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Single-Player Gaming Picks For April 2019



Single Player Games April 2019 SteamWorld Falcon Age Days Gone

Our apologies for trying to mislead you yesterday about where you should spend your money this month. The time has come to address that wrong and deliver what truly are the most eye-catching games of the coming month.

Falcon Age

Release Date: April 9, 2019
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation VR

Despite appearing briefly during PlayStation’s debut State of Play presentation, Falcon Age continues to fly under the radar for many gamers because of that VR connection. However, developer Outerloop Games is maintaining maximum accessibility by ensuring that the game can also be played without PSVR.

Falcon Age begins on a world strip-mined and culturally devastated by the uncaring actions of robotic colonial invaders. Enter Ara, a young woman who, while in prison for a minor crime, befriends a baby falcon. The pair escape together, and so begins an adventure of rebellion and resistance.

As players explore the desolate landscape, they will have to raise, train, and take care of their avian companion. Players will also engage in first person combat, with the falcon taking the traditional role of a ranged option. The gameplay trailer embedded below also points to the inclusion of some light survival mechanics.

SteamWorld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech

Release Date: April 25, 2019
Platforms: Switch

The SteamWorld series continues late this month, with developer Image & Form Games once again shifting gears to deliver a card-based RPG.

As may be expected from that brief description, a core gameplay loop is the collection of cards to increase the offensive capabilities of the party. Alongside that progression mechanic, however, is an XP system more traditionally associated with RPGs.

Anyone who has played one of the developer’s previous games will be familiar with SteamWorld Quest’s humorous tone and penchant for robot-oriented puns. Also returning is the eye-catching cartoon aesthetic that has aged so well, even from the low-res series debut SteamWorld Tower Defense on the 3DS.

Early impressions of the project have led to rapturous enthusiasm, with Hardcore Gamer claiming that “[i]t will not only be fun, but it might also be a turning point for games.” While SteamWorld Quest is only scheduled to launch on the Switch for the time being, most previous series entries have eventually made their way to a multitude of platforms.

Days Gone

Release Date: April 26, 2019
Platforms: PlayStation 4

Lacklustre early showings of Days Gone raised concerns that it would be an awkward, less interesting cousin to Sony’s more invigorating projects, such as God of War and The Last of Us, though Bend Studio has turned that impression around.

More than 12 years have passed since Bend Studio last worked on a console project, with the intervening period being filled with portable spin-offs to the Resistance and Uncharted franchises.

Days Gone is far more ambitious than those titles, though. Indeed, a key point of difference from most of Sony’s first-party offerings is the systemic nature of Days Gone’s design. Melee, gunplay, crafting, dynamic weather, vehicle customisation, fuel management, spatially aware AI, and stealth comprise just some of the multitudinous moving parts of the experience. Coupled with those elements are a massive open world and an estimated playtime in excess of 30 hours.

However, fans of the narrative-driven approach are not left out, as the game will also include around six hours of cutscenes, as biker protagonist Deacon St. John tries to survive in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by zombie analogues called Freakers.


Outside of these three headliners, April is chock full of single-player-pleasing games. Strategy fans have the espionage thriller Sigma Theory: Global Cold War on April 18 and Imperator: Rome, the latest grand strategy project from the team behind Stellaris and Crusader Kings II, on April 26.

Meanwhile, Vambrace: Cold Soul and Zanki Zero: Last Beginning hold down the RPG fort, the former without a specific date yet, but the latter on April 9.

Platformer sequel Super Meat Boy Forever is also expected out this month, fans of campy action have Earth Defense Force: Iron Rain to look forward to on April 11, and anyone still anxiously waiting for a Burnout sequel should look to Dangerous Driving on April 9.

Finally, story gamers get the choice of Victorian-era mystery Dance of Death: Du Lac & Fey on April 5 or archaeology adventure Heaven’s Vault on April 16.

Have we forgotten anything that you’re excited for? Let us know down below or on our shiny new Discord server.

Damien Lawardorn is an aspiring novelist, journalist, and essayist. His goal in writing is to inspire readers to engage and think, rather than simply consume and enjoy. With broad interests ranging from literature and video games to fringe science and social movements, his work tends to touch on the unexpected. Damien is the former Editor-in-Chief of OnlySP. More of his work can be found at

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The PlayStation 5 Specs Are Beefy, But Not Entirely Necessary



PlayStation 5

Six years have passed since the launch of the PlayStation 4, and, consequently, the launch of the eighth generation of consoles. Throughout this time the industry has seen a shift in how the medium is consumed. Nowadays, gamers are no longer forced to experience titles through conventional controller inputs thanks to the implementation of VR, while visual performance and optimization are at record heights given the current technology available to developers.

For well over a year now, rumors and speculations have sprung up surrounding the next generation of hardware from both Sony and Microsoft, with the latter being more open about its technological aspirations. Despite withholding true hardware specifications, Microsoft does not shy away from igniting conversations around its next systems (yes plural). Sony, on the other hand, has been extremely tight lipped on the topic, only hinting at the PlayStation 5 during a discussion on the success of the PS4.

Until now, consumers were left to speculate on the possibilities of what the PlayStation 5 will contain. To the surprise of many, however, Sony has unexpectedly opened up about the final specifications that will be found within the upcoming hardware. Lead architect on Sony’s next console Mark Cerny detailed how important this generational leap is for the company and what consumers can expect from its beefy machine. While confirming some rumors, and debunking others, Cerny expressed Sony’s desire for the new generation to allow “for fundamental changes in what a game could be.” As a bold statement by Cerny, this ideology will help Sony fall in line with the trajectory that other studios, such as Xbox, have had during the eighth generation of consoles.

For those who are unaware, the PS4 launched in 2013 to wide success, re-establishing Sony’s brand at the forefront of console gaming. Although the console became a household and media juggernaut, many tech-savvy individuals were quick to point out the flaws within its hardware. For example, much of the specifications that the PS4 touted were, in fact, already outdated at release when compared to high-end PC rigs. Despite the obvious limitations of console gaming, the choice of hardware found within the PS4 proved puzzling, as it was being marketed as a giant leap forward for the industry. Sony would later attempt to mitigate the ongoing damage caused by underperforming hardware with the mid-generation iteration of the PS4 Pro, though this attempt only served to extend the console lifecycle by another few years.

From the outset, Sony knew its largest issue was underperforming hardware, and, thanks to the information detailed by Mark Cerny, the community finally has some insight on how that will be addressed. For starters, the CPU found within the PS5’s hardware will use the third generation of AMD’s Ryzen line which is a massive leap over the PS4’s Jaguar chip. Although I am not much for technical jargon within the PC economy, I do understand how much the Jaguar chip held back performance within the eighth generation, and I welcome the Ryzen with open arms. My only hope is that this upgrade will be enough to sustain the PlayStation 5 throughout the years and maintain its presence as a PC competitor.

Additionally, the custom AMD Navi GPU that will be present in the PS5 will support ray-tracing, a feature that only a few games fully utilize on PC, but nonetheless will provide a more realistic experience. Although this specific feature is a welcome addition to the console ecosystem, I honestly never expected it to be a priority. While having real-time accurate reflections within the environment will definitely increase immersion, I would personally desire a more optimized experience that will never falter during play. We will have to wait until more is revealed on the PS5’s ray-tracing technology, but I can only hope that it will not take priority over performance.

Building upon the implementation of ray-tracing with the PS5, Cerny noted that, for him, the audio technology present within the PS4 did not achieve the standards of a generational leap from the PS3. According to Cerny, the PS5 will implement 3D Audio, dramatically changing how gamers perceive sound within a video game. The inclusion of 3D Audio sounds like a well-deserved feature for PlayStation veterans. However, I feel as though this addition will only benefit those who have an entertainment setup that supports it. Unfortunately, individuals who resort to stereo speakers could potentially see no difference in how the audio is delivered from PS5 titles compared to those on PS4.

The interview also provided information surrounding the type of storage available in the PS5. As a much-needed addition, the PlayStation 5 will contain a solid state drive (SSD), which will allow for faster load times and experiences. As many PlayStation users know, the PS4 can provide some appalling load times, leading this issue to be a constant topic of discussion throughout the entire generation. The possibility of a game having long load times was so great that it often made headlines in video game’s media, pleading for action to be taken (Bloodborne anyone?).

Thankfully, information on the PS5’s hard drive capabilities does not require too much speculation, as Cerny provided an example of how fast it will be. According to him, Marvel’s Spider-Man, which has an average of a 15 second load time on a PS4 Pro, will have just 0.8 second load times on a PS5. No indication is yet forthcoming as to how consistent this technological feat will be across different titles, and I urge consumers to temper their expectations on the speed of the PS5 because only time will tell how efficient it can be. Regardless of my concerns surrounding inconsistencies, the PS5 will feature the fastest load times of any console before it, eliminating one of the greatest issues of the PS4’s hardware.

Bloodborne gameplay 1

In addition to the announcement that PlayStation 5 will have an SSD, Cerny confirmed a much-desired feature in backwards compatibility. Although this feature will not reach as far back as the competition, the PS5 will be compatible with PS4 titles, both digital and physical. This was to be expected—seeing as both consoles will run off the same architecture—but the silence from Sony proved worrisome for some fans, myself included. While I am disappointed that PS3 titles will not be compatible with the PS5, I understand that the cell processor of that earlier device would take more effort than it is worth to make games from the platform compatible. Regardless, PlayStation fans can rejoice in this news, as it further validates any investment into the PS4’s ecosystem.

Where I draw most of my criticism from Mark Cerny’s report on the specifications of the PS5 is within the idea that Sony’s next hardware will support 8K resolution. To be clear, I am not stating that such an achievement is impossible; rather I question the necessity of it. Given everything that we know about the PS5, one can assume that the system will cost around USD $500. With 4K televisions slowly becoming a household norm, is it worthwhile for a company to be devoting resources into a feature that will likely not be consumer friendly for years to come? I understand that Sony is at a disadvantage right now with the Xbox One X outputting at native 4K, but seeking to outdo the competition to this extent seems financially unobtainable for most consumers.

My concerns develop from individuals who hear the news of PS5 and 8K resolution and assume it to be the Second Coming. It is unfeasible to have a $500 to $600 console run at a native 8K resolution. Anyone who believes this will happen need look no further than PlayStation’s competition with the Xbox One X. At its launch, Microsoft was selling the Xbox One X at a loss, solely to prevent the console from exceeding the $500 mark and turning away consumers. Microsoft’s current machine is capable of outputting at a native 4K resolution, whereas the PS4 Pro can only achieve the same through upscaled checkerboarding. The PS5 will surely be able to output at a native 4K resolution, but to expect anything more with the current state of consumer technology is wishful thinking. I urge consumers to understand that if the PS5 has an 8K setting, it will likely be only achieved in the future and through a checkerboarded solution.

Spider-Man PS4

Given the rumors that the next generation of hardware will be the last, Sony may be trying to future proof the PS5 so that it can remain on the market for as long as possible. Given the information provided by Mark Cerny, Sony may be intending to utilize every feature of the PS5 to its entirety before considering what could come after. By future proofing the PlayStation 5, Sony can anticipate where the industry is heading, ultimately eliminating the need for a mid-generation upgrade with a PS5 Pro.

I have been a PlayStation fan for as long as I can remember, but have recently branched out with the Xbox One X and PC gaming to experience what those ecosystems have to offer. By broadening my horizons, I maintain an outside perspective on how Sony is upholding its promise to gamers and how the competition tackles similar issues created by an ever-growing industry. With the eighth generation nearing its completion, I look forward to discussions such as this one as it generates hope and excitement for the future of the brand.

While the PlayStation 4’s colossal success this generation will provide a jump-start in sales for the company’s new hardware, the beginning of a new generation only reinvigorates the console wars. As a firm believer in what both Sony and Microsoft will do to shape the future of the industry, I am reminded that competition breeds excellence. Furthermore, when competition is present between both parties to win over public appeal, in the end, consumers emerge victorious.

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