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Gaming New Releases

The Wildly Popular Mobile Premier League Makes Its Way To The U.S.

If you haven’t already heard of Mobile Premier League, then you better believe you will soon. MPL is a unique but wildly popular segment of the growing gaming community, casual gaming, that has rapidly exploded in the US over the past few months, providing a way for both casual and avid gamers to play all of their favorite games (I.E. pool, bowling, solitaire, baseball, etc) all in one place, while also giving gamers a chance to play with their friends for money or a side hustle.

Mobile Premier League

Originally developed in India, MPL has quickly become Asia’s biggest mobile gaming platform, and has now launched in the U.S. At the time of this writing, MPL currently boasts more than 85 million casual gamers, and was recently valued at $2.3 billion. The game is a unique way for people to kill time, earn money, and play games with old friends while meeting new ones. We spoke with MPL CEO Sai Srinivas about the development process behind the game, and how they plan to take gaming to new heights.

ONE37pm: Congratulations on the success of MPL! What was the development of the game like?

Srinivas: The development of MPL goes all the way back to my days as a game designer and product manager. I’ve always believed that if someone is good at something, then they should be able to use that passion as a way to make money. I used to play 8 Ball Pool and thought about how it would be if people could play their favorite games, essentially compete in tournaments through a World Cup, and figure out who’s the best. When I started MPL in 2018, I didn’t see anybody else doing this concept. I developed the game in India, and we’ve since expanded to Asia and the United States. Everybody loves to compete, and MPL was the right place and right time for us, especially in India. 

ONE37pm: Did you encounter any obstacles while in the early stages of MPL?

Srinivas: As a game designer, my first obstacle was creating a game that developers could use. We’re still in the early days in that regard, but we’ve made a lot of progress with developers over the past year-and-a-half. The goal is to have even more international developers and players in Europe, U.S., India, and Asia.

ONE37pm: How did you select the games for MPL?

Srinivas: It was important for me to choose games that people like to play, which are mostly evergreen such as cricket in India, baseball in Europe, etc. Our focus is on those games and trying to bring them onto our platform.

ONE37pm: We have a lot of aspiring game designers that will be reading this article. What’s your advice to them?

Srinivas: The game has to be fun to play. That is the most important element, and it’s not going to work if it’s not fun. You can’t put the metrics and revenue before the actual gameplay because people decide whether or not they like the game in the first five to ten minutes. You have to focus on those first five/ten minutes and make the game enjoyable before you put your attention on the potential metrics and value.

ONE37pm: Where do you see MPL in the next five years?

Srinivas: Ideally MPL will be a place that game publishers can use to publish their games, and from there players will automatically be able to host a World Cup. I think this is the future of digital sports. If we could host tournaments around the world that would be great!

Categories
Gaming New Releases

Best Gaming Chairs With Footrest on Amazon

If you are a professional gamer or just a video gaming enthusiast, you will know that endless hours of video gaming can be exhausting and leave you with a backache. However, chairs designed especially for gaming purposes help you retain a comfortable posture and reduce muscle strain. For hours of comfortable gaming, the best option to go with is a gaming chair with a footrest. The great thing about gaming chairs is that they are not confined for gaming use only but can also be placed in the living room or used as a desk chair. Here are some amazing gaming chairs you can choose from online.

1. Top Pick: Respawn Gaming Chair


2. Easy To Assemble: BestOffice Gaming Chair


3. Also Consider: Nokaxus Gaming Chair

1. Respawn Gaming Chair
Respawn

This gaming chair has a 4D adjustment system that helps you raise, lower, and recline the chair between 90 to 155 degrees to find the best position. It also has an adjustable headrest and armrests, enabling maximum comfort. It also has soft padding in the armrests and a 360-degree swivel rotation.

Pros:

  • Ergonomic design with contoured support
  • High-quality leather and a weight capacity of 275 pounds

Cons:

  • The leather material is not cruelty-free
Buy Now, $174.99
https://amzn.to/3ChjQNC
2. BestOffice Gaming Chair
BestOffice

This gaming chair is extremely durable with a BIFMA-approved heavy-duty metal framing. It also has 360-degree swivel casters for easy maneuvering and a footrest for added comfort. The high-quality PU leather cushioned backrest can be reclined from 90 to 155 degrees, and the chair can support up to 250 lbs.

Pros:

  • Adjustable and user-friendly, with a reclining backrest
  • Easy to assemble 

Cons:

  • No race car seat design
Buy Now, $99.99
https://amzn.to/3zmwbhP
3. Nokaxus Gaming Chair
Nokaxus

The USB massage function is the most impressive feature. This gaming chair is also 4D adjustable, with not just a reclining function but also height adjustable. Its thick, dense sponge offers maximum comfort, and the high-quality PU leather acts as durable material. The large-sized 360-degree rotating wheels make it easy and safe to maneuver.

Pros:

  • Large size with comfortable and wide dimensions
  • Highly adjustable backrest, footrest, and height 
  • USB massage function

Cons:

  • Maximum weight capacity not specified
Buy Now, $152.99
https://amzn.to/3zhrKoj

ONE37pm may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Categories
Gaming New Releases

NBA 2K Mobile Season 4 Brings Authentic NBA Action On-The-Go

Last week, NBA 2K announced Season 4 of NBA® 2K Mobile, one of 2K’s flagship mobile titles with more than 28.5 million downloads to date. Now Season 4 is back and bringing a new Courtside Pass to unlock exclusive rewards, updated player likenesses and jerseys, card stats to reflect the upcoming NBA season, and so much more.

NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard is the face of season 4, and there’s a lot for 2K fans to look forward to. Players can build their NBA all-star teams, advance their basketball careers, and slam dunk on console-quality graphics – all on the go.

On top of more new ways to jump into the action, including:

  • Updated 2021-22 rosters and teams. Players can explore hundreds of new NBA Basketball Cards from current NBA players and icons, such as Damian Lillard, Kevin Durant, and Luka Doncic, to all-time NBA All-Stars like Dirk Nowitzki, Shaquille O’Neal, and Vince Carter;
  • ‘The Stat Line’ that offers rewards for taking specific action in-game. Additional player modes include 3-on-3, 5-on-5, real-time NBA PvP multiplayer matchups, MyPLAYER customization, and more;
  • A new limited-timed event, Power Cap, will kick off in October and let players show off their front-office skills by strategically selecting cards across five different leagues to top the leaderboard and earn Event Points, Milestone Awards, and much more. 
  • And coming soon, the Courtside Pass provides a front-row seat to the best basketball plays and lets players collect premium rewards throughout the new NBA season;
NBA 2K
NBA 2K Zion Williamson

To play, download the free NBA 2K Mobile app for Apple devices with 4+ GB of RAM and iOS 11.0 or later or on Google devices with Android 8+ (Android 9.0 recommended). An Internet connection is required. NBA 2K Mobile’s live 2K action requires newer hardware. App includes optional in-game purchases.

Follow NBA 2K Mobile on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest info and updates.

Categories
Gaming New Releases

The Biggest Games Releasing in October 2021

So y’all thought last month’s game releases lineup was crazy? Wait ‘till you guys see what’s on the docket for this month. October has a long list of heavy hitters on deck that are sure to join your playlist (make sure you complete your backlog first!). You got two sports sims, a surprising party brawler, a highly anticipated first-person shooter, a quality strategy RPG, and even more. Be prepared to be here for a while as we take a look at the biggest game releases for the month of October.

FIFA 22 – October 1 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam, Google Stadia)

The world’s most popular futbol simulator is back once again for the fall season and it’s looking to further improve on past iterations in the series. All the modes you’ve come to enjoy will make their return here – Career Mode, Volta Football, and FIFA Ultimate Team are back and all come with some much-needed enhancements. FIFA 22 also comes with a wide range of standout pro clubs, the Hypermotion play feel that makes the onscreen action look even more fluid, and changes to the series’ traditional futbol action.

Alan Wake Remastered – October 5 (PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC – Epic Games Store)

Remedy Entertainment’s most memorable release thus far is the supernatural, third-person thriller known as Alan Wake Remastered. For years, fans have been clamoring for a return to Bright Falls to re-experience Alan’s mysterious search for his lost wife. That request has been answered in the form of this welcome remaster that features all of the upgrades gamers have come to expect. The visuals have been improved to output 4K visuals, both pieces of the game’s DLC are included at launch, and a new commentary track by the game’s lead writer Sam Lake. Alan Wake Remastered is the perfect game for the spookiest month of the year.

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl – October 5 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

This platform fighting game mashup between the mechanics of Super Smash Bros. and the Nicktoons roster caught everyone by surprise. After watching some gameplay demonstrations of this unexpected fighter in action, it looks way better than it has any right to be. Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is set up as a serious platform fighter that features iconic cartoon characters at war with each other. You can hop into battle with the likes of SpongeBob Squarepants, Ren & Stimpy, April O’Neil, and so much more. This party brawler may just take the stage at premier fighting game tourneys in 2022 and build up a scene full of hardcore Powdered Toast Man mains.

Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania – October 5 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Don’t let this game’s super cute veneer put you into a false sense of security – Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania is hard as hell! The simple act of rolling a precious monkey inside of a ball becomes a nerve-wracking experience once you come across the game’s most outlandish track layouts. Super Monkey Ball Banana Mania is a remastered best-of compilation that features all of the tracks and minigames from the first three series entries. Along with all that, you’ll get to do some rolling with separate Sega icons and some of its past consoles. Get ready to carefully maneuver your way through some daredevil stages and enjoy some fun multiplayer side games along the way.

Be sure to check out our review for this game right here.

Far Cry 6 – October 7 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam)

Ubisoft’s premier FPS series is going international once again by transporting players to the fictional Caribbean island of Yara. The tyrannical leader of that new locale is referred to as “El Presidente” (real name: Antón Castillo), whose likeness and vocals come from actor Giancarlo Esposito. You’ll fight to liberate Yara with a varied arsenal packed with firearms, vehicles, and helpful allies that come in the form of human resistance fighters and even local wildlife. As Mr. Castillo raises his young son to eventually take his place, you’ll take the fight to his forces and look to liberate Yara’s many denizens. Welcome to Far Cry 6.

Metroid Dread – October 8 (Nintendo Switch)

Interplanetary bounty hunter Samus Aran sure has her work cut out for her in this new side-scrolling series entry. This time around, Samus must explore the mysterious planet of ZDR and stay out of the vicious grasp of a vicious robotic foe. Like Samus’ starting adventures, Metroid Dread will push players to explore every nook and cranny within ZDR and blast any foes that invade the bounty hunter’s comfort zone. For anyone who enjoyed Samus Returns, then you’ll want to hop into this new Nintendo Switch exclusive since it retains the free aim and melee attacks from that game. Metroid Dread puts forth a more terrifying feel as you take Samus Aran on a journey through a new hostile planet.

Back 4 Blood – October 12 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam)

Shout out to Turtle Rock Studios! They really tapped into their inner Thanos and went “Fine, I’ll do it myself” when it came to creating another co-op zombie buster. They developed the Left 4 Dead games, after all. Their spiritual successor to that series comes in the form of Back 4 Blood, a four-player co-op FPS that pits your band of “Cleaners” against the bloodthirsty “Ridden.” You’ll need to have your wits about you as you pick your finest ranged/melee weaponry and navigate a series of locales that are filled with walking dangers around every corner. Back 4 Blood’s cards present varied challenges during each campaign, plus the game’s PvP mode offers something different for those used to the Left 4 Dead formula.

Crysis Remastered Trilogy – October 15 (PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

When Crysis first came to be, PC gamers recognized it as a powerhouse FPS that pushed the limits of the best PC gaming builds. Now in 2021, all three entries within the graphically intensive franchise are coming together in a remastered package. The Crysis Remastered Trilogy is a comprehensive collection that helps each game look as great as possible and play just as well as you remember. The Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 version of each game outputs 1080p and 4K at 60 FPS, plus they each come with Dynamic Resolution, HD textures, and so much more. It’s time to don that signature exoskeleton suit and take down some nasty aliens!

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba – The Hinokami Chronicles – October 15 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam)

CyberConnect2 is responsible for providing Naruto fans with a strong line of fighting games via the Ultimate Ninja Storm series. And now they’re set to apply their arena brawler formula to the new hit anime, Demon Slayer. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba – The Hinokami Chronicles lets you experience the tumultuous demon-hunting tasks given to Tanjiro Kamado first hand. The game’s single-player campaign starts at the very start of the series and runs up to the “Mugen Train” arc. On the multiplayer front, you and your rival can test out your combat mastery during heated 2v2 battles. We personally can’t wait to head into battle as the demons that will get added to the game as free post-launch DLC.

Be sure to check out our review for this game right here.

NHL 22 – October 15 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One)

Shredding across the ice, bashing your opponents into the protective glass, and nailing that strategically placed puck shot means everything in the world to hockey pros. Simulating such a demanding sport has always been a priority for Electronic Arts on an annual basis, which is why we’re getting yet another one this year. NHL 22 looks to keep building upon the foundation set by earlier iterations of the series. Dedicated fans can look forward to the incorporation of Superstar X-Factors across various modes and improvements to all of the franchise’s signature gameplay suite. Be a Pro, Franchise Mode, and Hockey Ultimate Team will be better than ever before and live by the on-ice gameplay that fans have come to celebrate for years.

The Dark Pictures Anthology: House of Ashes – October 22 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam)

Supermassive Games’ The Dark Pictures Anthology has already delved into the realm of supernatural horror two times before with Man of Medan and Little Hope. Now the studio is ready to deliver the third entry in their ongoing IP with House of Ashes. This time around, you’ll follow five soldiers and fight to keep them alive as they deal with otherworldly creatures within a hidden Mesopotamian temple. House of Ashes offers some mechanical enhancements, such as a free-moving camera, difficulty levels for the game’s quick time events, and more. 

Guardians of the Galaxy – October 26 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Peter Quill aka “Star-Lord,” Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, Groot, and Drax the Destroyer are collectively known as Marvel Comics’ Guardians of the Galaxy. Now that ragtag group is finally getting their own AAA-video game from the developers at Eidos-Montréal. This brand-new Marvel interactive experience has you controlling Star-Lord as you use your plasma pistols to do big damage and command your teammates in battle. Of course, you’ll be treated to some licensed throwback tunes, engage in some hilarious conversations with each team member, and explore the galaxy at large.

Be sure to check out our review for this game right here.

Age of Empires IV – October 28 (PC – Steam)

Xbox Game Studios is ready to satiate strategy RPG fans’ thirst for a new experience thanks to the release of Relic Entertainment’s Age of Empires IV. This highly anticipated sequel transports players to the Middle Ages while they play out the events tied to the Norman Conquest of England. You’ll be able to choose from eight civilizations as you raise them to societal prominence and defend them from outside threats. The best aspects from the last two entries in the Age of Empires series are present here, so you’ll get to dive into the best-streamlined experience yet. It’s time to raise your empire to greatness!

Riders Republic – October 28 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam, Google Stadia)

The world needs more games dedicated to extreme sports, doesn’t it? Ubisoft and its Ubisoft Annecy development studio seem to think so, which is why they’re filling that sub-genre void by releasing Riders Republic. This massively multiplayer sports game lets you go exploring and participate in the following activities – mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, wingsuit flying, and rocket wingsuiting. You’ll be able to test your skills within each sports category against 50 players during super competitive races (note – this can only be done on current-gen consoles, while 20-player online support is offered through last-gen hardware). Riders Republic looks like it’ll be the type of game SSX and Steep fans have been waiting for.

Mario Party Superstars – October 29 (Nintendo Switch)

Mario Party Superstars is essentially a celebration of the longtime party game series. This best-of compilation includes five of the best play boards from the Nintendo 64 Mario Party games, plus it compiles 100 fan-favorite minigames from the N64 and GameCube games. You can enjoy all the Mario Party fun (and get enraged from time to time!) via local and online multiplayer play. Mario Party Superstars sticks to what worked so well during earlier series entries and ups the ante by bringing all of that retro goodness online for fans far and wide to enjoy.

Console Ports

Tetris Effect: Connected – October 8 (Nintendo Switch)

Resident Evil 4 VR – October 21 (Oculus Quest 2)

Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water – October 28 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Categories
Gaming New Releases

The 31 Best Survival Games On Switch

The Nintendo Switch is home to a number of survival games that could keep any fan of the genre busy for hours on end. The games run the gamut from cute titles for children to more disturbing titles clearly geared toward adults. While they may share certain elements they are equally varied. The following are the top 30 survival games for the Nintendo Switch.

31. Forager

Forager is one of the most straightforward games on this list. You forage for supplies whilst protecting your homestead from enemies. The title released in 2019 is one of several open-world titles in the survival genre. Its aesthetic is somewhat reminiscent of the original Legend of Zelda, giving a clue as to the demographic this game is meant to appeal to. That doesn’t mean children and adults of all ages can’t get into this surprisingly complex offering from HopFrog. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/forager-switch/
30. Minecraft

You can’t talk survival without at least mentioning Minecraft. Created in 2011, the game has gone on to be one of the largest on this list, with little sign of slowing down. In Minecraft players are not only free to build home bases, they are free to build just about anything they want. This has led to some truly imaginative creations. The Switch manages to breath new life into the game simply by optimizing for handheld so players can build as they go about their day, untethered to their desktops.

Buy Here for $29.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/minecraft-switch/
29. Resident Evil

No list of survival games is complete without including a bit of survival horror and the original Resident Evil is one of the most popular games in the genre. In fact, it was a major hit when it was released in stores in 1996 by Capcom. The traps mixed with the haunting atmosphere and constant threat of the undead made for an intense experience. The fixed camera, which often obscured the immediate danger the player was in, only enhanced the experience. While some may argue it’s a stretch including this game on this list, it’s important to remember there were elements of crafting, like mixing herbs and collecting increasingly powerful weapons. Resident Evil and its sequels may differ from Minecraft, which is all the more reason to include them on this list. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/resident-evil-switch/
28. Subnautica

Players flocked to Subnautica because it managed to combine all the best elements of the survival genre, like crafting and exploration, with just the right touch of creepy. Subnautica, released by Unknown World’s Entertainment in 2014, is a creepy game. While the game emphasizes exploration there are moments, particularly those when you are away from the safety of a base or vehicle, when you feel vulnerable to just about everything outside of your peripheral vision. While not explicitly a horror game, Subnautica definitely has its moments. 

Buy Here for $29.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/subnautica-switch/
27. Subnautica Below Zero

Released in 2019, the developers at Unknown Worlds Entertainment took everything good from the first game and cranked it up. Below Zero puts players in a world even more incomprehensible than the first. Both the frozen tundra and the water are home to creatures that might or might not kill you. 

Buy Here for $29.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/subnautica-below-zero-switch/
26. Windbound

At first blush, Windbound has all the appearances of a Legend of Zelda clone. But the developers at 5 Lives Studios were aiming for something more in the 2020 title. In some respects, they were successful. Windbound elegantly combines crafting elements with exploration that might be accused of being threadbare when compared to the game’s inspiration. While comparisons to Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild are inevitable, Windbound is ultimately its own game with its own elements. 

Buy Here for $29.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/windbound-switch/
25. This War of Mine

Originally released in 2014 by 11 Bit Studios, This War of Mine is a survival game made popular by giving a splash of cold water to players who might be more familiar with war games like Call of Duty. Players don’t take on the role of some invincible soldier. Instead, you are a largely faceless civilian forced to survive in a conflict zone. This War of Mine is a real look at what war entails for the majority of people. The game manages to get its message across quite effectively, while still managing to take players on a harrowing journey. Not many games are able to pull that off. 

Buy Here for $3.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/this-war-of-mine-complete-edition-switch/
24. Banner Saga

Another game whose presence on this list some might question. The Banner Saga is a strategy game in which you take control of different groups of people as they try to survive a harsh environment made harsher by the return of an ancient enemy. Where this game differs is in its various survival elements. In between battles, players must remain cognizant of the group’s supplies, morale, and a host of other factors that dwindle with each passing day. Resource management is as important in this game as a battle, which adds an interesting element to a tried-and-true formula. 

Buy Here for $24.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/banner-saga-1-switch/
23. Don’t Starve

A cult classic made all the more popular by its Switch port. Don’t Starve was originally released in 2013 by Klei Entertainment the game’s premise is in its title. It isn’t just starvation that threatens players. All manner of creatures is constantly poised to try and kill players. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/dont-starve-nintendo-switch-edition-switch/
22. Green Hell

One of 2018’s biggest indy releases. Creepy Jar’s Green Hell was popular among players because it offered a different aesthetic twist on the survival genre. Taking place in a jungle, Green Hell pits players against a hostile environment. Each playthrough is different with a different set of challenges, which is one of the reasons this game has managed to maintain a healthy player base. 

Buy Here for $24.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/green-hell-switch/
21. Resident Evil 5

Another Resident Evil game that blends one part crafting with nine parts zombie killing. Resident Evil 5 was released by Capcom in 2009, Resident Evil 5 is the direct sequel to the critically acclaimed Resident Evil 4. The fifth installment takes a detour from horror by focusing a bit more on the action. This doesn’t mean that the game doesn’t have its moments. The game boasts fluid gameplay and high-stakes stories players will appreciate. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/resident-evil-5-switch/
20. The Survivalists

Released in 2020 by Team 17, The Survivalists is a top-down survival game that emphasizes exploration. The game can be played solo or with a group of friends, which allows for a bit of task delineation. The Survivalists is a great addition to any Switch console. 

Buy Here for $24.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/the-survivalists-switch/
19. Sheltered

Sheltered is a 2D game that hides quite a bit of complexity behind its look. The game, released by Team 17 in 2015, is about surviving in a bunker in the midst of an unspecified apocalypse. Players must find provisions although resources are scarce. Al the while players must fend of enemies which range from animals to roving gangs.

Buy Here for $14.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/sheltered-switch/
18. Help Will Come Tomorrow

Originally released in 2020 by Arclight creations, Help Will Come Tomorrow tasks players with keeping a family alive while stranded in the wilderness. Keeping warm, fed, and sane are important elements in the game as the elements try their best to wear down already weary characters. 

Buy Here for $5.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/help-will-come-tomorrow-switch/
17. Radiation Island

Radiation Island adds elements of science fiction to the survival game. Released in 2015 by Atypical games, Radiation Island tells the story of an experiment gone wrong. Players must survive on an island infested with mutants and they have a number of tools at their disposal. That is what makes Radiation Island so interesting. There is no single method for beating the game but it’s satisfying when you eventually do. 

Buy Here for $9.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/radiation-island-switch/
16. ARK Survival Evolved

When first introduced in 2015 by Studio Wildcard, players thought the game was strictly about capturing and taming dinosaurs. As players sunk their teeth into the wildly in-depth survival game they discovered there was so much more beneath the surface. What was advertised as a prehistoric ranching game is in fact a major work of science fiction that continues to wow players. With a sequel on the horizon, now is the perfect time to sink your teeth into this title.

Buy Here for $49.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/ark-survival-evolved-switch/
15. Resident Evil 4

The bridge between the previous horror games and the latter action games, Resident Evil 4 is a survival horror that mixes the best of both worlds. Released in 2005, the game has a number of memorable moments. While the game may be daunting at first. Eventually, however, players build a toolset making them the most dangerous aspect of the game. There is a reason why this is one of the most beloved games in the franchise. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/resident-evil-4-switch/
14. Silver Falls

Silver Falls is what you get when a developer focuses less on graphics and more on atmosphere and story. Much like other survival-horror titles, the player starts out helpless but slowly builds an arsenal making him more than formidable to the forces that constantly hound him. Silver Falls may not look impressive but it’s worth a look. 

Buy Here for $7.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/silver-falls-episode-prelude-switch/
13. Frost

Released in 2016 by Jerome Bodin, Frost is different from other games on this list, largely because of the card-based element featured throughout the title. Like other games, however, players must contend with the harsh environment, as well as dangerous enemies. Survival is largely based on the players’ choices. You will mess up, eventually, which will impact the game in any number of ways. This is why this game is a must-play for any fan of the survival genre. 

Buy Here for $2.59
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/frost-switch/
12. Pine

Released in 2019 by Twirlbound, Pine is a survival game that is, in many ways, in a similar vein to Breath of the Wild. The player must live off of the land, hunting, and foraging for sustenance while creating tools to increase chances of survival. 

Buy Here for $9.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/pine-switch/
11. Breathedge

Players of RedRuins’ Breathedge will be surprised by the juxtaposition of the game’s comedy and bleak atmosphere. The game puts players in the wreckage of a massive ship and tasks them with survival. Air is, of course, a necessity as the player makes their way across the wreckage finding out what happened to the ship. It’s one part mystery, two parts survival that should entertain fans of the genre. 

Buy Here for $24.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/breathedge-switch/
10. Terraria

Released in 2011 by Re-logic, Terraria is a game that has been called a 2D clone of Minecraft. The game, however, manages to stand on its own two feet and has done so for a decade now. With services like Twitch increasing the game’s popularity, Terraria is one of the most popular games on this list. The game tasks players with journeying across the procedurally generated world in search of raw materials to build. While enemies abound you can face them with a group of friends, making this game even more of a must-buy. 

Buy Here for $29.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/terraria-switch/
9. Smoke and Sacrifice

Released in 2018 by Solar Sail Games, Smoke and Sacrifice is a critically acclaimed game that tells the story of a woman in search of her child. While the premise is straightforward, the story is anything but with winding plot details and unexpected twists that will keep most players invested until the very end. Survival is key as hordes of enemies keep the main character from her ultimate goal. This is a must-play. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/smoke-and-sacrifice-switch/
8. Resident Evil 6

Released in 2012 by Capcom, the game is one of the most expansive in the series. It tells three different meandering stories, woven together by the actions of six characters, seven if you count Ada Wong. While the reaction to this survival-horror title was mixed, it still managed to cultivate a large player base. Few developers are willing to offer players three games in one which is why this game is worth a playthrough, or three. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/resident-evil-6-switch/
7. Fortnite

Despite its release in 2017 by Epic Games, Fortnite remains one of the most popular games on the market. Its popularity aside, the game does have elements that make it a survival game, even though it is ostensibly a shooter. Players must collect raw materials in order to quickly erect walls to protect themselves from enemy fire, a feature that makes this game straddle genres. 

Buy Here for free
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/fortnite-switch/
6. Risk of Rain 2

Released in 2019 by Hopoo games, Risk of Rain 2 is a visually stunning piece of art. The graphics and art style alone are enough to keep players interested. Players must explore and collect items in order to survive hordes of enemies of increasing strength. Players can team up or, if they are particularly brave, go solo. Item management and cooperation are key. 

Buy Here for $24.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/risk-of-rain-2-switch/
5. Dawn of Survivors

Released in 2019 by WiSTONE Entertainment, Dawn of Survivors is more than just another zombie game. Players must defend their base and each other from hordes of zombies intent on overrunning them. To survive this, players must craft weapons and use them wisely. 

Buy Here for $4.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/dawn-of-survivors-switch/
4. Cube Life Island Survival

Cube Life Island Survival is a game for players who like Minecraft but want something a bit different. Cube Life, released in 2015 by Cypronia, gives players a change of pace. Players can collect materials from an island and build bases. Players must keep an eye on their hunger and thirst, as well as their life. Neglecting anyone will lead to immediate death. The game provides a challenge that isn’t present in Minecraft which is something players will enjoy. 

Buy Here for $14.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/cube-life-island-survival-switch/
3. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Arguably the best in the franchise, Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild was such a success, there was a brief period it outsold the Switch. The game puts players in an expansive open-world environment and tasks them with surviving by collecting tools, weapons, and food. Players have the freedom to do as they wish as they traverse Hyrule. While most Switch owners have likely played this game, it’s well worth a second go-round.

Buy Here for $59.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/the-legend-of-zelda-breath-of-the-wild-switch/
2. Niche: A Genetics Survival Game

Released in 2016 by Stray Fawn, Niche is a peculiar game. Players must create creatures with the right genetic aspects to survive the dangers the game throws. Haphazardly mutating your characters won’t do them any favors. Everything the player does in this game must be thought out and deliberate. 

Buy Here for $19.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/niche-a-genetics-survival-game-switch/
1. The Long Dark

Perhaps one of the Switch’s biggest cult classics. The Long Dark wears its survival bona-fides on its sleeve. Originally released in 2014 by Hinterland Studio, the game features a number of dangers that can easily kill the player. Everything from the cold, lack of food and water to the ever-hunting wolves keeps the tension of this game turned all the way up. This is a must-play for fans of survival. 

Buy Here for $34.99
https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/the-long-dark-switch/
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Gaming New Releases

ONE37pm’s Official ‘NBA 2K22’ Review

NBA 2K22 has finally arrived after months of the usual hype and anticipation that normally surrounds 2K releases, and I got in on the playing action. The 2K crew was kind enough to send a copy of 2K22 my way, and I spent the weekend exploring and experimenting with everything the game has to offer.

Obviously, you have 2K diehards that play the game every year, but as someone who hasn’t played consistently in a while, I feel being away from the game allowed me to view my personal experience with a set of fresh eyes which I think is important because every year there is a new 2K fan purchasing the game for the very first time. Here is our take on the latest entry in the 2K franchise.

Day One (MYWNBA)
NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 The W

As soon as the game finished installing, I went straight to MYWNBA to see what we were working with. To brush up on my skills, I started off with quick gameplay between the Las Vegas Aces and Chicago Sky. I elected to be the Sky, and in my opinion, I felt the gameplay did a good job of reflecting those two teams in real-time. I was absolutely dominant with Candace Parker (who has been unreal as of late) and was really able to utilize players like Diamond DeShields, Courtney Vandersloot, and Kahleah Copper. On the flip side, the Aces are closing out the season strong as well, and I found them tough to defend at times getting into foul trouble quickly. After the game, I headed over to build my own player which was fun.

NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 The W

I grew up playing basketball and as a young girl I would have loved to have a WNBA mode, so of course, I went crazy. This was my first time creating my own WNBA build, and it was straightforward as usual. You can create any type of player you want, select which team you want to go to, and work your way through your journey of becoming a pro. Once again I opted to create a player for the Chicago Sky, and after that, I got started.

The more you play and continue to grow your game, the more opportunities are presented your way. One of those is the ability to participate in the “Off-Day” experience, which includes scrimmages, and the opportunity to connect and play against WNBA legends. I definitely want to continue my player’s evolution as we head into the postseason.

Day Two (MYCAREER)
NBA 2K
NBA 2K22

Day Two was all about MYCAREER mode. Obviously, you can’t complete the entire mode all in one day, but I was able to get a decent start. If you want you can go the college route prior to turning pro which allows you the chance to select your school and participate in March Madness activities. I created my player, selected the team I wanted to play for (which was the Cleveland Cavaliers), and played my first game against the Memphis Grizzlies. The game and dribble controls were good in my opinion, and the shot meter was helpful. Everything ran smoothly in terms of offense and defense.

NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 The City

I must say the storyline is intriguing and keeps you locked in the whole time. There’s going to be highs and lows as you progress through the season, and my goal is to keep checking in, playing games, and unlocking badges and rewards. The off-court experiences are neat, and almost makes it feel like you are playing an entirely different game altogether. Since I’ve yet to upgrade to a PS5, I don’t have access to The City—instead I have The Neighborhood, which is still an awesome experience. 

For those in the next-Gen category, you’ll have access to a new and improved version of The City with a lot more opportunities to build and expand your player. Of course when you aren’t playing or exploring, you can hop out MYCAREER and do other fun stuff like designing your own sneakers, and diving more into the 2K soundtrack. I’ll be sure to update more as I make progress.

Day Three (MYTEAM)
NBA 2K22 MYTEAM

Day Three was dedicated to exploring MyTEAM. Similar to MYCAREER, the MyTEAM mode is ongoing and will need a bit more than a day to get the full experience as well. 2K spent a lot of time this year revamping the mode, and as a result, MyTEAM will look different than in previous years. MyTEAM: Draft is a brand new mode where you pick a full lineup of Player Cards which will include the latest cards in MyTEAM. 

NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 MYTEAM

You’ll be able to choose 13 players plus your coach and dominate with the feature pack which can lead to great rewards and prizes as you progress. There are also exciting updates to Triple Threat Online, and the usual Pick-up and Skills challenges that you can play around with as you go through the seasons.

Final Thoughts:
NBA 2K
NBA 2K22 Cruise Ship

2K22 is an immersive experience that is fun, challenging, and varied depending on the type of gaming mood you are in. You can spend all day in MYCAREER going through your collegiate and eventual professional journey, or you can chill out for a couple of hours in MyCity or MyNeighborhood on a lighter gaming day. You can choose to spend the majority of your time in MYTEAM, or you can have days where you don’t play basketball at all and just design sneakers or check out the weekly soundtrack updates. There is something for everyone to enjoy, and I personally can’t wait to see what else is in store.

If you haven’t already, make sure you pick up your copy soon.

Categories
Gaming New Releases

NBA 2K22 Elevates The W With “The Courtside Report”

As we inch closer and closer to the September 10th release of NBA 2K22 release, we are getting more exciting updates about what we can expect once we finally get our hands on the game. One of the most anticipated features to look forward to is the Courtside Report for The W, which comes on the heels of Candace Parker being announced as NBA 2K’s first female cover athlete. 

NBA 2K

Building off last year’s unveiling of The W, NBA 2K22 continues to enhance the WNBA mode with added realism and more ways to experience the league both on and off the court.

Here is a preview of what to expect.

The WNBA mode will introduce an all-new badge progression experience, including three playable off-day experiences, while continuing to provide ways to connect with friends online.

NBA 2K

Felicia Steenhouse, Senior Producer at Visual Concepts says this year the game will expand upon the most comprehensive sets of game modes and features that accurately affect the WNBA.

“It’s grounded in authenticity and delivers an experience that honors and elevates some of the best ballers in the world: the women of the WNBA. Building off last year’s unveil of The W*, this year continues to enhance the WNBA mode with added realism and more ways to experience the league both on and off the court”

Other features include:

New Player Progression
NBA 2K

With a new badge progression feature, players will be able to earn badges to improve their games as they embark on the journey to become WNBA legends. Competing on the court or grinding it out in practice, players will be able to equip and upgrade badges to customize their MyPLAYER builds based on their unique specialties.

Off-Day Experience
NBA 2K

The W introduces three new playable activities to make off-days count. Scrimmages, team practices, and contact workouts provide the opportunity for players to hone their craft as they develop throughout the season. In a franchise first, historic and current WNBA stars can be challenged in contact workouts to acquire new skills on one’s own path to greatness.

The W Online
NBA 2K

Returning to NBA 2K22 for PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X|S consoles, The W Online brings new ways to connect with the 2K community. Players will be able to link up with friends before the matchmaking process to take to the court as a team. By playing games in The W Online, players will be able to earn Season XP as they level up to earn new prizes and awards.

For more details checkout the Courtside Report on their official website, and make sure you regularly check the NBA 2K website for more information in the coming days. 

Categories
Gaming New Releases

‘Call of Duty: Vanguard’ Returns the Franchise to Its WWII Roots

When Call of Duty debuted in 2003, it arrived during the height of World War II-themed first-person shooters. While Electronic Arts’ Medal of Honor IP ruled the WWII FPS landscape at the time, Activision sought to get a piece of the pie via its new franchise. 2009’s Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is responsible for catapulting the series to new heights, there was a slew of series entries that came before and after it that reverted back to its roots. 2021 marks a return to that welcome trend with the announcement of Call of Duty: Vanguard. Here’s everything we know about the next Call of Duty thus far.

1. Release Date & Platforms
Activision

To say that the FPS shooter release schedule for 2021 is stacked would be an understatement. Ubisoft is dropping Far Cry 6 on October 7, EA is launching Battlefield 2042 0n October 22, and Xbox Game Studios is preparing to release Halo Infinite sometime later this year as well. Activision is set to join the fall FPS onslaught by releasing Call of Duty: Vanguard on November 5 for the following platforms – PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam.

There are three separate editions of Vanguard, which are the Standard Edition, Cross-Gen Bundle, and Ultimate Edition. The Standard Edition comes with either the PS4 or Xbox One version of the game and allows for backward compatibility on either the PS5 or Xbox Series X|S. That same edition comes with the Night Raid Mastercraft Weapon Blueprint and Frontline Weapons Pack. The Cross-Gen Bundle includes those aforementioned goodies, the last- and current-gen versions of the game, and five hours of Weapon 2XP. And finally, the Ultimate Edition comes with everything the Cross-Gen Bundle features plus five hours of Player 2XP, the Task Force One Pack (which comes with three Operator Skins and three Weapon Blueprints with Tracer Rounds), and access to the Battle Pass Bundle.

2. Campaign
Activision

Developer Sledgehammer Games are the main architects behind Call of Duty: Vanguard. On the campaign front, this series entry will explore the origins of a group of Special Forces soldiers known as Task Force One. The mission at the heart of their crusade is known as “Project Phoenix,” which is a fictional operation that sets up the last remnants of the Nazi party as they look to find a successor to their failed leader after the fall of Berlin. Players will see the events of this dangerous campaign through the eyes of four soldiers who fight on their own war fronts.

IGN detailed the backstories of those four soldiers, which you can read about below:

Sgt. Arthur Kingsley (Western Front) is a member of the 9th Parachute Battalion in the British army. His character is based on Sidney Cornell, a paratrooper who played a part in Operation Tonga. For Kingsley, Campaign Creative Director David Swenson explained he has to take charge and successfully help complete the operation in order to make a particular beach safe for D-Day the next morning. Kingsley is voiced by Chike Okonkwo and written by Tochi Onyebuchi.

Lt. Polina Petrova (Eastern Front) is a member of the Soviet Union’s 138th Rifle Division inspired by Lyudmila Pavlichenko, a sniper nicknamed Lady Death. Petrova’s story starts in her home of Stalingrad where she worked as a nurse and eventually becomes an ace sniper when her home is invaded by the Germans.

Cpt. Wade Jackson (Pacific Front) is a pilot of Scouting Squadron Six of the United States Navy. Inspired by the actions of Vernon “Mike” Micheel, Jackson fights in the Pacific Battle of Midway before being shot down over the Solomon Islands and must adapt to fighting on the ground with a team.

2nd lt. Lucas Riggs (North Africa) is an Australian infantryman in the 20th Battalion. He’s inspired by Charles Upham and the Rats of Tobruk. Riggs fights as one of these Rats of Tobruk in North Africa to take out opposing forces there.

3. Multiplayer
Activision

The online competitive multiplayer suite for Call of Duty: Vanguard will be as substantial as past entries’ suites. 20 maps will be available at launch and will be set across the four aforementioned fronts featured in the campaign. 16 of those maps will focus on 6v6 combat, while four of them will primarily deal in 2v2 skirmishes. A new mode will make its debut here and it’s called “Champion Hill.” Champion Hill is described as an amalgamation of the best parts of your average battle royale mode and 2019’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’s Gunfight mode. Players can participate in Champion Hill Mode solo, in a duo, or in a trio squad as they play across progressing rounds and four maps. Players will now earn the option of using Combat Pacing, which is a new search feature that customizes one’s multiplayer experience.

The following three parameters can be used to change the online multiplayer player count and the experience as a whole:

– Tactical: Fewer players for slower gameplay

– Standard: 6v6 traditional player count

– Blitz: More players for chaotic, fast gameplay

Keep in mind that pre-order recipients will get early access to Vanguard’s open beta on PS4 and PS5 only. PS4 and PS5 owners can get in on the game’s Alpha period, which will run from Friday, August 27th at 10 am PST/1 pm EST to Sunday, August 29th at 10 am PST/1 pm EST. The Alpha will focus on Vanguard’s new Champion Hill multiplayer mode.

4. Zombies
Activision

Development studio Treyarch (which developed 2020’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War) is back in the driver’s seat for the latest COD entry’s Zombies Mode. And what makes this incoming take on the long-running Zombies co-op mode is the fact that it’ll serve as a prequel to the story established in Black Ops Cold War.

5. Warzone
Activision

Warzone, which is Call of Duty’s signature battle royale mode, has been a smashing success thus far. Raven Software will still handle the lead developer duties for Warzone but will make sure to feature elements from Vanguard in its ever-expanding mode. Once Vanguard launches, players can look forward to seeing all of its weapons and Operators added to Warzone.

Categories
Gaming New Releases

‘NBA 2K22’ Unveils New Music Discovery Soundtrack Experience

As we inch closer and closer to the NBA 2K22 release date, more details are slowly making their way to the very excited sports and gaming community. The 2K soundtrack is always a highly anticipated event and has been a staple for the last two decades not just with established artists, but for rising underground artists looking for a bigger platform to introduce themselves and their music. This time around, things are going to look a little bit different for the NBA 2K music community.

NBA 2K
NBA 2K Soundtrack

Last week, 2K announced that NBA® 2K22, the next version of the top-rated and top-selling NBA video game simulation series, is unveiling a new approach to its in-game soundtrack that includes an all-new integration with Seasons, along with an array of music from top artists, including Aitch, Freddie Gibbs, Gunna, Megan Thee Stallion, Metro Boomin, Saweetie, Skepta, Smino, Travis Scott, and many more.

And according to Alfie Brody, Vice President of Global, NBA 2K will continue to build upon its strong relationships with musicians. 

NBA 2K has become a global platform for music discovery and that continues with NBA 2K22. This year, we are creating a dynamic soundtrack, complete with early access to unreleased tracks, new artists, and opportunities for fans to become part of the experience and solidify their place in video game history.”

That’s not all though, players will also be able to discover music throughout the year via “First Fridays,” where new songs will be added to the soundtrack on the first Friday of every new Season. Each update will feature a mix of high-profile and up-and-coming artists to support music discovery and growth within NBA 2K22. More details on what will be included in each Season will be shared later in August.”

This year will also introduce brand-new ways for aspiring artists to become a part of the NBA 2K series music experience with an all-new producer experience. The all-new Producer Series will integrate a Beats Pack into the game and create an opportunity for the community to record their best verses over the beats and showcase their talent. More details on the Producer Series and even more ways aspiring artists can be involved in the NBA 2K soundtrack which will be unveiled closer to launch.

Starting September 10, players can experience all the music available in-game at launch and beyond on the official NBA 2K22 playlist; check out the 2K Beats official site for more information.

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Gaming New Releases

All 20 ‘Mass Effect’ Companions, Ranked

If you’re like me, you’ve been sinking hours upon hours into the Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, which dropped on May 14th. It is one of the most beloved and highly regarded sci-fi gaming franchises out there. While the ending to the original trilogy and the follow-up game, Mass Effect: Andromeda, have divided the fanbase, the games hold a special place in many gamers’ hearts, myself most definitely included. Taking on the role of Commander Shepard, players embark on a galaxy-spanning adventure full of action, drama, comedy, romance, and more.

Having finally just completed the long, arduous mission of saving the Milky Way Galaxy from the villainous and genocidal Reapers, I got to thinking about arguably the most crucial part of the franchise: Your companions. One of the big reasons Mass Effect remains so popular is that fans loved the characters, identified with their struggles, and laughed and cried alongside them.

Bioware achieved something extraordinary with these characters, and even though much of your crew were fictional alien beings, they felt as real as anyone you may encounter in real life. Whether it be the rogue space cop and ultimate bro Garrus Vakarian, the eccentric scientist Mordin Solus, or the academic researcher turned information broker Liara T’Soni, each of these characters were valuable members of a squad assembled to save the galaxy.

With all that being said, some squad-mates were simply better than others, and throughout three games with 20 potential companions, some were bound to be more memorable. Here are all 20 Mass Effect companions, ranked from worst to best.

20. Morinth

Putting Morinth last on the list is sort of cheating since she is an optional squadmate and one that only truly renegade players would choose to join the squad.

Morinth is, well, a serial killer, one whose only mission in life is to seduce and then murder her victims. She is a powerful biotic (Mass Effect‘s version of magic), so she is, hypothetically, a potentially very useful squadmate. Morinth is also the daughter of Samara, another potential squadmate, and Morinth first appears in Samara’s loyalty mission. Players are confronted with a choice: Side with either Samara or Morinth. Most players tend to choose Samara, so at the end of the day, we never truly get to know Morinth but are you really going to choose to side with someone that has no qualms about murdering innocents? I sure hope not.

19. James Vega

James Vega gets a bit of a bad rap in my eyes. Voiced by Freddie Prinze Jr., he’s a new squadmate that gets added to the last game in the trilogy (Bioware has said that he’s supposed to “represent” players that are just starting to play the games), and he doesn’t get much to do in Mass Effect 3 outside of being a space jock.

He’s a soldier through and through but in a game that already has so many other quality characters, it’s just hard to get invested in Vega’s story.

18. Zaeed Massani

Zaeed Massani is a legendary space bounty hunter that is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. He gets shortchanged in these games simply because he was a DLC character in Mass Effect 2 and, much like Vega, sort of feels like he was brushed aside.

He is a gruff guy that’s seen it all and done it all, but when his conversations boil down to non-cutscene interactions, how are we supposed to care about what happens to him?

17. Kaidan Alenko

One of your very first squadmates in Mass Effect, Kaidan, lands with you on Eden Prime in the franchise’s very first mission.

As the game progresses and your squad begins to expand, Kaidan felt less important as a squadmate during my playthroughs.

Put it this way: When the player reaches Virmire and is forced to decide whether Kaidan or Ashley Williams dies, I’ve never had too much of a moral dilemma in siding with Ashley.

16. Jacob Taylor

Ah, Jacob Taylor.

A character who should have been much more interesting than he ended up being, but I place that more on the writing, and the voice actor, Adam Lazarre-White, has nothing to work with.

He is a human biotic who serves as one of the major players in Cerberus, the human-centric organization that Shepard works for in Mass Effect 2, and, similar to Kaidan Alenko, he’s just a rather bland character.

15. Kasumi Goto

I take no pleasure in ranking Kasumi this low on the list because she suffers from the same problem that Zaeed does: She is a DLC character in Mass Effect 2.

Kasumi, the galaxy’s greatest thief, is an interesting character who, unlike Zaeed, has a great backstory. Her partner in crime, and love interest Keiji, was murdered by arms dealer Donovan Hock and she enlists Shepard’s help to pull a heist to get some of her equipment back.

The mission is a ton of fun and a nice change of pace for the third-person shooter game, which helps Kasumi greatly.

14. Ashley Williams

Ashley Williams, another one of the earliest squadmates available to you and the other potential survivor on Virmire, is an Alliance soldier that believes wholeheartedly in the organization’s mission.

Bemoaned as a “space racist,” Ashley mistrusts the alien crew members on the ship and even goes so far as to say, “I can’t tell the aliens from the animals” at one point. However, once you get a better idea of her backstory (her grandfather was the first human to surrender a garrison to an alien force), her misgivings, while still wrong, become a bit more understandable.

She’s a soldier through and through, but her lack of trust in Shepard throughout the second and third games can make her seem unreasonable.

13. Javik

The last voice of the Protheans.

Javik, another DLC character, should have been included with the main game as his appearance fleshes out a ton of lore in the Mass Effect universe.

The Protheans are a long-extinct race whose beacons help set the stage for the entire saga of Mass Effect. However, Javik was placed into cryostasis for 50,000 years and is awakened by Commander Shepard, and he joins the crew of the Normandy.

He has no time for compassion or mercy and believes that one must be ruthless to survive the Reaper onslaught. When asked by Shepard why he is like this and if he has any sense of honor, Javik replies with one of the best quotes in all of Mass Effect: “Stand in the ashes of a trillion dead souls, and ask the ghosts if honor matters. The silence is your answer.”

12. Legion

“Shepard-Commander.”

One of the biggest surprises in Mass Effect 2 was the fact that a Geth, a race of synthetic machines that Shepard had killed thousands of in the original Mass Effect, would be joining your crew. He saves Shepard’s life on board a derelict Reaper and proves his loyalty by helping the commander defeat the Collectors.

His efforts to achieve peace between the Geth and Quarians in the third game help showcase just how far he has come as not just a sentient being but as a friend.

11. EDI

EDI, which stands for  Enhanced Defense Intelligence, is Normandy’s Artificial Intelligence in Mass Effect 2. So she isn’t a physical member of the squad, but once she is unshackled during a Collector attack on the Normandy, her abilities increase dramatically.

In Mass Effect 3, she takes control of the body of a Cerberus operative who had been upgraded with Reaper technology, allowing EDI to take physical form.

This was an enormous criticism of Mass Effect 3, given that the body that EDI was given was highly sexualized for no particular reason (something the entire franchise is guilty of when it comes to its female characters.) However, she is a great character in her own right, and much like Legion learns what it means to be human and, literally, not just a robot.

10. Samara

Samara is an Asari Justicar, think an agent of justice that believes in her code above all else. She is an extremely powerful biotic, and when she is first encountered by Shepard, she is hunting down her daughter, the aforementioned Morinth.

Samara has a tragic history, all of her daughters suffer from the same disorder that drives them to kill, but Morinth is the only one who acts on it. Still, she lives a lonely life moving around the galaxy rooting out evil, forcing her not to hold many attachments.

That is until she meets Commander Shepard and becomes a loyal member of his/her crew.

9. Grunt

An accidental member of the team, Grunt is a cloned Krogan bred in a tank by a rogue Krogan scientist. Shepard initially arrives on the planet looking to recruit said scientist, but upon being ambushed by mercenaries and finding the scientist dead, decides to bring Grunt along.

Grunt is a perfect Krogan soldier who is tough beyond belief and never backs away from a fight. However, he is just a teenager in many ways and is shunned by his species as inferior because he’s a clone.

Shepard helps him defy those odds and shows the galaxy that Grunt is not to be messed with. Grunt is one of the funnier teammates and, if he survives Mass Effect 2, is found leading the legendary Aralakh Company in its fight against the Reapers in Mass Effect 3.

8. Miranda

Genetically engineered by her villainous father to be perfect in every aspect of her life, Miranda Lawson is Cerberus’ second in command when Shepard first meets her. Though she begins as a cold, calculating, and no-nonsense operative, Miranda gradually opens up to Shepard about her past.

Shepard begins to help Miranda see that Cerberus isn’t what she believes it to be, and by the end of Mass Effect 2, she leaves the organization behind and goes on the run.

Much like some of the other female characters in the franchise, Miranda is hypersexualized to the point that the developers literally edited scenes from Mass Effect 2 when making the Mass Effect: Legendary Edition to cut down on it.

Those issues aside, Miranda is one of the most well-written characters in the game and has one of the best arcs in the whole franchise.

7. Jack

“The psychotic biotic.”

Jack, aka Subject Zero, was kidnapped by Cerberus as a child and experimented on in a secret facility where she was tortured to fully test her capabilities. She broke out of the facility and went on the run where she did anything to survive and was eventually captured and placed in a private prison run by mercenaries.

Shepard arrives to recruit her for the mission against the Collectors, and their relationship gets off to a rocky start, to say the least. Jack butts heads with Miranda, whom she calls a “Cerberus Cheerleader,” and their relationship never truly improves until Mass Effect 3, but only ever so slightly.

Thanks to her efforts to stop the Collectors, Jack takes a job as a teacher at a school for biotics, helping to bring her arc full circle. Much like Miranda, she learns to outgrow her mistakes and move forward, and not let the past define her.

6. Liara T’Soni

The shy academic researcher turned ruthless information broker, Dr. Liara T’Soni is a fan favorite, and for good reason. Liara begins the series as someone who is unsure of herself, whose mother is a companion to the first game’s primary villain, Saren.

Caught between family and duty, Liara remains loyal to Shepard and is forced to help kill her mother, who had been brainwashed by the Reapers.

Her experiences with Shepard changed her as a person, causing her to embrace a new role as an information broker on the world of Illium. Shepard helps her take down the Shadow Broker, one of the great forces of the galactic underworld, and Liara assumes the role herself before joining Shepard once again to finally defeat the Reapers.

5. Thane

Thane is a terminally ill assassin that is recruited for one last job: To stop the Collectors. He’s lived a life full of regrets, and it is only through absolution that he ever hopes to find peace. His species, the Drell, can vividly recall every one of their memories. During Thane’s conversations with Shepard, he often breaks away and describes his kills and experiences perfectly.

Before meeting Shepard, Thane had planned to mend his relationship with his estranged son Kolyat, whom Thane had neglected due to his life as an assassin.

Thane survives until the events of Mass Effect 3, provided he hasn’t been killed on the mission to the Collector base, and it is there that he makes one last heroic sacrifice. He prevents Cerberus assassin Kai Lang from killing a member of the Citadel Council. A life full of mistakes and wrongdoing, redeemed in the service of the greater good.

4. Mordin Solus

“I am the very model of a scientist Salarian, I’ve studies species Turian, Asari, and Batarian.”

An alien scientist with a passion for musical theater, who is also able to help you defeat genocidal monsters? That’s just Dr. Mordin Solus.

Inherently funny and eccentric, Mordin is full of memorable lines and quotes, none more so than his rendition of Gilbert and Sullivan.

At the beginning of Mass Effect 2, Mordin is running a clinic on the crime infested world of Omega, where he is attempting to cure a plague that is ravaging the alien population there. He then aids Shepard in defeating the Collectors, and along the way gradually comes to terms with his own past, a member of the Salarian special forces who helped forcibly sterilize the Krogan population.

Now you might think Mordin is a monster based on this description, but (if you follow the Paragon path) he helps to cure the bioweapon that is causing this problem with the Krogan, at the cost of his own life.

“Had to be me. Someone else might have gotten it wrong.”

3. Tali Zorah Vas Normandy

“Keelah se’lai”

Tali Zorah, along with Garrus, is the only character who is a squad-mate in all three entries of the Mass Effect franchise and has, arguably, the most significant character arc out of all the characters that join Shepard.

In the first game, she is a scared, young Quarian (think Space nomads forced to live in bio suits), and by the third game, she is an Admiral brokering peace between organic beings and synthetics.

Engineer, strategist, and loyal companion, it is a true testament to the writers of these games that Tali becomes such a fan-favorite character, and you never even see her face (unless you form a romantic relationship with her, and even then it’s only in a picture.)

Her arc is so impactful for players because she, much like all of us, is genuinely experiencing this universe for the first time. The rest of the squad-mates in Mass Effect are all veterans or seasoned spacefarers. Meanwhile, Tali is just getting to know other planets and species, much like us.

2. Urdnot Wrex

Urdnot Wrex is what happens when you take a gruff, old, angry alien and force him to join a crew dedicated to saving the galaxy, one that has done next to nothing for him or his species. In fact, the other species are forcibly sterilizing his kind, slowly killing them off.

However, he commits to Shepard’s cause in Mass Effect, helping the commander stop Saren from unleashing the Reapers upon the galaxy. He’s similar to Garrus in many regards, a guy that has seen it all and done it all, and while he isn’t the nicest guy in the room, he is dedicated to doing the right thing.

He just doesn’t mind killing a few people to get that done.

Wrex is a born leader, and in Mass Effect 2 and 3, we find him leading his species. He wants to cure the sterility plague that is affecting the Krogan at any cost. Wrex also intends to repair the image of the Krogan and how they are seen in the rest of the galaxy. To do so, he adopts more progressive policies and leaves the old ways in the past.

A gruff guy, Wrex is also hilarious, fiercely loyal, and one that would gladly take a bullet for Shepard if asked to do so.

1. Garrus Vakarian

“Not sure if Turian heaven is the same as yours, but if this thing go sideways and we both end up there, meet me at the bar… I’m buying.”

The undisputed GOAT. The best space buddy anyone could ever ask for, the one and only, Garrus Vakarian.

It sounds almost like a cliche, but Garrus is a rogue space cop that doesn’t play by the rules and is the embodiment of “getting things done.” He has no time for rules and regulations that get in the way of his mission and becomes frustrated by bureaucracy, which is a big reason why he joins Shepard’s crew in the first place.

Along with Tali, he is a crew member for all three games and is loyal to Shepard until the very end. He’s funny; he’s deadly in combat, and you know you can always rely on him.

Say it with me, everyone: “There is no Shepard without Vakarian.”