Game Pass June 2022 Review – 18 titles and the future of the service

I’m Kinglink and it’s time for the Game Pass June 2022 Review.  

We have a massive 18 games this month to cover and I’m excited to start running down the list, as there are quite a few titles that are going to please fans.  The rules for this coverage are: I spend a night with each game, see how far I get, how they play, and if they’re worth checking out.  I’ll tell you who will enjoy them and what to expect.

With so many games, let’s just get started with some massive creatures.

Jurassic World Evolution 2.  One for the fans.

Jurassic World Evolution is a really solid game, where players take control of a series of parks across the five main islands, in the area of the original Jurassic Park movies.  The sequel instead goes with an extremely short campaign of five missions focused on teaching players about running the park.  We’re talking about five hours for the entire campaign and that’s too short. 

But Jurassic World Evolution 2 is more about running the park on your own, giving a sandbox and challenge mode similar to Planet Zoo.  It also is a love letter to the films, and tries to strike that nostalgic feeling once again, and does a good job.  Though a lot of the voices feel good, I do have to call out that awful Owen Grady character who is not even trying to be Chris Pratt.   Honestly, they should have changed his name. 

Pick this up if you like the first Jurassic World Evolution or Planet Zoo but just want more, but I think both the first game of this series and Planet Zoo, are the better titles.  Though if you want more dinosaurs this is a good choice and has more of the Planet Zoo feel than the first game. 

Her Story. An amazing and unique title. 

Her Story is easily one of my favorite stories in gaming.  It is unique, different, and interesting.  Players search a video database from the police that is a recording of an interview about a missing person named Simon.  The questions asked of the interviewee are missing so players have to piece together the story only from the interviewee’s responses.

To do this, players just have to figure out topics and words that the subject would use in answers and then piece the story together from the various clips in the game.  It sounds odd, and at first, this is a strange and frustrating experience, but before long, the story takes over and players will focus on the narrative and understanding what happened.

I am also going to say this is probably the only game that I constantly think about and daydream about.  There are a few pieces here that have just stuck with me to the point that I am astounded at the experience, here, and considering this is just one woman acting on a videotape and it’s made me think this much about it, Her Story is incredible. 

Pick this up if you want a solid story told uniquely.  If you remember Telling Lies from last year, I said it wasn’t as good as the previous game from Sam Barlow. W, well Her Story is that game, and I highly recommend it, this is easily one of my favorite titles.  I have a video on this game which I will link at the end of the video and possibly put up in a card here.  If I don’t forget. 

Umurangi Generation.  A first-person shooter, by that I mean photography.

Umurangi Generation talks about being a first-person photography game, and I immediately thought this could be like a stylish Mirror’s Edge where the players take pictures.  I overhyped myself.  Instead, Umurangi Generation is a puzzle game focused on taking pictures of different targets and then once all the different targets have been snapped, you exit a level by delivering a package.  That’s pretty much it. 

Umurangi Generation is a unique game based on that, but the photography angle is interesting but not that exciting.  There are ways to gimmick some of the photographs to make your life easier, but more importantly, the gameplay doesn’t feel part of the world.   There’s a story at the heart of the game and it’s a story that’s not told.   The gameplay itself is a bit too simplistic and where I’m normally the guy who revels in unique titles, this is one that I’m ambivalent about.   

Pick this up if you want something different.  This is a puzzle game, but I think Pupperazi did the photography angle better, and the levels here are so small you’ll be able to break through this game in two or three hours, at least I did.   Honestly, this is probably one I’d skip unless your interest is piqued. 

Little Witch in the Woods.  Great art, but that writing. 

Little Witch in the Woods is in Early Access or Game Preview and has some great art.  The characters are cute, the animations are good, and the gameplay works well with it.  You’re a cute little witch who gets lost in the woods and finds a house, from there you use your potion brewing powers to solve different tasks like removing some weeds, or healing people.  

The problem is when Little Witch decides to have a cutscene.  The writing in this game is awkward.  Sometimes the motivations feel a little too on the nose, but most of the time the writing feels like it’s from a different language and feels off, which is probably because it is.  This game was created by two people in South Korea.  But the translation into English has not helped it.  At least this is Early Access, so maybe a full retranslation may happen but I know a lot of people who adore this game and if that’s you, I’m glad. 

Pick this up if you like games that are so cute they’re sickeningly sweet.  This is a nice warm comfortable sweater of a game, though while I do like some of those, like Gilmore Girls, yes I am a fan of Stars Hollow, this one just doesn’t feel as good, and it’s those cutscenes that hold it back from being something I adore. 

Vampire Survivors.  Simple but addictive. 

Vampire Survivors looks like someone just knocked off Castlevania and did it quite badly, and at first, I wasn’t sure what was going on.  The attacks you’re seeing are automatic.  You can play this game one-handed because all the player will do is move the character around to avoid attacks and hit with their automatic attacks.   

But after 8 hours on that first day of playing it.  Yeah, there’s something really good here.  This is a highly addictive yet simple rogue-lite.  The goal is to stay alive as long as possible and kill enemies to rack up points, and hopefully experience levels, and gold.  After you die, you’ll use gold to unlock new characters and upgrades.  You also will unlock pieces of the game by beating challenges, and that’s pretty much it.  You just repeat it over and over.  This is a true rogue-lite where it’s just randomized gameplay rather than a story. 

Pick this up if you need something to play something simple but very interesting.  Or if you have between five minutes and eight hours.  I like this game a lot, but I also have trouble putting this one down.  I actually picked up the title on steam because it only goes for three dollars, and the developers easily deserve much more than that.  Do not miss out on this title, it’s worth a try.

Farming Simulator 22.  Another day on the farm.

Farming Simulator 22 has the player running a farm, and having to harvest, plow, and seed the fields over and over.  It’s a simple idea that works well with the simulation genre, and this is the tenth PC release for the series.  That being said, it’s kind of similar to what Farming Simulator 19 was and likely what Farming Simulator 25 will be.

As a game, it’s very laid back and chill, though I do hate the fact that if the player is letting the AI work, the work happens in real-time, even if the player sleeps for the day, or changes the clock speed.  The AI won’t work faster, so you just have to sit there and wait, or take over and do the same chore at about the same speed.   

This is also a game you will need to sit down with a wiki and learn because not everything is well explained in the game, even on some of the articles I’ve seen, it’s not always clear where to buy stuff from, a hint on that, it’s always the same store.

Pick this up if you want the laid-back life of a farmer.  This was interesting for a night, but I don’t want to take the time it would require to learn the entire game.  However, if I wanted to play something where I could just relax and play for multiple hours at my own pace, Farming Simulator 22 is perfect for that. 

Floppy Knights. A card-based take on the turn-based tactics genre.

Floppy Knights is a game where the main character collects disks and uses them to summon characters, move them, and attack enemies with them.   Those disks act like cards, but it allows players to build decks and use them to tactically take out enemies.  This game reminds me a lot of Fire Emblem or Advance Wars but with far more focus on deck building. 

There are a lot of different cards and levels and there’s a decent amount of strategies required rather than just overpowering the enemy.  Sometimes you’ll get bad deals, but most of the time, the map and bonus challenges are quite reasonable, and it’s an engaging idea.  However, it is just another card game.  I remember when actual soft floppy disks were a thing, and there’s not much here to directly relate to that. 

Pick this up if you like tactical games, this one is a great example and the addition of deck building and organization makes the game far more interesting than I expected.  The story is good as well, though for me I was more focused on optimizing my deck and chasing every last objective.   Also, this is Disk with a K, since we’re going way back to the floppy age.

Hardspace: Shipbreaker.  Working on a salvage gang and making millions.

Hardspace: Shipbreaker gives players puzzle boxes in the shape of derelict ships that players must dismantle and pull parts out of.  It’s a simple concept but every ship has a variety of different steps to take them apart and each ship is interesting to navigate.  The entire experience is a very relaxed simulator game with a unique style.  Over time there are more and more complications, but nothing that will overwhelm the player, just different challenges most of which can be done if players approach them methodically. 

The story is a bit eye-rolling focusing on unionization. But the experience here is worth pushing through it.  There’s a slow drip-feed of interesting new content that will keep players hooked, and every ship, even ripping apart a ship you already dismantled earlier, is engaging almost challenging the player to do it even faster than before.   I ended up playing this for 16 hours over two days because I was so hooked and I keep coming back for a couple of hours every few days because it’s that solid. 

Pick this up if you like laid-back simulator games.  The concept and idea here are good, but there’s a question of what you will see next, or how you’ll take apart the next ship that will keep you returning.

Sniper Elite 5.  Let’s go kill nazis yet again. 

Nazis are the easy mode of writing a story, everyone hates them, and they admittedly deserve it.  Once again Sniper Elite lands the player in the middle of World War 2 to dismantle and take apart Nazi operations, and once again it is a really solid game.  Sniper Elite returns to the pseudo-open-world style of the previous games and it works again.  It heavily reminds me of the style of open-world in Metal Gear Solid 5 or Hitman.  That style where players can approach targets from multiple directions, using stealth or combat. 

Sniper Elite 5 does add a few new features.  There’s an invasion mechanic that feels like it was pulled directly from Dark Souls, and I wasn’t a fan of it, but due to that I just turned it off, which is the right way to handle it.   There are a lot of optional objectives waiting for players to find the collectibles or stumble on locations and the enemies are smart but still able to be manipulated.  While the game is called Sniper Elite, you can also use a lot more stealth, and close-ranged weapons if you prefer.

Pick this up if you like shooting Nazis, also if you like the Hitman games I would say check this out.  It’s not the same style exactly, but the stealth and gameplay are very similar and while there’s more focus on killing than Hitman’s focus on full stealth, the experience here works great and is similar enough to be worth considering. 

Cricket 22.  I still don’t get this. 

Do you know cricket is played over 50 overs in a single day, and a match is multiple days long?  We’re talking about 7 and a half hours of play sometimes in a single day?    Every time I try to learn about Cricket it comes off as a very boring game.  Cricket 22 tries to teach you about specific rules, it focuses on topics like LBW, leg before wicket I think, but it doesn’t attempt to teach you the sport itself, or why you should love it. 

The thing is Cricket is like Baseball or Nascar, if you’re a fan, you’re probably pretty hard-core, but it’s hard to really get into these sports, especially cricket. There’s strange terminology, very long gameplay, and an uninteresting experience.  Cricket 22 also has some glitches, though I will say the career mode was the most interesting, at the end of the game, I still was just playing Cricket and that was ultimately the biggest issue. 

Pick this up if you already like Cricket as a sport, I don’t think this will convert anyone to love the sport, but I don’t think this was intended to convert anyone either. This is very much like MLB the Show, it’s great at what it does, but it’s also very specialized in its target audience.   Nothing wrong with that. 

Pac-Man Museum +.  Almost every type of Pac-Man, and lovingly reproduced. 

14 Pac-Man games are here, each one made to play to your heart’s content.  Do you want to play The original Pac-Man, or maybe you want to play the strange Pac Land or even the relatively modern Pac-man 256.  Players will use their virtual money to plunk down coins to play these recreations in their virtual arcade.  Each game has a set of missions and challenges to beat, all of which are pretty reasonable, and players will get a chance to relive the history of iconic mascot of Namco. 

But…. so a lot is missing here.  The 14 games included are good, but where’s Ms. Pacman, which was an improved version of the original game.  Where’s Pac-man Championship DX which was a better version of Pac-man Championship Edition?   I’m not going to say we need every single edition of Pac-man here, but there are a few notable exceptions.  Also, the coin system would have been a good reward for playing the games, but I don’t understand why they are needed to start the game, or why players are given 500 just for booting up the title.   Just a bunch of strange choices along with a deluxe collection.

Pick this up if you want to play Pac-man, if the game you want to try is included here this is a great way to experience it.  However, there’s a lot to be desired in this collection, and this is almost scraping the surface of what could have been included here.  I’d probably only give it a C because so many titles are missing and some strange additions are here.

Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection.  Three games in their probably their best form. 

The 3d Ninja Gaiden series was one that came out at the wrong time.  The first title came out around five years before Dark Souls and just beat gamers’ butts up and down the streets.  I always kind of wondered what if it was released after Dark Souls’ popularity was in full swing and how people would perceive it.  Well, I guess we have a chance now.  

I’m sure with that comparison most people will understand Ninja Gaiden is not messing around, The base game is probably decently harder than Dark Souls, less forgiving, with a linear mission and level structure.  With its name it’s not a surprise there’s a focus on being a ninja instead of an RPG, but in this, it knows what it wants to be and will reward players with both challenge and excellent gameplay. 

However the Master Collection is also the Sigma series, which adds in a ton of new content, though supposedly also changes some things, I’m not an expert at these games so I can’t tell you all the intricate details.  The best change though is adding in an easier mode, that allows weaker players, aka me, to be able to see the full game here, and these games are quite good, especially the big boss battles.

Pick this up if you like a challenging game or have ever heard of Ninja Gaiden.  This is a great collection and while, yes, the original trilogy was on the NES, this covers the second trilogy which is worth playing, and now almost anyone can do it. 

For Honor: Marching Fire Edition.  Melee combat between warriors from different eras.

For Honor is a multiplayer game where players will battle in a field of combat.  There are a few single-player offerings but the core of For Honor is playing online while fighting against AI opponents or PVP matches.  The combat is interesting, forcing players to block or dodge enemy attacks.

This really can be seen as more of a 3d fighting game on a large battlefield rather than an action game.  Players will spar with each other, attack enemies, and control points.  And in that area, For Honor does well, but this is also a game that’s been around for 5 years, so a lot of the meta has evolved.   The community is smaller and well-skilled, so if you’re going to join, you’re going to be spending a lot of time practicing. 

Pick this up if you want to spend the time to learn the game and get online to challenge others.  As I said, the single-player offerings are a bit weak but if you want to try the game out, you can play through those in a couple of nights, but it’s multiplayer that’s going to keep people here.  I’d probably go play more Mordhau if I wanted to play some knight combat, but I understand why people love this game as well.

Assassin’s Creed Origins. The first of the new Assassin’s Creed.

Assassin’s Creed has a long lineage of games, and in a lot of ways Assassin’s Creed Origins sweeps that away to start a new legacy.   The game focuses on rolling back to Egyptian time at the beginning of the history, thus Origins.  Here our main character Bayek assassinates people and works his way through an involved story in ancient times.  The locations are beautifully recreated here, and there’s a lot of focus on trying to remain accurate to the real world, mostly, there’s still gods.

But this is also where Assasin’s Creed started to lose its way.  Origins heavily push RPG elements, including leveling, gear, inventory, crafting, and more.  While later titles like Odyssey go even further, it’s a huge departure from what made the original games special, and feels like every game at this time was going in this direction.  Part of the reason at least for Ubisoft was to sell Microtransactions, but the other part was to refresh the gameplay.  I think they failed in the long run as the sequels were far worse, but Assassin’s Creed Origin still retained a tight enough experience with a solid enough story to be enjoyable. 

Pick this up if you like the Assassin’s Creed Series.  If you’ve already played Odyssey, this might be too similar, but I enjoyed the story here, and while the leveling and gear got annoying near the end of the game with a small amount of grind required, it’s still an enjoyable game, just a long one. 

Spacelines from the Far Out.  Co-op resource management with a Slay the Spire theme. 

Spacelines from the Far Out Reminds me a lot of Overcooked, Moving Out, or Out of Space in that it’s a game that’s fully intended to be played in multiplayer.  Spacelines focus on piloting a ship and taking passengers through space to get to the next space station and trying to balance making money, taking care of passengers, not running too late, avoiding dangers, and more.  It’s an overwhelming experience with one player. 

Spacelines feels like it’s meant to be played by more than one player to balance the jobs.  This is where Spacelines struggles because most of it also attempts to be a rogue-lite with a map that evokes the feeling of a Slay the Spire run, along with bonuses and finding the right route.  The problem is the large map will take longer to play through when the gameplay found in the game would probably be better aimed at smaller bite-sized levels for groups of players. 

Pick this up if you want a rogue-lite with co-op gameplay based on Overcooked, or Moving out.  However, be prepared for long sessions to play through the game.   It’s a clever idea, but Spacelines can be more frustrating to play solo, and too long of an experience to play with others.  Still, it might be fun with the retro-futuristic look, and interesting ideas. 

Chorus.  A space combat game across a vast galaxy.

Chorus starts in a Descent-style space mine teaching the player the controls, but then opens up to a massive area for players to explore, find side quests, and tackle large objectives.  This is all done while having an upgrade system on all the components in the game, and a shop for players to improve themselves.  The action is at the heart here and it’s usually intense space battles, with ships flying around trying to tag each other with attacks. 

Chorus’ one weakness is the story, or more likely the way it introduces the story.  As a player, I barely understood who I was or what the AI that was talking to me was about, let alone the massive conflict in this universe between different factions.   The good news is you can push that story aside and have some amazing moments, there were at least three missions that were extremely exciting to play, and the rest of the universe is out there to explore to find more. 

Pick this up if you like space flight.  This is far more action than a sim.  This is more Star Wars Squadrons or Freespace than Elite Dangerous, but it does a great job with it.  I wish the story was better, but once you hit the mission you get control of a big old ship and take down enemies, you won’t mind too much.

Disc Room.  A game of deadly discs. 

Disc Room involves a large maze with players having to accomplish different goals to unlock new rooms.  These can be anything from surviving 10 or 20 seconds to dying to different enemies along the way, boss battles, or even mystery tasks.  The large map as well as the solid art style makes the game interesting to play for a while.

The difficulty in Disc Room can get frustrating at times, though some excellent accessibility modes can make anyone be able to tackle the game, and that’s appreciated.  The one big issue with this title is it does get a little monotonous even with the variety of rooms.  At the end of the day, the experience is to avoid dying to discs even when different rules appear.  Though I did push through and reach the second ending of the game. 

Pick this up if you like struggling to fight your way to the top of leaderboards, a lot of these rooms are going to require a decent amount of effort.  There are also some puzzle aspects here, though a couple did require me to do a google search.   Still, it’s a fun game to pick up and try on Game Pass, kind of the perfect game for that. 

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge.   Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

And yea that song is actually in the game, and even with a new version, it’s still good.  This is a throwback, it’s a new game but it oozes the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Arcade game and Turtles In Time so much that I wonder how people who haven’t played those games will understand.  It’s a love letter to a series that has a lot of fans, and there’s so much.  Just starting the game with Bebop and Rocksteady fights throws me back to when I was pumping quarters into arcade machines.  When I started the game all I wanted to do is be able to fling enemies at the scene and it’s all there. 

The game itself is a bit easy, though this is a side-scrolling button masher as the original games were.  With up to 6 players in co-op that’s a massive group, and the ability to play online or just find people to team up with is a nice touch.  The animations are good, each of the turtles is slightly different and you now get the ability to play as of April O’Neil and Splinters, because they needed to have 6 players.  I’ve heard Casey Jones is available but haven’t seen him yet. 

The downside though is I’m fanboying out on this game.  This is pure nostalgia, and while players might come to this without the legacy of the Turtles games, this is made to emulate those original titles and remind fans of those games.  That’s alright but it might be harder for new players to connect to this title the same as others. 

Pick this up if you have a love for the TMNT: Arcade game or Turtles in Time.  If you love beat ‘em ups, you might want to try this but be awareaway this is very button mashy and doesn’t have as deep a fighting system as some of the other titles, but that’s how a Turtles game should be.  It’s an easier version of Streets of Rage 4, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

And that’s what I have for Game Pass. 18 titles this month which is quite a lot.   There’s everything from the AAA, to the smallest indie, and most of them were extremely entertaining. 

Microsoft announced the first set of games for June a week earlier than previously and has yet to announce the second set, so hopefully, that comes out on the same day as this video but there’s been a week here with only a single release.  That being said, Microsoft did have a show which we’ll talk about in a minute. 

I don’t have too much more to say, there are just a ton of games here, so let’s talk about the five best. 

The fifth strongest of this month is Her Story. I did call this one of the best of the year, and I still stand by it, but I also tend to look at the length of these titles when talking about the best and worst Game Pass games, and Her Story is a bit short.   That being said, it shows exactly how powerful narratives can be in games, and I recommend this game to everyone. 

The fourth strongest of this month is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge.  This was a perfect nostalgic trip and I’m looking forward to getting together with friends and playing through even more.  This is a fantastic game with so many wonderful moments.  It’s only this low due to it being aimed at a specific category of players who fondly remember the other Turtle titles. 

The third strongest of this month is Vampire Survivors.  I put in so much time on this game, and I love it.  It’s the right mix of a rogue-lite with minor progression and interesting stages.  It’s also wicked cheap so if you don’t have Game Pass, you could consider picking this up for the price of a cup of coffee, which makes it a fantastic deal. 

The second strongest of this month is Hardspace: Shipbreaker.  Maybe it’s my love of incremental, maybe I like the puzzle aspects here, maybe I just like the mechanics of tearing something apart but I played a lot of Shipbreaker and I keep going back to this title.  This was an absolute joy to play.  

The strongest title of the month is Sniper Elite 5.  It’s the biggest release of the month, it was a day one release and this series is extremely good.  The open-world aspects of the map are definitely what has kept me engaged, the ability to approach targets in multiple ways is nice but also the ability to find different things to do as you’re crossing the map to the major targets makes for a great experience. 

And that’s the top games of June 2022, but like I said Microsoft had a little show and they showed a great graphic that I’ll post up here. Notice some games are not flagged for Game Pass, yet, this list is incredible.  I’m excited about the Persona series, Slime Rancher 2, Starfield, the new real Forza, and Eiyuden Chronicle. but there are a ton of great games coming, so the future does look quite bright.   

I’ll be covering those games as we get our hands on them, so I hope you’ll stay tuned. The best way to do that is to subscribe and ring that bell if you haven’t already. Now, last month something broke in the Youtube algorithm and a ton of new people checked out my video, which is awesome. Welcome everyone whether you’re new or old.  If you want to help out the channel, like, share, and comment on the video that always helps boost these videos, and does matter.

I’m going to be popping up my video on Her Story here, I think it did a good job of explaining why you should check that title out, and I’m sure youtube will put something interesting in the other slot. 

See you next time.

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