Developed by ECC Games S.A. and published by 505 Games, Drift21 was first released as an early access title on the 7th of May 2020. This drifting racing simulation game got its final release on the 10th of June this year and it is available for PC via Steam. Tune your dream drift car, change parts, boost performance and challenge other players on Japan’s legendary EBISU circuits!
Drift21 offers a career mode, quick races, a sandbox mode and multiplayer, where you will race other players. In quick race you will select a prebuilt car, a track and the racing mode, where the options are free ride or challenges. There are plenty of different challenges on each track and you can test your drifting skills in them on different parts of the tracks. Sandbox mode allows you to build the best drift cars with no cash limit and all content unlocked. You can then test them in practice mode or in multiplayer sessions. Multiplayer offers you a server list where other players race and you can join in as a contender or a spectator. You can also join a private session by entering the server name and password, or you can be the one hosting a new server with options to choose from a public or private session, the maximum amount of players, the track and car plus some other finesses. When starting a career mode the game offers you a tutorial in which you will learn all the basics of playing Drift21. After that you can choose between twelve different cars on which you can spend your credits on, those being BMW’s E30, E36, E46, E92, Ford Mustang, Mazda’s RX-7, MX-5, RX-8, Nissan’s 180SX, Silvia, 350Z and a Subaru BRZ. Once you own a car of your choice, you can fine tune it with the remaining credits. There are more than 1800 replaceable components in your garage to tune your car with, from engines (R4, R6, V8 and Rotary) to suspensions and wheels. By changing specific parts you will make differences in your car’s performance, so you can design a vehicle that will completely suit your driving style. You can also visually tune your car by changing body kits, its colour or adding decals to it. As far as the gameplay goes, I would not put it in the simulation category, since it is more of an arcade drifting experience. It would also not be bad, if the game would feature more than twelve cars, and also more tracks, but with its 25€ price point we cannot expect it to feature an overwhelming amount of content. By adding the Steam Workshop feature to it, the community would be able to create additional content for the game at practically no additional costs. I recommend Drift21 when you are into building and customizing cars, and not completely serious drift racing.
Pretty Girls Klondike Solitaire
We have a classic card game of solitaire for all of you keen card players. Pretty Girls Klondike Solitaire was developed by ZOO Corporation and published by eastasiasoft. It was released on the 17th of June 2021 for consoles PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. If you raised an eyebrow expecting nudity, you will find none in this game, so calm your tits!
This Unity made card game offers similar solitaire gameplay as older Windows operating systems had with one additional gimmick. The game’s motto is “Playing a game of solitaire doesn’t have to feel lonely!” and that is supposed to be achieved by adding an anime girl on the screen. Initially, there are seven different girls you can play… with (?) and you can unlock three more, if you will collect all of the dresses that are available to complete for those seven girls. You complete a dress by winning a round of solitaire, which can be played on easy, normal or hard mode. Easy and normal are more or less the same, I have not noticed any particular difficulty peak, and the hard mode turns three cards from your deck instead of one. If you are having trouble in a session, there are three options you can get help with. Those are Hint, which highlights the cards that can be moved, Shuffle reshuffles all of the hidden and unused cards then re-deals them, and Expose that opens up one of the hidden cards and adds it to the board. And that is about it, I do not have anything more to say about Pretty Girls Klondike Solitaire. The game, on the other hand, has unlimited replay value as all solitaire games have. It is available for 5,99€ in the PlayStation store, with getting the PS4 and PS5 versions of the game with a single purchase. It also has an easily achievable platinum trophy, as you can get it by completing only twelve rounds of solitaire. Get it if you crave for some solitaire, or if you are into anime girls.
The TakeOver was already available before on Steam, it released on the 10th of November 2019. Developers Pelikan13 and publishers DANGEN Entertainment however brought it to PlayStation 4 consoles on the 20th of May 2021. The Takeover is a side-scrolling beat’em up inspired by 90’s classics such as Streets of Rage and Final Fight. Battle solo or alongside a friend in local co-op while listening to awesome tunes from Little V Mills, Richie Branson, James Ronald and industry legend Yuzo Koshiro!
In The TakeOver there are various game modes – besides the straightforward arcade one that lets you play through the game, there are also challenge and survival modes. There is also a practice segment, where you can put in the number of enemies and choose your difficulty to, you got it, practice your moves, combos and beat-downs. In the arcade mode you can choose between three characters – Connor, Ethan, and Megan, with the fourth one to be unlocked. Each has different characteristics, so you can choose the one that suits you best. Or just complete the game with all of them, because why would you not? The TakeOver can be played in easy, normal or hard mode, where hard mode always starts from the first stage with no continues available. The enemies are also faster and in higher numbers, so it offers a real challenge to all beat ‘em up maniacs out there. There are seven stages and more than twenty different locations you will fight through. Its art style is combined with 2D and 3D elements, and the graphics look more than satisfactory. Whereas the sounds of fighting could have been better, the soundtrack is simply outstanding. The game also offers a local two-player co-operative game mode where you and a friend can both play through the game simultaneously and collectively prevent the takeover. It is a must-buy if you are looking for a fun co-op experience or enjoyed old-school games like the Streets of Rage series.
Wonder Boy: Asha in Monster World
Wonder Boy: Asha in Monster World by STUDIOARTDINK and ININ Games got released on the 14th of May 2021. The adventures of Asha, the little warrior, begin! Together with her blue sidekick Pepelogoo, she will run through numerous stages and save the Monster World from the darkness.
Wonder Boy: Asha in Monster World is a remade version of Monster World IV, which was released way back in 1994. It serves us a brand new story of Asha, a warrior that embarks on an adventure to save the Monster World from its threats. It vastly improves on an old classic, but still remains intact with the feeling of nostalgia of older Monster World games. Its gameplay is simple, but the bad thing is, that it keeps the now outdated mechanics, when it could bring us something totally new and exciting. It is a simple action game that incorporates the classic move-set of Asha – sword swing, a defence shield which is not used too often, a magic hit that induces extra damage, and some aerial attacks which are useful when encountering more than one enemy at a time. These few moves are enough to wander through the whole adventure, which is approximately five hours long, but they do not offer anything new that we have not seen yet. There are modern games out there that bring us a lot more to the table, but Wonder Boy: Asha in Monster World offers a trip back to nostalgia land if you grew up with the series. Its physical version also features an English version of the Monster World IV game, and when playing it one after another, you can see that the developers stayed faithful to the original game. The biggest problem I had with the game is that there are no level checkpoints, as the game relies to manual saving, so I had to replay a lot of the content just because my lazy brains forgot to save the progress. Other than that there are no visible hiccups and the game plays smoothly from start to finish. As I have already said, if you are in need for some Wonder Boy nostalgia, you should get the game and play it through. But if you are looking for a new experience, there are a lot of modern platformers that do the job better than Wonder Boy: Asha in Monster World does.