The games of September 2012

The holiday season is nearly upon us, as evidenced by the notable uptick in titles on the docket for September, and it's a diverse crowd this month. We've got big-name sequels and expansions like Borderlands 2, Dead or Alive 5, and World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, as well as anticipated downloadable affairs like Mark of the Ninja and Hell Yeah: Wrath of the Dead Rabbit, as well as a good selection of options for the kids and family. We're still a little ways off from the true year-end barrage, so take the time to savor some great new games this month before you have to schedule out game time to fit everything in!

September 4

The Sims 3: Supernatural

Platform: PC
EU: September 7

Nearly every month seems to offer some new heap of The Sims 3 content, be it a full-on expansion or just another silly pack full of designer digital pants, but the latest entry – The Sims 3: Supernatural – actually has our interest piqued. We recently took a hard look at the mystical expansion and already found six things to love about it, including the ability to play as a fantastical fortuneteller… or a realistic one that simply swindles its customers out of cash. Also intriguing: undead creepers, colorful ghosts, werewolves, and even Plants vs. Zombies-themed content. If anything, it sounds like an amusing new twist for what's usually well-worn terrain.

Zen Pinball 2

Platform: PSN
EU: September 4

Releasing as a free core download, Zen Pinball 2 updates Zen Studios' existing pinball sim to work on both PlayStation 3 and Vita, with downloaded tables usable on either platform with a single purchase. Much like the studio's Pinball FX series on Xbox Live Arcade, Zen Pinball serves up a super stellar digital representation of the beloved bar and arcade game, with a whopping 26 tables available for purchase on day one, including a mysterious PopCap-themed one that'll be revealed during PAX this weekend. Finally having access to all of the existing tables (including Marvel Pinball ones) on Vita is sure to be an awesome addition to the handheld in particular.

Everyone Sing

Platform: Xbox 360, PS3, Wii
EU: September 14

O-Games is the latest to try its hand at the microphone-based karaoke affair with Everyone Sing, which looks a bit like SingStar in its usage of licensed music videos overlaid with lyrics and pitch indicators. Tracks like A-Ha's "Take On Me" and Taio Cruz's "Come On Girl" are included amongst the 35 songs – we're guessing this budget affair isn't primed to be a DLC-toting platform, by the way – and its hook amidst a well-stocked singing genre is a series of party games, like Pass the Bomb and Know Your Song, as well as an "eight-player mode" in which four pairs apparently swap the mic during the song.

September 5


Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
EU: September 5

It's tough for any game to make a big impression amidst the chaos of E3, especially a colorful side-scroller that's not plastered on a towering wall of screens, but Pid did just that; in fact, we said it "might be this year's Limbo." We're not ones to throw around such hopeful praise without darn good reason, but luckily, this debut entry from the ex-GRIN devs at Might and Delight offers plenty to look forward to. As you'll see in the trailer, this platformer (coming to PC and PSN later) stars a little boy with one seriously helpful gadget in an odd world, with charming art design and music in tow, not to mention some very neat puzzle mechanics. We're excited, and by all means, you should be as well.

Kung Fu Strike: The Warrior's Rise

Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
EU: September 5

Let's be honest. Kung Fu Strike: The Warrior's Rise isn't the most electric title we've heard of late; it sort of feels like the result of a campy martial arts film name generator. As for the game itself? It's a beat-'em-up, but rather than putting players through lengthy stages, it instead serves up a gauntlet of rooms to survive through, with each offering more (and more intense) enemies to deface with killer combos and fists of fury. The PC version dropped some weeks back, and the word on that version is to expect a heaping helping of challenge as the 28 included stages stack up. Masochists, this may be the game for you this September.

September 7

Mark of the Ninja

Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
September 7

Mark of the Ninja earns the elusive Friday release date for an Xbox Live Arcade title, but the Microsoft-published adventure has the hype to back up the special slot. It's a side-scrolling stealth action game developed by Klei Entertainment, the studio behind the Shank series, and while it similarly sports an attractive hand-drawn look, the similarities stop right about there. Instead of creating a badass ninja that simply kills everything in sight, the lead's ideal here is to remain unseen as he completes objectives and evades guards, motion-trackers, and other hazards. Stealth is typically a 3D genre, so the switch to 2D feels marvelously unique, and we came away from our hands-on plenty intrigued.


Platform: PC (Steam)
EU: September 7

Closure began life as a browser-based game, so technically it's already on PC – and you're welcome to play that version to your heart's content. But that original foray into this brilliant indie concept is a mere shadow of the final, full-fledged release, which hit PlayStation Network earlier this year and will launch on Steam next week. Closure includes dozens of puzzling stages built on illumination or the lack thereof, with an orb of light dictating what does or doesn't exist in the world. We called the PSN version a "neatly-constructed package that wonderfully showcases a smart and challenging puzzle game," and expect much the same from the Steam release.