This week, gamers got the epic 100-plus hour game The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. It’s a fantastically deep fantasy game that many players (myself included) won’t be putting down for weeks to come. So it’s understandable that other big publishers have given it some space by not releasing any major triple-A Xbox One or PlayStation 4 games next week.
But not everyone has a new console or $60 to spare, and not everyone is interested in getting roped into an adult fantasy game that takes several entire days of your life to complete. Those gamers are in luck, because plenty of titles are launching next week across a variety of genres and platforms.
Whether you’re into fighting games, action platformers, or colorful shooters, you’re sure to find something to play next week. Read on to find out what games will release the week of May 25, 2015.
1. Ultra Street Fighter IV
Releases May 26 on PS4
How many versions of Street Fighter IV do we need? A lot, apparently. We already have the arcade edition, the home edition, the 3D edition, and the iOS edition. Thankfully, this Ultra version of the unstoppable fighting game series is actually the best version date.
The developers at Capcom have taken all the characters, tweaks, balance updates, and tournament knowledge they’ve amassed in the six years since the original SFIV came out and bundled them together here. To top it off, they’ve added five new fighters, six new stages, and three new gameplay mechanics to the mix. It’s a game that’s stuffed full of everything a fighting game fan could want.
This version of the game launched on the previous generation of consoles last year, but is finally making its way to PS4. That’s probably due to the publishing deal Sony and Capcom made to bring Street Fighter V to PS4 as a console exclusive. In any case, if you’re looking for a top-tier fighting game for PS4, look no further.
2. Magicka 2
Releases May 26 on PS4 and PC
This fantasy action game puts you in the shoes of a wizard who’s on a mission to save the world by slaying thousands of beasties that roam the wilderness. Such violence is OK, because these monsters have cruel intentions for the good citizens of the land. If that sounds a little dreary, don’t worry, because this game is as charming and colorful as they come.
One of the best features of the game is that you can also play cooperatively with friends locally or online. You have to be careful, though, because there’s no way to turn off friendly fire. If you’re careless with the direction of your attack spells, they’ll hurt your buddies (who might decide to hurt you back). Magica 2 may not be the deep RPG it looks like at first glance, but it promises to offer plenty of monster-slaying fun.
3. Octodad: Dadliest Catch
Releases May 26 on PS Vita
This game has been swimming from system to system since its original PC release in 2010, but it’s just now making its way to the Vita. Like I Am Bread and Surgeon Simulator, the only enemies in this quirky game are the overly complicated controls.
The funniest part of the game is actually the premise. Somehow an octopus has convinced everyone in his life, from his co-workers to his family, that he’s a human. To keep up the ruse, you must help him do things like get from the bedroom to the kitchen, eat breakfast, and get in his car to go to work. It’s not easy, but it’s incredibly silly and highly satisfying once you achieve Octodad’s rather pedestrian goals.
4. Badland: Game of the Year Edition
Releases May 26 on PS4, PS3, and PS Vita and May 29 on Xbox One
This one-button game is all about quick reflexes. You play as a rotund bird-like creature flying through a drop-dead gorgeous game world. When you hold down a button, your bird pumps its wings and rises on the screen. Let go, and it falls to the ground.
The idea is to make it through each level without being squashed by the many traps and obstacles that dot the landscape. Throw in some power-ups and a multiplayer mode, and you’ve got an uncomplicated game that’s easy to start playing but tough to stop.
5. Rogue Legacy
Releases May 27 on Xbox One
Rogue Legacy is an indie platformer with a goofy sense of humor. Much of the game is randomized, from the quirks of the main characters to the layout of the dungeon, meaning no two run-throughs are exactly the same.
The goal is to make your way through all four sections of the ever-changing dungeon and defeat the bosses. The game is exceedingly difficult, but every time you die, you get to spend gold to increase your stats. So the more you play, the more powerful your characters become. It’s a cool gimmick that earned the game high critical praise on other platforms. I expect it to be just as good on Xbox One.
Releases May 29 on Wii U
Leave it to Nintendo to turn the typically R-rated shooting genre into something the whole family can enjoy. In Splatoon you don’t shoot bullets at enemies; instead, you shoot ink. Depending on the mode you play, the goal is usually to coat as much of the environment as possible in your team’s color of ink, which means shooting your opponents is optional.
I had a blast playing the preview version of the game, and that was just a small slice of the total package. The full game has lots of additional modes and extra things to do. If you’re looking for a colorful, creative shooter, Splatoon has you covered.