It’s a brand new year, ladies and gentlemen, so if you have a little bit of money left over from the silly season, here’s what you could be spending it on.

It’s a pretty slow start to the month, but things do gear up on Wednesday January 18 when Gravity Rush 2 crash-lands onto PS4. It’s the sequel to the PS Vita original that has you returning to a world where the laws of gravity are yours to bend or break as you see fit.

A few days later on Saturday January 21, 3DS fans score an RPG to sink their teeth into in the form of Dragon Quest VIII: Journey Of The Cursed King – filled with magic, betrayal and people transformed into plants.

Meanwhile, Tuesday January 24 serves up three wildly varied choices. For Disney fans, there’s Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue (PS4), the last of the collection releases before we hopefully see Kingdom Hearts III, while anybody looking to live life as a Japanese gangster can do just that in Yakuza 0 (PS4). Finally, there’s the latest instalment of the Resident Evil series, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (PS4, XBO, PC), which hopes to substantially shake up the series’ formula.

Closing out the month is the full retail release of Hitman:The Complete First Season for PS4, XBO and PC. The disc will contain all previously released episodes and content. It sneaks its way onto store shelves on Tuesday January 31.


Steep (PS4, XBO, PC)

You have to hand itto Ubisoft – for an unexpected crack at the winter sports genre, Steep isan incredibly ambitious attempt. Thanks to a complete lack of linear progression, you can essentially play to your own whims. If you want to ski straight down a giant mountain, you can. If you’d rather swap out thoseskis for a bit of snowboarding action, you can do that too. If paragliding or wing suits aremore your bag… you get the idea.

This level of freedom acts as both blessing and curse. Roaming around the expansive world tackling one death-defying endeavor at a time can feel absolutely exhilarating. Yet at the same time you’ll also start to notice an underlying lack of direction due largely to the absence of a substantial in-game driving force. Making things worse, should you actually want to make it all the way through to the game’s conclusion, Steep’s focus on freedomis turned slightly on its head. That’s because in order to unlock later areas you will be all but forced into continuing to advance your player’s level by completing events you’d been steadily ignoring up until that point.

At its core, though, Steep looks to follow a similar trajectory to many of Ubisoft’s other original IPs. There is a strong and promising foundation at play here, but one that will hopefully be built upon and improved with a return trip to the slopes.


The Last Guardian (PS4)

When a game is in development for as long as The Last Guardian has been, a certain amount of pressure and anticipation is inevitable. Seven years have passed since the game’s original inception, so it’s somewhat of a wonder that Team Ico hasn’t buckled under the weight of its own expectations, and instead presented a truly touching tale of a boy and beast.

Most of your time will be spentescaping increasingly elaborate rooms by making use of the boy’s slender frame or Trico’s strength, but it’s all about the relationship that develops between the duo. The resulting connection is what truly makes The Last Guardian something special. An annoying camera and poor frame rates may frustrate, but don’t let that detract you from experiencing it for yourself.

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