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SPORTSFRIENDS (PS4, PS3, PC, MAC, LINUX)
BY DIE GUTE FABRIK
The New Wave of Local Multiplayer is upon us, and Sportsfriends is offering a bumper crop of couch-bound competition. With four—four!—games, including Johann Sebastian Joust, BaraBariBall, Super Pole Riders, and Hokra, this is basically a party in a box. If you’re the type of person who has friends that live nearby and play videogames, this is what you’ll want to pop in between rounds of Towerfall.
Perfect for: 24-hour party people, parents who are tired of Lego games, anyone who needs to break in a new couch
Playtime: Until you kick people out or get kicked out
HEIANKYO PARAMETERS (PC)
Heiankyo Parameters takes the idea of an RPG, abstracts it into a graphically minimal interface, and gives the player a sense of being a puppetmaster at a switchboard rather than a “hero for the ages.” Parameters improves upon the previous Heiankyo by throwing city building into the mix, but the game’s previous allure—that is, its surprisingly compelling mix of strategy and grinding—remains intact.
Perfect for: People who want more Candy Box but less waiting, fans of stats, those harboring animosity towards yellow boxes
Playtime: A little more than an hour.
MARIO GOLF: WORLD TOUR (3DS)
BY CAMELOT SOFTWARE PLANNING
Golf is a pretty tough sport. While people don’t try to tackle you to the ground it’s still pretty hard to hit a little ball a couple hundred yards while fighting the wind, obstacles, and your own nerves. One of the great things about Mario Golf: World Tour is that it condenses that satisfaction down into a few button presses. Also great: all that Mario sports goofiness.
Perfect for: Mario enthusiasts, golf enthusiasts who don’t mind Piranha Plants, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 ex-pats
Playtime: Hours alone, much longer with others.