Re-Spawn: This Week’s Video Game News

re-spawn cover
Image by Dave Banks

Welcome back to the latest edition of Re-Spawn where GeekMoms and GeekDads share video gaming news that caught our eye in the last week and let you know what we’ve played recently.

  • Niantic announced Pokémon Go Fest this week. With the first anniversary of Pokémon Go just around the corner, Niantic is doing in-game and real world events to celebrate with players. Details are extremely slim right now on what exactly will happen at the real world events. For now, we know the first event will be in Chicago on July 22nd at Grant Park. Tickets will be available for purchase starting at 10:00 am PDT on June 19th. You can purchase tickets on PokemonGoLive.com/Fest. Events across Europe will be announced later. In-game, players can enjoy the new Solstice Event. It will run from 06/13 – 06/20 and players will enjoy buffed encounter rates on fire and ice types of Pokémon. There will also be increased XP and a sale on Lucky Eggs.
  • Electronic Arts:
    • EA is revealing new gameplay later today (06/11) for Anthem. Sadly, this article will have gone to editing before the reveal, but here is the teaser trailer to tide you over. The video shows us a post-apocalyptic world where people have to wear armored suits and live behind walls to survive the environment. The graphics look great, hoping the gameplay videos reveal the mechanics are as nice.
    • A New Way Out is a prison break and then survive game recently announced. Two men begrudgingly work together to escape prison and then try to avoid the authorities and complete missions (read: survive). With strong adult themes, please watch the following with caution.
    • And though this isn’t a new announcement, I’m so dang excited for Star Wars: Battlefront II that I’m just going to park this fun gem of a video GeekDad Dave Banks sent me this week. Watch it as many times as you want, I won’t judge.
  • AtGames is releasing several retro console options this September.
    • The Atari Flashback 8 Classic Game Console will come in two versions. Gold will come with 120 built-in classic games including Pitfall!, Space Invaders, Kaboom! (a personal favorite of mine), and Centipede. It will come with two wireless 2.4ghz controllers that look like the original joystick controllers and the console will have two ports to use legacy wired controllers. The standard system comes with 105 games and two wired controllers.

      Box art for Atari and Sega Genesis Classic Consoles
      Atari and Sega Genesis Classic Console Options
    • The Atari Flashback Portable Game Player comes with 70 pre-loaded games including Pac-Man, Dig Dug, Pitfall!, and Frogger. It has an SD card slot if you want to load your own games. You can play on the go or connect it to your television with an optional cable.
    • The Sega Genesis Flashback and Sega Genesis Classic Game Console are, similar to the Atari ones mentioned before, two versions of the same console. The Flashback is made to look like the original Sega Genesis and comes with 85 pre-loaded games including the Sonic series, Mortal Kombat, and Shining Force. It will come with two wireless 2.4ghz controllers that look like the original Genesis controllers and this console also has two ports that will work with legacy controllers. The standard system comes with 81 built-in games and two wired controllers.

      Atari and Sega Handheld Classic Games
      Atari and Sega Handheld Classic Games
    • The Ultimate Portable Game Player is AtGames’ take on a portable Sega Genesis. It will include many of the same pre-loaded games and can also be connected to a television with an optional cable.
  • Microsoft Xbox’s latest:
    • Current Games with Gold are Speedrunners (06/01 – 06/30),  Phantom Dust Multiplayer Content Pack (06/01 – 06/30), and Assassin’s Creed III (06/01 – 06/15).
    • You can check out the games on sale right now on the Deals With Gold page.
  • Nintendo’s latest:
    • You can always view current and upcoming releases on the Nintendo Games Store page.
    • Universal Studios Japan had a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Super Nintendo World. The project is estimated to cost more than 60B Yen and they expect to be open in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. According to the press release on the Nintendo website, the hope is that attendees will feel like they are in the game when they visit the theme park.
    • New Pokémon games were announced at Pokémon Direct, as well as the announcement that Pokémon will be available on Switch with Pokkén Tournament DX. More details on the announcements can be found in the press release.
  • Playstation’s latest:
    • The Limited Edition Gold Playstation 4 System is now available for $249.99. It is smaller and lighter than previous versions and comes with a 1TB hard drive already onboard. Available now at major retailers.
    • The Drop on the Playstation blog is the place for a detailed list of all the games coming out for Playstation platforms in the next week. Each game in the list has a brief synopsis.
  • STEAM has lots of one-day or weekend sales and you should bookmark their News front page so you can keep up on them. Here is a link to the Specials section of the STEAM store as well.
    • The new releases page highlights items that have recently become available on STEAM.
    • Then the upcoming releases page shows you a list of games coming as far as the eye can see. Well, as far as 30 pages of listing can show you, I guess.
    • RimWorld, despite the unfortunate name, is getting incredibly high rankings for a game still considered in “early release.” It was created from a Kickstarter campaign several years ago but they have left it marked unfinished because they are still developing some content to fulfill the original scope. This is a SIM-driven game with a sci-fi spin. The developers say they were influenced by Dwarf Fortress and Firefly when designing the game and it really does look like a fun take on the SIM genre.
    • Another game getting rave reviews from the STEAM community is Inside. It came out just about a year ago but is still oh so playable. This game has some mature themes, so proceed with due caution. You play as a young boy who finds himself alone and on the run. In this 2D platform puzzle game, you will solve puzzles and unravel mysteries while trying to stay alive and stay hidden. The dark, creepy tone to the graphics pairs impeccably well with the music and sound effects. Creepy, yes, that is the right word for this one.

GeekMoms and GeekDads often write about video games and this week Kelly Knox shares the new Superhero building feature in Roblox and has prize packs to give away! Check it out with “‘Roblox’ Gets in the Superhero Spirit With ‘Roblox Heroes.'”

Want to see some of us in the wild? You can catch several of the GeekMom/GeekDad writers at ReplayFX in Pittsburgh this July. We will be wandering around with our kids enjoying all the games we can handle. If arcade and console game are your thing, you may want to check the event out. My son and I will be at the event on Saturday, July 29th.


Below are the video games some of the GeekMom and GeekDad crew have been playing lately.

  • Dr. Gerry Tolbert:
    • Overwatch and Heroes of the Storm (PC)
    • Jaipur, Pandemic, Onitama, and Colt Express (iOS)
  • Will James: Star Wars: Force Arena, Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes, and Transformers: Forged to Fight (iOS)
  • Anthony Karcz: Hearthstone, Skullgirls, and Marvel Puzzle Quest (iOS)
  • Mike LeSauvage:
    • Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Has-Been Heroes (Nintendo Switch)
    • Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, and Star Realms (PC)
  • Z.:
    • ARMS (Switch)
    • Mass Effect: Andromeda (PS4)
    • Ever Oasis (3DS)
  • Ryan Hiller: Splitter Critters (iOS)
  • Michael Harrison: Overwatch (PC)
  • Samantha Fisher:
    • Starcrawlers and Overwatch (PC)
  • Sophie Brown:
    • LEGO Lord of the Rings (PS3)
    • 100 Balls and Word Cookies (iOS)
  • Kelly Knox:
    • ARMS (Switch)
    • Star Wars: Battlefront (Xbox One)

Have you played any new games this week? Send me a comment or hit me up on Twitter (@samanthafisher) to let me know what you’ve been playing.

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