Checking out three smaller releases that may have flown under the radar for you, we’re taking a look at new DLC for Moving Out, the arcade-inspired shooter Blastful and the colorful platformer Bang-on Balls: Chronicles.
Movers In Paradise DLC for Moving Out has been released
We reviewed Moving Out when it launched last year, and really enjoyed its new and unique take on local co-op mayhem. Carrying furniture around tricky corners together evokes memories of real-life moving challenges and not having to break a sweat while moving was a plus, but things got even more fun when you realized this was just a game and you could bend the rules waaaaaay past what you’d do and try in real life. Want to chuck that sofa over the railing rather than walk it down the stairs? Sure!
Team17 has just released more content for the game with the Movers in Paradise pack, which has been released at a low price point for all available systems that have the base game. As you’d expect, it features new levels to tackle (14 in total), alongside 10 arcade levels that all offer unique mini-challenges for you to tackle rather than the objective of completing an entire moving process. If you consider that the base game also had 10 arcade levels (in additional to 30 regular ones), that’s a good amount of content.
Rather than just offer more of the same, Movers in Paradise mixes things up by moving players away from the main game’s location of Packmore and towards an island that’s nearby. That might sound like an easy way to just tack on some new levels, but the island setting is put to good use with wider and more open areas to play in (as opposed to the multitude of houses in the base game) as well as some thematically inspired additions. These include shipwrecks, but also a quartet of new characters that includes a grab-happy crab called Clawdius. If you’re still playing Moving Out, then this new pack will certainly add to the game’s lasting appeal.
Blastful is out now for PlayStation and Nintendo Switch
When you picture arcade-inspired shoot ’em ups the mind usually goes to sidescrollers like R-Type, vertical scrollers like 1943 or even games like Space Invaders. Blastful, which was recently released by Playstige, follows a different path, with echoes of Asteroids. It’s out now for PlayStation 4 and the Nintendo Switch and the retro fan in us just had to take a look.
As far as sheer numbers go, Blastful features procedurally generated levels in which 10 different enemy types come at you from all directions and you have five different weapons to try and take them all down. The biggest novelty doesn’t lie in the simple retro-inspired visuals or the EDM soundtrack through, it’s in the fact that this is a shooter that requires you to navigate your ship all over the screen and fire in different directions as you turn towards your enemies. Sure, there are plenty of twin stick shooters that do the same and there are quite a few games like this on Steam, but on PlayStation there aren’t that many games that take the classic arcade sci-fi shooter formula and go with an Asteroids-like control scheme. If that’s the diversion you’re looking for, this is a basic but also very affordable way to fill that need and score an easy platinum trophy in the process.
Bang-on Balls: Chronicles heads to Early Access
You probably wouldn’t think it, but Bang-on Balls: Chronicles from Exit Plan Games is actually a 3D platformer in the same vein as Mario or Yooka-Laylee – but rather than an iconic and recognizable lead character it stars…. balls. It’s heading to Early Access this week and for a small indie production it certainly looks colorful, gorgeous, bright and full of balls.
In a way, that’s no surprise, because the team at Exit Plan Games has experience working on games that include The Witcher 3, Bulletstorm, Gear of War, Motorstorm and Cyberpunk 2077. This one’s quite different from that though, and it reminded us of CountyBalls Heroes, which we covered a while ago: plenty of silly humor, stereotypes and not taking yourself too seriously.
The gameplay itself looks like it’ll be much more akin to a typical 3D platformer though, only with less-than-traditional mechanics that include rolling your ball character around and knocking into others for combat. It also promises to have four-player cooperative play and plenty of stuff to destroy inside its large environments, which are partly based on real life history and locations.