The Last of Us Part II is the biggest new release since Final Fantasy VII Remake and clearly too big to fail. Many millions of fans are on the hook to play this one — which is why it does not feature as one of our three single player games to play in June. That title is basically just a given. What else is there then? Here are a few genre hybrids with some weird new ideas to try, as well as sequels to long-dormant series. In particular, we’re looking at Desperados III, Disintegration, and Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia.
Release Date: June 16, 2020
Platform: PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
Desperados III is a real-time tactics game with a heavy emphasis on stealth, coming to us from an older series that completely skipped the 2010s. Thanks to the rise of digital distribution and PC-to-console ports, though, many real-time tactics titles are seeing sequels and prequels from mid-range European publishers.
Desperados can now benefit from the renewed popularity of western stories post-Westworld and Red Dead Redemption 2, as well as the vast graphical improvements since the last release, Helldorado in 2007. As with developer Mimimi Games’ previous Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun, this is not intended as an entry-level experience.
Real-time tactics games are often criticized for their trial-and-error play, and Desperados III is not about to change this, with a heavy focus on precise maneuvers and quick save/quick load in the event of things going pear-shaped. On the other hand, the enjoyable Wild West vibe and better accessibility options (including a limited tactical pause) might open Desperados III up to more players.
Release Date: June 16, 2020
Platform: PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One
From ex-Halo and SOCOM developers comes Disintegration, a first-person shooter/real-time strategy hybrid. Players control Romer, a totally radical rebel riding a gravity bike and commanding a team of outlaws.
Disintegration‘s world initially portrays an intriguing example of transhumanism, rebellion, and post-climate change fiction, where humans have been “integrated” — i.e., had their brains placed in robots — in order to survive an ecological disaster. Years later, when the planet becomes livable again, some of those integrated are perfectly fine with their robot bodies and begin an anti-human war. Thus begins a story with the artistic beauty of an American science fiction game… told with the clunky writing and lack of subtext of an American science fiction game.
Saturday morning story notwithstanding, Disintegration is notable for being an action game with multiplayer where the solo mode is not a massively interconnected online experience. For single player gamers, this is an exciting proposition.
However, developer V1 Interactive’s biggest challenge will be selling players on a mix of first-person action and strategy, something that has not properly worked since the Battlezone games, and certainly not on consoles to any notable degree.
Can Disintegration capture something akin to the Brothers in Arms games, effortlessly combining action and strategy? Or will it be remembered alongside some admittedly great games that failed to hit it big, such as Brütal Legend?
Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia
Release Date: June 25, 2020
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Jobbing studio Matrix Software has been involved with some of the biggest Japanese franchises of the last 20 years, from Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy to Professor Layton. Brigandine is not one of these heavy-hitters, never extending beyond the original PlayStation until now.
Described as a grand strategy game, Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia also includes multiple modes and hexagonal tactical battles between summoned creatures, reminding one of Heroes of Might and Magic, but in larger and more complicated arenas. The trailer visuals certainly attempt to evoke classics such as the remake of Tactics Ogre and Fire Emblem, though it bear acknowledging there was once a very crowded space of medieval anime games.
If the medieval anime aesthetic and its ambitious gameplay appeals to you, Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia could be an exciting prospect.
Notable Dates for Single Player-Friendly Games
June 2 — Liberated (PC, PS4, NS, XB1)
June 9 — 1971 Project Helios (PC, PS4, NS, XB1)
June 12 — Warborn (PC, PS4, NS, XB1)
June 16 — Hardspace: Shipbreaker Early Access (PC)
June 17 — Across the Grooves (PC, NS)
June 19 — CAMEO – CCTV Detective (PC), Ys: Memories of Celceta (PS4 port), The Last of Us Part II (PS4)
June 25 — The Almost Gone (PC, NS)
Let us know in the comments which games you are looking forward to, and have fun until next month’s Three Single Player Games.