9 Games Launching This Week: ‘Metal Gear,’ ‘Mad Max,’ and More

For video gamers, September is kicking off with a bang thanks to the double-shot release of Mad Max and Metal Gear Solid V on the very same day. But those two major titles are just the beginning of a week that’s packed to the gills with game releases from developers big and small.

Suffice it to say that gamers won’t have to look far to find something to play this week — or any week for the rest of the year, for that matter. The busy gaming season has officially begun. Here’s a list of the notable releases coming your way the week of August 31.

1. Disney Infinity 3.0

Releases August 31 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U, and mobile

Disney is pulling out all the stops with Disney Infinity 3.0, a game that brings together three huge properties that fall under the company’s empire of brands. The game has Disney characters like the emotions from Inside Out, Marvel characters like Iron Man and Captain America, and Star Wars characters like Anakin Skywalker and Han Solo.

To play as all of those characters, however, you’ll need to buy the corresponding figurines to digitally teleport them into the game. There’s no doubt about it: this game’s going to be a major moneymaker for Disney, a blast for kids, and a financial drain for parents.

2. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Releases September 1 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC

While the tensions between publisher Konami and Metal Gear Solid director Hideo Kojima have been well documented, there’s little doubt this game is going to be everything fans want from the franchise. From the open-world environments to the much improved control scheme, the early reviews say this might be the best installment in a franchise full of certified classics. Expect loads of stealthy infiltration, missions you can complete however you want, and a plot so twisty even Kojima himself may not know exactly what’s going on.

3. Mad Max

Releases September 1 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC

The movie Mad Max: Fury Road brought the bizarre world of the wasteland to a whole new generation of fans, and this game is looking to cement their interest. It’s an open-world action game that has you run missions and seek out scrap metal in order to build your car into the ultimate combat machine. With high-octane action on the road and intense fistfights and gunplay in enemy hideouts, Mad Max could be the open-world game you’ve been waiting for.

4. Danganranpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls

Releases September 1 on PS Vita

If you’ve played the first two entries in this unique series, prepare yourself for something quite different from the third installment. Instead of a visual novel about a group of high schoolers who must kill each other (and that’s just the start of the craziness), Ultra Despair Girls is more of a third-person shooter. You play as one of the characters from the first game as she fights against an army of evil bear robots. It’s definitely weird, but the first two games are amazing, so this one’s worth keeping an eye on.

5. The Deer God

Releases September 1 on Xbox One

Billed as a “3D pixel art adventure that challenges your religion and your platforming skills,” The Deer God clearly has ambitions beyond your average indie game. You play as a struggling hunter who shoots at the wrong deer and becomes reincarnated as the titular deity. From there, you gallop and jump through a seriously gorgeous world of forests and deserts that’s populated with bears, scorpions, and the like.

Reviews of the PC version were mixed, with critics citing its repetitive design as boring missions as weak points. But if you want to run around a gorgeous world and encounter pixelated wildlife, be sure to give this one a shot.

6. Armello

Releases September 1 on PlayStation 4, PC, and Mac

Armello is a colorful fantasy game that pits clans of anthropomorphic animals against one another in an attempt to take charge of the kingdom. It’s a video game, but it plays just like a board game. You move across hex-shaped spaces and play ability cards as you try to strengthen up your heroes and make your play for the throne. I played an early version of the game years ago, and it was a lot of fun then. It will be interesting to see how the finished product turned out.

7. Xeodrifter

Releases September 1 on PlayStation 4 and PS Vita

There’s no doubt about it: Xeodrifter was inspired by Super Metroid. That’s not a bad thing at all, since the “Metroidvania” genre is as popular as it’s ever been. This retro-style action platformer puts you in the shoes of a space explorer who can travel between four worlds, on which you’ll find items and abilities that open up new paths on the other worlds.

The idea is to explore the areas and collect as much gear as you can, then bring your gear to the other worlds to see where it gets you. It’s a pretty familiar setup for Metroid fans, but it’s well done, and the game doesn’t overstay its welcome.

8. Grow Home

Releases September 1 on PlayStation 4

Grow Home is something of a callback to classic 3D games on the original PlayStation and Nintendo 64. In it, your job is to climb a giant plant on an alien planet, collecting seeds to help it grow along the way. The game ends when you reach your space ship, which is floating high above the planet. Reviews of the PC edition were quite positive, so check it out when it lands on PS4.

9. Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons

Releases September 1 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4

Finally this excellent title is getting a physical release. In it, you navigate a gorgeously painted world and solve environmental puzzles on a quest to cure your father’s illness. The hook is that you control the two protagonists at the same time, using a single controller. One analog stick and trigger controls one boy, while the other stick and trigger controls the other. It’s tough to get used to, but eventually it clicks — and boy is it worth it.

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