OXCGN’s Top 10 Anticipated Sequels of E3 2012
All roads lead to E3
by Daniel Geikowski
©2012 Daniel Geikowski
The one thing that makes gamers around the world go absolute batshit crazy.
Some in a good way, where announcements make gamers jump into loving bro-hugging (or the female gamer equivalent….sis-hugging….”shugging” we’ll go with) embraces, others which draw the ire of gamers everywhere.
Over the last few years, we have come to expect a few things are a given at E3; the latest Call of Duty will feature, Microsoft will draw the gaze of gamers everywhere simply by saying “Halo”, some weird and awkward guy on stage will make an ass of himself using the Kinect, and people everywhere detest Valve for announcing/demoing/talking about a game that isn’t Half Life with the number 3 attached.
However, it’s usually the announcement of the unexpected that gets gamers up and about.
The new IP that blows people away, the rumoured sequel they weren’t 100% sure would make it this year, new information about a previously announced game- these are the elements that makes E3 in L.A. the Mecca of the gaming world.
Some have been a tad disappointed in the news that both Microsoft and Sony have decided not to showcase their next-gen consoles (if they are telling the truth), and the disappointing feedback from the Nintendo Wii U.
I personally don’t find this such a bad thing, because we can get all giddy about the games.
With the slew of Top 10 lists coming out from everywhere regarding E3, I thought I’d be totally original and do the same thing- except focus on my most anticipated sequels of E3 2012.
I’d like to note that I didn’t include either GTA V as Rockstar are neglecting E3 by choosing not to have a booth, or BioShock: Infinite as it’s been reported it will also be a no-show due to the announced delay of release.
So without further ado…
Top 10 Anticipated Sequels of E3 2012
10. Hitman: Absolution
After faking his death in order to escape The Franchise, 47 slipped away into the shadows. Absolution sees Agent 47 on a quest for revenge against those within the ICA who have betrayed him.
Because let’s face it, it’s bad enough having a silent and efficient killer after you, let alone one who’s pissed off.
The Hitman series has been very popular over the years, and Absolution looks to continue this popularity by giving players multiple ways to complete missions, from those who prefer the stealthy, silent method, to those who’d rather take a direct approach with a mounting body count.
What I’d like to see: Imaginative and diverse methods for completing various objectives.
9. Call of Duty: Black Ops II
No doubt it will sell huge numbers on reputation alone, but I’ve personally lost the excitement in the Call of Duty series, along with a lot of previous fans.
Hopefully Black Ops 2 starts to change up the series from the stale formula we have been experiencing lately.
Black Ops 2 will take place within two timelines, one being the 1970-80s, the other in 2025.
The player once again controls Alex Mason during the 70s and 80s, and his son David in 2025.
Cyber warfare plays an important role in 2025, with conflict arising between the US and China. Players have the opportunity to deal out punishment with robotics and unmanned vehicles in addition to conventional weapons.
The trademark MP will return, along with the ever popular Zombie Mode, but the new Strike Force Missions are the most interesting new feature.
These act as branching storylines within the campaign, where the player can man various robotics, infantry or vehicles. Selecting a particular mission locks out others, and the overall storyline changes depending on whether the player succeeds or fails these missions.
Players cannot retry failed missions or select alternative strike missions unless they start a fresh campaign.
This will no doubt add replayability to what has been a relatively short campaign in the last few Call of Duty games. Hopefully we get a little more insight into the story at E3, along with some gameplay footage.
If Black Ops 2 doesn’t simply rely on their tried-and-true formula, it will hopefully sway the jaded COD players back into the series.
What I’d like to see: Equal focus between both campaign and multiplayer.
8. DOOM 4
I believe there is more chance of Doom 4 being revealed this year at E3 than Half Life 3 (Or Episode 3).
It’s been roughly 8 years since Doom 3, and I for one am ready to once again hack up Imps with my chainsaw.
With rumours flying around over the last couple years of Doom 4 being developed, I’m hoping this year we see it revealed at E3.
While not much is known, Doom 4 will be a prequel to Doom 3, with the game taking place on Earth.
While I enjoyed the creepy atmosphere and style of Doom 3, Doom 4 will be more akin to the previous Doom games. I for one have no problem with this, as I loved mowing through hordes of demons with my shotgun in the original games.
The Doom series is one of the pioneers of the FPS genre, and it’s time for a new generation of gamers to experience what is undoubtedly one of the best FPS series of all time.
What I’d like to see: A nice balance between the sheer amount of enemies from the original Doom games, and the creepy environments from Doom 3.
7. Halo 4
ODST was a mixed bag; lacklustre campaign with the brilliant Firefight mode, and Reach adequately portrayed the Fall of Reach leading into Combat: Evolved.
When I heard they had announced Halo 4, and that it would be the start of another trilogy, I was a bit hesitant.
Did I really want to get back under Master Chief’s helmet?
Having been there since Day One, I can’t help but get drawn back into the Halo universe.
No doubt we will hear a little more about the ancient evil that Chief will do battle with, and provide that trademark Halo action.
Whatever the case, Halo 4 will no doubt be one of the more popular games at E3 2012.
What I’d like to see: The Halo series not fall into the COD mould and focus mainly on multiplayer. Also, dual wield swords.
6. Prey 2
Being a fan of the original, the sense of direction totally blew me away with confusion. It’s plain to see that a lot has changed from the original Prey.
The struggle of the Native American Tommy being abducted by aliens and fighting his way out bares stark contrast to the universe in Prey 2.
You play as U.S Marshal Killian Samuels, who is on a flight that crashes into the Sphere from the original Prey. Killian is knocked unconscious, and wakes up several years later on the alien world of Exodus, with no memory of how he got there. Killian then takes on the role of bounty hunter while trying to piece back his memory.
My heart sank a little when it was rumoured that Prey 2 was cancelled, but quickly perked right back up once that rumour had been proved false.
I’d love to hear a little more on the story of Prey 2, including what sort of role Tommy plays throughout the game.
What I’d like to see: Prey 2 distinguish itself from similar games such as Mass Effect, Star Wars, etc.
5. Darksiders 2
Players this time around take on the role of Horseman Death, determined to prove War’s innocence after being convicted of bringing about the Apocalypse a tad early.
The game will take place during the same time as the original, and feature the same great hack and slash combat.
Darksiders 2 looks to retain a similar structure to the original, utilising HUBs which connect to various dungeons. However, gamers will be pleased to hear that these levels will be much larger than the original.
Darksiders 2 looks to tell a more engaging story this time around, as I personally felt the narrative in the original was a tad flat.
Death promises to be a more engaging character than War, as Death seems a little more unhinged and quick to temper than his brother.
The other two remaining Horsemen, Strife and Fury, will also feature in some way. It will be interesting to see how all these characters tie into why exactly the Apocalypse was brought about prematurely.
Fans of the original Darksiders would no doubt have been disappointed when news that Darksiders 2 would be delayed until August of this year was announced. While it’s a letdown to have to wait a couple extra months, at least we know the time will be well spent polishing and refining the final product.
What I’d like to see: Death show a bit more character than his brother War did in the original Darksiders.
4. The next Splinter Cell
As a fan of the Splinter Cell series, I’m eager to know what is next for the ass-kicking machine Sam Fisher. What happened to Third Echelon? Will the United States be under attack? How many urinals can you throw someone’s face into?
These are the questions everybody wants answered. [Editor: Not sure about the urinals one...]
I for one think Sam may team up with his SEAL buddy Victor Coste and work with him as a part of his private security firm, similar to Solid Snake and Otacon with Philanthropy in MGS2.
Hopefully the gameplay follows the revamped style of Conviction, as I felt it was a tad more streamlined, and a lot more accessible. It felt great to be a badass.
Having standalone missions as well as incorporating it into the overall narrative was a smart move on Ubisoft’s part. Plus, it’s always good choking your mates without any sort of legal repercussions.
What I’d like to see: The series continue to innovate while retaining its stealth origins.
3. Assassin’s Creed 3
I for one am glad to see the series depart from Ezio and his saga, with focus on a new protagonist, Connor.
The Seven Year’s War and the American War of Independence is an interesting backdrop and it will be interesting to see how the Assassins and Templars fit into it.
I enjoy the various ways Ubisoft incorporates historical events and figures into the Assassin’s Creed series, and this is no exception. It will be interesting to see what roles that George Washington and Benjamin Franklin play in the long-running conflict between the Assassins and Templars.
Along with the lengthy campaign, the multiplayer will also return.
There is nothing better than denying someone a kill just as they have it within their reach. One the other hand, it’s extremely frustrating to be assassinated after tracking your target for some time.
Let’s see what new twists Ubisoft have in store for us this time around.
AC3 will also have increased focus on Desmond this time around. Personally, as long as it has nothing to do with those first-person platforming sections seen in Revelations, I’ll be happy.
It will be bittersweet to say farewell to Desmond, but no doubt it will be a fitting end.
What I’d like to see: How many British people get pissed off by this game.
2. Dead Space 3
The focus on survival horror of the original worked well with the concept of being trapped on a ship full of Necromorphs, and the environment provided actual scares.
It also demonstrated that survival horror can still work in this day and age. Dead Space filled the void left by Resident Evil after the series shifted to more of an action focus.
With rumours of a third game in the works, I feel Dead Space 3 may also be revealed this year.
Isaac Clarke has escaped the Necromorph-infested Sprawl, destroying the marker he unknowingly helped build, in the process ridding himself of the guilt that plagued him over his girlfriend Nicole’s death.
What happens now? It was revealed that additional markers have been built; does Isaac make it his mission to rid humanity of these structures?
If the series continues to feature disturbing events like Dead Space 2 (MY EYES!), Dead Space 3 is going to be one freaky, gory ride.
What I’d like to see: The series revert to the survival horror focus of the original Dead Space.
1. Far Cry 3
I’m not too sure what it is about the Far Cry games I enjoy so much, but it might have something to do about the freedom that is given to players.
Giving the player a choice in how they tackle a situation is a smart strategy in my book.
Even though I didn’t mind the African Savanna of Far Cry 2, I’m glad to hear players will once again be trapped on a tropical island with a lot of people who want to kill us in various ways.
This time around, players fight for survival as Jason Brody, some poor fool who finds himself on an island full of crazies. People have gone insane due to their prolonged stay on the islands, and it is revealed that Jason himself will also start to experience the same fate.
This is an interesting dynamic which separates itself from the other Far Cry games; let’s just hope it doesn’t rely on taking pills all the time similar to malaria in Far Cry 2.
The world itself will be around 10 times larger than previous games, and no doubt we will be treated to some spectacular scenery.
Hopefully they incorporate a more effective quick travel system than Far Cry 2, and the world itself has enough variety to interest players traversing the islands.
Once again the player has the ability to scout areas and plan attacks before executing them. I did enjoy creeping through camps at night in Far Cry 2, planting explosives before making my escape. Hopefully similar opportunities are possible this time around.
One thing I hope doesn’t make another appearance is the short amount of time it takes for enemies to respawn.
Clearing out a checkpoint only to have enemies respawning as you head around the corner was some pretty big BS.
One of the more popular features will also make its return, the map editor.
This will no doubt provide longevity once players finish the campaign, and allows for some creative additions to the standard map set. Hopefully the multiplayer gets a bit of a touch up, as I felt the Far Cry 2‘s multiplayer was a bit plain.
With an engaging story and a lush, living, breathing environment, where the player is free to tackle any situation they see fit, I for one cannot wait to see what Far Cry 3 has in store.
What I’d like to see: How insanity starts to play a part in Brody’s experience.
June 5-7, 2012
Writing this article got me thinking, where are all the new IPs?
Sure, there are some out there, such as Dishonored, but it seems the majority of games on the way are sequels or reboots.
Is this a bad thing?
©2012 Daniel Geikowski
Filed under: 1st Party Titles, Console gaming, E3 2012, Events, Game Impressions, Industry News, New Game Information, New Xbox 360 Games, PC News, PS3 News, Xbox 360, Xbox 360 3rd Party Games, Xbox 360 Game Previews, Xbox 360 News, Xbox 3rd party exclusives Tagged: | AC3, Assassin's Creed 3, Assassin's Creed III, Bioshock Infinite, Black Ops, Black Ops 2, Black Ops II, Call Of Duty, Call Of Duty Black Ops, call of duty black ops 2, Darksiders 2, Dead Space 3, Doom, Doom 4, Far Cry 3, Half life 2, half-life, Halo, Halo 4, Hitman, Hitman Absolution, Microsoft, Prey 2, rockstar, Splinter Cell, splinter cell 6