It’s here at last: the next generation of video gaming goodness is upon us in the UK with the Xbox One hitting shelves this Friday. Though mainly dominated by Microsoft’s slew of launch titles, those sitting out on next-gen still have much to look forward to.
Rugby League Live 2 – World Cup Edition | PS3, 360 | Thursday
Looking to avoid the imminent stampede of Microsoft’s next-gen platform, Rugby League Live 2 makes a return this Thursday. The World Cup Edition is effectively a revised version of last year’s Rugby League Live 2, tagged with a number of add-ons.
Saint Seiya Brave Soldiers | PS3 | Friday
Namco Bandai is back with its manga-inspired brawler series. Brave Soldiers features over 50 playable characters and three storylines to pursue. It looks fairly hectic, echoing a similar fighting style to games such as Dragonball Z, Naruto, and Final Fantasy Dissidia.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds | 3DS | Friday
It’s a new era for Link and Princess Zelda as they make their first original debut on Nintendo’s latest handheld. Combining old-school, top-down dungeon crawling with intuitive, wall-crawling puzzles, A Link Between Worlds earned itself a stalwart 9/10 in our review.
Tearway | PS Vita | Friday
Sony is also bringing its A-game to the handheld spectrum with yet another quirky title from Media Molecule. Tearaway, exclusive to the PlayStation Vita system, is the British studio’s first venture away from Sackboy and its landmark LittleBigPlanet series. Expect a luscious, vibrant papercraft world populated with a myriad of contextual puzzles and other shenanigans. We’ll have a review of the title tomorrow.
Crimson Dragon | Xbox One | Friday
Perhaps not the most ambitious of the X1’s debut line-up, Crimson Dragon is best summed up as a downloadable, on-rails shooter. It still looks great, however, and harbours plenty of content including a stable of playable dragons which can be trained by collecting items in-game. Yukio Futatsugi is also on board, best known for his work on Sega Saturn title, Panzer Dragoon.
Dead Rising 3 | Xbox One | Friday
It’s goodbye Frank West and Chuck Greene as players slip into the boots of Nick Ramos, the latest protagonist joining the ranks of Dead Rising. Once again you will be tasked with bringing down waves of the undead as the interactive parody plays out. Expect a crap-load of zombies on screen at once and an arsenal of zany weapons to take them down with.
Fighter Within | Xbox One | Friday
Considering the cold reception Ubisoft’s Fighter Uncaged received at launch, very few of us predicted there would be a sequel in the pipeline. Fighter Within is, essentially, what Uncaged was supposed to be: an intuitive fighting game that makes use of the Kinect’s motion technology. Whether or not it will succeed largely hinges on the revised peripheral though initial reports show that Kinect is more than up to the challenge.
Forza Motorsport 5 | Xbox One | Friday
Old names will be put to the test over the next year or so as racing greats, including Forza and Need for Speed, go head-to-head with Ubisoft’s The Crew and Evolution’s Driveclub. Unlike Sony’s exclusive racer however, Turn 10 was able to deliver on its day one promise with Forza 5, delivering insanely-detailed tracks and cars as well as a refined driving experience.
Killer Instinct | Xbox One | Friday
It may not be a complete return to form for fabled studio, Rare, yet Killer Instinct definitely marks a new path for the developer, having previously chained itself to the Kinect Sports series. Microsoft’s exclusive brawler is, rather surprisingly, free-to-play, offering players a select number of characters which rotate every now and then. The idea is for users to throw down cash to unlock characters permanently, a bold approach for a fighting yet one that could always work.
LocoCycle | Xbox One | Friday
From developer Twisted Pixel, LocoCycle is all about a renegade, high tech motorbike with a mind of its own. It may be the zaniest digital title at launch, but also looks to be one of the poorest next generation titles.
Ryse: Son of Rome | Xbox One | Friday
Better known as the launch-day wildcard, Ryse: Son of Rome is a first for developer Crytek. Substituting guns, aliens, and bows for swords and shields, Ryse was originally meant to champion the Xbox 360’s Kinect motion tech before it became a fully-fleshed action game. Previews of the game outed it as a dull brawler that relied far too much on sluggish combat and QTEs. More recent reports paint the game in a more positive light though some will still need convincing.
Zoo Tycoon | Xbox One | Friday
Now here’s a surprise. While other launch titles have been met with generally mixed reviews, Microsoft’s animal sim has returned to a spread of high scores. Created by Kinectimals studio, Frontier Developments, Zoo Tycoon is – as alway s- all about building your own enclosures and filling them with a variety of exotic beasts that need to be cared for.
This week also sees the re-release of games such as Call of Duty Ghosts, Battlefield 4, and Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag on next generation platforms. Here’s the full list:
- Call of Duty: Ghosts
- Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
- Battlefield 4
- Skylanders: SWAP Force
- Just Dance 2014
- NBA Live 2014
- Need For Speed Rivals
- Zumba World Party
- FIFA 14
- Madden NFL 25
And there we have it, ladies and gents. What about you? Are you shelling out for an Xbox One this week or holding out for the PlayStation 4’s release next week?