NASCAR Heat 5

NASCAR Heat 5 Box Art

This year’s installment of NASCAR Heat features all the official drivers, teams, and cars from the 2020 season NASCAR Cup Series and the support series. The Career Mode where the player has to work their way to the top starting with Xtreme Dirt Series, moving through the Gander RV & Outdoor Truck and Xfinity Series, and finally reaching the NASCAR Cup Series is making a return. New to the franchise is the Testing Mode that lets the player experiment and find the best car setup for each track to increase their chances of victory. NASCAR Heat 5‘s multiplayer mode supports 2-player offline split-screen and up to 40 players online.

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Trails of Cold Steel III (Switch)

Trails of Cold Steel III (Switch) Box Art

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a JRPG with turn-based battles developed by Nihon Falcom and published outside Japan by NIS America. It picks up over a year after the events of the previous game, and centers around the returning Rean Schwarzer. As an instructor at the newly opened Thors Branch Campus, he takes lead of Class VII and has to guide the new generation in the face of an uncertain future.

Like with the previous launches of Trails of Cold Steel III on PlayStation 4 and PC, the upcoming Nintendo Switch release in the West is accompanied by some modest pre-order bonuses and special editions detailed below.

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Outriders

Outriders Box Art

Outriders is a third-person RPG shooter from People Can Fly and Square Enix. The game takes place in a hostile planet of Enoch where the titular Outriders – hardened mercenaries and explorers – search for a mysterious signal that might hold the key to humanity’s survival.

Outriders is said to combine brutal gunplay with an extensive RPG system. Players create their Outrider from scratch and pick one of the four classes that come with unique supernatural abilities such as manipulation of fire or time. The weapons too can be crafted and customized with mods. Up to four players can join in a drop-in co-op, and the entire story campaign can also be tackled solo.

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Hunting Simulator 2

Hunting Simulator 2 Box Art

Neopica’s niche Hunting Simulator returns for a second installment that promises bigger and more varied natural environments in Texas, Colorado, and Europe, over 33 animal species to track, 75 official weapons and gear from manufacturers like Browning, Winchester, Verney Carron, and more.

Perhaps the most interesting addition is the hunting dog that will accompany the player and sniff out animals and trails. Dogs can be trained to get better at tracking, and different breeds are better at different tasks.

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Disintegration

Disintegration Box Art

V1 Interactive, an independent development studio led by Halo‘s co-creator Marcus Lehto, is preparing to launch their debut project: Disintegration. This sci-fi shooter is set in Earth’s near future where scarcity and pandemic have driven humanity to the brink of extinction, forcing them to transfer their brains to robotic bodies through the process of Integration. It wasn’t long before the majority of the Integrated decided to eliminate the remnants of humanity altogether. Standing in their way is a small resistance group of Outlaws with gravcycle pilot Romer Shoal at the helm.

Disintegration plays like a mashup between a first-person shooter and a real-time strategy game: the player rides a heavily armed gravcycle while commanding legions of troops. In addition to its single-player campaign, the game features three team-based 5v5 multiplayer modes.

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Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath

Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath Box Art

Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath is a major expansion for MK11 that continues the story where the original game left off. It adds three new playable characters to the roster – Robocop, Sheeva, and Fujin – as well as three new skin packs that will be released over time. One skin pack can be obtained on day one by pre-ordering the expansion as detailed further below.

Aftermath can be purchased separately as a digital upgrade, or bundled together with the original Mortal Kombat 11 for those who don’t yet own it.

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla

Assassin's Creed Valhalla Box Art

Norse-themed Assassin’s Creed Valhalla brings raiding, settlement building, and more advanced RPG elements to the franchise. The game’s story centers around Eivor, a fierce viking raider and member of the Assassins, who alongside his or her clan sails from the harsh Norway in search of richer lands. Arriving on the shores of England, Eivor’s clan establishes a village that will prosper and grow as a consequence of the player’s efforts. From this settlement the Vikings can launch brutal raids against Saxon fortresses throughout the lands.

While Valhalla is a single player game, it does have some online components. For example, it is possible to create and share custom mercenaries that can then be recruited by the player’s friends and fight alongside them in their campaign.

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