Happy New Year everyone. With a new year comes new games and… well… January is a bit sparse, at least in the beginning. As usual the first two weeks of January is the time for the gaming industry to recover from their holiday hangovers. However, the second half of January is densely packed with big name releases, amazing franchise revivals, creative indie titles and much much more.
Pupperazzi (Jan 20 – PC, XBO)
Explore a world of dogs. Pet dogs. Play with dogs. Dress up dogs. Watch dogs play with each other. Wash dogs. Pamper dogs. And most importantly, photograph dogs. This is a bizarre yet adorable combination of Pokémon Snap and Nintendogs with, even more oddly, an open world. An open world dedicated to interacting with and taking photos of cute dogs.
RPGolf Legends (Jan 20 – PC, Switch, PS4, XBO)
We aren’t entirely sure why golf and RPGs go so well together, but it does. RPGolf Legends is the latest combo of the two genres, and it leans heavily on the RPG. Golf has been sealed and it’s up to you and the spirit of an ancient golf club to uncover its secrets. Be prepared for combat, classes, skills, treasure, air-ships, and more, all in the service of getting a ball into a hole.
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Extraction (Jan 20 – PC, PS4, PS5, XBO, XSX, Stadia)
It’s Rainbow Six meets Aliens. Instead of fighting against other players, it’s three players going up against an alien infestation. The big draw of this one? The gameplay is procedurally generated. Your objectives might be different the second time around on the same map. One playthrough you might find a breakable wall granting you a shortcut, and the next you might find a steel barricade forcing you to take another path. With 18 operatives and 12 changing maps, this is one co-op shooter that is sure to have a ton of replay value.
Windjammers 2 (Jan 20 – PC, Switch, PS4, XBO, Stadia)
The best fighting game style ultimate frisbee competition is back with Windjammers 2. New characters, new stages, new mini-games, new mechanics, new anime art style, and much much more make this revival of a beloved competitive gem one to keep an eye on. If you haven’t felt the hype of this head-to-head disc flinger in the past, you don’t want to miss it now, because it is going to be a competitor for the fighting game of the year, even if it doesn’t look like a fighting game.
Hidden Deep (Jan 24 – PC, Switch, XBO)
What monstrosities lurk in the deep? That’s the theme of Hidden Deep, a physics-based 2D exploration game, with a heavy gore horror aesthetic. As you go deeper and deeper, you uncover more and more secrets lying under the rock and dirt, and more horrors that you’ll have to fight. What will you sacrifice to go just a bit deeper? And will you ever get to the surface?
Reverie Knights Tactics (Jan 25 – PC, Switch, PS4, XBO)
Combining elements of The Banner Saga and Final Fantasy Tactics, Reverie Knights Tactics tasks a group of heroes with rescuing a team who was sent to preserve lost elven knowledge from orc-occupied territory. One part visual novel, one part survival/exploration game, and one part grid-based tactical strategy, this hand-painted tale is sure to scratch that war game itch.
Kingdom of the Dead (Jan 26 – PC)
How scary can an FPS be with just two colors and a low framerate? Pretty scary if Kingdom of the Dead has anything to say about it. This minimalist FPC relies heavily on its black and white aesthetic to get across and feeling of unease. You’ll fight everything from shadow monsters to giant lovecraftian worms, all with a trusty shotgun or living sword.
COGEN: Sword of Rewind (Jan 27 – PC, Switch, PS4, XBO, XSX)
One of the major indie releases of the month, COGEN: Sword of Rewind, takes the basic time rewinding mechanics of Braid out of the puzzle genre and into the super-fast anime action platformer genre. It’s one hit and you’re dead, but that one hit doesn’t matter much when you can rewind time three seconds. Just don’t rely on it too much because, in a Prince of Persia style twist, overusing your power might just put you in a situation where your only option is to face a dismal death. Also to note, it’s going to have music composed by Motoi Sakuraba of Tales and Dark Souls fame, and it’s going to have a crossover release event with…
Gunvolt Chronicles: Luminous Avenger iX 2 (Jan 27 – PC, Switch, PS4, PS5, XBO, XSX)
While Mega Man 11 may have revived the classic Mega Man series, Mega Man X and Mega Man Zero didn’t get the same treatment. Luckily, the Gunvolt series is pretty much a spiritual successor to both. High-speed projectile and sword-based 2D combat, abilities, and attacks gotten from a variety of elementally inspired bosses with specific weaknesses, wall jumps, dashes and hidden upgrades, all the elements of a classic X or Zero series game are here. So if you are a fan of those games but have been sleeping on Gunvolt, now is the time to check it out.
Pokémon Legends: Arceus (Jan 28 – Switch)
With Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl being, well, little more than a one to remake of the original Diamond and Pearl, Pokémon fans are incredibly excited for this new take on the Pokémon world, Pokémon Legends: Arceus. It’s an open-world Pokémon game, with new creatures to capture, a deep story about the Pokémon world’s past, and the one thing every Pokémon fan has been asking for since the beginning… the ability to flat out punch a wild Pokémon in the face!
What games are you excited to play this January? Let us know in the comments.