Plus Bleed 2 and The Raven Remastered.
December’s just around the corner, meaning we’re thankfully entering the final stretch of 2020 (surprise alien invasion or Elder God awakening notwithstanding); it also means there’s one last wheeze of effort from Xbox Games With Gold before 2021, which closes out the year with developer Double Fine’s Stacking, Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell, and more.
Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell – originally released as a standalone expansion for Saints Row 4 – will be available, in its Xbox 360 guise, from 1st December to 15th December, and offers a decent blast of entertainment for fans of developer Volition’s increasingly irreverent open-world series. Eurogamer called it, “very obviously a budget Saints Row adventure,” back in 2015, “[but] a likeable one, where both time and pennies have been spent wisely.”
1st December also marks the arrival of The Raven Remastered on Xbox Games With Gold, where it’ll remain available until 31st December. This one’s an Agatha-Christie-style mystery turned point-and-click-adventure, in which a bumbling Swiss police constable, Anton Jakob Zellner, becomes embroiled in a conspiracy, circa 1964, after he’s tasked with guarding an Ancient Egyptian treasure as it travels cross-country on a train.
Next up is Double Fine’s wonderful puzzle adventure Stacking, which unfolds in a world of sentient matryoshka dolls. It’s a lovely thing, full of warmth and whimsy, with a wonderful art style, and it won over Eurogamer’s Christian Donlan back in 2011 too. “This is generous and imaginative,” he wrote in his review, “and the richness of the world is more than enough to make up for an occasionally tricksy camera, a fair amount of backtracking and a tendency to pad things out as it heads towards the final act.”.
Rounding out December’s Xbox Games With Gold offerings is Bleed 2, available from 16th December. Its developer, Ian Campbell, describes it as a “relentless arcade action game featuring air-dodging, bullet-reflecting, and tons of bosses”. Eurogamer, meanwhile, called it “two hours of brilliance; with tremendous scope for replayability,” saying, “This one deserves an S rank of its own.” It’ll remain available on Xbox Games With Gold until 15th January.