The catch-up coffee: May 6, 2024

Four games launching this year!

7 mins read
A newly-cropped version of Dee Dee in the DDNet news studio.

Welcome to Digitally Downloaded’s weekly catch-up news feature, the catch-up coffee. With each issue I will bring you the best news that you may have missed. Grab the biggest mug you’ve got, fill it with your favourite brew, and catch up with us (and our favourite news anchor, Dee Dee)!'s Discord banner. You click on it to be taken to the Website's Discord server

Cozy exploration game Into the Emberlands announced for PC

The peaceful Knacks’ world has been plunged into darkness after being engulfed by the Miasma, though what exactly that is remains to be seen. As the chosen Lightbearer, you are given a lantern filled with radiant Ember. Venture through different biomes to save those who have becomes list in the darkness. The game has a roguelite twist and a clear mission to rescue lost Knacks, but you’ll also be collecting resources to rebuild and expand the village. Just don’t let the light fade, or you will become lost yourself…

Landscapes and biomes are procedurally generated so every new adventure is different than the last. Every type of biomes has its own unique challenges and encounters, so you’ll need to adapt as you progress. Knacks aren’t the only creatures that call Emberland home: there are things from lazy trolls and crazy scientists to chickens. These creatures will offer quests and bargains with the promise of unique rewards, though beware that some offers are more dubious than others.

Developed by Tiny Roar and published by Daedalic Entertainment, Into the Emberlands will be released in Early Access for PC via Steam in Q3 2024.

The HD remake of Rainbow Cotton will be released this week

For the first time, Sega Dreamcast shoot ’em up Rainbow Cotton (2000) is making its way West with a remake of the game. It features new witchy twists, stunning visuals, a local two-player mode, revamped snap-back, lock-on targeting, controller rumble plus speaker support, and more improvements for a more “luxurious” gaming experience. Retro Mode is there to add in the authentic charm of the original game. The cutscene audio is Japanese, but the game now has English, French, Spanish, Italian, and German subtitles.

Best described as a 3D rail shooter, Rainbow Cotton involves collecting power-ups, building up a collection of projectiles, and throwing them at enemies; there is also magic involved, of course. The game follows Cotton, a young witch, and her fairy friend Silk. Cotton is yearning for delicious Willow, but a wicked demon and his legion have stolen the Legendary Willow. She’ll hop onto her broomstick and fly off into a whacky adventure.

Developed by Success Corporation and published by ININ Games, Rainbow Cotton will be released for PC via Steam, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One on May 9.

Surprise! Pine Hearts is coming to Nintendo Switch

Pine Hearts has been on my radar for some time due to its consistent presence in video game showcases (like 2023’s Access-Ability “Summer” Showcase). It has always been labelled as a PC release, or at least it was until last week. It will now be releasing for PC and Nintendo Switch in late May. Described as a whimsical heart-tugging narrative adventure, Pine Hearts is a love letter to anyone who has experienced loss. It is a welcoming, cozy refuge where players can unwind and look back at fond memories. The latest trailer (below) shows off some of the charming characters, activities, and locales found in Pine Hearts Caravan Park:

Hop into the hiking boots of Tyke and begin his journey at Pine Hearts Caravan Park. Meet other campers, have cookouts and… find a monster in the woods?! Gather wood, eat marshmallows, pet dogs, and learn how to grill a perfect burger. Along the way, jump into Tyke’s childhood memories about times he spent at the park with his father. If you’re interested, read about the game’s accessibility options here.

Developed by Hyper Liminal Games and published by Little Nook (also part of Hyper Liminal Games), Pine Hearts will be released for PC via Steam and Nintendo Switch on May 23.

Turn-based rhythm JRPG Keylocker announced

Fun fact: this might be the official game announcement from the publisher but we’ve seen Keylocker before at a Guerrilla Collective Showcase in 2022. The world in Keylocker is one where music is both a weapon and the key to liberation. BOBO is a singer-songwriter trying to bring down a tyrannical regime that has made her dystopian metropolis come to complete silence. Through music, BOBO will execute rhythmic moves in real-time to get one up on her foes, uncover the mysteries of her city, headline concerts with her cybernetic band, and dismantle the corrupt system as a whole.

Tactical battles against the authorities harness the power of music to fuel the moves. You can swap between different movesets (and tactics) to master the rhythm and emerge victorious. There are multiple classes, branching quest lines, and a narrative influenced by player choice. Romantic and platonic connections can be built with diverse characters through meaningful interactions and gift-giving.

Developed by Moonana Games and published by Serenity Forge, Keylocker will be released for PC and Xbox Series in late Q3 2024.

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Lindsay picked up an NES controller for the first time at the age of 6 and instantly fell in love. She began reviewing GBA games 20 years ago and quickly branched out from her Nintendo comfort zone. She has has developed a great love of life sims and FMV titles. For her, accessibility is one of the most important parts of any game (but she also really appreciates good UI).

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