Hey guys it’s Sam, and if there’s one thing 2012 media is going to blow up for, it’s video gaming. Without video games, we’d never have a source of interactive entertainment, and I’ve decided to sneak a couple of spoilers at you for only the best games to expect next year, some of them even on my anticipated list myself. Without further ado, let’s take a look at interactive 2012!

A rider takes an icy trip down a snowy slope.

If you could remember back in the seasons where wind chills were abnormally low, I released a post about the upcoming “SSX: Deadly Descents”. The darkest game of the six (seven, counting the mobile Out of Bounds) has now been renamed to just SSX, and is the first game of the new year, having already slid into stores 6 days ago. The theme has been announced as “race it, trick it, survive it”, with shown footage including helicopters, objectives, a new user interface, graffiti, and much more. EA Canada will have their crafting hands in session for SSX, while EA Sports will be publishing it. Although we have to wait, Europeans have already gotten their own public share! (the game making a European debut two days ago) It’s an outrage.

Deus Ex? Hitman? Dragon Quest? All bestselling creations from Square Enix, resulting in a merge between Enix and Square Co. in 2003. In the eight years they’ve been a part of the interactive world, they’ve already gotten a taste of bestseller’s fame. And they’ve decided to give one of 2009’s lone wolves their pack with Final Fantasy XIII-2. A direct sequel to Final Fantasy XIII, the storyline revolves around Lightning as she disappears into an unknown world. Her younger sister, Serah, and the boy named Noel attempt to find her in an evolved fighting system compared to the original. The Filipino singer Charice will belt the theme song called “New World”, while Mai Fukui will sing the Japanese version, “Yakusoku no Basho”. The talk of a sequel rose as early as January 2010, but it was officially announced in January 2011 and will head for stores at the end of January 2012. Will this adventure be the best yet, or will it really be Square Enix’s final fantasy?

Kazuya hits Ryu with his own shoryuken that proves he's been in the city of ember.

This is what you’ve been in the streets crying for. Street Fighter had to cross over with something sooner or later. And if there’s a biggest fighting game of 2012, it’s definitely Street Fighter X Tekken. This fully-Capcom-crafted game will take to the 2D streets of Street Fighter, opposed to Tekken. But don’t worry–Namco is making their own to-be-announced (TBA) present known as the confusedly named Tekken X Street Fighter. The game is going to hurricane kick onto the PS3, the Xbox 360, and the soon-to-be-published PlayStation Vita so far. The storyline is about a cubical object that crashes onto Earth, that releases a watery energy when people conflict over it, which makes no sense compared to the game. Anyways, on March 2, put on your fingerless gloves, folks, because we’re taking it to the streets like never before.

from left to right: Thane, Miranda, Commander Shepard, Grunt, and Jack.

BioWare’s only known bestseller series may be the sci-fi RPG Mass Effect, others including Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights. They have also worked in Star Wars and Sonic, just for a fact. Their last major success was in 2010 with Mass Effect 2, but they may have a chance to shine again 2 years later with Mass Effect 3. Following from the events of the predecessor’s DLC pack, the game follows Commander Shepard on a mission to save not just the world, but the entire galaxy from the hyper-advanced Reapers, by rallying civilizations galaxy-wide together. But Shepard’s got a second problem on his hands–he’s got to deal with Cerberus, who has instantly decided to turn against him/her (you can gender bend). The third and final chapter in Shepard’s chronicles, over a thousand variables have been strung together in shape to see how the final chapter unravels. The music will be composed by Golden-Globe nominated composer Clint Mansell straight out of England. Get ready, because on March 6, it all ends. (Am I doomed to get sued by Warner Bros now?)

Have you ever had no idea of your past? Have you ever dreamed of becoming an unstoppable shapeshifter that could take the body of anyone who dared to walk in your path? You’re thinking about Alex Mercer from Prototype. He is the main character with the ability to roam around post-diseased Manhattan. You see, a plague called Blacklight has swarmed around Manhattan, turning anyone infected into a monster with an urge to destroy all uninfected. Although it was derivatively compared to Infamous and Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, it instantly became a top Steam sale and a Platinum Hit, so it had to get a sequel, which is now Prototype 2. The sequel features a new protagonist, Sgt. James Heller, on a quest to eradicate Blacklight with a vengeance, setting his crosshairs on Alex himself after the death of James’ family. The sequel was announced at the 2010 Spike VGA Awards under the slogan “murder your maker”. Sharpen your claws everybody…retail stores are getting infected April 24.

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And that’s the best of all the announced video games. There are tons more that are going to press start sometime in the year, while their dates are unclear. Here are a couple of anonymously-releasing games.

  • In 1998, Mario Party was born as a Nintendo 64 exclusive. Over the 14 years it rang, 10 more installments spawned, counting Mario Party Advance and DS. Now, the ? block is going to open again, and thus will become Mario Party 9. Continuing the criticized-but-traditional board game wrapper from past games, the game is taking a new taste by allowing everyone to transport around the board in cars. Minigames are obviously returning, with more gameplay focus than of Mario Party 8. The only available platform the game is coming to is obviously the Wii.
  • After 2 critically crumbled installments, will the rivalry of Mario & Sonic still thrive with their series? After a dinner of dust in the Olympics, and a faceful of frost in the Winter Olympics, can they stop eating the ground in the London 2012 Olympics? The competing characters are divided into 4 groups: skill, speed, power, and all-around. It’s just been announced that more focus is captivating the events and gameplay, which is no big surprise for 2012. Some sports include badminton, soccer, and equestrian that are headed for Wiis. But do you want to go back to the past while still being present? The Dream Events have your question answered. The 3DS version of the game is scoring retail stores in February 2012, but the Wii version is actually coming out in mid-November 2011. Oops.
  • Halo was known as the reason why people bought the Xbox in 2001, so it become a revolutionary Microsoft breakthrough. Then Halo 2 came out at the end of 2004 and outdid its predecessor as the Xbox’s bestselling game by just 3 million copies. Then Microsoft gave birth to Halo 3 three years later, the third-most bestselling game of the Xbox 360. Then something known as ODST came out in 2009 which is surprisingly a main entry (the fourth, by now), and also the twelfth on the 360’s bestselling list. Then Halo got back into structure with Reach, which is surprisingly the eleventh-most bestselling X360 game. Can they get on the top of the lists for the sixth time with Halo 4? Apparently, this game is the new beginning of the “reclaimer trilogy”, a series of new Halo games. Sadly, Bungie has broken their developing hands and passed them onto 343 Industries. The game continues sometime after Halo 3, and marks the return of Master Chief as a main character. Sadly, you’ll have to wait a long time for the game, as it’s being released in 2012’s final quarter.

So those are some games to expect in the year. And one more final hint of an upcoming game: Vehicular combat with an evil flaming clown. Sony Computer Entertainment’s Twisted Metal is coming back on Valentine’s Day 2012 after 4 years, but I don’t believe I feel their love.

– Sam

p.s.

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