high-profile releases, the PlayStation VR 2 is a standout. This is Sony’s next-generation virtual reality stackhat, and it comes with a list of 37 launch titles. Of those launch titles, very few are platform exclusives. In fact, the overwhelming majority of the titles arriving Day One for the PSVR 2 are ports from other VR platforms. There are some standouts, however — Horizon: Call of the Mountain is the device’s splashy AAA red carpet welcome, but there are a few gems in there too like Fantavision 202X, Tetris Effect: Connected and Pistol Whip. Here’s the full list below, from Ruby’s yarn earlier this year. Some of these titles will arrive shortly after launch.

  • After the Fall
  • Altair Breaker
  • Before Your Eyes (launch window)
  • Cities VR
  • Cosmonious High
  • Creed Rise to Glory: Championship Edition (launch window)
  • The Dark Pictures: Switchback (launch window)
  • Demeo
  • Dyschronia: Chronos Alternate
  • Fantavision 202X
  • Gran Turismo 7 (via free update to PS5 version)
  • Horizon Call of the Mountain
  • Job Simulator
  • Jurassic World Aftermath
  • Kayak VR: Mirage
  • Kizuna AI – Touch the Beat!
  • The Last Clockwinder
  • The Light Brigade (purchase includes PS VR and PS VR2 versions)
  • Moss 1 & 2 Remaster
  • NFL Pro Era (free PS VR2 upgrade)
  • No Man’s Sky (launch window)
  • Pavlov VR
  • Pistol Whip (free upgrade)
  • Puzzling Places (free upgrade)
  • Resident Evil Village (free update to PS5 version)
  • Rez Infinite
  • Song in the Smoke
  • STAR WARS: Tales from the Galaxy’s Edge
  • Synth Riders (free upgrade)
  • The Tale of Onogoro
  • Tentacular
  • Tetris Effect
  • Thumper
  • The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners: Ch. 2: Retribution (launch window)
  • Vacation Simulator
  • What the Bat?
  • Zenith: The Last City (free upgrade)


Redemption Reapers (PC, NS, PS4)

Redemption Reapers is a tactical RPG full of fantasy tropes and turn-based combat. You play as a group of heroes charged with saving the world from a monster blight called the Mort. Each member of the squad has their own unique abilities — one of them is a rogue, another a barbarian, you get the idea. For those who’ve already blased through Fire Emblem Engage and are after more strategy, this might be the one to scratch that itch.


February 23

Blood Bowl 3 (PS5, XSX, PC, PS4, XBO)

There may be some of you reading this that have never heard of Blood Bowl before. Allow me to explain: it’s Warhammer, but football. Blood Bowl 3 faithfully recreates the current tabletop ruleset for a digital game that takes the term ‘fantasy football’ extremely literally. There’s no fair play in Blood Bowl — your goal is to crush, kill, cheat and shithouse your way to the top.


Company of Heroes 3 (PC)

Company of Heroes 3 is the return of the beloved real-time strategy series developed by genre stalwarts Relic Entertainment. The game is set within the European theatre during World War 2, and it’s up to you to establish beachheads and bases of operations and build your army to secure victory over the Axis forces in wide open maps full of varied terrain. It’s been a long time between drinks for this series — its last outing was in 2013, a decade ago.


Haulin’ Oats (PC)

We love a pun title around here, don’t we folks? Haulin’ Oats is a digital board game about truck driving. Four players compete to deliver precious oaty cargo and then get back to their warehouse without getting waylaid by any number of dangers on the road. Sabotage other players, race against one another, curse competing businesses, and do whatever it takes to gain the upper hand on your foes.


Luckily, My Arm Is A Shotgun (PC)

With a title like that, how could I not put it in the list? Luckily, My Arm Is A Shotgun is a game about a little bean guy who gets stranded on an island and then (checks notes) shoots everybody. It’s fine, the island is full of monsters. It’s self defense! Short, sweet, silly, it’s out on Steam this week.


Planet Cube Edge (PC)

Planet Cube Edge is a side-scrolling platformer in the vein of Mega Man, complete with gorgeous pixel arts visuals and a Game Boy-esque pea-soup green filter. This one looks fast, fun and hard as hell. Very keen to give it a try.


Remorse: The List (XSX, NS, XBO)

As everyone knows, the only surefire way to be rid of a ghost is to shoot it with a gun. Remorse: The List comes to Xbox and Nintendo platforms this week after a successful run on PC. One for players who cannot get enough survive-the-night horror in their lives.


Sons of the Forest (PC)

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in The Forest. Sons of the Forest is the sequel to the popular survival game The Forest. What distinguished The Forest from other games in the genre was its willingness to indulge the horror of being stuck alone in an unfamiliar environment. Everything is hostile in its heavily wooded world, and in the sequel, it’s all just that much more difficult to stay alive. One for the survival purists, I have no doubt.


Tyrant’s Blessing (NS)

A throwback to JRPG tactics like Final Fantasy Tactics, Tyrant’s Blessing comes to Nintendo Switch this week! The perfect game for a portable platform, really, it’s got that one-more-turn gameplay that makes it ideal for playing on your commute.


February 24

Architect (PC)

Image: Aleph Null

Architect is a chill game about building mind-bending, abstract structures and then filling them with weird little guys. Another “No Thoughts, Head Empty” game for those days where it’s all been a bit much.


Digimon World: Next Order (PC, NS)

Digimon World: Next Order is a new, full-blooded RPG in the popular series of monster battler games. Some of you have already closed the tab to throw down a preorder and you know who you are. Digimon fans are not to be trifled with.


Kerbal Space Program 2 (PC, PS4, XBO)

Kerbal Space Program 2 goes into Early Access this week. The original has always been a bit of a special game — a rigidly realistic physics sim married to the silliest little guys imaginable, Kerbal is all about building a spacecraft capable of taking your weird little guys to another world. That already sounds pretty hard, but it’s actually way harder than it sounds. Your engineer friends will be going insane about this one.


Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe (NS)

(Drowned out by the sound of Ruby screaming) KIRBY’S RETURN TO DREAMLAND DELUXE IS OUT ON FRIDAY.


LOUD: My Road To Fame (PC)

Image: Hyperstrange

Loud: My Road To Fame is a rhythm game about becoming a rockstar when you’re still very young and unsure of yourself. It’s very cute and very wholesome, and you’ll never hear me turn a new rhythm game down. Out on Steam this week.

Octopath Traveler 2 (PS5, PC, NS, PS4)

Octopath Traveler was a bit of a divisive game when it launched. It beautifully aped the visual conventions of Square Enix’s SNES era JRPGs with a little 2.5 razzle-dazzle thrown in for good measure. That was the part everybody seemed to like just fine. It was the game’s hub-and-spoke design for acquiring the game’s eight companions that proved contentious. Will Octopath Traveler 2 make up for the original’s deficiencies? (For what it’s worth, I was in the camp that really liked Octopath 1).


Someholm (PC)

Somerholm is a tranquil game full of randomly generated islands. Explore, take photos, and build yourself a little life. I love the look of this one — it forcibly reminded me of games like Little Big Adventure 2: Twinsen’s Odyssey.


February 26

Destiny 2: Lightfall (PS5, XSX, PC, PS4, XBO)

Lightfall, the latest expansion to Bungie’s wildly successful multiplayer shooter Destiny 2, is probably best described as the beginning of the end. Bungie has a clear roadmap for how Destiny 2 will finally wrap up its years-long story, and Lightfall is the first chapter in the game’s final volume. The Witness has arrived, and the End To All Things approaches. War has broken out on Neptune, and it’s up to you to stop it.

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