1. Diablo III
The year is 1996, the Nintendo 64 video game system is released in Japan, the first electric car to go into mass production is launched by General Motors, and Blizzard Entertainment releases Diablo, a game that will ultimately make history. Diablo received the Game of the Year award in 1996 and in 2011 it’s still the no# 1 game on Gamespot’s most popular games with an impressive 9.6/10 score. The game was followed in 1997 by the release of Diablo: Hellfire expansion.
Several years later, in 2000, Diablo II hit the shelves and with the addition of Battle.net multiplayer, the game was a huge success, bettered only by the expansion Lord of Destruction, in 2001. From that point…total silence, for 7 years nobody knew anything about a sequel, until June 28, 2008, when Diablo III was announced, scheduled to hit the market in the first quarter of 2012.
The universe of Diablo begun in the first game of the series, in the Kingdom of Khanduras, located in the world of Sanctuary, where the player had to adventure beneath the town of Tristram, though 16 levels, to find Diablo, The lord of Terror, buried in the depths of Hell. The storyline of Diablo II skipped a few years in the future, but still in the land of Sanctuary, in the town of Tristram, where Deckard Cain tells the story of the Dark Wanderer (the Unnamed Warrior, the hero of the first game) and the arrival of Diablo who released his brothers, the other prime evils: Mephisto, Lord of Hatred and Baal, Lord of Destruction from their soulstones. Diablo II ending with the destruction of the worldstone by the Archangel Tyrael.
“And the Heavens shall Tremble”
The prime evils have been killed, the worldstone which shielded the land of Sanctuary from the forces of Heaven and Hell, has been destroyed and twenty years later, the storyline of Diablo III starts, as the evil reappears in Sanctuary. At this time, Diablo III is in beta testing and by the looks of it, it has the potential to rise up to its expectations. The game underwent some major changes: the skillset is not a tree anymore, but now, with every level, players gain new skills, potions drop out of monsters as health orbs and the new interface gives the possibility of some killer-combos(literally), the all-new auction-house lets players to sell and buy in-game items, new character classes: Daemon Hunter, Witch Doctor, Monk, Wizard, as well as the old Barbarian and the possibility of male/female characters are just some of the all new and improved Diablo III. All we can do is wonder as to which direction Diablo III is going, but in my opinion, the next Diablo game will be a MMO, like World of Warcraft. We’ll just have to play, wait, and see.
2. Max Payne 3
12 years have passed since The Fall of Max Payne, Max is now in Brazil and still fighting off bad guys, hoping to find a girl he had to protect. Not much is revealed by Rockstar’s trailer, but from what we can see, the game has improved in any way it could. The graphics had underwent a serious changeover, the plot thickens and the stakes are higher. Max Payne 3 is set to launch in March 2012, so we have lots of time to get our gear in place and set up our gaming room.
The sky-city of Columbia has never looked better and the Action-Horror First Person Shooterpresents a visual style that no other game can imitate. This time, the player is helped by a partner, Elizabeth, who can manipulate the tears is realty and give items, ammo and who knows what else. The franchise has lots of fans and we can only hope BioShock Infinite lives up the expectations, but from what 2K Studios showed us, it definitely will.
Rockstar announced in 2009 a PS exclusive game, and here it is: Agent. The story takes place in WW II but much more than that, we don’t know. Rockstar is a secretive developer so no information on the game is available, just a few photos scattered across the internet. It’s safe to say that from 2009 until now, they had a lot of work done, so the owners of PS3s have very high expectations of this game.
5. Halo 4
Halo 4 is one of the most anticipated games of 2012. The fans of the Halo series have something to look forward to: the trailer offers a glimpse into the campaign, the graphics look stunning as well as the feature of switching between the 2012 graphics and the original 2001 version and the new engine promises new features that will keep gamers busy for some time. The game is due to launch in November 15 2012, so lots of time to speculate on the features it will have.
The 5th game of the series looks absolutely magnificent! 47 is armed with new tech and he looks better than ever. The plot thickens as Agent 47 is hunted down by police, after he “finds himself at the center of a dark conspiracy” as said in the press release at E3 and will be available on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Since Blood Money was released 5 years ago, IO has been working on the Glacier 2 engine for the Absolution and in 2012, gamers form around the world will get a taste of their work. I just hope the game will be as good as the trailer.
The final chapter of Mass Effect is here. After forming a crew in Mass Effect 2, this time, the hero will have to gather an entire galaxy to fight with him. The game is bigger in every way: the scale is massive and the decisions made in the game are bigger than ever. The trailer shows us a beautifully modeled world in ruins, the stage of the last battle of Commander Shepard.
Revisiting familiar sights such as San Andreas, in Los Santos, GTA 5 is more an upgrade of the previous GTA, but that is mostly my opinion. The graphics have improved, the game is more realistic and the in-game options, such as golfing will definitely make it worth the wait. Not many facts were released about the game at this point, we only know that is sometime in 2012 when we’ll be at the keyboard of this game.
9. Prototype 2
Meet your maker! After spending countless hours to make Alex Mercer a badass, now payers have to kill him, playing as Sergent James Heller, also infected with the virus that transformed Alex in the first game. The action is placed in the ruins of New York and keeping in mind the skills Alex use to have, I can’t imagine what new skills of mass destruction we could enjoy in the sequel.
10. Far Cry 3
“Your name is Jason Brody, your girlfriend’s missing and you are trapped on a mysterious island, and everyone there is crazy”. This is how Far Cry 3 was presented at E3. The 3rd game of the series takes us back to an island, similar with the one in the first game. At first look, the game is stunning: the Dunia Engine used to power Far Cry 2 has undergone some changes, now using advanced water tech to give the game an in-depth experience, the imagery is more realistic and the gameplay has some new features.
11. God of War 4
In 2012, fans of the God of War series will be very happy to see that Kratos’s Returns is announced! For those who don’t know about this series, God of War is a mythological game featuring the Greek goods, a game exclusive to Play Station, and of course, GoW4 will be PS3 exclusive. At this time, not much known about GoW4, but we hope in the near future, some info and maybe a gameplay video will show us how it looks.
12. Yakuza: Dead Souls
Yet another zombie game! Similar to Left 4 Dead and so many before it, Yakuza: Dead Souls is the type of game where you pick up the biggest weapon you can find and start blowing heads of zombies. In my opinion a very relaxing type of game, with nice graphics, cool and intensive gameplay. Certainly a very good game for the weekend.
13. Guild Wars 2
A sequel of the first Guild Wars is rapidly approaching. Guild Wars 2 is a major upgrade of the first game and like the one before it, a MMORPG full of quests and dynamic combat. This free to play game will be one of the best MMOs out there (World of Worcraft, Lord of The Rings Online, RIFT etc) offering players an open setting defined by their own actions in the game.
“What will you cut? The blade is in your hands” This is a truly cutting edge game. With a blade that can cut practically anything and a part human part machine character, Metal Gear Solid Rising: Revengeance looks like a game that will keep us in front of a monitor for a few days. It looks awesome and the gameplay is wonderful. I can hardly wait to enjoy this game.
No one thought Valve could ever reinvent Counter-Strike, but it seems that 12 years after its original release in 2000, Valve will launch Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. A new and improved game with new models, new weapons and new gameplay types. The game looks better than ever and with the possibility of playing on consoles and cross-platform capability, Counter-Strike will one again unite players from all over the world in one place.