2015’s Upcoming Summer Doldrums

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For some reason I keep thinking each new year is going to be the year where enough good games come out during the summer. There have actually been a few summers where at least some decent, under-the-radar games come out. Sadly, 2015 doesn’t look like it’s going to be one of those years.

Recently I’ve said 2015 will actually be a pretty good year for big releases, particularly for the PS4 and Xbox One because it seems like great games will finally come that are actually meant for those systems. Even with the recent delays I still think that’s true. After May however you’re probably going to have to wait until fall for that to happen.

Basically, Batman: Arkham Knight is it. At least as far as anyone can really confirm right now.

Oh there are a lot of dates listed vaguely as “summer” or “quarter 3 2015” or even just “2015.” Spring is only just starting and we still have that whole season of games to get through, and we’ll probably get more solid release dates between now and the end of May, whether that means confirmations or delays. I feel skeptical about them though, because some seem to be big projects — the kind that usually suffer the delays Batman did.

A huge one is No Man’s Sky. No public release date has ever been announced for it, and because so many in its target PS4 audience have never seen a procedural space simulator like it, they’re extremely skeptical the game will even deliver what Hello Games is promising. The face of the game — Sean Murray, said at E3 2014 that he would be disappointed if another E3 went by and the game wasn’t out yet. More recently it’s let slip that Hello Games actually does have an internal “confirmed” date they just haven’t decided to announce yet. I don’t know how much of that take with varying amounts of salt. I think NMS is going to at least make it out in 2015 on the PS4.

Supposedly the closest thing NMS has to competition will arrive on Xbox One this summer — the console version of Elite: Dangerous. I also wouldn’t be surprised if Frontier Developments delayed it. I don’t know. I would just be surprised if they managed to flip such a big PC game over to Xbox so quickly unless Frontier has already been working on it for a long time without telling anyone. I’m still most interested in how console audiences will react to both it and NMS.

Other than that, the last “big” game I see actually making its summer window is Yoshi’s Wooly World. I guess summer is the best place for a game like that which would otherwise get trampled in the fall or even Spring. A few indie games might drop around this time too (outside NMS), but indie release dates are the most vague and erratic of all.

The summer doldrums is why  Microsoft used to do its “Summer of Arcade” on Xbox 360. Will we get such a season on today’s consoles or PC in 2015?

Just this spring a few indie games have gotten final release dates just a month out. That’s how unpredictable they are. I already did a post listing the indie games I’m still excited for that got delayed into 2015. I guess some of those could pop up out of nowhere during the summer. Hyper Light Drifter is one possibility. Releases.com lists Yatagarasu in that time frame but I don’t think that’s happening.

The most dependable indie releases are probably going to be the subsequent episodes of Life is Strange. They’ve been pretty consistent so far right?

So… unless all these release dates are on the dot I guess we’re gonna be subsisting on our backlogs (and Batman) this summer until Metal Gear Solid V starts off September.

BULLETS:

  • I’m gonna level with you: the real reason I rambled out this blog post is because over the past couple days I got caught up reading the Alternate History Wiki. It started when I discovered some DeviantArt accounts by people who make elaborate and beautiful maps displaying the historical fantasies the people make on that site. It’s insane. Someone will look at a single, seemingly minor point in history, change it slightly, and open a discussion with a bunch of history nerds who speculate the butterfly effects during the following centuries. Then some people will write detailed, book-like “timeline” stories about them. The History Channel should make a series about this whenever it decides to stop doing Ancient Aliens.
    • An alternate history map depicting an Ainu trading empire across the Pacific Rim. http://t.co/HFDOiFGeHM
    • What if the Australian Yam mutated thousands of years ago into a founder crop, transforming the Morray Valley into an additional cradle of civilization and allowing the Aborigines to establish an advanced civilization by the time Europeans get there? http://t.co/Wb5HHkvyJB
    • What if ancient Egypt found more gold to strengthen it against the Persian and Macedonian empires? http://t.co/2uxzZXKhOs
    • What if Elizabeth I had been born a man? http://t.co/DAS5q5Mliz
    • What if the Guanzhang Massacre had been averted? http://t.co/CVjmBsvb8g
  • Some advice on the use of the word “that.” http://t.co/pp0Yyfcwz9
  • Some advice on writing shorter. http://t.co/QfNIyY6qUm
  • This is exactly why I was wary of OnLive. http://t.co/2bSH43Usin
  • The RE4HD project marches on. http://t.co/siZ9K8MvhJ
  • Some pretty amazing fantasy art. https://t.co/e5cZITtYK2
  • The helmet for the F-35 is the future, man. http://t.co/p9tsGty4In
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