Summer video games could keep us away from the sun for hours

A scene from "Uncharted 4: A Thief's End." (Photo credit: Naughty Dog)

A scene from “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.” (Photo credit: Naughty Dog)

By Rory Appleton
The Fresno Bee

People love summer for a variety of reasons — swimming pools, barbecues, running around half-naked on a beach.

Those all have their places, but the best part of summer is hunkering down indoors with your beloved gaming machines while you do your very best not to melt. Unfortunately, I’ve had to grow up and no longer get summers off. But I won’t let that stop me.

Here are a few options I’m considering as I prepare my summer bunker — I mean my apartment:

UNCHARTED 4: A THIEF’S END — OUT NOW
This is an odd choice, as you may remember that I hate this franchise. But the insanely high review scores are tempting me. It is currently the third-highest rated PS4 game of all time on Metacritic. I review games, so I know how full of . . . insight we critics are. I may have to give the franchise one final shot. It certainly looks pretty.

DOOM — OUT NOW
I’m a little too young to be a diehard “DOOM” fan. By the time I was old enough for the hyper-violent alien extinction simulator, I had already latched on to similar titles like “Halo.”

However, the name commands respect. I’ll be interested to see how it is received. If everyone raves about it, I may come around. I am a firm believer in peer pressure.

HOMEFRONT: THE REVOLUTION — OUT NOW
I am going to proceed with caution here. I was quite excited when the game was announced. It looked like a funky modernization of “Red Dawn,” so I figured at the very least I could just run around screaming “WOLVERINES!”

However, it’s been heavily delayed and even sold mid-development to a completely different company. Deep Silver, which created the “Dead Island” series, is capable, but I could see this game being a technical disaster.

We’ll all have our answers soon.

TOTAL WAR: WARHAMMER — MAY 24
I am far more certain about this title than my previous three suggestions.

The “Total War” franchise is as rock-solid as they come when it comes to real-time strategies, and “Warhammer” may be just as strong. Some people are concerned about the melding — typically “Total War” sticks to historical periods like Medieval Europe or Ancient Rome — but I’m certain it will be fantastic.

The only thing that can trip this game up is technical issues. Developer Creative Assembly has struggled with bugs on a few previous “Total War” entries, so let’s hope they are properly exterminated.

OVERWATCH — MAY 24
This game is a slam dunk. I couldn’t put down the beta version, cramming 14 hours of gameplay into a few days. That’s a lot for me at this point in my life.

“Overwatch” is a beautiful mashing of “Team Fortress” and “League of Legends,” which are probably my two favorite PC games of all time. Developer/publisher Blizzard knows strategy (“StarCraft”), and its sister company Activision knows shooters (“Call of Duty”), so it’s no surprise they were able to mix the two so well.

We will have to give Blizzard some time to balance the characters and maps out. There will probably be some server issues. But that’s to be expected of a new multiplayer game. I truly believe this game could be as addicting as “League of Legends.” And I’ve played “League of Legends” every week for about six years now.

NO MAN’S SKY — JUNE 21
It’s almost here. My body is so ready.
I’ve been gushing about this game for nearly two years. You know it’s about space exploration in a nearly infinite universe.

No man better even try to speak to me once this game drops. If you see me out in public the week of June 21, know that I am only out there because I am working or gathering supplies for the voyage ahead. I like talking to random people about my stories, but it will have to be done during the other 51 weeks of 2016.

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