What games are you looking forward to?

Here's our top two.

infinitecontinues

Last year was a bumper crop for games, with enormous triple-A titles like Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Assassin’s Creed 2 finding their way onto our consoles in the final quarter of the year alone. Seemingly, there will be no let up in quality titles in 2010, with many in the industry predicting the start of this new decade to be the best year the videogaming industry has ever seen. With a cursory glance at the release schedule of Q1, it’s hard to put forward a decent argument against that. So what are you looking forward to the most? For me, there are two titles that stand out as particularly promising.

Heavy Rain

A recent playthrough of Quantic Dream’s Fahrenheit on the PS2 hints at David Cage’s genius. A game unlike anything I’ve ever played before, the clunky controls curtailed the flashes of frequent innovation within, but it is easy to look back on older generations with a sneer considering the rapid pace of technological advancement. Cage’s magnum opus, Heavy Rain, is due for release at the end of next month, and has been generating press for as long as I can remember. Its fans champion it as the ultimate narrative adventure, and footage of the game pitches it in the realm of ‘interactive movie’. Its detractors denounce it as a string of QTE setpieces. I got my hands on a very small sliver of the game at the Eurogamer Expo, and admittedly came away slightly disappointed. But if my First Impressions have taught me anything, it’s never to dismiss a game before giving it its chance to shine, particularly, in this case, when played out of context.

Whether Heavy Rain turns out to be a masterpiece or a false start, Cage should still be judged on what he is trying to achieve here. Faced with a sea of middleware mediocrity and numbing familiarity of ‘this button does this’, Heavy Rain strikes out into its own territory, where control of your character has context to what they are doing at that moment in time, just like in real life. I’m hoping Cage succeeds and Heavy Rain is a massive success, not just for the PS3 but for the industry as a whole. I’ll be picking it up on the day of release to find out. In the meantime, there is a fantastic, spine-tingling trailer here to whet your appetite.

Super Mario Galaxy 2

The original was a staggering work of art. With the slight dip in quality that was Sunshine, Mario’s proper debut on Wii was a tour de force, a reinvention of the magic introduced by the seminal Super Mario 64. Granted, my recent playthrough of gorgeous series’ throwback New Super Mario Bros. Wii has reignited my nostalgic passion for Nintendo’s mascot, and my current jaunt through Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story (review coming as soon as the final credits roll) is doing nothing to diminish that; but even without these reminders, Super Mario Galaxy 2 would still be one of my most anticipated titles of 2010.

From what I’ve read, the follow-up is just more of the same, and I couldn’t be more delighted. Nintendo already put in the legwork in 2007, introducing new ideas into the Mario mix whilst still retaining the platform mechanics that have been the mainstay of the series to date. Another ten hours of the same ideas, on different planets, with the added bonus of Yoshi, will be just fine thank you very much. I doubt we’ll see Super Mario Galaxy 2 until close to Christmas, so there is plenty of time for the big N to drip-feed us with tidbits to get excited over, but here are some early screenshots to start with.

What about you? Which games being released this year are you most excited about?

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8 Comments

  1. Posted January 29, 2010 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Mass Effect 2 for sure, I’m quite excited by that and by all accounts it’s quite epic. Other games for me are Splinter Cell, Bioshock 2, Batman 2 and the long awaited Mafia 2. Plus of course Halo Reach. It looks like Bungie are going to be doing some serious fan service on that one.

  2. noobcake
    Posted January 30, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Heavy Rain for sure. I love that style of game, from Silent Hill to Ico and Uncharted also. The act of uncovering the next plot twist is pure joy. Who cares if critics want to slag Heavy Rain off just because it isn’t something they like? Pah, I’ll buy it and enjoy it and I reckon plenty others will too.

    Even though I don’t play as much these days I am looking forward to World of Wowcraft Cataclysm mainly for the new storyline and how touring the old areas all smashed up. I’m hoping for an announcement of an Uncharted 3 maybe this year, that would be just fine. I am into shooters so any new fps on ps3 would grab my attention.

  3. Posted January 30, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    How about MAG? That was released yesterday (in UK). That might be up your street if you are into FPS games, although it is online only. What’s your PSN ID, Noobcake?

  4. Posted January 30, 2010 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    I don’t reckon we’ll see Batman 2 this year. At least, I hope we don’t. A second release so soon after the first would be rushing it. I also hope they’re not tempted to turn it into an open-world adventure in Gotham.

    The others you mention aren’t even on my radar (yet). Haven’t even scratched the surface of the original Mass Effect yet so wont be getting the second one for some time. I’m not into Halo (as you know) and I don’t know anything about Splinter Cell or Mafia 2.

  5. Posted February 1, 2010 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    You should look into Mafia 2, the original game was brilliant.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CW0lwAWCa3k&feature=related

    It was quite overshadowed by GTA 4 which came out around the same time (to be fair GTA nailed the open world sandbox while Mafia was far more rigid, but in my opinion it was all the better for it as the narrative was stronger and far more meaningful).

    I got Mass Effect 2 at the weekend and it’s an amazing game. I’m slightly biased as I played the first and I love science fiction but it’s so polished and so much fun it’s insane. I haven’t even scratched the surface after playing for over fifteen hours. If you can spare a few weeks I highly recommend finishing the first and getting stuck into the second. For me this looks like a strong contender for game of the year.

  6. teeny
    Posted February 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    On the Wii, I am certainly looking forward to Super Mario Galaxy 2. I am also pretty excited for Metroid Other M, No More Hereos 2, Red Steel 2 and Silent Hill. Plus, there are rumblings of a new Zelda game in the works, but I very much doubt it will be out this year. One can hope!

    The PS3 has Heavy Rain, God of War 3, 3D Dot Game Heroes, Dead Rising 2 and Dead Space 2.

    My wallet is just going to cry this year :(

  7. teeny
    Posted February 2, 2010 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    Im a bit of a Zelda nut, cant wait for E3 :D

    Will do!

    I am a bit sketpical, because theyre giving Isaac a more direct (spoken) role this time around. But I will play it nonetheless :P

  8. Posted February 2, 2010 at 9:42 am | Permalink

    I think we will see Zelda this year, but very late on, or maybe Q1 2011. Looking through your Wii wish list, there is a feature I’m working on that you might enjoy, so watch this space.

    I’d forgotten about Dead Space 2. Loved the original – hope it can match that in terms of quality. Your wallet is indeed going to cry, but take comfort in the fact that plenty of us will be sharing your pain ;)

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