2011: A look ahead
January 7, 2011
Video games have evolved from cave drawings to the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in two and a half decades, as Tom Bissell says in his book, “Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter.”
I think 2011 will reveal a little insight into where games are heading as more games use motion controllers, 3D televisions and smart phone operating systems.
The Playstation Move controller and Xbox Kinect are aiming to get gesture-based controls out of the toy box and into hardcore gamers’ hands.
After seeing recent iPhone games “Rage” and “Infinity Blade,” it is clear that smart phones are capable of delivering quality graphics and experiences on a platform a large number of people already have.
To find out what 2011 has in store in the software department, I tackled the grueling task of scouring the internet for upcoming game trailers and announcements. Yes, my sacrifices have been great, and here are the results in the obligatory “Most Anticipated” list — in no specific order.
Child of Eden — This is the successor to “Rez,” and is being called a multi-sensory shooter by its creators. Its use of the Kinect, sound, vibrations and eye-candy visuals are sure to create an experience more immersive than anything before.
Portal 2 — If you haven’t been tempted by the promise of cake, you are missing out. The sequel to “Portal” looks as promising and mind-taxing as any puzzle game. Plus, it will mix in a co-op puzzle campaign that is sure to start an argument.
Metal Gear Solid Rising — This game has two firsts: Hideo Kojima is relinquishing the creative reigns for a Metal Gear game and Snake is being replaced by Raiden as the lead character.
The Last Guardian — A playable painting.
Online: www.jp.playstation.com/scej/title/trico (Sorry there is no English version of the site).
Brink — Bringing parkour-esque movement and a highly stylized look into the first-person-shooter genre, “Brink” should be a refreshing addition to the sea of run-and-gun titles out there.
Rage — id Software, the grandfather of the first person shooters, is making a return with their first original title in 14 years. The only question: Will it live up to past id Software titles, “Wolfenstein,” “Doom” and “Quake”?
Bullet Storm — Forget about plot. What’s the most creative way you can kill an enemy? Find out in this promised-to-be-bloody title.
Gears of War 3 — A quick glance at the latest videos of this game shows just how far developers can push the aging Xbox 360 hardware with the newly updated Unreal Engine.
Mass Effect 3 — I have to know how my story ends.
Agent — Little is known about this game other than it will be set in the Cold War and involves espionage. But, if Rockstar’s past titles “Grand Theft Auto,” “Max Payne” and “Red Dead Redemption” are any indication, it’s going to rock.