Game Pass Round Up! (August 2021)

Game Pass for me this month has been more focused on specific games that I knew were coming or wanted to spend more time playing from July and thanks to a regular event for one of them I’ve been able to spend much more time than I expected thanks to the social aspects of it. Can you believe I’m talking about Microsoft Flight Simulator (MFS) here? ๐Ÿ™‚

After some teething troubles getting a group together for multiplayer (not as simple as it could be) it’s been fun to catch up with a few of the guys in MFS and take our planes out for a flight around Australia which have become almost mini tours as everyone shares stories about their own little corner of the country. The switch from shooter mayhem to chill flights seems to have worked even if it’s a digital approximation of reality. Still… there’s a part of me that wishes I could attach a machine gun to my plane and go all Crimson Skies on everyone but the majority of these planes tend to crash if you push them too hard my chances of succeeding are unlikely. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I was initially planning on spending a lot of time on Art of Rally but a launch issue that required a console reboot was a bit of an inconvenience. It’s been patched now and I can now jump in easily and it reminds me a lot of Neo Geo era arcade racers like Neo Drift Out with its angled top down perspective. When it comes to rally games I normally think of cars driving through dirt so brown is a dominant colour but here it is anything but that and describing the game as vibrant is an understatement. A very pretty game with its own take on driving.

The other game I’ve been playing a lot is Hades and I’m having a smashingly good time. The game play loop on this roguelike ticks all of the right boxes for me in terms of controls, progression and variety. Best of all I can happily play it in small doses and even then the rewards still make me feel that I’m moving towards my end goal. I’ve already shared my thoughts on the game and that still stands… it’s brilliant.

So… what’s for next month? It’s got to be Psychonauts 2 – I’ve avoided plenty of reviews and spoilers so far and think it’s time to see for myself what the game is like. I also need to spend more time with The Ascent which has a cyberpunk aesthetic that stands out as being one of the best seen in years and the game has received plenty of post launch support to smooth out it’s rough edges so this is as good a time as any to play more. It’s scary to think that Myst has been released yet again and though it may not have the same impact like it did when ushering in the CD-ROM era I might have to load it up to see what the latest generation brings to this iconic adventure. ๐Ÿ™‚

All games mentioned are available now on Xbox Game Pass.

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