Console Games scheduled for 2012 that catch my attention

Be aware that I like puzzle games, adventure games and third person action adventure games with platforming.

I Am Alive: An Ubisoft productiion, the trailer shows an awesome combination of platforming, third person action, puzzles, first person shooting and more. Currently scheduled for XBLA and PSN. The game looks a bit big for digital release, but maybe that’s a good thing.

Hitman-Absolution: After watching a nail biting gameplay sequence on the official website showing awesome stealth, timing and shooting mechanics I am totally sold on the first ever PS3 Hitman.

Devil May Cry: As developer Ninja Theory will not be doing a sequel to Enslaved, seeing their work continued in some fashion in a fascinating looking game is what I’ll settle for. I have no connection to the DMC games, so a reboot is right up my alley.

Papo & Yo : Another digital only, this time PSN only, has amazing art and gameplay with seems puzzles meet third person adventure.

Tomb Raider: No gameplay has shown up for the reboot, but I trust in the company to create another excellent game full of everything I like.

Max Payne 3: I’ve been a fan since day 1, got Payne on XBox and PC and Payne 2 on PC. Got to see what they’re doing with Payne 3 at New York Comic Con and I was sold.

The Last of Us: Sure no gameplay yet, but it’s Naughty Dog and it has a great cast. Also from what I understand one of the main guys who worked on Enslaved spearheaded this.

A.M.Y.: Sure it’s ANOTHER zombie survival horror game, but it’s a PSN title and it’s made by the man who gave us Flashback all those years ago.

Inversion: Third person shooter with physics tricks and gameplay? Yes please and thank you.

Neverdead: Ever since the first gameplay of this I was on board. You’re body can fall apart and then you find it and as you gather a body part you can keep fighting and you can just keep getting your arm or leg ripped off and just grab it again but shoot with the other arm? Plus the story trailer was hilarious!

Lollipop Chainsaw: Hot chick, super awesome graphics, extreme violence, 3rd person action and Suda51? Ok!

Journey: thatgamecompany has not disappointed. Cloud, flOw and Flower were three very different but amazing games and I look forward to seeing what they’re latest which has had a much longer development time can bring.

Testament of Sherlock Holmes: Frogwares has been doing Sherlock games for the PC for a long time now, with interesting and original stories in the Holmes tradition including having him go against Jack the Ripper and Arsène Lupin. This will be the fifth game in the series and the first to be designed with PS3 and XBox in mind. They upgraded their gengine from scratch and look to have retained/returned to their more popular third person camera with first person probably now being the optional camera view. I’ve actually gotten to enjoy these games and feel they have a good handle on the character. While all renditions of Holmes have their incencretities, these are some of the funnest next to the BBC modern show and the Guy Ritchie films.

Silent Hill-Downpour: Traditionally the Silent Hill games have caused me frustration more than anything, but the latest version is from a brand new developer and is just using the premise of the Silent Hill ghost town to tell another survival horror action adventure. With IDW editor and Silent Hill comics writer Tom Waltz on story duties and music from Dan Licht.

Binary Domain: An action shooter from the producer of the Yakuza games and the producer of Vanquish? There seems to be some innovative squad based actions as well, yet still all in single player third person mode… so basically like elements from the Mass Effect games, but with a different fundamental. The videos for this look awesome.

New York Comic Con 2011 Overview Part 1

To get a clearer idea of where my head was in a jumbled state and the factor of this being possibly a serious mishmosh, let’s set some background.

I’m working from memory mostly, with the notes of my schedule for reference. Twitter and Facebook were impossible to get onto while in Javits. I tried, and was successful sometimes, but mostly nope, so my notes are photos, videos, what I bought, sketches and my good ol noggin. Another thing to note is that on Wednesday my mom admitted herself back into the hospital. She was there throughout the weekend and is still there as I write this on Monday night. It is nothing serious and they are getting down to the bottom to various problems she has had lately, but it added a stress factor to what usually is my most exciting weekend I New York for the last six years.

DAY ONE- Thursday

I got to the convention center and down into the press room, registered and ready to hit the floor just around opening at 4. The first person I saw before even getting on the show floor was Steve Talkowski. He introduced me to Tim Jester and I got to see his GibbyGop figure while admiring the Tokidoki car as well.

For this first official preview night where I had no panels or scheduled press interviews or autograph sessions I wanted to hit up so it was all about hitting the floor, getting whatever goodies I could and seeing as much as I could before 7 PM hit and it was time for the Tom Morello concert.

I gave my hand at Dead Rising 2: Off The Record and I’m thinking I’ll want it eventually, although I’ve yet to beat Dead Rising 2. A lot of the game booths pertained to genres I didn’t care about or had no interest in, but at least Ubisoft was there with some Assassin’s Creed and their game for the TinTin film. I played that and found it really fun.

Over at the Rockstar booth they were showing off the 10th anniversary edition of GTA3 which is a port for mobile devices and tablets. I got the feel for it and with some final tweaking it’ll definitely find new life on iPhones/pad/droids/whatever.

They were also showing Max Payne 3 in an early build in a closed off room. I’m thinking I’m probably not even supposed to TALK about the game, but damn it, it’s not video or photos, it’s just some dteails on awesomeness. They showed us a sequence flashback with Max Payne looking like his old self in New York City. In this wild sequence we find out why and how he ended up in the games main part of Brazil. They showed us the awesome mechanics and amazing graphics that are still in process, which means they’ll get even better. They then showed us a section of the Brazil part where Max is running around protecting his girl. The bullet time and final kill shots are just mesmerizing and there’s even SPECIAL bullet time sequences to allow for balls out ballistic kick ass action and Max is way more brutal now. After a dive he can be on the ground and turn around while still shooting. While Batman: Arkham City, Uncharted 3, and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations are going to keep me busy, I look super forward to Payne right now after that preview they gave us.

Walking the floor exploring awarded me seeing various other industry friends and acquaintances such as Dean Haspiel, Chris Miskiewicz, Joe Infurnari, Michel Fiffe and Kat Roberts (aka The ACT-I-VATE Crew) and in the Cultyard, Jared Deal. I also got to see the FIRST comics booth and had a good conversation with the owner of the returning publishing venture. I was also happy to see Jarret Williams, writer/artist of Super Pro K.O. from ONI Press. He was the first of the very few sketches I was able to pull off at the convention this year.

Other things of note were the awesome Batman: Arkham Asylum and Arkham City action figures on display the DC Booth, the Hasbro Announcement of bringing back Jem and The Holograms and while I found the new Rayman game way challenging it looks freaking awesome and that visual standpoint should help it overcome it’s pretty high difficulty in 2-D platforming.

I also really enjoyed meeting street artist/cartoonist Tito Na Roa. When he hit New York City as part of visiting for NYCC he hit up the legends rooftop in Manhattan. I am hoping he somehow finds/found time to hit up more walls before going home, but even if he didn’t at least he solds his books at NYCC and his project is so mesmerizing.

Before the show floor closed on Sunday I was staring at Mattel’s collection of WWE figures, because no matter what I can’t seem to quit this shit. No matter how bad it gets. I’m still not the kind of fan they want though and never will be. My TV’s aren’t counted in market share, I don;t buy PPVs, I don’t go to live events, I don’t buy the toys and I criticize them left and right whenever I can. So I’m an addict, but at least I take my methodrone.

I almost decided to not go to the Tom Morello concert, but I am very glad I did. It was a super enjoyable and fun concert to listen and watch. He did a full amazing set of Night

I fell like I’m leaving out essential information in that the evening before I was off buying an iPhone and while I was about to go home is when my mother called me to tell me she was going into the hospital. She didn’t even know if she was being admitted till much later, which is why I wasn’t worried on Thursday. She wasn’t put into a room into late Thursday.

After the concert I went home knowing that the next few days were going to be intense and brutal.

An Assassin and an Adventurer walk into a bar

Since I’ve started writing about video games, I thought I’d link to a few videos and discuss two of the games I am looking forward to most as 2011 comes to a close and discuss their history in some detail as well.

The first is Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. This will the fourth game in the series and the third game that is part of a story arc. In the game you play a young man named Desmond who is placed in a machine and can live out the memories of your ancestors. In the first game you met Altair, a Master Assassin from the Byzantine era of the Middle East, you travel around Syria, Jerusalem and more assassinating key figures in the Holy Wars, only to discover it was all a ploy of your mentor seeking power for himself in an item of much power, you defeat him, but what happens next in Altair’s legend remains unknown. In the second game you met Ezio, a young man learning the ways of becoming an Assassin during the Renaissance period of Italy. You face The Borgia, defeating The Pope and his sons through the second game and then a third called Brotherhood in which you start training Assassins yourself. You also become good friends with folks such as Leonardo Da Vinci, Copernicus and Machiavelli (so the game is really based on real history). In Revelations, you return to Ezio in his old age, in which Ezio is now seeking to find out what happened to Altair, before the first game and after. At the same time, Desmond is trapped in a special black world because of stuff that happened in Brotherhood. So you play as all three trying to piece together all the answers.

The first video just will show you how amazing the story telling, acting and animation is, especially in the upcoming game along with a commentary track from the developers.

Oh and the Game developers have so much love for the game and the series they even made a Live Action film called LINEAGE which is about Ezio’s father, who was also an Assassin.

They also put together an animated film called Ascendance.

And another animated film is coming out called EMBERS.

Oh and there have also been two books and a comic book, and these were not adaptations, but stories that take place in between the game or in the same world of the game, but in a different section!

Oh I forgot to mention that Desmond also has friends and partners in the games, helping him in the machine. There’s the hot blonde, voiced by Kirsten Bell (Veronica Mars, Heroes, Forgetting Sarah Marshall), the cute brunette tech girl and the British researcher.

Another game I am super excited about is UNCHARTED 3.  Uncharted are the adventures of Nathan Drake, a treasure hunter/former thief who believes he is the ancestor of Francis Drake. Following clues from ancient legends he finds the home of amazing treasures once thought real, but forever lost. In the first game he followed clues from Francis Drake to find the fabled El Dorado. In the second game, once again following clues from a diary by Francis Drake, Nathan goes in search of Shamballah. In the third game he will follow the lead of T.E. Lawrence in search of Iram of the Pillars. In the third game incluence will also be taken from the classic film “Lawrence of Arabia”. Drake has had various partners. His main one is Sully, an older dude who is really tough played classic character actor Richard McGonagle, Elena, a journalist played the lovely Emily Rose, Chloe a tough as nails Brit played by Farscape’s Claudia Black and Harry played Magician and Comedy actor Steve Valentine. The games have also featured Rene Auberjonois and Simon Templeman, the third game has very popular British actress Rosalind Ayres as the bad guy.
Nolan North plays Nathan Drake and he’s so good, he also plays Desmond in Assassin’s Creed and the voices are similiar but quite different, not a distraction as in going “Wait, he sounds just like Nathan Drake”.

Nolan is much more suited to play Nathan though, which you can see is this live action commercial for the third game starring Nolan North, it is very funny, Nolan is fantastic, sort of like David Boreanaz, Bruce Campbell and Nathan Fillion having a love child:

http://blog.us.playstation.com/2011/08/25/uncharted-3-drakes-deception-collectors-edition-unboxed/

The game has also had a Motion Comic prequel.

It also has a comic coming soon and a novel telling a story not in the games by Christopher Golden.

Video games when you really analyze them like this have come a long long long way. I know most of know this, but how frequently do you sit down and think about it?