Summer is definitely all about getting outside and enjoying the great outdoors, sunbathing at the beaches, and cool beverages at a hip downtown patio. But sometimes it rains, and when it does video games come to the rescue.
This summer the digital downloads are king, whether it’s on Xbox Live Arcade, the PlayStation Network, Steam or any other online game shop, this is the time to sharpen your points card and speed test your internet connection.
Starting with Microsoft’s Xbox 360, the Summer of Arcade is an annual event where they ramp up the digital-only offerings, showing some real promotional love to the independent developers who inject a lot of innovation into a Call of Duty obsessed industry.
Check out Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD: a mix of the best Tony Hawk elements for 1200 MS Points. Release date: July 18
Wreckateer: if you own a Kinect, do something with it. Wield a powerful Ballista as you destroy castles and forts using your body to aim. Bonus points for awesome takedowns. 800 MS points when it releases on July 25.
Dust An Elysian Tail: A beautiful art style and compelling action-rpg gameplay make ‘Dust’ a must watch-for title this summer. It can be yours on August 15 for 1200 MS Points.
More Summer of Arcade games will be released throughout the season and if you buy three games you get 400 free points.
Sony really really wants you to be a PlayStation Plus member, and they’ll be enticing you with quality free games and sizeable discounts all summer if you sign up.
The PSN summer sale ended on July 9, but different games will be getting discounts throughout the season.
Games that seriously deserve your attention include Journey (PS3 $14.99), a gorgeous adventure game where you play as a mysterious robed figure traveling through a massive desert environment searching for answers.
Also check out The Walking Dead, an episodic series based on the comic and television series of the same name. You have to work with fellow survivors to last through the zombie apocalypse. What makes this game stand out is the incredible story telling. Each episode is $4.99 on PSN
Not to be outdone, Nintendo is highlighting their digital offerings this summer, specifically the retro catalog during the ‘8-bit Summer’ promotion on the 3DS eShop.
Available now are: The Legend of Zelda ($4.99 3DS) originally released on the NES, this was the Zelda that started it all.
Hit the links with Mario and company in NES Open Tournament Golf ($4.99 3DS) the old school graphics will give strong nostalgic feelings of simpler times.
But if you’re in the mood for a fun puzzle game instead, check out Pushmo ($6.99 3DS) where you need to move blocks around in 3D with increasingly challenging levels.
And of course the smartphone stores including Apple’s App Store and Google’s Android Market are brimming with new content every week, most games are either free or .99 cents.
Despite Angry Birds already permeating the industry, the latest entry ‘Angry Birds Space’ (.99 cents) is definitely worth a look. It changes up the addictive formula in unique ways to keep it fresh.