I have started thinking about all of the titles coming out this year and I realized something: there are a lot of possibilities for Game of the Year. So many candidates this year and quite a few categories as well. So, first off allow me to provide a brief description of each big game releases this year and then the possible categories. Then we'll discuss what we think should go where.
The Last of Us (PS3)
The Last of Us is an upcoming Survival Horror (unofficially "Survival Action") video game developed by Naughty Dog for PlayStation 3. The game focuses on two survivors, an adult Joel and the young Ellie, on a journey across a post-pandemic United States. It is set two decades after fungus called Ophiocordyceps unilateralis has killed a majority of the human population, leaving the abandoned cities and towns to be reclaimed by nature. Many survivors are forced into quarantine zones, under the strict law of the United States military. Joel, a battle-tested black-market smuggler within one of the quarantine zones, for unknown reasons makes a promise to a dying friend to get a young, fourteen year old girl named Ellie, away from the military and into the hands of an allegedly radical resistance group known as Firefly All while avoiding the Infected, creatures whose sole aim is to spread the fungus and scavengers that survive outside the quarantine zones who see Joel and Ellie as boxes of food, ammunition, and water. On top of that, the military is bound and determined to find Ellie and take her back to the Quarantine zone in which she was born and raised.
Dead Island: Riptide (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
Set just hours after the events of the first game, Dead Island: Riptide chronicles the trying misadventures of five immune survivors ex-American football star Logan Carter, one hit wonder Sam B, Hong Kong police officer Xian Mei, Australian bodyguard Purna, and newcomer soldier John Morgan. Due to events in the first game, all islands off of New Guinea (Banoi, Palanai, etc.) are infected with a mutated strain of a disease known as Kuru, an incurable degenerative neurological disorder that is a type of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy. This being the cause of the infected's cannibalistic tendencies and extreme pain tolerance. The five survivors must make their way to different parts of the island, fighting off waves of the undead, all while running errands for the local resident survivors and hunting down corrupt politician Frank Serpo.
Tomb Raider (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
Tomb Raider is the 2013 reboot of the Tomb Raider franchise from developer Crystal Dynamics and publisher Square Enix. It is the tenth Tomb Raider game, and the first in a new series, unofficially known as Lara Croft's "Origin series". Fresh out of college and in search of lost relics, 21-year-old Lara Croft journeys to an island called Yamatai off the coast of Japan, in the infamous Dragon's Triangle, aboard the Endurance, a ship helmed by Captain Conrad Roth. Roth is Lara's mentor and close friend, who was friends with Lara's father before he met his demise years ago. Before anchoring on the coast, the ship is overwhelmed by an unforeseen storm leaving Lara separated from the rest of the crew and washed ashore. She must locate her crew and find a way off the island, all while discovering the secrets of Yamatai.
Bioshock Infinite (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
BioShock Infinite is the third game in the BioShock series. It is not a direct sequel or even prequel to any of the previous BioShock games, and it takes place in an entirely different setting, although it shares similar features, gameplay, and concepts with the previous games. The game takes place in the airborne city of Columbia, in 1912, where the player is thrown into the role of Booker DeWitt, a disgraced Pinkerton agent. Booker has been given the task of finding a young woman named Elizabeth, who has been confined by a beast called Songbird.
Dead Space 3 (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
The third entry in the most successful survival-horror series in over a decade, Dead Space 3 features co-op and follows a more action-orientated route. Developed by Visceral Games and published by EA, the game pits returning protagonist, Isaac Clarke and newcomer, John Carver against hordes of human corpses reanimated by the signal of an alien artifact known as the Marker. Using an all new cover system, the game reinvents the series for better or for worse and drags Dead Space fans either by the neck or by the feet, depending on the view.
Crysis 3 (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
Crysis 3 is a first-person shooter developed by Crytek running on Cryengine, published by EA. The player takes on the role of Prophet as he returns to New York in 2047, 24 years after the events of Crysis 2. Discovering that the city has been encased in a giant Nanodome created by the corrupt CELL corporation. Prophet is said to be on a "revenge mission" after uncovering the truth behind CELL's motives regarding the quarantined Nanodomes. The citizens were informed that the structures were in place to protect the population, but in reality, the Nanodomes are CELL's covert attempt at land and technology grab in their quest for global domination by means of debt enslavement.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (XBox 360 and PS3)
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is an action video game developed by Platinum Games and produced by Kojima Productions. It is the ninth game in the Metal Gear series, with a plot set four years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. The story focuses on the cyborg ninja, Raiden, in a fight against a private military company known as Desperado Enterprises. The gameplay focuses on fighting enemies using a sword and multiple subweapons to perform combos and counterattacks. The game introduces the Blade Mode feature which allows the player to dismember cyborgs in slow motion and steal parts stored in their bodies. The series' stealth elements are also optional to reduce combat.
God of War: Ascension (PS3)
God of War: Ascension is a third person action-adventure video game developed by Santa Monica Studio and published by Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE). It is the seventh installment in the God of War series and prequel to the entire series. Loosely based on Greek mythology, the game is set in Ancient Greece with vengeance as its central motif. The player controls the protagonist Kratos, the former servant of the God of War, Ares, who tricked Kratos into killing his wife and child. Kratos renounced Ares, breaking his blood oath to the god. For this act, Kratos was imprisoned by the three Furies, the guardians of honor and enforcers of punishment. Helped by the oath keeper Orkos, and learning that Ares and the Furies plan to overthrow Mount Olympus, Kratos escapes his imprisonment, defeats the Furies, and reluctantly kills Orkos. Although free of Ares' bond, Kratos begins to suffer the nightmares that will plague him throughout his adventures.
Gears of War: Judgment (XBox 360)
Gears of War: Judgment is a third-person shooter developed by Epic Games and People Can Fly and published by Microsoft studios as the fourth entry to the Gears of War series. The game's story takes place during flashbacks recalled by Baird and his team during a hearing at a COG military tribunal. Each level is a recollection by a different member of the team. Lieutenant and mechanical genius Damon Baird, former Thrashball player Augustus Cole, Onyx Guard cadet Sofia Hendirk and former UIR soldier Garron Paduk. The reason for the hearing is Baird's unauthorized use of a lightmass missile and subsequent death penalty. Upon hearing Baird's testimony it flashes back to Kilo Squad during the early time of emergence day the locust have seized control of many human areas and seek to take over Sera.
Grand Theft Auto V (XBox 360 and PS3)
Grand Theft Auto V is an upcoming open-world action-adventure video game being developed by Rockstar North and published by Rockstar Games. The game will be the first major title in the Grand Theft Auto series since Grand Theft Auto IV in 2008, and a continuation of the fictional universe that was introduced in that game. It is set in fictional Los Santos in the state of San Andreas and its surrounding areas, based on modern-day Los Angeles and Southern California. The narrative of the game follows three characters with interconnected stories. Michael is a retired former bank robber in his early forties who lives with his dysfunctional family on the proceeds of his former life in the upper-class suburb of Rockford Hills, based on Beverly Hills. Trevor, his former partner in crime, lives alone in a trailer in the desert of Blaine County, where his reckless and psychopathic behaviours are fuelled by drug addiction. Franklin makes a living in Vespucci Beach—based on Venice Beach—as a repo man for an unscrupulous Armenian car dealership. The three acquaintances are drawn into Los Santos' criminal underworld "in the pursuit of the almighty American dollar". According to Dan Houser, each of the protagonists is unlike any primary character that has appeared in a Grand Theft Auto title to date.
Beyond: Two Souls (PS3)
Beyond: Two Souls is an upcoming interactive cinema video game developed by Quantic Dream and published by Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE). The game features psychological, spiritual and thriller elements centered on questions about what happens after death. The game lets the player take Jodie Holmes from age 8 to age 23 (15 years of her life) on a journey to discover the true meaning of the entity Aiden, who has been alongside her throughout her life. The game's producer noted that players might be able to find out "what lies beyond" after playing it.
Pikmin 3 (WiiU)
Pikmin 3 is an upcoming real-time strategy video game developed by Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development Group Number 4 and published by Nintendo. It is the third game in the series and is the direct sequel to the 2004 game, Pikmin 2 for the Nintendo GameCube. Pikmin 3 expands on the gameplay of the previous Pikmin titles, in which the player commands a horde of up to 100 plant-like creatures called Pikmin and uses their unique abilities to explore in-game worlds and uncover treasures within them. Pikmin can be directed to accomplish various tasks, such as building bridges, destroying barriers, and defeating enemies.
Watch Dogs (PC, XBox 360, PS3, PS4, and WiiU)
Following the tail of Aiden Pearce, an infamous hacker, Watch Dogs in developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. The storyline of Watch Dogs game is built around the concept of information warfare, interconnected data, and the world's increasing use of technology—questioning who exactly runs the computers they depend on. The game is set in an alternate reality version of Chicago, Illinois, which is one of many cities to feature a supercomputer known as a "CtOS" (Central Operating System). The system controls almost every piece of technology in the city, and contains information on all of the city's residents and activities which can be used for various purposes. In the game's universe, the Northeast blackout of 2003 was found to be caused by a hacker, prompting the development of CtOS. The game will follow an anti-hero named Aiden Pearce, a highly skilled hacker described as a person who uses both "fists and wits”.
Elder Scrolls Online (PC)
The Elder Scrolls Online is an upcoming massively multiplayer role-playing video game developed by ZeniMax Online Studios and published by Bethesda Softworks. As with other games in The Elder Scrolls franchise, the game will be set in the continent of Tamriel and feature a storyline indirectly connected with the other games. The game will be set a millennium before the events of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and around 800 years before The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, with the Daedric Prince Molag Bal appearing as the main antagonist as he attempts to conquer all of Tamriel.
Metro Last Light (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
Set one year (year 2034) after the events of Metro 2033, Metro Last Light is developed by 4A Games and published by Deep Silver. Mankind is struggling to survive beneath the ruined city of Moscow, in the tunnels of the Metro system. People and animals exposed to the poisonous substances filling the skies have become mutants stalking the catacombs and hunting its inhabitants. The survivors are fighting against each other for the remaining resources instead of standing together to fight these dangerous creatures. They all covet an ultimate weapon; a powerful doomsday device from the military vaults of D6. Civil war among the survivors seems imminent and might lead to the end of humanity. In these darks moments, he player is cast as 'Artyom', a returning protagonist from Metro 2033, who has to find a way to make sense of the chaos and be the last light in humanity's darkest hour. The game is story-driven and lets the player experience combat situations where they have to fight with an arsenal of exotic hand-made weapons and fight against both human and mutant foes to progress in the game. The environment of Metro: Last Light is designed to be an immersible, atmospheric one.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 (XBox 360 and PS3)
Sequel to 2010’s Castlevania Lords of Shadow game developed by MercuryStream and Kojima Productions and published by Konami. The game will star Gabriel as Dracula while he seeks to regain his lost power to combat a new threat, while dealing with the Belmont clan, who wants him dead.
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist is an upcoming third-person action-adventure stealth game developed by Ubisoft Toronto and published by Ubisoft. The game is the seventh installment of Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell series, introducing a new gameplay mechanic called killing in motion, allowing the player to highlight targets and take them out in quick succession. Following the events of Splinter Cell: Conviction, Patricia Caldwell, the fictional President of the United States orders the corrupt Third Echelon to cease all of its operations. President Caldwell forms Fourth Echelon – a team of elite operatives drawn from different agencies, which operate in a mobile environment and performs missions assigned by the President. Former Third Echelon agent Sam Fisher is appointed Commander of Fourth Echelon. While Third Echelon is shutting down, Fourth Echelon activates and former Third Echelon agent Sam Fisher is appointed Commander of Fourth Echelon. A group of twelve terrorists initiate a terror ultimatum called "The Blacklist" – a deadly countdown of escalating terrorist attacks on United States assets. Fisher and his team must hunt these terrorists down and stop the Blacklist countdown before it reaches zero.
Call of Duty Ghosts (PC, XBox 360, XBox Fusion, PS3, PS4, and Google Playground)
Call of Duty: Ghosts is an upcoming first person shooter video game to be the tenth installment in the Call of Duty series. Developed by Infinity Ward, Neversoft, and Raven Software and published by Activision, Call of Duty: Ghosts starts a brand new story arc. It will feature all-new characters, story, and experience. It will also be featuring a new engine, supposedly to be developed by Infinity Ward.
DmC Devil May Cry (PC, XBox 360, and PS3)
DmC Devil May Cry is an action hack and slash video game developed by Ninja Theory and published by Capcom. It is the fifth installment of the Devil May Cry series, serving as a reboot. The story takes place in Limbo City, a modern-day city secretly controlled by all-powerful demons, manipulating humanity through the comforts of life, with the demons themselves living in a parallel plane called 'Limbo'. Living on the fringes of the brainwashed society is Dante, a young man at odds with the demons who constantly hunt him and the civilian authorities they control.
FUSE (XBox 360 and PS3)
Fuse is an upcoming, four-player cooperative action video game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Electronic Arts. The game is set in the near future and follows a team of four misfit agents collectively known as Overstrike 9, whose mission is to stop the evil Raven Corporation from gaining an alien substance called Fuse. Using Fuse powered weapons and tech gadgets and lethal teamwork to gain the energy
- Game of the Year
- Best XBox Exclusive
- Best PlayStation Exclusive
- Best Single player
- Best Multi-player
- Best Co-operative Multi-player
- Best Strategy
Now, which games should receive each title?