Malindy Hetfeld has been playing Tetris Effect, which transforms the classic puzzle game into a psychedelic art space experience. She compares to a meditation app, which seems very apt. I'm looking forward to trying this out—last time I played Tetris it was at a game exhibit where it was hooked up to multiple controllers, and only one button worked on each. You had to collaborate with other players, shouting at each other about where to place each block. It was fun but stressful, and this seems like a more calming experience.
Andy Kelly has tested out Dry Drowning, a visual novel about a detective in a dystopian future, which comes out next month. It looks very Blade Runner but the story is about hunting a serial killer who is committing mythology-themed murders—all the cool killers have a theme. I dunno if I have it in me to spend that much time with another deadbeat detective. I struggled to get through The Nice Guys, and that's a two-hour movie not a 20-hour visual novel.
James Davenport has been playing Wolfenstein Youngblood. Some of the levels were made by Arkane, of Dishonored and Prey fame, and I'm super curious about what they've done with 1980s Nazi Paris. Turning Wolfenstein into a hitpoint-bar level-grind sounds less like my cup of tea. That's what I play Borderlands for.
Joanna Nelius's latest dive into The Sims 4 involved exploring its new character creator, which lets you generate a personality via questionnaire (kind of like the modded version of Bloodlines). In Joanna's case it came up with an unemployed man whose aim was to be hated by everyone and a writer who wants to be rich. What surprised me about this story is that her writer Sim ended up living in the shadow of a volcano that spits out rocks you can mine. It's a very different game to the one I used to play.
Steven Messner is still playing Final Fantasy 14 and its well-regarded Shadowbringers expansion. He's managed to rope James into playing it now too, and they swear it really is one of the best MMOs around even if it is slow to get going. It's become the kind of game I enjoy reading about but will probably never play, like EVE Online.
I've been playing Eisenhorn: Xenos, inspired by the news the Warhammer 40,000 novels this game was based on are being turned into a TV show. The books are pretty good and I've got high hopes for the show, but the game's pretty rough. Every sin of the third-person action game's here—swingy camera, poorly placed checkpoints, sub-Arkham combat, quick-time events, awkward minigames—and yet it's not all bad. It's an interestingly bottom-up view of the setting from the viewpoint of characters who aren't space marines, and Mark Strong is well-cast as Inquisitor Eisenhorn. It'd be great if he got to be the TV version of the character.