I went to PAX East in Boston and while there were over 20,000 people there to interact with HUNDREDS of new games that are coming out soon, I was able to talk to several developers about their games and even try them out! Here are my top 3 favorite games from PAX and ones you should keep on your radar:
EMILY IS AWAY TOO:
DEVELOPER: Kyle Seeley (Indie Developer)
RELEASE DATE: May 2017
PLATFORM(S): MAC, PC, LINUX
DESCRIPTION: "An interactive story set in an old instant messenger. Message both Emily and Evelyn as you determine the outcome of your senior year. Extend the story past the chat window with YouTube links, Facebook profiles and file transfers. And most importantly, change your text color to lime green so everyone knows you're the coolest kid in school."
WHY IT STOOD OUT TO ME: I was able to actually talk to the game's developer, who made the game, and its prequel, on his own, and this is completely a passion project for him. Its prequel is completely free and is different than most games you'll play because it focuses on the story behind its gameplay.
While the prequel focused on aging your character from the late '90s to the early 2000s, the sequel focuses on the mid-2000s and focuses its gameplay on technology from that time.
GET IT IF YOU LIKE: AIM, the 2000s, Stories in Gaming
THE AMERICAN DREAM:
DEVELOPER: Samurai Punk Studios
RELEASE DATE: Q3 2017
PLATFORM(S): Virtual Reality Devices (Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR)
DESCRIPTION: "Look down the barrel of a future where all your everyday needs are solved with guns. Samurai Punk presents, a satirical virtual reality trip through a 1950’s world’s fair where you learn to live your life with guns. With weapons ranging from pistols to rifles and shotguns, you’ll learn how guns will take care of all your needs! Bite the bullet and come on down, you’re guaranteed to have a blast every time at The American Dream!"
WHY IT STOOD OUT TO ME: This was actually my very first virtual reality (VR) game and it was so surreal! Instead of having hands, you have guns for hands and have to navigate through life by shooting things instead of holding them. It has a 1950s-vibe throughout the demo I played and its cool to think about how life back then would have changed with guns.
The funny thing is that the game is actually developed by Australians and Canadians so it will be interesting to see what commentary they provide on guns in America and the 1950s in a video game experience.
GET IT IF YOU LIKE: Virtual Reality, Job Simulator, Fallout 4, the 1950s
DEVELOPER: TinyBuild Studios
RELEASE DATE: Summer 2017
DESCRIPTION: “Hello Neighbor is a Stealth Horror Game about sneaking into your neighbor's house and figuring out what he's hiding in the basement. Play against an advanced AI that learns from your actions.”
WHY IT STOOD OUT TO ME: I've seen A LOT of YouTubers play this and it's actually pretty entertaining to see that every time you "revive" the AI changes his house up based on how you play.
I got to play this with headphones on and it's extremely nerve-wracking to know there is a looming threat, but also how to use your problem-solving skills to figure out what to do. While I have no clue why I'm going into the neighbor's house, I love every minute of it!
GET IT IF YOU LIKE: Dark Souls, Puzzle-Based Games, Outlast, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard