game pass

We might need to get out more, but we get a certain thrill out of a surprise Game Pass release. When we hear the announcement of the games for the month, there’s a subtext that – perhaps – some games haven’t been mentioned and we’re in for a surprise. And so it is today.

The expected game is Umurangi Generation Special Edition (Cloud, Console and PC), a kind of Pokemon Snap for cyberpunk lovers, but the more enigmatic release is Little Witch in the Woods (Cloud, Console and PC), which is releasing as part of the Game Preview program.

Let’s kick off with Umurangi Generation Special Edition. This is a first-person photography game with a bit of a twist. We’re used to taking photos of pets, animals and monsters in games like Pupperazzi, Alba: A Wildlife Adventure and Pokemon Snap, but we’re not particularly au fait with taking photos of cyberpunk landscapes and the people who live within them. 

This is a first-person game, set in a futuristic city called Tauranga, which is preparing for an alien invasion. Mechs are being mobilised and cannons loaded, while civilians race home to be with their loved ones. It might not seem like the opportune time to take photos, but someone needs to document this moment in history, and that person is you. Get exploration bonuses for exploring the city fully, get graded for the quality of your pics, and have full creative control over the composition and any filters.

More leftfield is Little Witch in the Woods. We know very little about this title: even the Microsoft Store has precious little written about it in its description – perhaps that’s due to it being a Game Preview title too, you know, those games which are ‘still in development’. We know that the intention of Little Witch in the Woods is to release a prologue and three opening chapters as a Game Pass preview, with more chapters coming in the future when this witch gets her full game badges. 

You play Ellie, a trainee witch with a witch’s handbook to complete. She wanders her neck of the woods in search of flora and fauna that can be made into spells and potions, as well as fill out her handbook like a witchly Pokedex. Beyond that, we know as much as you, so we will be dipping our toes into Little Witch in the Woods to find out more, before reporting back. 

All that remains is to remind you of the other titles coming in May. Floppy Knights (Console, PC) and Hardspace Shipbreaker (PC) are coming on May 24th, Sniper Elite 5 (Console, PC) will with us on May 26th, and Pac-Man Museum+ (Console, PC) is planned for May 27th. As with Little Witch in the Woods, there may be more announcements and sneaky launches (there are whispers of a new ARMA title coming in May), so you will be among the first to know.

Going to give Little Witch in the Woods a fly? Or perhaps you fancy taking snaps of aliens? Let us know in the comments or on our social channels.

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