On an average day about a dozen new games are released on Steam. And while we think that's a good thing, it can be understandably hard to keep up with. Potentially exciting gems are sure to be lost in the deluge of new things to play unless you sort through every single game that is released on Steam. So that’s exactly what we’ve done. If nothing catches your fancy this week, we've gathered the best PC games you can play right now and a running list of the 2023 games that are launching this year.
My Friendly Neighborhood
Release: July 18
Developer: John Szymanski, Evan Szymanski
Horror games about kids entertainment are their own kind of terrifying: look at Five Night's At Freddy's and Poppy Playtime. My Friendly Neighborhood is the latest in this tradition, set in the backrooms of a TV studio dedicated to a once-popular Saturday morning variety show for kids, hosted by puppets. The show fell out of favour and the studio sat dormant for years, until one night it abruptly returned to TV, except with a bizarre 'n' sordid twist on the formula. By now you've probably guessed that these puppets are no longer cute and funny, but instead cruel, evil, violent, and prone to eating one another. Naturally it's your job to go in there and figure out what's going on, but don't worry, you'll have some weird weaponry at your disposal. This is getting an "overwhelmingly positive" response on Steam, so if you're after a new horror game—do it.
Release: July 19
Developer: Kruger & Flint Productions
It's probably more expedient to create a boomer shooter checklist rather than write an old fashioned paragraph. Is Hellbound hellish or sci-fi inspired? Hellish, with a hint of horror. Is the movement inspired by Doom, Duke or Quake? It looks like a Quake engine affair, and moves at the same pace. Is there a shotgun? Yes. Can you dual-wield? Yes. I hope none of this sounds dismissive: Hellbound looks cool, but it also has dozens, nay hundreds, of contemporaries to contend with. If you've already played Dusk and all the classics Hellbound references, well, maybe give this a shot.
Coreborn: Nations of the Ultracore
Release: July 18
Here's an Early Access online survival game about reclaiming a sprawling land from "Sorgoth the Devourer", whose invasion is so undesirable that the land's six endlessly bickering kingdoms have united to fight it. It's a light fantasy affair with a focus on PvE combat, resource pillaging, and the bolstering of your own township via the usual building and survival loops. This Early Access build has one region to explore, plus the game's social hub, but more regions and nations will be added during the next one-to-two years. It's quite a pretty looking game, with a little whiff of Breath of the Wild to the art direction. That said, this Early Access period is only for the extreme enthusiast, because once Coreborn has launched into 1.0 it'll be free-to-play whereas right now, it'll cost you.
Demon Lord Reincarnation
Release: July 19
Developer: Graverobber Foundation
This old school, grid-based dungeon crawler has a gorgeously lo-fi monochromatic art style. If Legend of Grimrock was made by a dungeon synth purveyor, it would look exactly like Demon Lord Reincarnation. Looks aside, this looks to be a fairly conventional first-person crawler: your party of four can be selected from over 20 character types, combat is turn-based, and the maps are labyrinthine.
Frank and Drake
Release: July 21
Developer: Appnormals Team
Here's a narrative driven adventure game starring two roommates on very different schedules: Frank works by day, Drake by night, and as a result they don't have any verbal contact at all. Nevertheless they are both drawn towards a bizarre conspiracy which they must collaborate on the unearthing of. This broad synopsis doesn't really capture the weird, dreamlike atmosphere of Frank and Drake, nor the appeal of its rotoscoped art style. Expect branching narratives, point and click-style puzzling, and some beautifully rendered urban environments with a touch of the uncanny.