Our penultimate collection of 2010 games, today we have an eclectic range of titles we’re sure you’ll find something to like. If not, there’s always tomorrow (or the last eight days for that matter).
Today’s update is a little special for this author, not because we’re nearly at the end of the series, but simply because it contains his most anticipated game of 2010. Let’s see if you can guess what it is.
Skate 3 – Developer: EA Black Box | Publisher: EA | Out: May 18th
Now that Tony Hawk has managed to pull off the perfect 1080-face-grind-to-total-commercial-death with his Ride misstep, skateboarding fans should be dusting themselves down and hoping their injuries will have healed in time for Black Box’s third edition in the popular Skate franchise.
Little is known about the new boarding extravaganza other than that there will be varying difficulty levels available for the more experienced of virtual riders. And no skateboard peripheral. Thankfully.
Spec Ops: The Line – Developer: Yager Development | Publisher: 2K Games | Out: 2011(!)
Considering the actual press release states that Spec Ops: The Line possibly may not see the light of day until 2011, we feel like dirty cheats for adding it to this list. There key word here is “may”, however, as there’s still a remote chance we’ll see it before the end of next year.
Spec Ops: The Line hit the gaming headlines recently when it transpired that the United Arab Emirates (where the game is set), were none too happy about their super-rich city Dubai possibly being shown in a negative light. UAE’s National Media Council will apparently review the game before deciding whether or not to ban Spec Ops: The Line outright.
We honestly don’t see the problem. Considering the events of the game feature a special ops team entering a Dubai destroyed by a cataclysmic sandstorm, we doubt you’ll be able to recognise a bloody thing.
Splatterhouse– Developer: Namco (formerly BottleRocket) | Publisher: Namco | Out: Q2 2010
More game politics, this time of the more he-said-she-said nature. Splatterhouse, a gorefest reboot of the old 1990’s series, was once under the guiding hands of BottleRocket Entertainment. Until Namco swooped in and took the game away due to “performance issues” that is. With no other game in developerment, BottleRock shut its doors last September with its owners resigned to creating a new studio from its ashes.
With the guys behind Afro Samurai now finishing off what BottleRocket started, Splatterhouse will make an appearance sometime next year. Probably without any crazy hairdos or Samuel L. Jackson. Though we can’t promise the latter. That man sure loves to work.
Split/Second – Developer: Black Rock Studio | Publisher: Disney | Out: TBC
With a long pedigree in racing titles (including last year’s Pure), Black Rock Studio will up the ante next year with the explosive Split/Second. Part Burnout, part volatile competitive racing reality TV show, Split/Second combines the blistering pace of street racing with the chaos of destroyable environments.
It’s a slight – but still relevant – twist on a well-trodden path. We can’t wait to unleash our vendettas on the competition as the world explodes around us in this stylistic racer.
Star Ocean – The Last Hope : International – Developer: tri-Ace | Publisher: SquareEnix | Out: February 12th
We could be petty and start banging the “thanks for the beta” drum now that Star Ocean 4 is no longer an Xbox 360 exclusive. We’re not that haughty, though, and instead we’ll just focus on the fact that the game is coming to the PS3 at all.
Nearly one year to the day (funny that) after its 360 debut, Star Ocean: The Last Hope gains the tag “International” (this despite the 360 version also launching internationally – go figure) along with new PS3 exclusive content and dual voice-overs (in Japanese and English along with other localised languages).
The new Star Ocean is actually a prequel to the popular (in Japan at least) RPG series. With a Metacritic score of 72% on the 360, we’re thinking this one is likely for fans of the genre only.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 – Developer: LucasArts | Publisher: LucasArts | Out: TBC
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. It promised much, with its fancy-pants Euphoria engine and Havoc driven physics, not to mention what DMM (Digital Molecular Matter) added to the mix when a Force wielder decided to smash things up with his mind. But it was all a little too much style over substance with the title rebuked for its frustrating and repetitive gameplay. But, hey, at least the story was good. In fact, most reviews of the game claimed the plot was more coherent and well-executed than Lucas’ prequels. (Not hard.)
Despite disbanding the team that made The Force Unleashed, Lucas Arts will return to the Jedi well with another tale of Starkiller in Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 next year.
Little is known of the plot (we’re assuming it still takes place between episodes III and IV; although Starkiller does appear a tad older in the teaser shown at the VGAs this month) or what new adventures the Dark Apprentice will get himself into. We’re assuming he’ll be throwing unwitting Stormtroopers about the place willy-nilly no matter what.
Irrespective of its quality, you can bet your last space-credit that, next year, The Force Unleashed 2 will sell like protocol droids in a room full of Hutts.
Starhawk (tentative) – Developer: Lightbox Interactive | Publisher: SCE | Out: May 29th (TBC)
Warhawk, Dylan Jobe’s much-adored multiplayer only showdown with an assortment of vehicles and options to unleash all forms of mayhem, finally sees a follow-up in the form of Lightbox Interactive’s secret title Starhawk – or whatever it ends it being called.
What we do know about the title is that, unlike Warhawk, it will have a single-player campaign. It will also double the carnage with support for 64 players online. Oh yeah, and it’s in space. Hence the possible title. That point is kinda important.
Super Street Fighter IV – Developer: Dimps/Capcom | Publisher: Capcom | Out: April 1st
With new moves, intros, and (most importantly) a roster of new characters, the only people who were surprised a Super version of Street Fighter IV was coming were those who bought the first version and thought they were getting the final edition.
The updated Super-Duper Hyper Alpha Ex (or whatever) version will see ten new characters added to the role-call from the likes of Adon (who starred in the first Street Fighter) and newcomer Juri, to fan faves T.Hawk, Dee Jay and Cody and Guy from Final Fight (returning from Street FIghter III).
Deemed too large and intrinsic to permit DLC – the return of the car beat-down bonus round obviously putting it over the edge – the Super Update will be marketed at a lower price-point.
The Agency – Developer: SOE Seattle | Publisher: SOE | Out: TBC
2010 definitely appears to be the year of the spy. Between Agent, Alpha Protocol and SOE’s The Agency, we’re going to be knee-deep in martinis and stunning women in a matter of a few short months. Guaranteed.
The Agency hopes to bring something different to the black-tie party, however. The third of SOE’s MMOs planned for a release next year (we’ve already covered Free Realms and DC Universe Online in previous articles), The Agency hopes to marry the seductive allure of espionage with the addictive nature of an MMO.
Featuring two factions of differing ideologies (high-tech versus blowing things up to get the job done), The Agency could be a surprise hit when it finally arrives – if it arrives – next year.
It’s been awhile since we’ve heard anything out of Seattle regarding the current status of The Agency. Already confirming at least once that the game hasn’t been cancelled, John Smedley, President of SOE, has reiterated that the team behind the title are “going full-bore towards it.”
The Last Guardian – Developer: Team Ico | Publisher: SCE | Out: TBC
Fumito Ueda has a reputation of creating the gaming equivalent to an artist’s masterworks. Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, and if lightning strikes thrice, The Last Guardian, his latest epic could be one of the biggest titles of 2010.
The footage shown at E3 (though previously leaked) is the stuff of legend and suggests we’re all going to be bawling our eyes out whenever we get the chance to play and complete the game. Depicting a strange bird-like rat creature and his boy companion, The Last Guardian looks to share some of its predecessor Ico’s attributes. Not that this is a bad thing. Ico was one of the best games to grace the PS2. With Shadow of the Colossus shortlisted to take the title altogether in my book. (I may have just given away the answer to the question that opened this piece.)
Despite Shuhei Yoshida, President of Worldwide Studios, calling Team Ico his Olympic Team (since it takes four years for them to make a game), it would appear that Ueda-san will break tradition and release The Last Guardian in 2010 – five years after his last offering.
Five years is a terribly long time to wait to play a new Fumito Ueda game if you ask us. Thankfully, the wait is nearly over.
Tomorrow sees the curtain fall on our mammoth ten-part series documenting some of the games of 2010 coming for the PS3. Tune in to see us give the series a massive send-off. Or we’ll just let it die, whimpering like a petrified animal. We haven’t really decided which yet.