New year, new month, new list of cool games you may have missed. And I say that, but we’re actually starting off the new year a bit slow – I only have four games for this month’s list rather than the usual six or so. I guess just not a lot came out this past month (of quality, at least). Regardless, the four I do have are some fun ones – so thanks to the publishers who sent them over to me and let’s go ahead and get started.
The action space flight genre is not one we really see all that often, and even when we do, the quality is usually debatable. So here we have Chorus, a game in that very genre that pretty much nails the gameplay aspect. For one, the flight controls are fluid and actually feel intuitive – that’s usually the main one most of these games fail on. That and the combat isn’t bad either. There’s just the right amount of aim assist, weapon variety, and scenarios to keep the experience going. It’s an open world too, but one where you can easily zip around and get to and from without a lot of aimless wandering, so points for that.
Still, I will say that the story is a bit garbage, with some really poorly written dialogue and robotic characters. Fortunately, that stuff is second to the gameplay, so no problem if you just want to skip over it. I haven’t finished it yet, but I’ve had a good time thus far and it’s an easy recommendation to make if you are into space games.
Archvale is a bit of a mashup. It’s a top-down action-adventure with some clean pixel graphics, but it’s also an RPG and, yes, a bullet hell shooter too. It works surprisingly well though, with the gameplay revolving around tackling various dungeons, exploring this large world map with a bunch of unique areas, and unlocking a mountain of loot along the way. There are weapon upgrades, but I hardly ever needed to use them due to the sheer amount of new weapons the game kept throwing at me. Magic wands, throwing axes, triple-shot bows – they just kept coming and I was surprised with how different they all were.
This same sense of variety applies elsewhere: enemies, map areas, and even the special rooms and events. It can be played both solo and with a friend and is well worth a look if you’re into these top-down indie RPGs or shooters.
QWOP in space is about the best description one could give this game. Playing either solo or with a friend, it is up to you to complete various tasks in zero gravity, with each arm bound to its own controls. You’ll be bumping into things, floating off unintentionally, and constantly wrestling with the controls just to move down a simple corridor – all in good fun though. The movement is challenging enough on its own, but the game has some really solid variety with its missions on top of that. Setting up a comms tower, assembling a space telescope, spacewalking to fix an issue with the station – it’s got a lot going on.
I played it with a buddy and half the fun was just trying to move two bodies through these tight spaces and grab the items we needed to use, it’s kinda hard to do so when you’re laughing so much. Maybe not quite as fun as a solo experience, but if you have a friend to play it with – then it’s an easy recommendation.
Heavenly Bodies retails for $20 USD and is available on Steam, PS4, and PS5
Shovel Knight Pocket Dungeon
I may not have played Shovel Knight yet, but I had a lot of fun messing around in Pocket Dungeon. Despite the appearance of being some sort of Tetris spin-off, it’s more of an action-puzzler. You move your knight around, knock out enemies in these giant chains, and collect keys to unlock treasure – treasure that then grants upgrades for the given run. In-between runs, there’s a hub world where you can unlock even more upgrades – it has a nice sense of progression for a roguelite.
And of course, the game is wrapped up in that classic Shovel Knight pixel art style and with some solid music to match. It’s a simple formula all things considered, but one I’m having fun with and this is yet another game that will go great with the soon-to-be-released Steam Deck.
Shovel Knight Pocket Dungeon retails for $20 USD and is available on Steam, PS4, and Switch.
And that’s it for this month’s list. Again, a bit shorter than usual, but still some quality stuff – my personal favorite is probably a tie between Heavenly Bodies and Archvale. Anyways, thanks for watching and I’ll see you guy’s in next month’s video – hopefully we’ll have a beefier selection by then.