Archive - Show of the Week
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Steep is the new open-world extreme winter sports game in which you go skiing, snowboarding, wingsuiting, paragliding and tumbling helplessly down a mountain in a ball of flailing limbs and ragdoll physics. It brings to mind some of our other favourite ragdoll moments from other games, as we discover later in this week's show.
Assassin's Creed: The Ezio Collection is a remastered bundle bringing to Xbox One and PS4 all the Assassin's Creed games starring Ezio Auditore da Firenze. We're on board because we love Ezio, almost as much as these other Ezio enthusiasts in Show of the Week.
Open-world hacking adventure Watch Dogs 2 builds on the potential of the original game with verve and co-op, and teaches us yet more valuable lessons in the art of breaching secure computer systems. Join us as we get to grips with Watch Dogs 2 and ruminate on the things other videogames have taught us about hacking.
Deliciously dark supernatural sneak em' up Dishonored 2 proves the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, offering the choice to play as either Dishonored's original protagonist Corvo or his similarly lethal daughter Emily. But Corvo Attano and Emily Kaldwin aren't the only murderous daddy-daughter tag team on the block; any of the duos in the following Show of the Week would give them a run for their money, until Emily morphs into a smoke monster and pulls their arms off.
The infinite of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is surely a reference to the vast infinity of space, rather than how Call of Duty has seemingly filled every era in history with bullets and explosions. But this isn't the first time this increasingly loopy military shooter series has been blasted into space, as we find in Show of the Week.
Skyrim: Special Edition brings dragon-shouting adventure Skyrim to the Xbox One, PS4 and PC with remastered art, some newfangled effects and a mound of memorable DLC. It's a moderately perfect excuse for transplanting a favourite Outside Xbox challenge to a new setting, which is to say, for the Skyrim Nude Jarl Punching Challenge (patent pending).
Battlefield 1 is out this week, and it takes the military shooter series to World War 1. This conflict was one of the most bloody and horrifying in modern history, but that doesn't preclude it from including an unexpectedly moving section where you play as a pigeon. It's not the first time a game has let us briefly, bizarrely be an animal, as Show of the Week discovers.
Titanfall's rideable robot warriors and puny wall-running pilots return shortly in Titanfall 2. This sequel adds a new single-player campaign mode that promises to flesh out the tantalising sci-fi backdrop of the first game with a proper story. In it, you play as Jack Cooper, a pilot who is forced to link with a Titan named BT-7274, after BT's original pilot tragically buys the farm.
WWE 2K17 comes out on consoles next week, promising to bring us closer than ever to the slapstick, gymnastic pantomime that is professional wrestling. We assess the game in Show of the Week, then turn to WWE Raw Tag Team Champions The New Day for tips on the most important aspect of playing with your friends: psyching them out so you score an easy victory.
Set 25 years after the events of Gears of War 3, Gears of War 4 centres on Marcus Fenix's son JD, who faces a new threat to humanity known as The Swarm. His old man Marcus is still around, though, and doing pretty well for 61 years old. As we discover later in the show, he's not the only grumpy would-be retiree in videogames.
Forza Horizon 3 refreshes its open-world racing with the diverse environments of a new Australian setting, the outback oomph of Australian utes ("utility vehicles", Mike tells me) and, by making you the new boss of the Horizon festival, the power to hire and fire your friends as on-staff racers. Show of the Week compares this solemn responsibility with other ways in which we have, given the opportunity, screwed over our friends in video games.
Mafia 3 ditches the Empire Bay setting of Mafia 2 and moves the action to New Bordeaux, a fictionalised version of New Orleans. But it's not the only time videogames have taken us to the Big Easy, as Show of the Week discovers.
Mafia 3's Lincoln Clay is a vengeful troublemaker gunning for powerful crime lords, a skilled Vietnam vet, and a black man in Louisiana in 1968 - so there are several places he is not warmly welcomed in New Bordeaux, the fictional version of New Orleans where Mafia 3 is set. Discover some of the places Lincoln Clay isn't welcome, but he's going anyway, they had best not try and stop him, in new Mafia 3 gameplay.
The main thing we look for in a robot companion is their willingness to not kill us, in spite of them being mighty constructs of metal and us being meatbags only skilled at making toasted sandwiches. This includes the faithful crew of Corebots in Recore, for instance: benevolent robot buddies who definitely won't ever decide we're the weak link, murder us, then form a robotic superteam on their own. Show of the Week inspects Recore in the following video and auditions further friendly bots.
Bioshock: The Collection does exactly what it says on the plastic Blu-ray case, collecting Bioshock, Bioshock 2 and Bioshock Infinite and all their DLC into one, space-saving package. Show of the Week inspects the bundle then revisits Bioshock's soggy city of Rapture and other deeply impractical videogame settlements.
Attack on Titan: Wings of Freedom arrives in Europe today, and in North America shortly. For the uninitiated, it's the game adaptation of a popular anime in which gigantic zombies smash the fortifications behind which all the humans live, then eat them. These 'titans' would be fully terrifying enough if they weren't also totally naked. What is it with games and conspicuously nude monsters?
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided continues the adventures of cyborg beard-haver Adam Jensen. It takes place in a world very different to that of Human Revolution, where the golden age of human augmentation has been replaced with fear and mistrust of 'augs'. Show of the Week ponders this un-brave new world and body mods not so practical as Jensen's taser fist.
In Scalebound you play as an all-American teen transported to a fantasy world called Draconis, where he ends up bonded to a colossal new fire-breathing friend called Thuban. Show of the Week puts questions to Scalebound's lauded creator Hideki Kamiya and salutes our best, trustiest, most monsterrific pals in games.
This first episode of Telltale's new Batman series starts as it means to go on, by emphasising your role as Batman's billionaire alter ego Bruce Wayne. When you're playing as Bruce you have to pick your way through typically nuanced Telltale conversations - or, if you are us, you choose the option that makes Bruce Wayne the biggest jerk. Show of the Week investigates just how far Telltale is willing to let us go.
Overcooked is a new co-operative cooking party game in which you cook food and serve it to guests in a variety of bizarre kitchens that include a frozen river with moving ice floes and a pair of trucks that move together and apart as they race down a mercifully straight highway. They still produce more appetising food than most of the stuff I've tried to cook in games, as we discover later in the show.
Indie survival game We Happy Few was a surprise offbeat hit at the E3 2016 Microsoft conference. This was thanks to its kooky Clockwork Orange-inspired premise, creepy masked characters, and how it included people smashing a rat to bits and eating the bits, in what is surely a press conference first.
This weekend is Star Wars Celebration: an annual celebration of all things Star Wars. It was during last year's celebration when publisher EA unveiled the first proper trailer for Star Wars Battlefront, and we can expect more news this year - about the upcoming Death Star DLC, for instance, which looks likely to feature Chewbacca as a playable hero. That's not the only Star Wars gaming treat heading our way soon, though, as we discover later in the show.
Show of the Week: Batman Return to Arkham and 5 Gotham Doctors Who Need To Be Struck Off Immediately
Batman: Return to Arkham is a collection of the first two Arkham games, Asylum and City, as well as all their DLC, available for the first time on Xbox One and PS4. It's also delayed indefinitely, because it looks awful. Show of the Week ponders Return to Arkham, as well as asking, Seinfeld-style, what is up with the terrible state of the medical professionals in Gotham. You'll have to imagine the slap bass sounds we're making right now.
Inside is a bleak, desaturated platformer specialising in physics puzzles and casually harrowing deaths. Show of the Week ponders this follow-up to Limbo from Danish developer Playdead, then other similarly harrowing experiences through which we gritted our teeth in other videogames.
Ghost Recon: Wildlands is the previously stuffy militaristic series Ghost Recon letting its hair down, chucking you and three of your best spec ops buds into open-world Bolivia, a country torn apart by a corrupt government and the illegal drug trade. It's your job to take the whole thing apart via the medium of synchronised sniper shots.
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