"Planet Coaster", "Final Fantasy XV" among Novemeber releases

November has arrived, bringing the holiday shopping season with it. With an eclectic mix of returning fan favorites, long-awaited second installments and spiritual successors, the month looks to be another exciting month for gamers.

Despite the lower-than-expected reviews, Ubisoft’s open world hacking game Watch Dogs is receiving a sequel, Watch Dogs 2. When making the sequel, developers at Ubisoft Montreal made it a priority to acknowledge all the issues that gamers had with the original and aimed to make the game more than just a rehash of the previous installment. The original game’s protagonist Aiden Pierce has been replaced with a completely new character named Marcus Holloway, a hacker who has been framed for a crime he did not commit.

The rendition of San Francisco in the game is twice as big as the orignial game’s rendition in Chicago world in the original game and will be available to explore in its entirety from the start of the game. In regard to the criticized driving mechanics in the previous game, the Watch Dog team is receiving assistance from Ubisoft Reflections, the team behind the company’s Driver series. Additionally, it is one of several games branded with “forward compatibility” with Sony’s new PlayStation 4 model that support s 4K high definition TV when the game releases on Nov. 15.

One of the most prolific series of games on PC is, without a doubt,  the RollerCoaster Tycoon series. However, the latest installment of the series, RollerCoaster Tycoon World, has been delayed indefinitely after the public beta released during the summer received overwhelmingly negative reviews from testers. At the same time, the third game’s developer, Frontier Developments, has taken up the main concept of the series and completely changed it to create an entirely new franchise separate from RollerCoaster Tycoon, called Planet Coaster.

As is typical from any amusement park management simulation, players can create whatever type of park they can imagine. While the custom coaster builder is a pivotal part of the gameplay, the classic piece-by-piece method of building has been fused together with a new spline mechanic, more akin to modern coaster builders. Custom roller coasters and park buildings can be easily shared online. The new game includes a feature called “global village” to make sharing more widely available and easy to do.

Also new to this game is a play mode called “crash mode.” One of the unintentionally popular elements of RollerCoaster Tycoon was the ability to intentionally build coasters in a way that would result in them crashing and hurting guests.

This new mode explicitly makes this goal the main objective  of the game. While the game is slated to come out on Nov. 17, many have already played the game via the two alpha builds that Frontier released during the summer, with the early reviews being very promising, especially compared to those of RollerCoaster Tycoon World’s public beta.

Right in the middle of the Pokemon Go craze, Pokemon Sun and Moon have finally arrived for the Nintendo 3DS. The first games of the seventh generation in the Pokemon franchise, Sun and Moon continue where Pokemon X and Y left off, shifting gameplay from a two-dimensional to a three-dimensional format. Other than that, the games have everything that fans have come to expect from the franchise’s 20-year existence. One interesting difference between the two games is that the in-game clocks in both games are set 12 hours apart, with Sun operating in real time and Moon taking place 12 hours in the future.

The game will also be compatible with Nintendo’s cloud service Pokemon Bank. One major addition is that any pokemon caught in the Virtual Console ports of generation one Pokemon titles will be transferrable to the new games, including pokemon caught in Pokemon X and Y and the enhanced remakes of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire. This feature, however, will not be available to players until Jan. 2017, long after the games’ Nov. 18 launch.

Three years after it was revealed during Sony’s reveal for the PlayStation 4, and over 10 years after development began, the long-awaited installment of Square Enix’s legendary role playing game series is finally arriving in the form of Final Fantasy XV.

The previous major console game in the series, Final Fantasy XIII, received polarizing reviews from fans and critics,and the developers are looking to win back the fans that were taken aback by XIII. While the game is branded as a sequel, XV is actually a standalone installment that operates as if its predecessor never happened. In a stark contrast to previous games in the series, the overall atmosphere is significantly darker and more foreboding. There is also a greater emphasis on more realistic environments and human characters within the game.

Several of the locations in the game are based on real-life locations like the Bahamas, Tokyo and Venice. Even the storyline takes a subtler approach than previous titles, with its group adventure story eschewing the typical story within the series of a lone warrior who meets others through destiny. Final Fantasy is slated to close off the month on Nov. 29.