Upcoming PSN Games To Look Forward To
After my relatively recent feature on upcoming Xbox Live Arcade games to enjoy in the near future, minus Outland (admittedly a booboo on my part), I thought it would be appropriate to do the same for its counterpart, PSN. Now there’s no way, short of doing a 15 page article, one can include every game with any substantial detail, so I won’t; it’s going to be a list of what is considered worth looking forward to. Forgive me if I miss a few. Some of these have appeared as preview write-ups already and while I won’t include as much detail for them, for obvious reasons, I’m including them for the sake of a nice and amalgamated list.
The first of two already previewed games, Dust 514 definitely deserves to be here. A free-to-play MMOFPS that intrinsically links to, affects and is affected by Eve Online for the PC; it’s not only a first for the PS3 or consoles in general, but an all round great looking game.
If you’re not interested in reading the preview — please do, I wrote it (self-promotion achievement earned) — then here’s the lowdown. Dust 514 is a futuristic Battlefield-esque game that centres itself on taking out the opposing teams Mobile Command Centre (MCC), though there will almost assuredly be some variations on that mode of play. One player will be given the keys to the MCC hammer and the responsibility of guiding and controlling their team by means of an RTS-styled perspective. The rest of the game is pretty standard, including war machines each capable of their own brand of vehicular manslaughter; bespoke vehicle upgrades; infantry classes and abilities; and well… a lot of neat sci-fi orientated gadgetry. Beyond that, well for one it’s entirely free, and two, you’ll have the unique opportunity of playing a new hybridised style of game that affects and is affected by the EVE universe… I know, I know, I said that already, but it’s a large part of Dust 514’s appeal. You’ll get to collaborate with those EVE players and not only give each other support but help one another conquer the universe for your particular faction; now tell me you’re not in the least bit interested.
One Piece: Pirate Warriors
While this is mostly fan service to myself — an admittedly massive, massive fan of One Piece — it’s also one of the only non-fighting, non-RPG, anime games I’ve seen in a while. I’ll be the first to admit fanboyism for One Piece, but in this case it has made me relatively jaded and I have hated the god awful-entirely mediocre-attempts to make a One Piece game for the Wii and DS. As such, and the fact that I’m actually excited for a One Piece game shows some potential for… not so much greatness but more goodness (if ‘goodness’ isn’t a word, it is now).
One Piece: Pirate Warriors is a Dynasty Warriors styled game and will take place from the ‘East Blue Saga’ all the way up until the ‘New World Saga’; talk about potential for length, that’s 517 episodes worth of content. What’s more is the game is intended to be the ultimate One Piece game, encompassing that same sense of comradery and grand adventure personified by the series and manga. With that and the stonking amount of opponents, playable characters and cameos, well it’s just as much a tribute to the greatest anime of all time (that’s right, I said it) as much it is a potentially good game.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
What can be said about Counter-Strike that hasn’t been said already? You’re either a fan of its particular style of gameplay and accuracy mechanic or you aren’t. That said, Valve, having now officially developed everything they possibly can so as to procrastinate with working on the new Half-Life, are certainly hoping to win over lost fans as well as gain many new ones with CS: GO.
So what’s new to CS: GO? Well other than being the first Counter-Strike game on console, it’ll also introduce new weapons (like Molotov cocktails), equipment, avatar models and gameplay modes. The two new modes are ‘Arms Race’ and ‘Demolition’, both of which will be introduced post-launch. ‘Arms Race’ is a squad based death match where each successive kill rewards the player with an improved weapon and the first to reach a predetermined weapon wins; I’m sure you’ll recognise the similarities of this new mode with particular mods already present in the Modern Warfare series and CS: Source. The other new mode ‘Demolition’ is similar to ‘Arms Race’ except each kill results in a subsequently weaker weapon; this sounds like a great mode and brilliant way of maintaining a persistent balance between the more skilled players and the less. All-in-all there are some awesome little tweaks and enhancements to CS: GO that make it a definite improvement over Source and gives it the potential to do brilliantly.
Expected: 21 August, 2012.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD
The second of two already previewed games, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD is an HD remake of the first two games all wrapped into one spectacular tribute to old school. That means the best of the levels, old school trick attack and horse modes, a more arcade style of play and a classic indie/punk soundtrack. The soundtrack, apart from the HD visual upgrade, is really the only other, mostly new, aspect to the game. Actually, while the genre stays the same to some degree, the specific songs do not-minus a relative few-and it’s a heavy downgrade in my opinion, though that could just be my taste in music. There’s really not much more that I can say that hasn’t been said in the preview already. I know I’ll be getting it, that’s for sure.
Expected: Q3, 2012.
And now for something completely different, to be fair though, it’s probably more refreshing than different. If you’ve ever played Final Fantasy Tactics or Disgaea, you’ll have a good idea of what a strategy, or tactical, RPG is. They’re largely RPG orientated games that provide finite strategic mechanics or elements to create a sometimes vibrant and excellent departure from the norm; the best examples that come to mind being Final Fantasy Tactics and Valkyria Chronicles. Rainbow Moon is a PS3 exclusive that aims directly at that niche and adds challenge, colour and a few other little niceties to appeal to those fans of the sub-genre. Its biggest departure from other tactical RPG’s is an open world, non-linear, structure that not only adds a lot more depth to the mechanics of the game but is rather odd since limited exploration has been a defining point of many tactical RPG’s so far. The rest of the expected mechanics are all there though and if you enjoy a game with a heavy emphasis on statistics, equipment and the inevitable grind (A.K.A levelling), well Rainbow Moon is for you.
I’ve had a look at quite a few gameplay vids, something I suggest you do as well, and from what I can see so far, it looks to be a little gem. That’s especially the case when you’re given the option of setting the game to normal or hard and how well equipped you’d like your character to start; as a glutton for punishment and a good challenge and the eventual sense of achievement earned for overcoming those odds is what tactical RPG’s are all about for me. It’s one of those love/hate genres and I know for a fact that as a fan I can’t wait to give this game a crack.
Expected: July, 2012.
If tactical RPG-esque grinding isn’t what you want from an RPG, how about a good old fashioned dungeon crawler? Legasista is an anime inspired dungeon crawler that puts you a world where science is in the past and scientific knowledge has become the stuff of myth and curse alike. Making use of a job-like class system with a huge assortment of loot, abilities and the inevitable levelling and mastering of characters required; Legasista, despite its somewhat simple anime aesthetics, is a pretty deep RPG. Throw in the chance to create custom (bespoke) characters, along with a team of formerly rival adventurers who eventually accompany Alto-the protagonist-along his journey, and the ability to interchange them mid-combat for varying styles of play; well by all accounts, you’ve got a convincing little dungeon crawler.
Expected: August, 2012.
So that’s it, that’s my list. Rainbow Moon should be out relatively soon so keep an eye out for it if tactical RPG’s are your thing. I know there are more upcoming PSN games like: Okami HD, Jet Set Radio (effectively an HD remake), Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles & The Darkside Chronicles, but like I said, this is a limited list. So if you’ve got a PS3 and have a little pocket change lying around, not that I do, keep an eye on the PSN store because there are a range of great looking games coming to you this year.