Sure, this June might not be hosting any blockbuster shooters, but frankly, that’s a good thing. That big bullet hole in the summer schedule has been filled with a bunch of excellent-sounding games from just about every other genre you can think of. No matter what kind of gamer you are, there’s something out there just for you – but if you enjoy niche Japanese games, the month is a real embarrassment of delights. Here are some of the highlights I’ve picked out that you should keep an eye on:
June 3: Dangerous Golf (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
It’s golf. It’s dangerous – at least for anybody in your general vicinity. This game isn’t so much about getting the ball in the hole as about creating mass chaos along the way. Your courses are places like a castle and the Australian outback. It’s sort of like Carmageddon for putters. Rad.
June 6: Edge of Nowhere (Oculus Rift)
Are you a VR early adopter? Insomniac Games has a treat for you. Venture into the harsh Antarctic wilderness while looking for your lost fiancé. Think that sounds like just another VR exploration game? Wait until the Lovcraftian horrors start showing up.
June 7: Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book (PS4, Vita)
I will never stop encouraging people to try out the Atelier series, RPGs featuring the adventures of young (usually female) alchemists trying to make their way in the world. Atelier Sophie starts a new chapter in the series, so it’s a great time to jump in if you enjoy turn-based combat, crafting, and adorable Japanese characters.
June 7: Mirror’s Edge Catalyst (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
The first Mirror’s Edge game had a promising concept and a fascinating, stylish world, but it floundered a bit in execution. I can’t wait to see what Dice has learned since 2008, especially since we’ll get to know more about protagonist Faith.
June 12: Kirby: Planet Robobot (3DS)
Spring-loaded plumber, whatever. Everybody knows that the most badass Nintendo hero is that pink blob of endless hunger, Kirby. In this game, he not only gets his signature copy abilities, he gets to turn into Mecha-Kirby. As if the original wasn’t terrifying enough!
June 21(?): No Man’s Sky (PS4, PC)
This highly ambitious title aims to give us an infinite universe to explore, conquer, and catalog. I don’t know how long the thrill of No Man’s Sky will last, but I think it’ll be pretty darn fun to find out. There are rumors it could be delayed, but until they’re official, I’ll keep looking forward to it in June.
June 24: Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE (Wii U)
If ever there were a game that could be described as “Japan as F*ck,” this is it. This mashup of the Persona and Fire Emblem series is actually looking more and more like its own thing, as a crew of Japanese pop idols discover the ability fight evil by drawing on the spirits of fantasy Medieval warriors. It’s being localized by our friends at Atlus, so it should be a good time.
June 28: Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Everything short of your toaster)
Yep, it’s time for another Lego game! These little beauties are always a good time, and this one promises some improved combat and some original stories that bridge the gap between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens . The character backstories alone should make this worth the purchase for Star Wars fans – and never fear, our Lego buddies will be voiced by the actual film actors.
June 28: Zero Time Dilemma (Vita, 3DS)
The Zero Escape series helped spawn the real life “Escape Room” trend. This is the third and final entry in the series, which stars a group of strangers who are locked together in a deadly situation. They’ll have to solve puzzles to escape and figure out who to trust in order to survive. Everybody’s got a secret, and the games are both entertaining and intense. You can check out its predecessors Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors and Virtue’s Last Reward if you want to learn what it’s all about.
This is only a sampling of the great games coming out in June, with other notable titles including Senran Kagura Shinovi Versus , Odin Sphere Leifthrasir , Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Daughter , Mighty No. 9 , 7 Days to Die , and Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness . What are you planning to pick up? Let us know in the comments!