1. Final Fantasy 8 Remastered is the next best thing to reliving our best JRPG life before Final Fantasy 7 Remake
In the collective mindset of the Final Fantasy fan community, Final Fantasy 8 sits pretty high in the rankings of the JRPG series’ best entries to date. It’s no wonder, then, that Square Enix is releasing a remastered version of the 1999 PlayStation classic for modern consoles this week, especially as a way to whet player’s appetites before the real nostalgia blast comes in the form of Final Fantasy 7 Remake (opens in new tab) next year. Upgraded with a host of visual upgrades and quality of life improvements to the core gameplay, Final Fantasy 8 Remastered is the perfect way to eat up the final days of the summer, and maybe the rest of the year, too.
What: Final Fantasy 8 Remastered
Where: PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch
When: September 3
2. Got Xbox Games Pass? Play Gears 5 several days earlier than everyone else, for no extra cost
Xbox Games Pass really is the gift that keeps on giving. Not only is every upcoming Xbox One exclusive game made available to download and play from launch day via Microsoft’s ‘Netflix for gaming’ subscription service, but members will be able to enjoy Gears 5 (opens in new tab) from as soon as this week, four days earlier than anyone else. The Coalition’s incoming sequel to 2016’s Gears of War 4 (opens in new tab) is being hailed as the most ambitious Gears game yet in the flagship cover shooter series, and our recent hands-on with the title (opens in new tab) certainly suggests that’s the case. All you’ll need is an active Game Pass account and an internet connection, and you’ll be able to play on Xbox One and PC from this Saturday, September 6, onwards.
What: Gears 5 Early Access
Where: PC and Xbox One
When: September 6
3. A bumper-sized It: Chapter Two brings the Pennywise saga to a close
Start blowing up those balloons – and stay away from any storm drains. You won’t want to miss this. It: Chapter Two lands later this week, and it clocks in at a whopping 165 minutes.
Why the extended runtime? Well, The Losers’ Club from the first movie are returning in flashback scenes, while the pitch-perfect casting of their adult selves, including the likes of Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, and (if you believe the early reactions (opens in new tab)), an award-winning turn from Bill Hader will attempt to bring an end to It’s reign of terror in Derry, Maine. There’s a whole lot to pack in. It’s sure to provide just as many scares and sleep-reducing moments as the original, too. Plus, even if Pennywise is defeated here, there’s the spectre of an It supercut (opens in new tab) combining both movies potentially being on the horizon. Gulp.
What: It: Chapter Two
When: September 6
4. Enter the Wu-Tang with a new Hulu docudrama about the collective
Wu-Tang: An American Saga is a new Hulu drama series that will tell the origin story of hip-hop heroes the Wu-Tang clan. You don't have to worry about it being a cheesy Lifetime version of the group's story either, because the show was has RZA as one of the principle creators, Method Man exec producing, and Ghostface Killah, Inspectah Deck, Masta Killa, and GZA as consulting producers. RZA has said the story will touch on subjects "we were maybe shy to say in front of a camera... when you grow up in the ‘hood, you think every camera is a cop." Moonlight star Ashton Sanders will play RZA.
What: Wu-Tang: An American Saga
When: September 4
5. Monster Hunter World: Iceborne transports hunters to Hoarfrost Reach
Iceborne is to Monster Hunter World what Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is to the base game. More than a DLC, it's a massive expansion meant to both rekindle and relaunch World itself. The list of Monster Hunter World: Iceborne monsters (opens in new tab) is well into the double-digits and features many fan-favorites as well as plenty of all-new monsters, including two new Elder Dragons. Besides that, the new Master Rank hunts will effectively add harder versions of all existing monsters, not to mention another tier of gear to chase. There's a frosty new biome, a new camp to upgrade, dozens of new moves and attacks utilizing the upgraded Slinger and its Clutch Claw add-on, and plenty of highly requested balance and quality of life changes (opens in new tab). It looks better the more we see of it, and we can't wait to play it ourselves.
What: Monster Hunter World: Iceborne expansion
Where: PS4, Xbox One
When: September 6 (on consoles; January 2020 on PC)
Release Radar picks the best games, movies, and shows of the next seven days every Monday at 11am GMT.