Monday, June 15, 2009

Big Budget Blockbusters

A round-up of the biggest, most eagerly awaited video game titles to watch out for in the coming year

Microsoft’s Natal, Sony’s Wand, Paul Mc Cartney and Ringo Starr – this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo had video game consoles and celebrities hogging most of the limelight. Now that the event is over, it’s time to draw attention to the real crowdpullers.

Gamers often moan that the gaming industry is very risk averse, preferring to stick to big name titles and safe sequels. This year’s E3 pulls no surprises, dispensing innovation in small, incremental doses.

All the games mentioned below have big studio backing, franchised characters and rehashed game play. However, that doesn’t mean we aren’t eagerly waiting to spend hours playing them.

New Super Mario Bros (Wii)
Release Date: December 2009

The latest addition to the Super Mario series promises blue skies, upbeat music, and multiplayer gameplay. Up to four players will be able to play simultaneously as Mario or Luigi in the side-scrolling worlds of the new Super Mario Bros, which now adds motion sensitive controller driven action, new items and abilities.

BioShock 2 (PC, PS3, X360)
Release Date: Nov 2009 for the PS3 and the X360

Winner of more than 50 Game of the Year awards in 2007, Bioshock 2 picks off 10 years after the events of the original single player story, blending a novel storyline with first person shooter action and role-playing elements. The sequel brings multiplayer action and the ability to wield multiple weapons at the same time.

Modern Warfare 2 (PC, PS3, X360)
Release Date: November 2009

This sequel from bestselling Call of Duty series, is for fans of first person gunplay. The single player campaign will take you through snow-capped mountains in Russia, a desert in Afghanistan, and a favela in Rio de Janeiro. Expect high production values, carefully scripted single player missions, top notch graphics, and downloadable content that will add to the life of the game.

God of War 3 (PS3)
Release Date: March 2010

For many, it’s been the reason to buy a PlayStation console. In our previous encounters, Kratos, the god of war, battled with the celebrity A-list of Greek mythology – Athena, Zeus, Atlas, Poseidon, Ares, Medusa, doing more for Greek mythology than a thousand books. The third instalment has the chainblade-wielding warrior in a world that’s four times larger than the original, as he scales the depths of Hades and the heights of Mount Olympus. Expect wondrous imaginary worlds, dazzling graphics, engaging puzzles and brutal combat from this modern epic.

Rock Band: Beatles (Wii, PS3, X360)
Release Date: September 2009

Fans of the Beatles wouldn’t want to miss this one. The Beatles edition lets players track the rise and growing legend of the band, sampling from a catalogue of 45 songs. Additional music from The Beatles’s catalogue will be made available for purchase as well. Gamers will have to match upto three-part vocal harmonies of the Beatles, and can accessorise with replicas of musical instruments used by the fab four.

DJ Hero (PS2, PS3, Wii, X360)
Release Date: September 2009

This title promises to do for wannabe DJs what the Guitar Hero series did for air guitarists. With a new turntable controller and a catalogue of over 100 club hits, DJ Hero promises to be the life of the house party. The turntable brings techniques like scratching, blending, and sampling, and can be used in multiplayer mode where DJs battle against each other.

Bayonetta (PS3, X360)
Release Date: September 2009

From the makers of the Devil May Cry series, this action adventure title has you play Beyonetta, a witch who can use magic attacks, handguns, shotguns and katanas. She can defy gravity by sprouting wings, run on walls, and do bullet time attacks as well. This game promises fast-paced action and plenty of replay value.
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