I debated actually writing about this list of my most anticipated games for 2013. Not only because it’s an easy thing to do, but mostly because last year’s list is almost every candidate on this year’s list. Blame the damn delays. Still, I can write about what I want and there are so many good games
next this year that it would be a little disrespectful to not give them some pre-release love.
This is the easy one, but DmC has been on my radar ever since its unveil, even doubly so after the downloadable demo. Dante’s redesign is intriguing and despite being only half the ideal framerate, the combat seems to match the juggle-heavy combos of the series’ coveted past. Knowing Ninja Theory’s past of creating gorgeous worlds and memorable characters, it could perfectly fit what Devil May Cry has always lacked. Capcom, you have my faith (and my pre-order) so don’t squander it.
If we’re continuing this train of blind optimism, the next natural stop is Dead Space 3. It has been giving me reasons to hate it. Between the co-op and action focus of everything they’ve shown, its been giving off a slight Resident Evil 5 vibe, which, if you are smart, is bad. Unlike RE5‘s development team, I feel the team at Visceral knows how to make a great game, especially one with Dead Space in the title. Knowing that, seeing some of the darker environments and how I don’t have to have an AI Carver if I choose to play alone makes me stoked. Also, it’s a motherfucking Dead Space game. Sold.
We can’t let such an icon like Sly go out on a pathetic, fart-like whimper. It wasn’t even an impressive fart, just an annoying poof that pissed off anyone in the vicinity. Sanzaru, after their work on the Sly HD Collection, have taken over and seem to be providing a faithful Sly Cooper experience that stays true to the roots. Hearing about their new Metroid-like progression system and seeing it on a Sly 2 backdrop makes me giddy and hopeful that Sanzaru knows what to do with the series. As long as they have a visible disdain for Sly 3, we’ll be in the clear.
This title makes me happy for a few reasons: I’ve listed only four games and two of them are melee-based combat games, Platinum Games is behind it, and this is a Metal Gear game. Seeing their glorious work behind Bayonetta and Vanquish collaborating with Kojima Production’s staff makes for a pedigree that doubles what most games can compete with. I’m hopeful that that scene in Metal Gear Solid 4 (you know, that scene) is only the beginning of what Revengeance has to offer.
First-person shooters usually don’t make me tight in the pants, but Crysis is an exception. Crysis 3‘s familiar nature seems to be taking more of a middle ground between the original open Crysis and the more closed parts of Crysis 2 by merging both industrial and jungle environments. The bow and arrow naturally excites me, but seeing how it opens up the stealth portion gives it a more tangible anticipation. Here’s hoping to new suit powers and a more open game that Crytek will more than likely deliver.
Continuing with the bow and arrow games, the next on the list is Tomb Raider which was honestly a game that was announced far too early. Lara has come a long way from looking like a reboot with potential to a game seeming to execute on that goodwill. One could be cynical with saying it is trying to out-Uncharted Uncharted, but such a compliment would benefit both the genre and the game as a whole. Have you seen the action scenes? I have to admit that they look fantastic and seeing a more personal story from Lara could be the best thing in the series since the first one.
Spoiler alert! I really love God of War. Even with all the pessimism over Ascension, I can’t contain myself over the mention of a new God of War game. Rather than resting on their laurels, SCEA Santa Monica is crafting a top-of-the-line combat game and differing aspects the series has always adhered to. They’ve changed the circle button prompt, guys. They’re serious. And so am I.
Yet another game that was announced far too early, Bioshock Infinite‘s recent showings should quiet any negative thoughts anyone might have had during the game’s suspicious silence. I’ll be honest in saying that I was one of those people. However, I was quickly swayed with reading a few previews and seeing the game in action. If the videos are to be believed, it looks like the next revolution for the series, one that might tug at the heartstrings of the player by tackling some more intense topics. Racism? In a game? That alone is worth seeing.
2012 might have been the year of the stealth game (on a related note, sorry Mark of the Ninja for forgetting you multiple times) but Sam Fisher doesn’t give the slightest hint of a shit. Splinter Cell: Blacklist may be taking a more action-like role in almost every trailer released, but the one trailer they put out gave me some hope that the sneaking roots are still alive. I’ve never played more than an hour of this franchise, but knowing my tastes, I’m think Blacklist will at least be a competent game.
A new fighting game from the developers of Mortal Kombat co-starring Batman. That should be enough. And, to be honest, it totally is. NetherRealm has shown that they can up the standards for the genre and mold a beautiful two-dimensional fighting game. The dynamic environments and different handling to every character will hopefully borrow the accessibility and depth from Mortal Kombat, maybe even surpassing that high benchmark. May fatalities rest in peace (for now).
I had actually forgotten about Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2, mainly because there has been next to nothing really shown on it. Just the mere mention and trailer is enough to warrant a spot on this list since the first Lords of Shadow was a deep, painstakingly underrated title that could use a sequel to iron out all the quirks. Making good on the nifty twist of the original, playing as Dracula seems to have its own perks along with lending itself nicely to a darker storyline. If it maintains the well-paced progression system and superb visuals and properly adjusts the block and dodge mechanics, this has potential to talked about near the end of the year.
The stars are all aligned for this one. Having the Uncharted 2 team behind a new IP near the end of a console cycle is nearly the best thing you could ask for. Visually astounding, unique, open, and mysterious, Naughty Dog’s expertise with the PS3 is easily showcased every time this title is shown. I’ve come to the scientific conclusion that it is impossible to not be stoked about this game. Like God of War II was for the PS2, The Last of Us will be a great swan song for the PS3.
But that doesn’t mean Beyond: Two Souls can’t also be a swan song for the PS3; it could be a symbiotic duet. David Cage likes to drop story-driven games on us and with all they’ve learned with Heavy Rain, we could have another unique hit on our hands. It hasn’t been officially shown outside of that awe inspiring trailer, but the name and team alone keeps it high on the list.
If Gears of War: Judgment is the Xbox 360’s swan song and The Last of Us is the PS3’s, then Grand Theft Auto V is the multiplatform version. Carefully leaking out information, the secretive folks at Rockstar have shown everyone just enough outside the logo to be completely amazed. Massive and ambitious barely even begins to describe GTAV, as Rockstar claims that it is bigger than GTAIV, Red Dead Redemption, and GTA: San Andreas combined. Switching between the three goofy characters and knowing that most of Rockstar’s games have been testing grounds for GTAV, it’s next to impossible that this game won’t be good or memorable. I’m fairly optimistic that GTAV will send off the generation with a bang.
It’s hard to say “that’s it” with a line up this killer. The crazy part is that this is just for the first half of the year, which gives credence to the fact that we are seeing new consoles in the fall. I’m curious to see the new hardware but with this many games coming out in the first half, it might be a little hard to tear myself away from the “old” hardware.