This is the season of teases, rumors, and trailers. It takes a little more to catch my eye than just a flashy sizzle reel right now. But when I woke up this morning and saw a trailer bouncing around for the retro-looking "198X," I thought I'd check it out. Boy, am I glad I did.
If you want to see the trailer before reading my opines about it, just go ahead and hit play. It's shorter than two minutes and worth your time, especially you're a nostalgic retro-head looking for something both fresh and familiar. It's coming to PlayStation 4 and PC on June 20, with Switch and Xbox One versions to follow.
In a series of short gameplay shots, we hear the narrator (and presumptive game protagonist) say what kinds of genre 198X isn't "just," while high-res shots of gameplay imitating games like Streets of Rage, Outrun, and Strider flash across the screen. "This is the story of my life," they say, cutting to a face reflected in the sheen of an arcade cabinet.
Billed simply as "over-the-top arcade-action meets coming-of-age drama," the site for 198X bills itself as an "arcade epic." It follows the story of Kid, a teen stuck between youth and adulthood, finding solace in the local arcade. But soon, the line between game and reality starts to blur.
You play through several different styles of arcade games, encountering twists on the formula as they go on. Really though, the trailer alone has me sold on it. It's warm, memorable, and good at invoking certain nostalgic feelings for those who have fond memories of the fluorescent glow of an arcade cab. We'll see how it all comes together June 20.