Nightmares into Dreams
Right on cue, the sneaky petes over at Dealabs have leaked Sony’s PlayStation Plus offerings for the coming month of August — and this one is a real doozy, as subscribers at the Essential tier or higher will bag themselves the fantastic releases Yakuza: Like a Dragon (PS4/PS5), Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 & 2 (PS4/PS5), and Little Nightmares (PS4).
Released in January 2020, Sega’s Yakuza: Like a Dragon had some mighty shoes to fill, specifically the snakeskin shoes of beloved protagonists Kazuma Kiryu. If a change of protagonist wasn’t enough, the developer Team Yakuza also took the bold step of replacing the series’ brawler action with a suitably slapstick take on turn-based strategy. Against all the odds, the changes were a hit with the majority of the fanbase, and Yakuza: Like a Dragon launched to rave praise, becoming one of 2020’s best-loved titles.
Developed by veteran studio Vicarious Visions, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 & 2 was a ground-up remake of two of the most iconic PlayStation releases of all time. Meticulously recreating the original titles’ maps, mechanics, and rhythm to a 1:1 capacity, Vicarious Visions absolutely delivered, with a title that sports the modern aesthetics of today’s technology, married to the excellent and compelling gameplay of the ’90s classics. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 & 2 is one of the most authentic remakes ever crafted.
Over on the spooky side of life, cult puzzle platformer Little Nightmares was developed by indie outfit Tarsier Studios and published by Bandai Namco back in the fall of 2017. Featuring a compelling and unnerving creepy-cute aesthetic, Little Nightmares sees players guide our brave hero, Six, as she picks her way through a twisted, dark world, solving puzzles and avoiding dangers on a quest to return to the real world as we know it. Highly praised for its atmosphere and smart design, Little Nightmares would be followed by a sequel in 2021.
Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 & 2, and Little Nightmares will be available to download for all PlayStation Plus subscribers in August. The current trinity of releases — Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time, The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan, and Arcadeageddon — are still available to download right now.
Senior Editor – Chris has been playing video games since the 1980s. Former Saturday Night Slam Master. Graduated from Galaxy High with honors. Twitter: @ChrisxMoyse