Uncle Jim’s Most Awaited Games of 2013
DmC: Devil May Cry
This is going to be a controversial game no matter what, and I have to confess that the shitstorm is part of the reason why I’m so keen on giving the final product a go. Fans were set on despising this game ever since it was first announced, the typical hatred of western studios developing for Japanese IP intensified by protagonist Dante’s new “emo” look and attitude. Ninja Theory had its work cut out for it when attempting to convince gamers this’d be a good one, and the release of its demo didn’t help — the hardcore purists are finding the combat too simplistic and the 30 frames-per-second too jarring. There are both legitimate and childish concerns with this one, but I choose to remain optimistic.
Having greatly enjoyed Ninja Theory’s previous game, Enslaved, I’m confident the studio can craft a compelling and entertaining experience. It may not be the Devil May Cry we’ve come to know, but I think it could still be a lot of fun. What I’ve played of the game already, I’ve liked, and while I’m a fan of the previous installments in the series, I’m not mourning the loss of the old gameplay. The first DMC is fairly dated now, DMC2 was never liked, DMC3 was legitimately excellent and DMC4 was good, but not great. It’s not like the series has a long legacy of consistent quality, so I don’t know where the whole sacred grove angle came from.
In any case, I’m not one of the DMC players who get into it for the 60fps and intricate combos. I want over-the-top bombast and ludicrous scenarios, both of which DmC: Devil May Cry look set to deliver. Maybe that makes me a “bad fan” of the franchise or something, but what can ya do!?
Dynasty Warriors 8
Yes, I know, I have a “terrible taste” in videogames. Whatever. Some people love watching cheesy kung fu movies — I like playing cheesy kung fu videogames. Dynasty Warriors 8 has already gotten my attention by finally including Li Dian, one of my favorite characters from the “Romance of the Three Kingdoms” legends upon which the series is based. It’s also inspired a lot of interest with its promise of severely de-cloned characters — one of DW7′s biggest flaws was the amount of characters who shared the same weaponry and movesets, a problem being taken seriously with this upcoming title.
To the casual observer, every single Dynasty Warriors game is the same, so I’d be wasting my time explaining the differences between each installment. There are major differences, though, and the main installments are actually not as frequent as one might think. Of course, the endless expansions and mini-sequels are where it takes the piss, but the big numbered updates? They’re always different enough to be worth a look. I am eager to see what changes have been made, for better or worse, in Dynasty Warriors 8.
Metro: Last Light
THQ’s future was on shaky ground all last year, but it seems that its bankruptcy declaration was a largely positive decision. The IP, for now, all looks set to be safe, and that’s a good thing, as Metro: Last Light is looking spectacular. I was already a big fan of the haunting, depressing, sometimes terrifying Metro 2033, and Last Light is aiming to up the ante, delving further into the Metro’s post-apocalyptic subterranean world, exploring its harsh societies, and naturally giving us way more guns to play with.
I love games from Eastern Europe in general, with both Cryostasis and S.T.A.L.K.E.R remaining among my most fascinating experiences. There’s a certain stark, oppressive atmosphere these games have that other developers never quite seem to nail. Metro 2033 had that same quality for me, and I can’t wait to see what Last Light can do with more publisher trust and, hopefully, a larger budget. I’m also really glad they bit the bullet and decided to take multiplayer out of the equation — it was never needed, and hopefully that frees up more time and resources to give us a quality single-player experience — the type that still sells, despite what publishers want you to believe.
It’s been way too long since I delved into the Metro, and 2013 is going to give me what I want. Hopefully. It better do!