June 18: wallet threat level yellow

, | Games

Quantum Conundrum is from Kim Swift, one of the designers of Narbacular Drop, the puzzle game that inspired Portal and eventually led to Portal when Valve hired her. She has since left Valve. Quantum Conundrum is her first post-Valve game. As someone who didn’t play Portal for the puzzles — the genius of Portal is in the writing wrapped around a serviceable puzzle game — I’ll be curious to see what happens when you take a Portal designer out of Valve. Wallet threat level yellow.

Civilization V: Gods & Kings is the expansion for Civilization V. I’ve been playing it. Wallet threat level green.

A new version of Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers is out this week, giving folks a digital look at cards that won’t be out for reals until later this summer. Given how good the Magic videogames have been, and given how they’ve added gimmicky but effective new ways to play, this escalates the wallet threat level to yellow.

Pokemon Conquest for the Nintendo DS is a Pokemon strategy game from Koei. Let me write that again: a Pokemon strategy game from Koei. I’ve been playing it a bit, and it’s exactly what you’d expect. It reminds me a bit of the Devil Survivor games on the DS, but with squealing chirping Pokemons instead of devils, and with kidding Japanese warlords instead of Japanese school kids. Wallet threat level uhhh.

I heartily recommend half of the table in the Avengers Chronicles pinball tables from Zen Studios. Tune in tomorrow morning for specifics. And good luck trying to beat my high score on the Avengers table. I had one of those “OMG I Will Never Get This Lucky Again” balls in which the Avengers and I rocked that helicarrier. Suck it, Loki! Wallet threat level yellow.

Steel Battalion 2, also known as Steel Battalion Kinect, also also known as Steel Battalion No Thanks, is out this week. Wallet threat level green.

I haven’t played a Lego game since dinking around with one of the Harry Potters, but Traveller’s Tales sure knows how to get the most out of the formula. You might think Lego Batman 2 is just Arkham City for kids, but it looks like more of an open-world playground for DC Comics’ cast of superheroes. Wallet threat level yellow.