Preview Guide: Top Video Games to Look Forward to in 2013
Army of Two: The Devil's Cartel (March 26, 2013)
A new bromance is brewing. Salem and Rios are being put to bed for Army of Two: The Devil's Cartel, which focuses on a new pair of soldiers, the creatively named Alpha and Bravo. The two essentially nameless operatives will take to the streets of Mexico in order to do battle against "the most lethal drug cartel in the world", The Scythe.
Devil's Cartel reportedly features a new ability known as "Overkill", which allows complete destruction of the surrounding terrain through the Frostbite 2 Engine.
The Cave (March 30, 2013)
Double Fine's newest title, The Cave, puts a bunch of disparate characters and travellers into a sentient cave network. Each character is there for their own reasons; each has their own dreams that they want to see realized. Oh, they all have their own deep, dark secrets, as well.
Only three of the six characters can be a part of your party; who you choose determines where you can go. It's kind of like The Lost Vikings, but with more puzzles and a larger cast of characters. And that's... actually incredibly awesome.
"It's better than Plato's Allegory of the Cave. Actually, it's better than Plato," --Tim Schafer.
The Elder Scrolls Online (Q1 2013)
An online The Elder Scrolls title has been something that fans of the franchise have been requesting ever since Morrowind. Evidently, The Elder Scrolls Online has been in development for five years, and marks Bethesda's first foray into the world of the MMO. Set a thousand years before Skyrim, players will be able to explore all of Tamriel (a huge draw for anyone who enjoys the lore), and the title will feature an emphasis on co-operation and exploration, massive, large-scale battles, and a power struggle between the game's chief factions for the throne of the Cyrodiilic Empire. Combat will be action-based (rather than the stand, click, spam system that's gotten so stale of late), while the game's class system places a big focus on customization.
This is definitely one of my most anticipated titles of the year - even if only for the lore.
Company of Heroes 2 (Q1 2013)
The original Company of Heroes was one of THQ's highest-rated titles, and is widely remembered as one of the best squad-based RTS games ever made. With that in mind, the sequel's got some big shoes to fill. THQ has been going overboard to make sure that Company of Heroes 2 lives up to its name: they did an obsessive amount of research about the environment and weaponry of the second World War before they even got started developing the game, and they've ensured that weather, cold, and terrain all play a very large part in battles.
From what we've seen so far, they've done a great job of capturing the atmosphere of war, and as a result, the game feel just as it should: a worthy sequel to Company of Heroes.
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 (Mar. 5, 2013)
The biggest change featured in Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 over previous entries in the franchise is the fact that Awakening Mode - which allowed each Ninja access to a suite of super-powered abilities - can now be used at any point during the battle (but only once per fight). That, coupled with the fact that assisting characters can join battles with the primary characfter through the use of several different combos adds a whole new layer of strategy to the series.
The story mode, too, has received something of an overhaul, and will feature a number of quick-time-event-based boss battles. Word is it'll take place right where Ultimate Ninja Battle 2 left off; following the World War arc of the anime.
Wii Fit U (Q1 2013)
Wii Fit was probably one of the Wii's most popular titles. After all, our society isn't in the greatest shape. Few people these days have time to exercise, and more and more men and women are taking jobs of a sedentary nature; positions which require them to do little more than sit and stare at a screen: the concept of a video game to help folks get in shape, while hardly a new idea, was a welcome one.
Wii Fit U builds on the success of its predecessor, and comes bundled with a pedometer (known as the Fit Meter) which players can carry throughout the day to track their physical activity. Beyond that, the title makes use of both the Wii U's tablet controller and the Wii Fit balance board.
The most unique element of the game is that you don't actually need a television to play it - you'll be able to get in shape simply using the U's GamePad.
Now, we're getting to the point at which information's getting a bit scarce. We only know of three big titles that'll be released in April at the current juncture: Dead Island Riptide, Star Trek: The Video Game, Injustice: Gods Among Us, and DARK.
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A gamer at heart, Nick started writing when he was a child. He holds a BA in English, works as a freelancer, and loves every minute of it. One day, he hopes to net himself a career in game design - but that's something for the future.
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