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Ben Joy
Ben JoyBen keeps the Play Team ticking, helps clients define their digital offering and manages the unruly team. You’ll often find him hitting the golf course too.

It's been a busy week or so in the world of games, with lots of events taking the place of the cancelled E3. So it's no surprise that this week's roundup is filled with some of the Play Team's favourites from the many trailers and announcements we've seen from the likes of Not-E3, Summer Game Fest and more.

The Plucky Squire

I've always loved E3. Maybe not so much the event or the ESA organisation itself, but the spirit of E3, the idea that for a handful of days, the industry comes together to show off what the future of gaming will bring.

Obviously, things have changed. E3 as we knew it may never be a thing again, despite the claims we've heard from some organising members. But I'm thankful that we still get to pretend we're at the world's biggest gaming expo, watch some live streams, and have most of the big names in the industry bring something to the table.

One game that has come out on top is The Plucky Squire, a beautiful, sumptuous looking game that combines 2D and 3D gameplay with an incredible array of art styles. Talk about the magic of (Not) E3 - we had no idea that this game even existed a week ago, and now it's at the top of our wishlists. That's the power that a truly great trailer can have. 




It's been a busy time for the games industry with Not-E3 the last few weeks, with hundreds of announcements, releases, interviews and A LOT of trailers.

The standout for me was the wonderful Nightingale - a gaslamp fantasy survival/crafting/exploration game coming out later this year. I've not played many games of this type before, but the aesthetics of this game are right up my alley: just look at the costuming and monster design! The worldbuilding looks gorgeous and unique, and there are some fun mechanics like card-crafting, base-building and exploration that I love the look of!




A game that really caught my attention was Routine. The game was first announced 8 years ago, but never saw the light of day and many assumed the game had quietly died. Until the Summer Game Fest last week where a re-reveal trailer was shown. 

The game is being developed by Lunar Software and published by Raw Fury. We don't have a release date yet, but there are many who are incredibly excited to see this game still alive and kicking, and like me, eagerly awaiting more news. 

It's very fitting with the seemingly current trend of spooky space themed games. As many of you may know, especially those who saw me play Five Nights at Freddy's, horror isn't really my thing! I am, in truth, a big scaredy cat. However, I am intrigued by this game and I actually want to give it a whirl when it comes out. The trailer has really pulled me in. I'm ready to put my nerves to the test again once I can get my hands on the game!

Ben J



As Ben showed in this week's live show, the follow up to Hollow Knight, Silksong has a new trailer which has me excited. The new game looks to be more of the same metroidvania style gameplay and a familiar aesthetic. Sometimes that's exactly what fans want. You don't need to rip up the playbook to appease the audience and create a successful iteration of an IP. In Silksong you play a new character (who appeared in the original) so we can expect a new storyline and set of skills to explore. A day one Xbox game pass release is a nice bonus too!



Games sales dip

According to The NPD Group’s monthly report, games sales in May were at their lowest for a single month since February 2020, down 19% year-on-year to (just) $3.7 billion.

The games industry experienced a huge surge in spending during Covid lockdowns, with millions of people around the world turning to games for entertainment (and escape) whilst being stuck indoors.

May’s dip in sales marks a significant milestone but not a wholly unexpected one, considering there were no big new games. With only one new game in the top 50 (Evil Dead: The Game) and sales for Elden Ring starting to slow down, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim managed to sneak into the top 20 (US) for May, its first appearance in the top 20 since November 2017, with Steam accounting for nearly half of its May sales.

Ben G

More Etch Play

You can find Etch Play on all the usual social networks you might imagine. In particular, we hang out on Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube

We also have a live show every Thursday, where we recap the latest games industry news in video podcast form. It's a lot of fun. If you'd like to check it out, why not follow us on Twitch?  You can check out yesterday's live show right here 👇


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