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The Maw: what's new in PC games this week?

Once Human, Anger Foot and a helping of cosy alchemy

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A man with a covered face spoonfeeding a man with a lock attached to his head in a satirical Goya etching
Image credit: Francisco Goya / Rock Paper Shotgun

Happy this week, everybody? Following last week's slight (and perhaps slightly editorialised) dry spell, there is a non-zero quantity of promising new PC games in the offing, and they cover a nice spread of genres.

On Tuesday 9th July, we've got Once Human, a free-to-play multiplayer open world survival shooter set in a world polluted by sanity-eroding Stardust. On Wednesday 10th July, there's the early access launch of Time Treker (sic), aka Vampire Survivor but with anime mecha. Thursday 11th July unleashes the first-person stomping of Anger Foot, and the Viva Pinata-adjacent gardening thrills of Horticular. And on Friday 12th July, the SNES-style horror maze running of Super Dark Deception, the cyberpunk deck-building of Zero Division, and the fungal-fingered scholarship of The Last Alchemist.

As ever, you can keep track of the latest developments in the tumultuous realm of PC gaming via the liveblog below, and make vicious jokes about our puns in the attached comments thread. Also as ever, the liveblog is sponsored by the Maw, the reeking, raging embodiment of the endless hunger for News, whose million lamprey gullets we strive ever to fill with, as the case may be, articles about dogs in Zenless Zone Zero, or people getting mad at Call of Duty. Please let us know if you stumble on anything that could make decent Maw fodder.

Key points

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Ho thar, a launch date for Dungeonborne, in which the dungeons are far from boring.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

A new mod replaces Shadow Of The Erdtree's final boss with Miyazaki riding Patches, wielding two moonlight greatswords, via VG247.

Nic Reuben

Ghost Of Tsushima PC has been patched to quash an outbreak of floating lighthouses. Alas, I have no pictures to share.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

BioWare won't say whether there are visible dicks in Dragon Age: The Veilguard, which I choose to regard as confirmation that there are visible dicks in Dragon Age: The Veilguard.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Bō: Path of the Teal Lotus is a 2D platforming metroidvania set in a world inspired by Japanese myth. Squid Shock Studios and creative director Chris Stair have penned a Steam blog describing how they're adapting folk stories like that of the Yogen no Tori. Here's a trailer to wash that down.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

A heads-up from Nic that Godot-engine-based, 2D-specialised development toolkit Action Game Maker has been announced for Steam release in 2025, via Gematsu.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Oh boy, another Steam promotional knees-up - this one's for Independent Game Festival award winners, and runs till 20th July.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

The designer of Fruit Ninja and Jetpack Joyride is making an undersea Lovecraftian horror game, Feed The Deep.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Hannah's Day is a fancy spatial puzzler starring a lady on a skateboard who wants to form a band, and has a flexible relationship with gravity. It's out 25th July.
Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

GET ME THE WEEKEND, FRIDAY

I can almost taste tonight's Victory Takeaway. FEED THE MAW.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

If you've been struggling to make sense of the Microsoft Game Pass pricing changes and new subscription tiers, this might help.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Tako no Himitsu: Ocean of Secrets is an action-RPG in the spirit of Game Boy Advance classics like Golden Sun, in which six heroes and their octopi chums try to save the world. Steam demo over here.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Barraka is a claymation-style escapade set in a spooky town fair from Basque developer Zomorro Studio. Seems pleasantly cursed.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Protagonist-switching soulslike Deathbound (dare I call it Killer7-esque?) has a release date - 8th August. It's "set in a callous world where Faith and Science clash." There's a demo on Steam.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Arc System Works are bringing back side-scrolling face-puncher Double Dragon in jaw-evaporating 3D. "Experience the same simple and intuitive gameplay, with controls and balance refined for the modern era," reads the release. Here's a *grits teeth* trazzer.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Having boggled at Doom in Fortnite, Nic fell into the cheeserope coils of a free pizza game based on Vampire Survivors.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Nic has once again arisen early and served up two piping-hot newsies. Here's the first: Doom runs on Fortnite now.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

GET ME A COFFEE, THURSDAY

Paging Dr Cthulhouise? Somebody shoveled a Sonic the Hedgehog story into the Maw last night and now it's having one of its "turns". Please fetch my largest pair of pliers and as much rubber tarpaulin as you can find - this is going to get worse before it gets better. FEED THE MAW, carefully.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Brendy has been scoping out the wilds of Star Wars Outlaws and says they're around five minutes in extent if you travel by speederbike, which you might want to if you're being chased by factional hit squads.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Coin Factory is one of those unabashed numbers-go-up games. "Combine and level up factories, explore numerous synergies at your own pace, and unlock multiple tiers of buildings." As far as capitalism simulators go, this one looks pretty mellow.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Plucky Balatro challenger Dungeons & Degenerate Gamblers is out 8th August.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Even as he disappeared up the aforesaid chimney, a gold-foil envelope flew out of Nic's waistcoat pocket. It contains a lavender-scented note with the inscription "maybe check out Let's Minesweeper, which is Minesweeper with 10 million mines scattered over 48 million tiles, played by 10,000 people simultaneously".

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Via Gematsu, Sony have entered into a joint venture with Pocketpair to launch Palworld Entertainment, which exists "to expand and develop new businesses associated with the hit game, Palworld". Look out for a tidal wave of Palworld lunchboxes.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

As reported by Windows Central, Microsoft are raising the price of PC Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (which includes PC Game Pass). Here's a PDF with all the regional price changes. For users with recurring billing, the new prices will come into effect on September 12th 2024, so there's still time to cancel.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

And here's Nic's second piece: quick thoughts on the demo for The King Is Watching.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Nic burst through the window with two news articles ready-written this morning, and has now disappeared up the chimney yelling "the hurrier I go, the behinder I get". Here's his first: Dragon Age: The Veilguard's companions are quite capable of falling in love with each other, should you take the Platonic route or just make a poor impression.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

GET YE AHEAD OF THURSDAY, WEDNESDAY

The Maw festoons and filibusters. Feed it, FEED IT.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

I will accept "trazzer", if only to stop you inventing something worse

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Bloodless is an indie Sekiro-like, with a free demo on Steam. Feast your eyes upon the trazzer below (are u happy now Edwin?!)

Watch on YouTube

Nic Reuben

TEKKEN bod Katsuhiro Harada thinks you should stop sending him your "specific character ideas", and gives a detailed explanation on why it's not a great idea.

Nic Reuben

Here's a sizeable launch FAQ for open world survival shooter Once Human, which releases today.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Yaoling: Mythical Journey, meanwhile, is a creature collecting Eastern fantasy RPG with visuals that remind me of the lovely tiny MMO Book Of Travels. It's out 16th July.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

I like the looks of Rawmen, coming to Steam and Epic Games Store. It's a team arena shooter but with food. You get to roll around as a giant meatball. It's free-to-play and out 23rd July.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

According to Okami director Hideki Kamiya, the widely acclaimed Zeldalike was a massive flop at launch. "It was a huge failure," he said, in a Youtube chat with former Platinum and Tango Gameworks developer Ikumi Nakamura, who also worked on Okami while they were both at Capcom's now-defunct Clover Studio. "If it had been successful, Clover would have probably continued." Ta, EG.

Watch on YouTube

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

EA are changing the Apex Legends battle pass system - from Season 22 onwards, you can only buy them using real world currency, and there will be two, separately sold battle passes per season. As VGC reports, the move has not been well-received.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

According to CDAction, Embracer have closed Gothic and Risen developers Piranha Bytes.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

GET YE BEHIND MONDAY, TUESDAY

The canaries in the quarantine chamber have begun speaking in Morse code! The airlocks are fruiting at the seals! FEED THE MAW.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

A short piece from me about Hollow Home, a game about the city of Mariupol during Russia's war on Ukraine.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Played a bit of Mushroom Musume and liked it. Here's my fungus daughter Alia.

A mushroom girl with stats describing her personality in Mushroom Musume
Image credit: Mortally Moonstruck Games / Rock Paper Shotgun

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

I believe it was Samuel Johnson who once wrote that "the great pest of speech is asshole livebloggers trying to make fetch happen".

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

"Sorry, we all have to go back to saying 'hail' - I'm not sure my nerves can take another 'hello' actually."

Language EVOLVES Edwin. It's here to stay-stay, I'm afraid.

Nic Reuben

There's some movement at 2K Cloud Chamber, suggesting a new Bioshock project in the works. They're hiring for roles including animation, cinematics, engineering and narrative, as per a Linkedin post.

Nic Reuben

Nic/treelo - I'm not sure my nerves can take another tray tray

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Elden Ring is getting a fan-made anime adaption, and there's a tray-tray kicking about. Cheers, Eurogamer!

Nic Reuben

"Tech-Noir Tactics” All Walls Must Fall is now free to keep on Steam. "A bloody good time-troubling tactical shooter,” decreed Adam Smith (RPS in Peace).

Watch on YouTube

Nic Reuben

Summer Games Done Quick 2024 wound up last night, raising a total of $2.5 million for Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders. Well done, speedrunners!

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Team Folon are perilously close to releasing their total conversion mod Fallout: London. The final builds are even now sitting in GOG's inbox.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Forbes are of the opinion that The First Descendant has all but straight-up copy-pasted icon designs from Destiny 2.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Nic has the skinny on modders adding cut boat races back into The Witcher 3.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

On a similar note, Ubisoft executive producer Mark Rubin has responded to complaints that XDefiant is rather buggy right now, commenting that unlike Call Of Duty (one of Rubin's previous gigs), the new game has been made using an engine that isn't designed for first-person shooting.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Hooded Horse CEO Tim Bender has objected at length to Hinterland CEO Raphael van Lierop characterising Hooded Horse's city builder Manor Lords as "a pretty interesting case-study in the pitfalls of Early Access development". In his LinkedIn post, Van Lierop comments that the game hasn't been updated significantly since it topped charts at launch. "Early Access is a marathon, and when you launch you need to have your next major content expansion pretty much in the queue," he writes. Bender's take is that "this is exactly the kind of distorted endless growth/burden of expectations/line must go up perspective that causes so much trouble in the games industry."

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

The latest Lethal Company update - the "Cruising Update" - adds a fancy new car for you to haul scrap in. Also two new creatures and weedkiller.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

Via MP1st, a LinkedIn page points to the existence of an unannounced remake from 2K Games.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

GET YE BEHIND ME, MONDAY

The tentacles have gotten into the cooling system again. FEED THE MAW.

Edwin Evans-Thirlwell

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