Sean's Personal Top 10 Anticipated Games of 2012

Posted on February 19, 2012 - 3:26pm by Sean Capdeville

 I think 2011 was one of the best, if not THE best, years in history for video games. Legendary titles were released like Skyrim and games I don’t care about because of Skyrim. While I don’t think 2012 can top that, I do think that there is a lot to be excited about. So, without further delay, I give you my personal Top 10 Anticipated Games of 2012.


One quick thing...

Just kidding about no delay. Before we get started, here’s a few games that would probably make the top 10 except that they haven’t been confirmed to come out this year or are just rumored to exist at all:

*Note: this doesn't mean that a game has to be confirmed to make my top 10, but the fact that it may not happen does bring it down a notch in my book.

Battlefront III: I spent hundreds of hours playing Battlefront II and Renegade Squadron on my PSP. I would love to see the series come back with modern multiplayer on today’s systems.

Diablo III - The third installment of arguably the best action RPG series of all time has a massive amount of anticipation behind it, and with good reason. And its for Mac. So, win.

Half-Life 3 - The franchise that practically invented the modern FPS needs to come to current generation hardware. It’s that simple.

Infinity Blade III - Not announced, but could happen. Liked the first and loved the second, so why not mention it at least?

(Wow that's a lot of 3s)


NOW without further ado, my personal Top 10 anticipated games of 2012. Please keep in mind the “personal” aspect of the title. Don’t flame up if you hate my choices or I didn’t even mention one of yours. To each his own.




#10 - Resident Evil 6

I have never played a Resident Evil game, but HOT DAMN does the reveal trailer get me stoked. Some fans are complaining that Resident Evil has lost its way and that they are no longer Resident Evil games. To them, I say suck it up. It doesn’t matter whether or not it fits your vision of what the franchise should be, what matters is whether or not it is a good game. If you take away the Resident Evil name, you’ve still got a horror shooter that is shaping up to be pretty dang fantastic.


#9 - Max Payne 3

Max Payne 3 is getting on this list solely based on the cool factor. The Max Payne series is one I’ve seen a lot about, but never personally played, however this is the year I hope to change that. The story looks pretty gritty and interesting, but the big selling point for me is of course the trademark bullet-time feature, allowing you to go all Matrix and dodge enemy fire as well as witness gruesome slow-motion kills. Especially the multiplayer is fascinating to me. The level of control you will have with the game’s incredibly fluid movement and cover system will be simply spectacular online, giving players an unmatched sense of mastery of the battlefield. A badass single player and an intense multiplayer. What’s not to love?


#8 - The Last of Us

We aren’t quite done with the zombie games yet. The Last of Us would be ignored by me completely if it wasn’t for the fact that Naughty Dog is developing it. That’s not to say I’m a Naughty Dog fanboy and will blindly buy their games, it means that I know what Naughty Dog does. They craft believable and memorable characters, then place them in good stories and beautiful environments with standard-raising character animations. One of Uncharted’s biggest flaws, in my opinion, is the fact that while the story is good, it was hard to get too invested in it because the premise of the game is just a fun adventure. With The Last of Us being a very serious and dark zombie apocalypse tale, I know that I’ll be able to get behind this story and game 100%.


#7 - Bioshock Infinite

This is the first of many first person shooters to crack the list, and definitely the most anticipated by the critics. I remember after the first time I saw the gameplay footage they released from E3. I just sat there for a good five minutes thinking, “what did I just watch?”. The scale of the firefights they’ve shown is simple enormous, a breath of fresh air amidst all the corridor-like shooters that are so common today. The unique “tear” system to spawn cover, ammo, etc looks very cool, and the powers, which Bioshock is known for, look as breath-takingly brutal as ever. To put it simply, this is the FPS taken to the next level.


#6 - Grand Theft Auto V

I don’t know how much I can put here. I’m just super excited to roam around a city and cause carnage, which I think a lot of people are. Rockstar has stated that this is the biggest game they have ever made, which truly is saying a lot. Not much else I can say at this point, seeing as very little details are public. I just know that I love a good sandbox game, and GTA V signals the return of the king.

...that was clever.


#5 - Borderlands 2

I have always loved shooting things in video games. It’s hard to find a shooter that I don’t have at least some fun with. But last year, Skyrim showed me that I also like leveling up, honing my skills, and, most importantly, looting a ton of crap. Borderlands 2 is the perfect blend of both these gaming concepts. It plays like an FPS, with literally thousands of guns to pick up and play with throughout the massive open world, but it also has stats, leveling, and a large inventory just like a traditional RPG. Throw on top of this a gorgeous graphics style and bizarre sense of humor and you’ve got one of the most unique, and probably one of the best, games to hit shelves this year.


#4 - Prey 2

This is one of those games that came out of nowhere, making me wonder how the heck I’d been missing it so long. There’s a lot for me to love here, so I’ll be keeping a tally for your convenience. Published by Bethesda (1), Prey 2 has you play as a bounty hunter (2) in an open-world (3), Blade Runner-esque environment (4). You are given a large variety of missions to complete, all of which can be approached in a variety of ways (5). Regardless of the method in which you choose to go about them, you’ll have to utilize a large array of cool gadgets (6), a smooth free-running system (7), and intuitive first person cover mechanics (8).

Prey 2 consists of so many things that I love it’s hard to believe I hadn't thought of this game myself. The most exciting part is that the fulfillment of my dream of becoming Jango Fett may only be as far away as winter 2012.


#3 - Mass Effect 3

I was incredibly late to the Mass Effect party, buying Mass Effect 2 only two months ago. Even so, its much-anticipated sequel is very high on my radar.

I’m excited for Mass Effect 3 because I love Mass Effect 2. I know that sounds incredibly lame and obvious, but that’s really the only way I can put it. I love the characters in ME2. In ME3, there are more characters, and the ones returning will have even more time to be fleshed out and identifiable. I love the stories in ME2. They’ve said multiple times that the scale of ME3 is much larger, meaning every tale will be that much more epic. While a bit basic, the combat system of ME2 is very enjoyable. It has been completely revamped for the better in ME3. The addition of the oddly-controversial multiplayer component just sweetens the deal.

Mass Effect 3 is easily on its way to becoming the best RPG, shooter, and possibly game in general of 2012. My message to the Reapers is simple: beware the Ides of March.


#2 - Assassin's Creed III

First thing’s first: save judgement until after you read my reasons.

One of my biggest flaws when it comes to gaming is that I occasionally COMPLETELY misjudge a game. In this case, I misjudged an entire franchise. To put it simply, I had no interest at all in the Assassin’s Creed games. Luckily, a friend of mine popped in AC II for me, and it completely changed my mind.

To skeptics of the Assassin’s Creed games, I do have a few reasons as to why I have faith in this title. First, I just recently discovered the franchise, as mentioned above, so while some gamers have gotten sick of them, they are still a new experience for me. Second, Ubisoft announced last week that ACIII has been in development for three whole years; since ACII was completed. This means that it will be a huge upgrade in nearly every way for the series, not just more of the same, which is why many people don’t like Brotherhood and Revelations.

ACIII barely edged out ME3 for the #2 spot, and that is mostly because of its possible setting. Ubisoft has already confirmed that this game will feature a new protagonist and location. One of those eras, listed in a survey done by Ubisoft asking where they want the next game to take place, was feudal Japan. This is what earned ACIII the #2 spot.

Before you write me off as shallow for focusing so much on something as small as where the game takes place, you should consider what games we’re talking about. The Assassin’s Creed games are known for their (more or less) accurate portrayal of a culture and its history as the basis of a plot. The gameplay consists of open-world parkour-like movement and the usage of dozens of cool weapons to dispatch your foes. I am personally fascinated by traditional Japanese culture and would love to learn more about their history, especially in the time of the Shoguns. Climbing around Japan in that time period would be phenomenal considering the gorgeous Japanese architecture. Also, Asian weaponry is perfectly suited for stealth kills or fluid and fast combat, as well as very unlike the items we’ve seen in previous installments. All of these things added together make Japan the ideal location for ACIII, and even if it takes place somewhere else, I’m sure I’ll greatly enjoy it.

Oh, and I really want to kill a bunch of people with a katana. Ok, maybe that part is a little shallow...

 Here's a concept for a Japanese Assassin's Creed setting. Pretty awesome, no? (Not my work, obviously)


Before we get to #1, how about a few ...

Honorable Mentions

Call of Duty 9 - Why not, right? It’s going to have an explosive, action-packed campaign and addicting multiplayer. Good enough for me.

The Darkness II - The quad-wielding system is truly fascinating and can lead to a new level of gameplay variety. Definitely one to keep an eye on if it plays as well as it looks.

Dust 514 - An MMO first-person shooter with 64-player battles? Looks really cool but I don’t have a PC. Wait, its for PS3? I’m listening...

Halo 4 - I know a good franchise when I see one. Very curious where the series will go from here, but it didn’t make the list because I will never get it. And I’m a PS3 owner.

Little Big Planet (Vita) - The LBP games are my favorite platformers, so naturally I’m interested in a new one. It didn’t make the top 10, however, because I don’t see myself getting a Vita any time soon.

Ninja Gaiden 3 - There simply need to be more ninja games, and the return of arguable to biggest ninja franchise of all time is surely worth noting. And it is awesomely bloody.

South Park RPG - South Park is making an RPG. That’s the only reason needed.

Starhawk - Very cool-looking PS3 exclusive, haven’t seen enough of it though.

Street Fighter X Tekken: I’ve been slowly warming up to fighters. It has Cole from inFamous.

Twisted Metal - Ridiculous vehicular combat is something I have never experienced, and it sure looks tempting here.

Uncharted: Golden Abyss - I love me some Uncharted, but I have to see for myself how it holds up on a mobile platform before I get too excited about it.


And my most anticipated game of 2012 is...


#1 - Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance 3

I know that nobody else would put NOVA 3 anywhere near their top 10, let alone #1, and that’s assuming that they even know about the game’s existence, which is highly unlikely. For me personally, however, I would cancel every single game on this list to make NOVA 3 happen. And I am dead serious. That is because, since Skyrim has been released, NOVA 3 is my most anticipated game of all time. By far.

I should quickly address that yes, I did include NOVA 3 on my Top 10 Anticipated Games of 2011 blog last year and it never came out. In my defense, I anticipated that possibility and adjusted by putting it at the #4 spot instead of the deserved #2 spot. This time, I’m 90% sure it will be released for multiple reasons. First, NOVA came out in 2009, NOVA 2 in 2010. Skipping a year was unexpected, but understandable. Skipping two years, however, could turn out to be suicide for Gameloft’s arguable biggest franchise. Most importantly, winter 2012, which is the expected release window for NOVA 3, is when Halo 4 comes out. There is no way Gameloft will miss that giant scifi FPS wave.

Now on to the reasons for NOVA 3 being at the #1 spot. The obvious reason is that it is an installment of my favorite mobile gaming series. If they improve as much from 2 to 3 as much as they improved from 1 to 2, we’ll seriously be in for a treat. Second, Gameloft is working with Epic Games to make four Unreal Engine powered games this year for iOS devices. One of those being NOVA 3 is a very large probability.

Most importantly, though, my excitement for NOVA 3 represents my excitement for iOS gaming in general. Between now and this winter, Apple will release a new iPad, iOS, iPhone, and iPod touch, all of which are due for a big upgrade, not just an incremental one. If NOVA 2 still holds up today, I can only imagine how marvelous NOVA 3 (or any high-quality iPhone game, for that matter) will be when it can make use of all these new things.

A game that is in my favorite genre, by one of my favorite developers, is an installment in one of my favorite franchises, will run on all new hardware, may be powered by the most sophisticated gaming engine available, and will cost only $7. That game is NOVA 3, and that is why NOVA 3 is my most anticipated game of 2012.


Thanks for reading,

Sean Capdeville (The Mactivist)




Reading over this again, I'm actually not entirely sure now if 2012 can't top 2011. I'll let you know when it's over.

Thank you, Mr. Conway, for featuring this blog in the Community Countdowns

Thank you, g1s, for not disregarding NOVA 3 because it's an iPhone game.

Thanks to Alpha Unit for helping me out with posting the pictures.

I'm really freaking proud of the NOVA 3 title I made. It is seriously awesome.


More of these games:

See Max Payne 3 in action here.

See the Last of Us Trailer here.

See the GTAV trailer here.

See Borderlands 2 in action here.

See Borderlands 2 trailer here.

See Prey 2 in action here.

See Mass Effect 3 in action here.

See AMAZE-BALLS Mass Effect 3 trailer here.

See why I loved NOVA 2 here. (<--- Hooray for shameless self-promotion)


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