Devolver Digital showcase features five real games, virtual abandoned expo centre, red sauce aplenty

Lacey Hannan as CMO Linda Masters in the Devolver Direct 2020. — Devolver Digital/YouTube/AFP Relaxnews

Indie publisher Devolver Digital kept up its mid-year custom of cramming more wild moments than all of its competitors combined into an indulgent, expletive-laden 45 minute routine of game previews and behind-the-scenes scheming through the Devolver Direct 2020, a "live pre-recorded event" broadcast on July 11.

Everyone has an uncle who works at Nintendo, including Devolver Digital's fictitious CEO and annual showcase host Nina Struthers, whose portfolio includes Shadow Warrior 3, Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout and a brain reprogrammed by her Chief Marketing Officer, Linda Masters, the corporate equivalent of Harley Quinn.

Is Shadow Warrior 3 a gory first-person action game or a pasta chef's psychotic break? Perhaps both? There's so much meat and red sauce that it's hard to tell.

Either way, the deliciously self-confident 2021 release continues the bloody adventures of disgraced corporate shogun Lo Wang. It's due on PC and, most likely, on consoles sometime afterwards.

Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is what happens when you shove the last-person-standing Battle Royale genre through a bouncy obstacle course, with up to 60 players trying to make it through the mayhem of one bonkers challenge after another.

One of mid-2019's most delightful surprise reveals, it launches on PC and PlayStation 4 this Aug 4.

As usual, Devolver's presentation played survival-horror reversal Carrion for laughs, its lead character now a games industry diva.

When Carrion comes to Xbox One (and Xbox Game Pass), PC and Nintendo Switch on July 23, it'll cast players as a terrifying, many-tentacled alien beast breaking out of a containment facility.

Itinerant showcase presenter Geoff Keighley has done his level best to provide an online alternative to the cancelled Electronic Entertainment Expo through his Summer Games Fest banner.

For Devolver, he popped up to tease virtual abandoned showfloor experience "Devolverland Expo," shown more fully at the showcase's close, and free through Steam for Windows PC.

The show took one of its regular detours into unhinged, self-referential fantasy to allow esteemed game designer Bennett Foddy (legendarily cumbersome mountain-climbing challenge Getting Over It With Bennett Foddy) to announce Getting Down With Bennett Foddy, which may or may not exist, plus the launch of a new Devolver-allied studio with a glorious early 2000s throwback website called Beans, and scurrilous rumours concerning beloved Nintendo characters Tom Nook (Animal Crossing), the Mario games' Yoshi and Princess Toadstool, as well as Kirby and the Pikmin.

Back to reality and Olija is a highly pixelated, retro-style action game about a penniless feudal lord washed up on strange lands. He's armed with an immensely powerful harpoon capable of laying waste to those that block his way home. It's out this year for PC and Switch.

Finally, ridiculously macho shooter Serious Sam 4 is preparing to slay an onslaught of repulsive aliens for the umpteenth time, here on Steam and Google Stadia from August this year while not ruling out console launches at a later date. – AFP Relaxnews

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