Video Games, Playstation 3, Xbox 360, nintendo, wii, ds, sony, microsoft, PSN, XBLA, Onlive, Playstation Vita, Wii U,
So the New Year has set in and with it comes the misery of being back to work and, of course, drizzle. Yet fear not dear gamer for help is at hand to lift the gloom as there are plenty of wondrous things to look forward to in 2011.
Yes this year us gamers will be getting our hands on some real treats. 2011 will see some great trilogies come to a close with the likes of Mass Effect and Gears of War ending their sagas. We will be seeing the return of Elder Scrolls and Nathan Drake as well as a certain bloke called Duke.
Indeed 2011 is simply littered with quality titles with February and March being unusually chocked full of top class releases. Yet we have a multitude of gaming delights scattered throughout this year and as ever we at G4A have decided to whet your whistle with the best selection of what you need to look out for.
Skyrim – The game we at G4A towers have been waiting for. The fifth game in the Elder Scrolls series and the follow-up to the amazing and hugely successful Oblivion. So far there is little by way of details except for a launch date and the teaser trailer. We simply cannot wait for more information to appear on this monster release and you can bet your arse and as soon as it does you can be sure you will know about it. Due on the 11th of November (11/11/11) you can watch the teaser trailer here.
Batman Arkham City – The caped crusader is back and we are hoping from big things from this sequel. Batman Arkham City features a more open world environment due to part of Gotham City having been walled off to hold the ever-increasing criminally insane population. We are introduced to a new baddie and a variety of wonderfully awesome new bat-gadgets. If this game is even half as good as we think it is going to be we are in for a real treat. Due in Q1 you can watch the trailer here.
Uncharted 3 – The follow-up to our 2009 Game Of The Year and certainly one of the best games of this generation Uncharted 3: Drakes Deception is getting us excited even now. Nathan Drake is stuck in the desert after a plane crash and Naughty Dog have gone to great pains to ensure the sand is the most realistic ever. Not that we care much, as we know this game is going to be amazing. However don’t expect to get your hands on this PS3 exclusive until Quarter 4 this year. Until then you can check out the teaser trailer here.
Mass Effect 3 - The final chapter in Bioware’s epic space saga sees the reapers attacking Earth. It is up to Commander Shepard and his crew to get to Earth and repel the threat. Expect the game to be even more intense and stunning than the awesome second part. The game will be released on 8th November and for the first time will be being released on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC simultaneously. We hope this means the story will have some unexpected twists and turns that would be spoilt by a staggered release. You can check out the teaser here.
Dead Space 2 – EA’s sequel to the surprisingly good Dead Space is looking like a survival horror masterpiece. Luckily someone is still doing survival horror where the horror is still pretty horrific. You again play Isaac Clarke trying to survive another outbreak of nasties only this time you are ever-so-slightly insane as well, traumatised from your first experience with the marker. This should add a new dimension to the gameplay and the demo is out now on PSN and 360 the game is slated for release on January 28th.
Little Big Planet 2 – Another PS3 exclusive and another sequel but LBP2 is looking like it is going to be rather special. Based pretty much on the same game engine as the first one you can expect loads of new features and gameplay styles. Whilst the graphics have not changed much they were pretty amazing anyway so that doesn’t dent its chances of being huge. We are sure LBP2 will be a massive hit and we are sure you wont have done everything in the game by Christmas even though it comes out sometime Q1.
Kirby’s Epic Yarn – Our first Wii game in the list and one which yet again shows that Nintendo are still the masters at creating original ideas. Kirby returns only this time the world he inhabits is made entirely from thread. You are able to manipulate this thread to open traps, make new objects, like a textile surfboard, and generally mess about. We have played it and it is great and a must for all Wii owners who are serious about their games. Was due out last year but was delayed so possibly Q1 but nobody seems to know.
Child Of Eden – Child of Eden thrusts the player into the centre of a battle to save Project Lumi, a mission to reproduce a human personality inside Eden, the archive of all human memories. As the project nears completion, the archive is invaded by an unknown virus. The player’s mission is to save Eden from the virus, restoring hope and peace. Coming from the mind of Tetsuya Mizuguchi who brought us Space Channel 5 and Lumines the game looks very reminiscent of another of his games Rez. The stunning visuals and gameplay that can be controlled by either a standard pad or Kinect should ensure this is another cult classic.
Test Drive Unlimited 2 - The sequel, yes another one, to Atari’s MOOP (Massively Open Online Racer.) Test Drive Unlimited 2 looks to take all the good things the original did and add to them. Featuring some of the most incredible cars in the world, crash damage, weather, Day/night cycles and an entire new island to explore this persistent online racer is be advertised as 2011’s best driving game. It could well be, we will know when it is released on February 11th.
Homefront – Finally a game in our line-up that is a new IP, Homefront from THQ. The US has been invaded by those pesky North Koreans and you play part of the resistance fighting against the oppressors. Harrowing scenes and heart-wrenching story-lines are promised throughout as you battle to help free the land of freedom in this intense FPS. Written by John Milius who penned Apocalypse Now and Red Dawn, we have high hopes for this and you can get your paws on it when released on March 11th.
Bullletstorm – Another game we have already played and another FPS that is looking quite stunning. Coming from Epic Games this game will reward the player with what they call skill shots. This should bring a new dimension to the genre or so it is hoped. The game follows two characters who have been marooned on a far away planet surrounded by mutants. Their mission to get off the planet alive and to extract revenge on the person who put them there. It is looking gorgeous and you can play it when released on 22nd Feb.
Marvel Vs Capcom 3 – We know Eddie is foaming at the pants for this one. Capcom bring the excellent Marvel Vs Capcom series back to our screens once more with the third game in the series. A huge cast and a new game engine will ensure that this MvsC 3 does to the series what Street Fighter 4 did for the SF series. Expect all the usual protagonists and mahoosive combos to boot as well as new characters including Hagaar and Phoenix from X-Men.You can kick some super hero arse on 18th Feb.
Brink – Yes we have been banging on about this for some time now and we really can say this original IP is one that looks worth getting excited about. Featuring brilliant visuals and an engaging storyline married to some innovative gameplay techniques that allow you to vault over and slide under objects at the touch of a button, Brink is sure to delight FPS fans everywhere. Set in a futuristic world where rich and poor live on giant floating ships we expect some great set-pieces and poignant plot turns. It is currently scheduled for a release in Spring.
Killzone 3 – Yet another monster PS3 exclusive, the third and supposedly final instalment in the Killzone franchise. Whilst the second game was sumptuous to look at, it lacked a little in terms of story-line and depth of characters. The gameplay also felt slightly on-the-rails. Hopefully the third part can finally realise the potential of what should be the PS3’s killer FPS. New weapons and jetpacks will add to the gameplay as will the addition 3D gaming. New firm date for release yet so expect it Q4.
Crysis 2 – It still seems a little odd to release a sequel on the consoles without the ability to have played the first game unless you are a PC gamer. Still, Crytek have been beavering away hard to bring the beautiful Crysis 2 to our machines. New York is under attack from a wave of scary aliens and guess what you are going to fight them! Powered by the Cry-Engine 3 this game is looking truly pant-wettingly amazing and you can get your hands on it when released on March 25th.
Dragon Age 2 – What do you know a sequel, this time to Bioware’s Dragon Age which was rated by many as the best RPG of 2009. Dragon Age 2 looks to expand on everything the first game did with more action, a new, more responsive combat system and a dynamic story that is already among the most multifaceted in gaming. Well that’s what they say anyway, we sure hope so! It will be an interesting slug-fest when this and Skyrim go head-to-head in the GoTY awards. Dragon Age 2 gets the drop on Skyrim when it is released on March 11th.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution - This year sees the very welcome return of Deus Ex. The stunning looking FPS/thriller could be one of the major surprise packages of the year. We are expecting a strong plot set in the bleak Bladerunner style future where you can upgrade your human abilities by mucking about with your genes. So far many of the details on the plot are being kept firmly locked away but as more details become available we will let you know. No release date is yet confirmed but we suspect at least Q3.
Gears of War 3 - The final part of Epic’s massive 360 Exclusive trilogy. If the way the second game upped the ante then you can expect some major battles in this culmination of the story. In this final chapter we will get to find out if Marcus Fenix and chums are able to save humanity from the locust horde. Epic chief Cliff (bell-end) Bleszinski, Design Director at Epic Games. “This is definitely the biggest and most dramatic chapter yet in the ‘Gears of War’ saga, and we can’t wait to deliver it.” We hope it really is that good.
LA Noire - We are possibly more excited about this game than any of the others as it could launch an entire new genre. Rockstar have gone all out in this classic detective story using a new motion capture system that is able to record almost every aspect of an actors facial movements. The result is stunning and it looks like L.A. Noire could set a new level of realism and it will need to as the whole point of the game is to be able to tell which characters are lying as you try to solve the mystery. No firm date yet so expect this Q4.
Duke Nukem Forever – Could this be real? Is this just a dream or is Duke Nukem Forever actually being released this year? The fabled game is sure to be a massive seller whether it is any good or not just because it sees the return of one of gamings most ‘colourful’ heroes. Duke is looking good and the negative press it has so far received about the game style being outdated aside we expect this to be a right romp back to the good ‘ole days of no nonsense shooters and hooters!
Portal 2 – Portal was one of the most original games we have seen for years. A mixture of FPS and devious puzzles blended with a humorous backdrop. Portal 2 will reunite you with the Aperture Science Labs and GLaDOS, the psychotic but hilarious computer from the original Portal. The game will feature an all new co-operative mode featuring its own unique campaign and characters, and will force players to both act and think together. It is certainly one to get excited about and is scheduled for release on April 21st.
Rage - Id software’s latest baby sees them showing off their all new engine and it sure looks puretty Ma. Set after an apocalypse brought about by a meteor strike. As in such cases the survivors set up small communities and defend them against bandits and mutants. You have been reawakened after being frozen underground in an Ark. The main point of the game is to progress through the story shooting lots of stuff whether it be by foot on in the dune buggy. It is looking great and it is good to see Id back on the ball. Rage is currently slated as being released on Sept 16th.
inFamous 2 – The first Infamous was a decent enough game without ever being exceptional. Part two looks to improve on everything the first one had to offer and ramp it up somewhat. We have played it and according to Liam, who has now played both, it is looking very, very good. Great visuals and a tightened gameplay and combat system should ensure that Infamous 2 exceeds the first game in every department and could do to the franchise what Uncharted 2 did. Expect this Q4.
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Yes link returns for another Wii outing. Nintendo’s massive series will get another update this year (Hopefully.) Skyward Swrod is a prequel to Ocarina of time and will see Link living in Skyloft which a a group of islands floating in clouds. One day he finds the Skyward Sword which enables him to travel to the land below where all sorts of nasties live. The adventure begins and the Skyward Sword will allow Link to travel between the two worlds. So far there is no indication of a release date other than it should be sometime this year. Watch this space.
The Last Guardian – The fact that this game is coming from Team Ico, the ones that brought us Ico and Shadow Of The Colossus should be enough to get any Playstation owners excited. The fact that it is supposed to bring gameplay elements from both games should have them fiddling furiously with their joypads. The game features a large griffin-type creature called Trico and a boy character that you will be controlling. At the start of the game you will need to free Trico and then build a relationship with the creature. Throughout the game puzzle elements will involve the way the two characters interact. So far firm information is scarce but it is certainly one we will be keeping a close eye on. No release date has yet been slated but rumours suggest that we may get to see it this year.
3DS – Of course it is not a game but it is set to change the course of hand-held gaming. In full 3D without the need for those headache-inducing, cool-killing glasses. We have high hopes for the little machine and feel the potential for new game styles is huge. We are slightly concerned about the price but that is yet to be confirmed.