Editorial

PC Games for the Single Players in July

July

As is frequently the case for the PC port of a popular title, OnlySP’s list of PC games this month is last, but certainly not least. Do not forget to check the earlier lists (PlayStation and Xbox One) for other games that might also hit the PC in July.

YONDER: THE CLOUD CATCHER CHRONICLES

Developed by Prideful Sloth—a team of three long-time industry veterans now working in Brisbane, Australia—Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles is almost as multifaceted as its name. The game, at first, appears to be a sort of non-violent take on Zelda, particularly the open world of Breath of the Wild. However, despite the similarities to that brightly-stylised adventure in the focus on both exploration and gathering crafting materials, Yonder has more in common with Harvest Moon and the recent Ever Oasis (though, again, without the violence).

Shipwrecked on the island Gemea, players explore eight distinct environments through “fishing, farming, crafting, brewing, and cooking”, rather than fighting and killing. Progression is earned through building relationships with the residents of the game world by completing quests and ultimately helping them overcome an evil fog that enshrouds the island. However, even with an overarching goal, players can uncover the world of Yonder at their own pace, whether they want to see all corners of the island or just stay in one place farming for a while.

Fans of action-RPGs and classical farming sims, as well as MMO players that want to try something for single players, will definitely want to give Yonder a look. Hopefully the game will be able to carry its eclectic mechanics all the way to the end.

Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles releases on July 18 for PC and PlayStation 4.

LONE ECHO (VR)

Here is an excellent example of movement in VR that is not just teleporting. Lone Echo is exclusively developed for the Oculus Touch and takes place in the microgravity of outer space. Like the astronauts on the ISS, players move around the environment by pushing off nearby surfaces or pulling themselves along. As the visual feedback is entirely different to walking under Earth’s regular gravity, many of those who have tested the game report far less motion sickness than in other VR titles.

Coming from the technology geniuses at Ready at Dawn Studios (The Order: 1886, Deformers), Lone Echo follows a player-controlled robot named Jack that must help solve an “increasingly threatening mystery” on board a futuristic space base. Completing the single-player story will entail puzzle solving and light platforming in 360-degree space, while at the same time engaging in interactive dialogue with another character, Captain Olivia Rhodes.

Lone Echo is an enticing addition to the growing list of single player, narrative-based titles for the nascent medium of VR; as the latest release from Ready at Dawn, seeing such a talented studio working on an adventure game that is not as crushingly linear as The Order: 1886 is relieving. If Lone Echo can satisfy on both fronts, gamers should expect to see more single-player adventures for VR in the future, and this is good news for all.

Lone Echo comes to PC on July 20, exclusively for Oculus Rift Touch.

SUNDERED

OnlySP readers will be familiar with Sundered from our preview coverage and our recent interview with developer Thunder Lotus Games. For the uninitiated, Sundered is a Lovecraftian Metroidvania—a kind of dark and terrible Guacamelee. Inspired by the success of the studio’s boss-focused action game Jotun, Sundered has the scale and immersive boss fights of the team’s first game now married to a non-linear and partially procedural world for players to traverse.

The game’s Lovecraft angle is no stylistic pretence, either. Everything reflects Sundered’s cosmic horror inspiration—from the story that tells of one of the last humans forced to face a land of nightmarish creatures, to the customisation allowing for more powerful “corrupted” abilities at the cost of the protagonist’s humanity. In the interview mentioned above, Rodrigue Duperron from Thunder Lotus draws the connection between the labyrinths of a typical Metroidvania map and the madness of a world in the grip of otherworldly terrors, making the mechanical and aesthetic genres an excellent fit for each other.

Although cosmic horror offers an unsettling, upsetting premise, Sundered looks anything but a chore to play through, with plenty of fantastic hand-drawn art and a generous focus on combining action and exploration. This is a project that should be high on any horror fan’s list and is worth a look for fans of platformers and action games.

Sundered is scheduled to hit PC and PlayStation 4 this month (exact date TBD).

NOTABLE MENTIONS

On our PlayStation 4 list, check out Pyre, Supergiant Games’s follow-up to Transistor, coming on July 25. On the Xbox One list, Minecraft Story Mode: Season 2, Black the Fall, and Aven Colony are all headed for PC, as well as the other systems. Finally, Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls comes out on July 27, for anyone who missed it on PlayStation.

Are you looking forward to any other notable PC games we missed? Do not forget to let us know if you prefer the new platform lists for solo players and, until August, have fun with video games.

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