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Video Game Feature: The 10 Most Anticipated Games of 2012

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CHICAGO – Last week, we gave you a list of the top ten video games of 2011. With a list that included “Arkham City,” “Dead Space 2,” “Portal 2,” “Skyrim,” and “Uncarted 3” 2011 definitely had some highlights, but, as mentioned in the previous article, 2011 will not go down as one of the greatest years in game history. There were some very fine games, but overall, games seemed to be lacking a bit…at least compared to 2010.

But now we turn the calendar over and start up a new year. With tons of new releases coming our way, there are definitely a great series of games to look forward to. “Halo” fans are sure to be excited about a new game in the series, there is the possibility that “Grand Theft Auto: V” could be released this year, and if the trend stays consistent, there will be a new “Call of Duty” release come November. But I’m looking past all of these releases (“GTA V” because I can’t be sure it will be out in 2012) and giving you my list for the video games I am the most excited for in the year 2012. Of course, narrowing down to ten is pretty difficult, so let me give five honorable mentions before the list. Make sure to keep an eye out for “Borderlands II,” “Darkness II,” “Dragon’s Dogma,” “Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning,” and “Metal Gear Solid: Revengeance.” Alright, let’s check out what games you should be looking to pick up in the coming 12 months.

Almost all release dates are EXTREMELY tentative.

10. “Prototype 2”
Release Date: April 24, 2012
Console(s): PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Company: Activision

Prototype 2
Prototype 2
Photo credit: Activision

The first “Prototype” game had a lot of hype, but a rush in the development process led to a less-than-stellar final product. A great deal of the first game was cut to meet deadlines and release dates, and the game suffered. The second one looks to be a fine-tuned, improved game. Judging by early trailers, looks at gameplay, and articles about the release, “Prototype 2” looks like what the first game was supposed to be. This time around, gamers will play as Sergeant James Heller, who is on the mission to exterminate the Blacklight Virus as well as seeking revenge for his dead family by killing the first game’s protagonist, Alex Mercer. A revenge game packed in an open-world environment with tons of special abilities. It is hard not to be excited for a game with the tagline “Murder your Maker.”

9. “Syndicate”
Release Date: February 21, 2012
Console(s): PS3, Xbox 360
Company: Electronic Arts

Syndicate
Syndicate
Photo credit: Electronic Arts

A remake of a famous franchise that started in 1993 (originally as a tactical isometric game), the 2012 version of “Syndicate” comes from Starbreeze, the same company that made the “Chronicles of Riddick” games and the first “Darkness” release. This game will play as a first-person shooter (appearing to be a game much like the “Deus Ex” series), and it is easy to say that it looks incredible. Playing as an agent for a mega-corporation called a syndicate, you fight against other syndicate groups trying to reign supreme in the market of chip technology. The game will be packed with tons of abilities and very interesting ones at that. The game trailer and early play-through shows some cool mechanics, incredible futuristic weapons, and some major violence. Also, a chip implanted into your characters head allows for the ability to slow down time, take down enemies, and even invade the mind of your foes using a series of upgradable hacking mechanics. Should be an exciting first-person shooter coming from a great studio.

8. “Dishonored”
Release Date: TBA
Console(s): PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Company: Bethesda

Dishonored
Dishonored
Photo credit: Bethesda

Arkane Studios, which also did level design assistance on “Bioshock 2,” has created an open-world game that blends the past, future, and everything in-between. “Dishonored” plays as a stealth combat game where you are a supernatural assassin with a variety of abilities and equipment to choose from, playing in an industrial retro city world. Buying combinable powers through the economy established by the game, the game developers say it will create what seems to be a unique and self-created experience through what you decide to buy, what powers you select or combine together, and what paths you choose to take. Every player has their own experience as there are extreme amounts of variation and tons of decisions in every aspect of the game. The game features brutal combat, but sneaking around in stealth modes will be a priority as well. With a wide arrangement of outcomes and ways to go about playing this open world game, “Dishonored” looks to be an exciting title that will allow for a unique gaming experience.

7. “Darksiders II
Release Date: TBA
Console(s): PS3, Xbox 360
Company: THQ

Darksiders II
Darksiders II
Photo credit: THQ

The first “Darksiders” game was great, but this sequel has the chance to be something very special. Set to be a full open-world game, an incredibly ambitious world at that, “Darksiders II” has gamers playing as death of the four horseman of the apocalypse (instead of his brother War like the first game). The game looks unique compared to other open world games by the methods of traversal, the way the land is allocated, the dominions over certain areas, and the fact that the game doesn’t follow normal archetypes of quest giving. Rather, it is a big open world where everything you do is story critical, with entire story-arches within the individual locations. The mythology of the game is awesome, and the first looks show some incredible fighting styles and gameplay. And when is it not fun to play as one of the four horseman of the apocalypse?

6. “The Last Guardian”
Release Date: TBA
Console(s): PS3
Company: Sony

The Last Guardian
The Last Guardian
Photo credit: Sony

Team Ico, makers of the “Ico” games and “Shadow of the Colossus,” simply makes gorgeous games, and ones that are always critically acclaimed. Announced three years ago and highly anticipated since, their new game, “The Last Guardian,” revolves around a boy trying to escape the ruins of an old castle, and his relationship with a giant, griffin-like creature that is escaping bondage as well. The game has a great reputation behind it coming from Team Ico and the first looks are absolutely brilliant. While it appears attack abilities mostly come from your pet, the game focuses on the action/adventure elements, puzzle mastering, and building a relationship with your giant, flying friend. The game is not based on fighting, but, rather, companionship, with the boy having to lead his pet away from instincts and towards their overall goal. There will be a challenge to not only playing as a small boy without a ton of fighting abilities, but also in trying to get the griffin to obey your commands. Above all, the game looks absolutely breathtaking visually, and should offer some very exciting gameplay.

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