The new year is young, and we're still in the middle of awards season, where the entertainment industry is more focused on evaluating the output of last year, rather than anticipating what's to come. In March 2020, we'll finally start seeing the big ticket items: the AAA games and long-awaited titles that will be the subject of next year's "Best of 2020" discussion.
Until then, we have a couple of brilliant, little indie gems, a handful of remakes, and the next entries in long-standing franchises. February also has an unusually impressive list of "free games," which are playable with no extra charge if you subscribe to one of several online services.
Here are all the video game news items you need to know for February 2020.
XBox Gold Free Games
TT Isle of Man (February 1-29)
This is a motorcycle racing simulation game. It's based on a real race that takes place on the Isle of Man. A whopping 260 people have been killed since the race's inception in 1907.
Call of Cthulhu (February 16 - March 15)
This is a dialogue-driven survival horror game, based upon the H.P. Lovecraft story of the same name. Based on what horrors you witness or take part in, you can lose your "sanity" and get one of several endings.
Xbox 360 (backwards compatible)
Fable Heroes (February 1-15)
A beat 'em up action game in the Fable series, you choose from 12, different characters and go on a rampage across Alvion. Up to four players can get in on the fun, via either local or online multiplayer.
Star Wars Battlefront (February 16-29)
A multiplayer-based Star Wars experience, the Battlefront series provides one of the most accurate, cinematic Star Wars experiences to date. It recreates iconic scenarios from the films, from ground assaults to dogfights in the skies.
Playstation Plus Free Games
Bioshock: The Collection (February 4 - March 2)
This collection includes Bioshock, Bioshock 2, and Bioshock Infinite, along with the released, playable DLC for those games. This franchise is for gamers who want a little intellectualizing with their blood and guts.
The Sims 4 (February 4 - March 2)
This is a life simulator with an oddly addictive focus on the mundane. Build a Sim, build him a house, and watch him earn money, get married, and have children. Or, don't do any of that. You could also have him do nothing but watch TV, and watch his life circle the drain.
Firewall Zero Hour (February 4 - March 2)
This PlayStation VR game puts you in the role of contracted mercenary, who forms a crew (local or public matchmaking), in order to carry out sensitive missions.
Google Stadia Free Games For February 2020
GYLT (February 1)
An exclusive for the Stadia, GYLT places you in the role of Sally, a little girl looking for her missing cousin Emily. It's a spooky game with lots of creepy atmosphere and supernatural touches.
Metro Exodus (February 1)
A post-apocalyptic first-person shooter, you're a survivor in what was once the Russian Federation, now devastated by nuclear fallout, mutated creatures, and cannibals.
Zombie Army 4: Dead War (February 4)
From the same group of developers that brought us Sniper Elite 4, this game is a grindhouse reimagining of post-WWII and casts the Nazis as an evil army of the undead. This is a co-op with supernatural, schlocky elements, and it's playable for up to four players at once.
Monster Energy Supercross: The Official Videogame 3 (February 4)
The latest in a long-running franchise, this off-road motorcycle racing simulator will allow you to join Monster Energy Supercross' official teams and compete for glory. The game comes with a track editor, and the game also allows you to host your own race and and set the parameters for other players who participate.
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance Tactics (February 4)
A continuation and video game adaptation of Jim Hensons' groundbreaking The Dark Crystal media franchise, this is a turn-based RPG featuring characters from both the film and the Netflix series. You play as a band of Gelflings oppressed by Skesis, and you do battle over the course of 50 lvl.
Yakuza V (February 11)
This will be the latest and final installment of the Yakuza Remastered Collection. Once exclusive to Japan, this upcoming version of the game has been translated and re-revised into English from the ground up, and it adds in Japan-exclusive content that was cut from the worldwide release version of the movie.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses - Cindered Shadows DLC (February 12)
The fourth wave of DLC for the turn-based RPG will introduce a brand new house, along with a group of new students. And after you complete the new missions (with the combined force of the Black Eagles, Blue Lions, and Golden Deer), the new house's students will be available to recruit in the core storyline, which will open up even more narrative possibilities.
Dreams (February 14)
A DIY experience, Dreams allows a player to create and share his or her created games with an online community. Ambitious in scope and presentation, the game included developer-created games to instruct. But the ultimate goal is to have the community define what Dreams is and can be.
Street Fighter V: Champion Edition (February 14)
The most authoritative, complete rendition of Street Fighter V to date, Champion Edition includes a grand total of 40 characters, 34 stages, and over 200 different costumes. If you already have a prior edition of Street Fighter, there's no need to rebuy; the new balance updates and game modes are free, and all additional characters are unlockable through in-game money.
NBA 2K20 Global Championship Finals (February 22)
This is the culmination of a worldwide tournament that began in October 2019. The finals will take place at ESL Studios in Los Angeles, where online basketball legends will compete for over $100,000 in prizes.
One-Punch Man: A Hero Nobody Knows (February 28)
This is a 3D fighting game based on the manga One-Punch Man, and it features 3-on-3 combat. The game deals with its near invulnerable protagonist, Saitama (who can knock anyone out in one punch), in hilarious fashion. If you choose him, he shows up late to the fight, which means that you have to withstand your opponent in a 3-on-2 handicap situation until he arrives.
Marvel's Iron Man VR (February 28)
Exclusive to PlayStation VR, this game seems to be what virtual reality was made for. You play as Tony Stark: you fly around in his armor, interpret his suit's heads-up display, and shoot your repulsors at hostile forces.