My Top 10 Most Anticipated Games Of The Year - thegodofwine7 Blog - www.GameInformer.com
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My Top 10 Most Anticipated Games Of The Year

If there's one thing I love to do, it's speculate. Ever since I was little, I've always enjoyed looking ahead and blindly guessing about things that are going to happen anyway.  Yeah, I don't know why I do it either.  I'm always wrong.  Heck, I did this last year and didn't even play one of the games (Syndicate), not to mention three others that didn't even come out.  One of them is on the list again, but I'm fairly sure I'll get the chance to love on it this time.  As usual, there are a ton of fantastic looking titles in the works, but here are the 10 that I am most excited about.

10. Dead Island: Riptide:  Dead Island.  Oh, how conflicted I feel about thee.  Here's the story:  I rented Dead Island from Redbox, right?  I played it for a little while, really liked it, and then hit the village level.  I have bad gamer ADD, and things started getting a little boring, so I took it out and prepared to take it to back...and promptly lost it.  Well, that's sixty-five bucks well spent.  Don't worry, this story has a (somewhat) happy ending.  I found it months later in my car, and started playing it again.  Coincidently, or not, I broke my shoulder in my basketball game.  Influx of free time for Blake = Mucho video game time.  I dug back into Dead Island, and ended up finishing it.  It definitely had its faults, but there is a very good idea (and excellent gameplay) behind that game.  I'm intrigued about importing my character, but I hope they can bring the storytelling up to par with the rest of the game, and more importantly, fix the mission structure.

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9. Crysis 3:  Crysis is sort of an odd beast.  Technically speaking, the game is phenomenal.  The graphics and sound design are second-to-none.  The combat is incredibly fun; great gunplay is combined with various powers and multiple angles of attack to make every new battlefield a treat.  Even the multiplayer is better than often credited, and features everything you could want in a competitive shooter like good matchmaking and a solid progression system.  Sure, the story is breaking any new barriers, but it's serviceable in a pre-fab science fiction kind of way, but the audio/visual experience is second to none.  I have to imagine that Crysis 3 will continue that trend, and I'm looking forward to running through it next year.

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8. Tomb Raider:  I was a huge fan of the early Tomb Raider games, but Lara's later adventures completely lost me in terms of both story and gameplay.  Neither evolved enough from the early formula to keep me interested, but it looks like Crystal Dynamics isn't resting on the buxom heroines laurels one bit.  A completely revamped game experience seems to be in the making, and I couldn't agree more with the direction.  Adding some much-needed vulnerability to Lara's character and making simple survival such a big part of the game are genius moves, and my expectations grow every time I see something new about it.  I can't wait to go bow hunting!  It won't be an easy job to return Miss Croft to prominence, but Crystal Dynamics has the pedigree to do it.

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7. Dead Space 3:  I'm not doing this again.  I loved the first Dead Space.  It was one of the few games this generation that I thought was genuinely scary, but when Visceral started talking about the sequel there was concern that the fear factor was going to be reduced in favor of action.  Visions of Resident Evil swim to mind.  But my worries were allayed as soon as I got my hands on it.  From the incredible opening sequence, Dead Space 2 kept me enraptured throughout, and was one of my personal surprise hits.  I'm going to have faith from the beginning this time; I really think Visceral is going to deliver again.  I'm a co-op fan, and I'm eager to rip apart some necromorphs with a buddy February 5th.

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6. Gears of War: Judgment:  I know that Epic Games is going through some turbulent times right now, but I am a huge Gears fanboy.  The original Gears was what really turned me on to online gaming, and from everything I've heard, I think we could be in for the best multiplayer in the series.  I'm intrigued about the blending of traditional multiplayer with elements of Beast and Horde mode, and it should be interesting to see if developer People Can Fly can breathe new life into the franchise.  By taking Marcus out of the spotlight and focusing on Baird, they are clearly showing no fear about deviating from the norm.  They've had to overcome numerous issues, but hopefully that will only mean a stronger product in the end.

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5. The Last of Us:  This may sound odd, but I think that the Last of Us, of all the games on this list, actually has the least potential to disappoint.  Looking at all the games ahead of it on the list, they all seem very high risk/high reward to me.  They all have spiritual (or direct) sequels to live up to, but The Last of Us gets a blank slate in that regard, and I refuse to believe that a developer as talented as Naughty Dog is going to drop the ball here.  I love the whole "killer fungus" hook.  It removes the regular zombie question of "how/why did this happen???" and focuses on pure survival, but I'm going to be honest with you:  I've already led one little girl through an apocalypse recently, and I wonder how reminiscent of that story The Last of Us will be.  The Walking Dead showed us how to tell that tale correctly, does Naughty Dog have a surprise or two up their sleeve? 

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4. Beyond: Two Souls:  Ellen Page!  I could probably stop there and get my entire point across, but I guess I'll elaborate.  The rare Ellenus Pagus is a beautiful and intelligent creature that instantly makes any electronic media, movie poster or breakfast cereal (for some reason) instantly more enjoyable.  I've been a fan of Quantic Dream's work since Indigo Prophecy, and everything I've seen about Beyond has me intrigued as hell to check it out.  I'm hoping that David Cage and his team can finally sync some quality gameplay with their always intriguing narrative and capitalize on all the potential they have.  Heavy Rain was light-years ahead of Indigo Prophecy, and if Beyond takes the same kind of leap, watch out.  This could be memorable.

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3. Grand Theft Auto V:  I'll go ahead and get this off my chest:  I didn't care for GTA IV.  It was great on a technical level, and I absolutely loved the dynamic encounters on the street, but if I had to drive one more person to play darts I was going to use that disc as a Frisbee.  Seriously, it felt more like I was playing Mild Taxi instead of this generation-defining blockbuster that everyone was raving about.  I don't expect to run into that problem with V.  I'm stoked about the character swapping mechanic, and I'm looking forward to kicking it back in Vinewood again.  I know expectations are sky-high already, but this is one this is going to be worth the wait.

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2. Rayman Legends:  As I've blogged about before, Rayman Origins sunk its teeth into me and didn't let go.  It reminded me of a simpler time I think, one where pure platforming fun was all that mattered and nobody cared about anything else.  Ubisoft crafted a legitimate revival of the franchise, and I can't wait to see what they bring to the table with the upcoming Legends.  More Rayman would be enough for me, but it is important to me that they evolve the formula somehow, especially in regards to the Wii U's unique features.  If it's going to be an exclusive (WHY!?!?!), then at least do it right.  Michael Ancel is still in charge, so its hard to imagine that things will go horribly wrong.  The best part of this coming out though might just be the fact that Ancel can start working on Beyond Good & Evil 2.

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1. BioShock Infinite:  Few, if any, games have grabbed me quite like BioShock did.  From the first few minutes in, I literally couldn't pull myself away from the masterpiece that Ken Levine and his team at Irrational Games put together.  With a bigger budget, more time and sky-high expectations, I have every confidence that they are going to somehow one-up the stellar BioShock.  I expect the combat, not the originals strongest point, to be brought up to the standard of the environmental storytelling and exquisite level design.  Rapture is one of the most finely crafted locales in video games, and I am going to spend so many hours trying to uncover Columbia's no-doubt myriad secrets.  I'm excited about every one of these games, but BioShock Infinite has to top the list for me.

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