Time for our regular roundup of the mostly (but not strictly) retro-interest games I’m aware of so far that are due for release in the upcoming month, complete with trailers for everything they exist for, and snippets of fascinating info to boot! As you might expect at this time of year, new things of note are on the slowdown, but it’s not a bad bunch all the same….

We’re starting this month where we left off last month because it seems like Donut Dodo got delayed to December 1st. It’s still a single-screen 2D platformer presented as a pixel-perfect lost arcade classic from 1983 though. Still seems to be old-school difficult too, but also very fair and reminiscent of something like Chuckie Egg, BurgerTime or Mario Bros. It’s already out on Steam, and I think that Atari VCS thing too, but it’s definitely coming to Switch too now. Hopefully.

Warp Drive is the latest pretender to the missing in action F-Zero throne, this time bringing a new-gangled cel-shaded art style to the party. At least it’s trying! Apart from that, it’s a futuristic hover-kart racer that looks pretty spectacular, maybe more reminiscent of Wipeout than F-Zero now I think about it. Either way, it’s out on Switch on the 1st for the princely sum of £22.99

Elevator Action Returns S-Tribute also arrives on December 1st on PC, possibly at the same time as the Switch, PlayStation and Xbox ones too but as always, confusion abounds! As far as I can tell this is a remaster of the 1997 Saturn port of the 1995 sequel to one of the all-time great arcade games, and it brings a load of quality of life updates and ways to make the game easier as far as I can tell, as well as a two player option. It’s a brilliant game and I guess this is as good a way as any to own it. Credit to City Connection for the vid.

Need for Speed Unbound brings a new helping of fast and furious open-world gangsta racing to Xbox, PlayStation and PC on the 2nd, and I’m not really sure why I’m covering it here because I’ve no interest whatsoever apart from enjoying that police chase one a bit a few years ago! Anyway, it’s set in a fictional Chicago, mixes a kind of cel-shaded graffiti art style with its regular gritty realism, and I’m sure there’s all sorts of unnecessary story and obnoxious characters to get in the way of any racing.

If I totally avoid Dwarf Fortress, coming on the 6th of December to PC and Mac, then it means there’s no chance I need to update my upcoming game of the year feature. Again! This thing has been around as freeware since 2002 and in early access since 2006, and behind its primitive looks there’s a totally insane mix of world creation and evolution, construction and fortress management, or a bit of roguelite adventuring if you prefer. This new release does bring enhanced (relatively) graphics and other improvements, and I can’t wait!

Crisis Core: Final Fantasy 7 Reunion comes to absolutely everything on December 13, and is a very HD remaster of the old PSP FF7 spin-off prequel thing charting the story of Zack Fair, a Shinra soldier, which in turn then fleshes out the back-stories of some of the higher-profile characters and world details from the original game. Maybe not quite as sophisticated as Remake, but hell of a soundtrack!

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard Cloud Version finally comes to Switch on the 16th. If it’s your only way to play it then I’m sure it will be fine because, for the first two-thirds at least, it’s a good ‘un, but if there’s a demo maybe try that first… There was some horrendous slowdown when I tried the Resident Evil Village cloud demo at launch so if you think it’s likely to sell millions then beware!

A very retro vertical shoot ‘’em up called GyroBlade comes to Switch on the 19th, and will immediately put you in mind of the NES port of Tiger-Heli or similar. No, actually, just the NES port of Tiger-Heli! Anyway, there’s eight stages, four difficulties levels and lots of no-frills shooting. Looks fun though, and the soundtrack is sounding fantastic! Credit to Kishi Kotaro for the only video on the internet at the time of writing too!

I don’t have an exact date yet, but the delayed Evercade EXP is hopefully coming before Christmas, and with it a couple of very cool cartridges… Irem Arcade 1 includes Moon Patrol, 10-Yard Fight, R-Type, Battle Chopper, In the Hunt and the first ever official home release of Lightning Swords. Toaplan Arcade 1 brings the aforementioned Tiger-Heli plus Alcon, Flying Shark, Truxton, Zero Wing, Guardian, Snow Bros. and Teki Paki! Something for everyone, especially if you like shooting stuff, and if I can squeeze it in I’ll try and review the lot, including the console!

Finally, as much as I’d like to be looking at way more homebrews for the old systems here each month, they’re a bit unpredictable and generally fly under our Retro Radar, appearing out of nowhere at the last minute. However, Darkula for Amstrad CPC is looking just about cooked, so I’m going out on a limb and saying look out for this sometime very soon! It’s a very retro platformer, not a million miles away from something like Mappy, and is a conversion of the 2019 PC game of the same name by 21Bloques. Looks excellent too!

And with that, I hope you enjoyed these trailers and previews, and we’ll be back in a month or so, not only with a look ahead to January’s new releases of note as usual, but there’s going to be a separate look ahead to the whole of 2023 too! And, of course, we’ve got our regular features, a very special festive deep dive and that Retro Arcadia game of the year top ten countdown to look forward to before that. See you around!