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Backlog: The Embiggening – July, 2024

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By Nelson Schneider - 06/29/24 at 03:36 PM CT

Welcome back to another look into the near future! As July rolls in, most of the MJ Crew is on vacation… except for me, because I never take vacations, since my life is just one long Summer Break as it is. We’re smack in the middle of the Summer Games Drought, and while there might appear to be a lot of games for me to sift through and condemn for your delight, dear reader, that appearance is only due to the ongoing scourge of ports. The Industrial Gaming big-wigs are quite literally showering us with used water (a.k.a., piss) and telling us to enjoy it.

We’ve got a light shovel-load coming in July, since not even shovelware publishers want to release games during the drought… which is so counter-intuitive and ignorant of basic economics, it’s hard to know where to start with it… anyway… We’ve got all three shovel-ready categories represented in July, with a port of a Licensed ‘One Piece’ game and a port of a Licensed ‘Agatha Christi’ game in the Licensed Swill category. In the 2Cazul category, there’s a spin-off of Sega’s Fighting… series?.. ‘Demon Slayer’ that takes the form of a Party game. Then, of course, EA has an Annualized Sports title dealing with College Football, for the mindless, unthinking audience of NPCs who buys those every year.

And now we come to the downpour of “used water” I mentioned in the intro: Ports, Remakes, Remasters, Compilations, and other rehashes of old games being pushed on a new audience. If you are a Nintendo-exclusive fanboy, you might think that Summer is amazing and there is no drought, as the Switch is getting a baker’s dozen ports dumped on it in July: “Wingspan,” “Exophobia,” “Tokyo Xanadu,” “Pocket Bravery,” “Hot Lap Racing,” “Chants of Sennaar,” “Captain Velvet Meteor,” “Super Alloy Ranger,” “Battle of Rebels,” “Colossal Cave,” “The Oregon Trail,” “ITORAH,” and the “Bitmap Bureau Collection,” are all hitting Nintendo’s aging hybrid, with the latter 5 also hitting other current-Gen platforms. Not to be left out, Sony is also rolling around in a big pile of ports for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5, including “White Day 2,” “Blacksad,” “My Time at Sandrock,” “Sunnyside,” and “Seed of Life,” with that last one also coming to Xbox.

So, is there any new water splashing down on us from on high without the acrid stink of uric acid ? Yes!

Is any of it exclusive, to justify selling systems? No!

Is any of it worth considering a purchase? …Highly unlikely! Out of the whopping FOUR new multi-platform releases coming in July, “B-Project Ryusei Fantasia” is an incredibly cringey-looking Visual Novel. “Flintlock: The Siege of Dawn” is yet another unnecessary and detestable Soulslike from a Eurojank studio and publisher whose previous games have all been flops. “The Legend of Heroes: Trails Through Daybreak” is yet another sequel in the mindnumbing Falcom/Nippon Ichi collaboration RPG series. Lastly, there’s “U-four-ia: The Saga 2,” the completely unexpected sequel to an incredibly rare and incredibly weird end-of-life NES release that might motivate me to emulate the original in order to see if this new one might be worth a shot.

Ugh, what a giant pile of crap… again. I guess I should be used to it by now. The only title I’d even consider feeding to my Backlog from July’s release schedule is “U-four-ia: The Saga 2,” and only because I still remember reading about the original in the pages of Nintendo Power Magazine and wanting to play it, but finding that the cartridge was as hard to come by as “Little Samson” and “Dragon Warrior 3.”

Backlog Embiggened: +1

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