Review of the Year 2012: October

When I signed off yesterday’s Review of the Year I said that October saw the kick off of the flood of releases, and I really wasn’t joking. There was an inundation of game’s in the tenth month of the year, well and truly kicking off that magical time known as Q4.

Things started off at the beginning of the month with NBA 2k13, which Aran heavily enjoyed despite its bloated menus and gave 8/10, and Resident Evil 6, which Aran again took on, although this time in a broader context. The game proved divisive in reviews, and Aran decided to put the game in the context of the future of the series. His finding? Resident Evil 6’s approach didn’t really work by trying to please too many people, and the series needs to refocus before its next outing.

[drop]The month also saw the release of one of Nintendo’s big hitters, Pokémon Black and White 2. Blair, our resident Pokémon expert, took on the game’s review, and found that while it was good, it didn’t quite reach some of the benchmarks set by other titles in the series. Then there was Fable: The Journey, which Vaughn Highfield took a look at in unconventional style. It would seem he wasn’t all that impressed with game’s use of Kinect.

On a more positive note, Peter enjoyed Dishonored and XCOM: Enemy Unknown, while Alex gave us his notes on Forza Horizon. October also saw the release of the HD version of Killzone, which Aran rated at a 7/10, and The Unfinished Swan, a game that Alex reviewed in one of the most intriguing and fun ways I’ve ever seen. He was even kind enough to show us exactly how he put his unique presentation of the review together.

Finally the month’s releases were rounded out by Assassin’s Creed III, a game that Peter enjoyed but found rather slow to get going, and WWE ’13, which Dan rated at a 6/10, pointing out failings with its character models and collision detection while praising its inclusion of the Attitude Era.

Moving on from the month’s software releases, there was also the iPad release. If the release of the iPad feels like déjà vu then it’s worth remembering that Apple shattered their traditional hardware cycle and released two iterations of the iPad within six months, something that Alex took issue with. At the same time as the new iteration of the iPad appeared there was also the release of the iPad mini, with Apple pulling a double whammy.

The news towards the end of the month seemed to be dominated by issues in games journalism, rather than the games themselves. Fortunately other bits and pieces cropped up throughout the rest of the month, such as the reveal of the new PSN store, which we shared our impressions of as well as interviewing some of the team behind the update.

[drop2]There was news about GTA V as well, with a leak that the game would release in May quickly confirmed by Rockstar. There was also some new artwork for the game released, although it wasn’t all that impressive.

Speaking of leaks, Bill Murray, the voice actor behind Call of Duty’s Captain Price rather than the Ghostbusters star and infamous party crasher, inadvertently revealed that another Modern Warfare title was in development, probably causing steam to come out of the ears of Activison’s PR department. Honestly I’m pretty disappointed it’s not the other Bill Murray more than anything.

However, probably the biggest new of the month was Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm, meaning that they now own Star Wars. Fortunately Disney were quick to confirm that projects in development, such as Star Wars 1313, would survive the purchase. However, heading into the future they did say that they’d be looking to focus more on social and mobile gaming.

As for the strangest news, it was obviously Sony levelling a lawsuit against Bridgestone. Why was it so strange? Well because it was all about the actor who portrayed Kevin Butler, Jerry Lambert. Apparently he portrayed a similar character in a Bridgestone advert, something that may or may not be in breach of his contract with Sony. I’m sure from a legal standpoint this is all rather serious but from the outside it seemed pretty crazy.

Finally, we look inwards. October was the month that TSA was rebooted and refocused, with Peter saying “It’s time for a change. It’s time to do something different.” I hope you’ve been enjoying the changes for the last few months.



  1. I got about an hour’s sleep last night, and I dreamed of The Unfinished Swan. Pretty efficient use of sleep, IMO.

    Still an amazing game.

    • The review for The Unfinished Swan was superb. Got it with Journey in the PS+ deal and it is indeed a great game.


    says it all about the Ipad Mini. ^_^

    and i might actually play a COD game if the other Bill Murray was in it.

    and the new store?
    looks nice and all, but runs like shite, seriously, 40 seconds to load up. >_<
    does every interface need buttons that each take up 20% of the screen these days?
    i know touchscreens favour that type of interface, but that's because you can't be as precise with a touch screen, and you need bigger buttons.
    that's not a problem on the ps3.
    i can understand why they did it on 360, even if i dislike the style, because they had to make it work with kinect, and we all know how well kinect and precision go together.

    and despite making "improvements" to the store, they still haven't done anything about the download list, still just one long chronological list.
    when you could have five years worth of downloads on it that's just not practical any more.

  3. Resident Evil 6 confirmed to me that the franchise is past it’s prime and needs to be given a rest. It tried to be an action horror beat them up in order to cater to 3 markets and fell flat on it’s arse. Oh and it abused QTEs. I wonder when the Turbo undead leather jacket outsourced hyper extreme pornographic version with 3 added skins will be out?

    AC3 was a bit of a disappointment. From the 6 hour opening to the disappointing set pieces and Conner was a bit on the bland side. Although the Naval battles are the best part of the game and put many fully fledged naval battle games to shame. Also, it had an annoying bug where you could fall through the fall at random and die. Seems to be fixed or as Ubi would say, optimised for players. I would give AC3 7/10 .

    If i recall correctly, that advert had no simularities to Kevin Butler and instead just an overexcited lab assistant. Plus, i thought they had finished with KB judging by the lack of KB adverts.

    Didn’t EG or IGN or CVG copy Nofi’s review of the unfinished swan?

    • no.

      • Could have sworn that you or Peter tweeted about it. Oh well. You tricked me into thinking FF refused to load the review!

  4. I’ll say it again Xcom blew me away never did I expect it to be so brilliant. Played over 200 hours and I finally Platted this beast last night. At times it was brutal belong belief but easily the best money spent this year.

    Now to play Dishonored the other game what everyone raves about released same day.

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