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New Releases: Week of 2/19/17

/ Feb 19th, 2017 No Comments

Berserk and the Band of the Hawk

February is a month about love, but this week’s new releases are about anything but. From RTS chaos to brutal combat to classic action-RPG gameplay to post-college malaise, this week has a diverse offering of games.

This week’s new releases include Halo Wars 2, Berserk and the Band of the Hawk, Ys Origin, and Night in the Woods.

Halo Wars 2 – Xbox One, Windows – February 21

Taking place in 2559, Halo Wars 2 comes 28 years after the events of the first game and a brief period after Halo 5: Guardians. After being in cryostasis for decades and being declared lost, the crew of the UNSC Spirit of Fire awakens mysteriously above the Ark. While the war between the human and covenant may be over, the crew of the UNSC Spirit of Fire isn’t done fighting.

Captain Cutter and his crew must fight against humanity’s most formidable threat: The Banished. The Banished are a fierce and powerful Brute faction led by the terrifying warrior, Atriox. It is up to Cutter and crew to stop Atriox and the Banished.

Halo Wars 2 allows players to control two factions the United Nations Space Command and the Banished. Each faction will have its own leader units that offer different tactical strengths. The main campaign features thirteen missions and supports co-op.

Halo Wars 2

Halo Wars 2.

To balance out the gameplay, Halo Wars 2 features a trinity, which means ground vehicles are effective against infantry, infantry is effective against aircrafts, and aircraft beat out ground vehicles.

The game also has a heavy multiplayer component with many different modes playable online with up to six players: Skirmish, Strongholds, Domination, Deathmatch, and Blitz. Blitz is a new addition to the game with a new approach to RTS gameplay.

Blitz combines elements from collectible card games with classic RTS gameplay. Players will construct decks and use those cards to deploy units. Cards can be earned from playing the campaign or daily challenges.

Berserk and the Band of the Hawk – PS4, PS Vita, PC – February 21

In a time of chaos and unrest, the Midland Kingdom and the Chuder Empire have been at war for over a hundred years. During the time of war, many mercenaries arose to gain money and glory. One lone mercenary, Guts, had the temerity to fight by himself. After gaining the attention of the mercenary group, the Band of the Hawk, he is forced to fight alongside them.

Acknowledging his weakness, Guts strives to prove his strength as a member of the Band of the Hawk, and helps distinguish the group as top notch mercenaries. This attracts the favor from the King of Midland, and now the Band of the Hawk fights under the Midland banner proving them to be tremendous on the battlefield.

After ending the war between Midland and Chuder, an unfortunate set of events occur that result in a tragic fate for Guts and his close comrade Casca. Following the appearance of the monstrous Apostles and the betrayal of the Band of the Hawk leader, Griffith, Guts sets out on a path of revenge clad in black armor and armed with the giant sword, Dragon Slayer.

Berserk and the Band of the Hawk

Berserk and the Band of the Hawk.

Berserk and the Band of the Hawk follows the storyline of the manga and movie trilogy from “The Golden Age” arc to “The Hawk of the Millennium” arc. The game blends the hack-n-slash formula of the Warrior series with the dark atmosphere of the manga/anime allowing for new moves to be performed like the “Slash” and “Smash” actions. Much like the manga and anime, the game features gruesome actions and plenty of gore.

Players will be able to select from a diverse group of characters from the series to enjoy a variety of fighting styles. Certain characters have the ability to transform and become powerful new forms allowing for them to kill enemies with a single blow. Besides the game’s rich story mode, players perform various missions and an endless fight in the Eclipse dimension in the Endless eclipse mode.

Ys Origin – PS4 – February 21

Taking place 700 years before the first Ys game, Ys Origin is an easy jumping on point for new fans. After a demonic invasion, the twin Goddesses used magic to bring the inhabitants of Ys into the sky. Not deterred by this event, the demons work to build the Devil’s Tower to reach the new human bastion and finish what they started. You’ll play as Yunica, a mighty warrior or Hugo, a cunning sorcerer to invade the Devil’s Tower, discover its secrets, and protect humanity.

Ys Origin

Ys Origin.

Ys Origins will get new features and enhancements in its PlayStation 4 port. The visuals and effects have been optimized; as well an overhaul has been done to the UI and menus to give a better visual experience. The game will include both English and Japanese subtitles, as well as French, Italian, German, and Spanish languages. After 10 years a PC port, Ys Origins is finally coming to console.

The PS Vita version of Ys Origin will launch later in May.

Night in the Woods – PS4, PC – February 21

Times are tough for both Mae Borowski and her old mining town of Possum Springs. After dropping out of college, Mae returns to Possum Springs hoping to resume her life as a slacker and reconnect with old friends. Things are different though, Possum Springs changed after the coal mines closed and her friends have grown up. As the season changes, Mae discovers strange happenings going on in the woods near Possum Springs.

Night in the Woods

Night in the Woods.

Night in the Woods is an adventure game allowing players to explore the sleepy mining town of Possum Springs and learn about its citizens. Mae will reconnect with her old friends and her hometown. You’ll get the chance to jump between buildings, feed rats, and smash light bulbs behind the local convenience store. It is up to you how Mae re-familiarizes herself with Possum Springs and what you end up seeing.

Kalvin Martinez

Kalvin Martinez

Senior Editor at Gaming Illustrated
Kalvin Martinez studied Creative Writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He writes reviews, prose and filthy limericks. While he is Orange County born, he now resides in Portland, OR. He is still wondering what it would be like to work at a real police department. Follow Kalvin on Twitter @freepartysubs
Kalvin Martinez

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