Fall 2011 - Bout to get EPIC.

In order of release:
Dead Island (PS3/360/PC)-9/6
Resistance 3 (PS3)-9/6
Gears of War 3 (360)-9/20
Res Evil 4/Code Veronica HD (360/PS3)-9/30
FIFA 2012 (All)-9/30
Dark Souls (PC/360/PS3)-10/4
NBA 2K12 (All)-10/4
RAGE (PC/360/PS3)-10/4
Twisted Metal (PS3)-10/4
Forza Motorsport 4 (360)-10/11
Batman: Arkham City (PC/360/PS3)-10/18
Ratchet and Clank: All 4 One (PS3)-10/18
Battlefield 3 (PS3/PC/360)-10/25
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception (PS3)-11/1
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (All)-11/8
Minecraft (PC)-11/11
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PC/360/PS3)-11/11
Halo Combat Evolved Anniversary (360)-11/11
Saint's Row: The Third (360/PS3/PC)-11/15
NFS: The Run (PC/360/PS3)-11/17
Assassin's Creed Revelations (PC/360/PS3)-11/30
Metal Gear Solid HD Collection (360/PS3)-11/30
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Wii)-Q4 2011

Are you dizzy yet?

360 vs PS3

Microsoft only has one notable exclusive in Gears 3, and no matter how great it looks, it's hard to argue against Sony's impressive showing.  Both Uncharted 3 and Resistance 3 seem poised to directly contend with Gears 3, though for different reasons.  Both Res. and Gears are the final installment of a trilogy dealing with mankind's war against a terrible enemy.  And Uncharted features the same cover-based third-person shooting as Gears, it offers a third dimension in terms of the verticality of the envirenments.  That's not to say either will be better than Gears, just that Sony is clearly trying to cover their bases.

Ratchet and Clank gives us more of our favorite little wombat, and his awesome future tech.  Oh and then there's Twisted Metal.  Though it promises to give Sony an even greater edge over it's rival, it isn't directly combating Gears.  Or is it?  Can you think of any more manly games than Gears of War and Twisted Metal?

Battlefield Set to Retake the Crown

Of course, we won't know for sure until we play them, which game is better.  But DICE has thrown down the Gauntlet big time, with what appear to be the most massive online first person shooter ever made.  Sure, 64 players doesn't touch MAG's 256, but the level of customization, destructability, and sheer scale is unprecedented in games.  They have fighter Jets for crying out loud!

But MW3 isn't going to take this lying down.  The one thing Battlefield has always lacked are the huge jaw-dropping set-pieces that make your eyes bleed.  MW3 seems like it has a few of those every level.  If they can manage to make a coherent story (hard but not impossible with what they have), deliver the awesome fans want, and feature a MP that is not just cut-and-paste what we've seen...well, all bets are off.

And while we're on the topic of shooters...have you seen RAGE?  OMGWTFBBQ....

RPGs Up the Ass

Did you play Demon's Souls?  If so, did you beat the first boss?  If so, you probably beat the whole game, as after the first time you feel that rush of completing one of the game's punishingly difficult sections, you can't wait to keep going.  Combine that with some of the most satisfying swordplay in any game, and you had a recipe for greatness.

The spiritual successor to that game, Dark Souls promises to give fans more of the same.  In fact, all indications seem to point to Dark Souls being ever HARDER, despite a quasi-checkpoint system.  And I can't wait.

But let's not forget the elephant in the room.  The game I personally am looking forward to the most, Skyrim.  Yeah, you can summon lightning to kill dragons.  The game engine looks absolutely beautiful, and seems to lack the wonkiness that plagued Bethesda's previous titles.  Combat has been improved in some places, and totally revamped in others, to create a game that REALLY gives you the feeling of bringing an Axe down on someone's skull (as opposed to just slashing around).

Lights, Camera, ACTION!

The Dead Island trailer took us all by surprise, and instantly had me interested.  A game about a zombie outbreak at a resort?  Hmmm....  Well, when I saw this game in action, I was amazed.  The combat, which includes some shooting but is geared towards melee, seems very tight, and even requires some strategy.  Zombies have fully rendered bones, muscles, and skin (what's left of it) to create uber-real damage modeling, which has a large effect on gameplay. 

Arkham Asylum took a lot of people by surprise with how unbelievably GOOD it was.  Like, seriously, it was awesome.  Arkham City looks even better.  The combat, which was spot on in the previous game, is supposedly improved, though what need 'improving' I do not know.  More space to explore, greater range of enemies, including almost all of Batman's top villains.  Oh, and catwoman...oh gawd.

Finally, there's AC: Revelations.  The final chapter in the Ezio saga (though unlikely the series), is set in the Ottoman Empire, and will also feature the return of Altair, protagonist of the first game.  The title alone tells us that this will be a game about answers, finally we will understand the significance of the pieces of Eden, and the connections between Desmond and his ancestors.  On the gameplay front, things look similar to Brotherhood, but with the addition of a new grappling hook, to make traversing the city easier.  The setting itself looks fantastic, and even though I love Italy, I'm excited for something different.

Did I miss anything?  Anything at all?  Oh yeah...
ZELDA

Though it technically doesn't have a release date, Wii fans were assured at E3 2011 that they would be playing Skyward sword this Holiday season.  A return to a more lighthearted art style of previous games implies this game will not be as dark on the story front.  Which I'm fine with.  Twilight Princess is still arguably one the best reasons to own a Wii, because of how exceptionally well it uses the Wiimote; maybe Skyward Sword will be even better.

Remakes?

In addition to all the new games coming out, several old classics are being re-released, with updated graphics and some new features.  

Halo CE Anniversary is the one likely to get the most press, as it is a remake of the game that launched arguably the biggest franchise of this generation.  Running on the Reach engine, the game looks better than ever.  The gameplay itself is NOT taken from Reach, and instead promises to be identical to the original; one pistol shot in the back will kill a Hunter.  Full 4-player online coop and multiplayer on six recreated maps, this is truly a love letter to the fans.

Resident Evil is also getting remade.  In this case, two games, arguably the best in the franchise.  Code Veronica X was the swan song of the fixed camera for the series.  Gameplay was mostly taken from RE3, but with massive visual updates and new 3D backgrounds.

Resident Evil 4 remains one of the greatest TPS ever, and probably the greatest survival horror game of all time.  It was scary, tough, scary, fun...really fucking scary.  A new over-the-shoulder camera and open environments gave players free range of motion and aiming.  Superior in every way to the previous games in the franchise, and a high-water mark for the series, RE4 HD is a must-buy for any fan.

The final remake (or remakes) is the Metal Gear Solid HD Collection.  This package includes MGS2, MGS3: Subsistence, and MGS: Peace Walker.  MGS2 was seen by many as a revolution in terms of stealth games, hampered only by the fact that players were forced to play as Raiden for the majority of the game, who BACK THEN was simply not as cool as Snake.

MGS3 is one of my favorite games of all time, and the subsistence version is even better.  All the games in the series (including the original MGS3) used a top-down isometric view with limited camera controls.  Subsistence was launched the game with some graphical updates, but most importantly a new over-the-shoulder camera.  Like RE4, this completely changed the game, taking an amazing title and sending it into the stratosphere.

Peace Walker, originally released as a PSP exclusive, is arguably the definitive game for the franchise.  The series' gameplay reached it's zenith with the fourth game, with amazingly smooth controls and sneaking that actually required some strategy and thought.  Unfortunately, the game part of it was only 4 hours long; a third of which were motorcycle races and mech battles.  Peace Walker returned that gameplay, but delivered a 20+ hour experience, in addition to over 60 separate missions to play through.  Four player coop put it over the top.

 

Yeah, so those are just a few of the massive number of releases this year.  If you could only choose three (which for me is likely to be the case), which would they be and why?

Mine would likely be:

1.  Skyrim-It looks unbelievably massive, a huge leap forward both in gameplay and design for an already stellar franchise.

2.  Battlefield 3-The leaked alpha gameplay only reaffirmed what I already knew; this game is going to be SWEET.

3.  RAGE/Dark Souls-They release the same day, so I will probably wait and see which is better received by fans and reviewers.  If they seem equally awesome (which may well be the case) I would probably go with Dark Souls.  Call me a masochist, no other games give you that kind of rush.

MrDudeMan's picture

I'm really excited about skyrim and maybe arkham city/revelations, but other then that its sort of bland. Though I have lost faith in console fps games after halo: reach and black ops. 

Jevrio's picture

Dead Island (PS3/360/PC)-9/6                                   Looks awesome, so I guess I'll be dissapointed.
Resistance 3 (PS3)-9/6                                                Sold my PS3, and don't like the earlier games.
Gears of War 3 (360)-9/20                                           Maybe. GoW1 was ok, GoW2 to cavey
Res Evil 4/Code Veronica HD (360/PS3)-9/30        No clue what this is.
FIFA 2012 (All)-9/30                                                      Hate it in real life, hate it in game-world.
Dark Souls (PC/360/PS3)-10/4                                  Meh. Whatever it is.
NBA 2K12 (All)-10/4                                                     Sport game.. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZzzzz
RAGE (PC/360/PS3)-10/4                                           Unsure about it, prob. console port, aka shitty.
Twisted Metal (PS3)-10/4                                            PS3 sold, fuck it.
Forza Motorsport 4 (360)-10/11                                  Racing game, zzzzzzzzzzzz
Batman: Arkham City (PC/360/PS3)-10/18             Batman looks stupid.
Ratchet and Clank: All 4 One (PS3)-10/18              Ps3 sold
Battlefield 3 (PS3/PC/360)-10/25                              If this suck, FUCK YOU EA! I will DDoS your site for a year!
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception (PS3)-11/1          see last ps3
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (All)-11/8                Really? Another one? Lol.
Minecraft (PC)-11/11                                                   I've played it alot already, I know it's awesome. Indie ftw.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PC/360/PS3)-11/11          Don't fuck this up, please.
Halo Combat Evolved Anniversary (360)-11/11     Like the original, this can't be that bad..
Saint's Row: The Third (360/PS3/PC)-11/15          Hope it's good. Coop will (hopefully) be fun!
NFS: The Run (PC/360/PS3)-11/17                         Looks more like Fast Five the game to me
Assassin's Creed Revelations (PC/360/PS3)-11/30  AC1: shitty, AC2: great, ACB: decent, maybe. maybe.
Metal Gear Solid HD Collection (360/PS3)-11/30  Unsure, like the grene, haven't played the games.
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Wii)-Q4 2011  Wii... HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA lol.

Done.

Pulse Cloud's picture

About the Halo Anniversary part: "Running on the Reach engine, the game looks better than ever."

Although the game does look better than ever, it does not run on the Reach engine, but on the original Halo: Combat Evolved engine. This means the gameplay is absolutely the same - for instance, one jump moves the Master Chef the exact same number of pixels both in my original, 10 year old Halo: Combat Evolved copy and in the new Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary.

What Anniversary has new, though, is a graphics layer which can be toggled on or off and which has nothing to do with Halo: Reach.

 

Nice article!

Jevrio's picture

Maybe graphic engine from Reach? That wouldn't affect gameplay or anything else.

Pulse Cloud's picture

@Jevrio "All the work on the improved graphics layer for Campaign (and a ton of other elements, not to oversimplify things) was created in partnership with our friends at Saber Interactive and we’re incredibly proud of the work they’ve done and the hurdles they’ve overcome."

I believe this means that the Graphics Engine is being developed by Saber Interactive.

Although this doesn't mean they aren't building on top of Reach's new Graphics Engine (because every engine uses code from other engines, ie, it's rare to see a studio create a brand spankin' new engine for anything), I highly doubt they are because it is property of Bungie, and Bungie has nothing to do with Halo Anniversary.

explicit_baron's picture

I will be getting

Battelfield 3, Uncharted 3, MGS HD

Maybe after Christmas Twisted Metal and Resistance 3

Predictions

PS3 has a better line up but, Xbox will definitely beat the PS3 in the U.S. this fall but, outside the U.S. the PS3 will sell many more units and games.

MW3 will sell 12 million first week and Battlefield  3 million. This is based on my and the internet estimates due to the sales of Black Ops and Bad Company 2.

Haters G0n Hate's picture

How do you think this year compares to 2007? (mw1, halo 3, mass effect 1, bioshock, super mario galaxy, twilight princess, ect).

iWINuFAIL's picture

I'd have to wait and see how everything plays out.  I;m hoping this year will be good enough, which it can be if just a few of the above games like up to the hype.  But both '07 and '08 were such Behemoth's in the gaming world, it's hard to think of anything that can compare.

TastyBizkitz's picture

Not to mention that in early 2012 there is also a great lineup. Almost virtually no break from the holiday season. ME 3, Bioshock Infinite, Far Cry 3, GRFS, Prototype 2. And then the already shaping up  2012 holiday season with the new metro, tomb raider, metal gear, and Halo 4.

explicit_baron's picture

2007 was a great year for Xbox and Wii not so good for PS3.

Xbox had COD4, Halo 3, Guitar Hero 3, Mass Effect, Bioshock and Orange Box.

PS3 had COD4 Uncharted 1, Motorstorm, and Ratchet and Clank.

Wii had Mario Galaxy and Zelda.

I believe 1998 and 2008 are the best years in gaming.

GLaDoS 96's picture

The only reason why 360 will outsell PS3 is because people see that you have to pay for XBL, so in their tiny little brains, it comes off as better. 360 will OUTSELL PS3, but Sony has one helluva line up for the remainder of the year. 

iWINuFAIL's picture

I'm sorry but that doesn't make sense.  Since people don't have to pay to play PS3 online, new customers are typically going to lean in that direction.  Unless you mean software and not hardware.  If that's the case, Sony will sell more exclusives due to having 4x as many, but Microsoft will win that overall.  

MyNameIsRobby's picture

I must admit that I have never played an xbox game except when I played Halo 3 for like 2 hours at a friends house. It was fun but the matchmaking took like half an hour... So I must say that the Ps3 lineup is pretty goddamn awesome right now! Uncharted 3 is gonna be fing sweet! A new Ratchet and Clank game is always welcome! I could honestly not give a rats ass about Resistance though... I thought it was a little boring! Just an opinion though! But since Sony has Mass Effect now I think that it pretty much levels the playing field. There is no xbox game that I really actually want. I used to want to try the new Halo games but I heard Reach was not as good as the Halo 3. And I don't know if you call those older games being remade... but more like remastered... but I really am not sure! Any who nice blog!

pfro's picture

too many games

I think I'll get R3, MW3, U3, ES5 for sure and maybe Rage, TM, BAC, B3 if reviews are good.

And if anybody wants to know how Battlefield will compare to Modern Warfare I will let you know, MW3 will sell more games and Battlefield 3 fanboys will troll on Modern Warfare. Both games will be good.

GLaDoS 96's picture

@iWINuFAIL

 

 When you have to pay for something versus something that is free, people will assume that the service which is not free is the better of the two. I couldn`t care less how many features XBL has, 60 bucks a year is highway robbery. 

Thomasmont's picture

No doubt im gonna purchase Battlefield 3 and the Resident Evil 4 remake.

I really hope they added a few gameplay mechanics into the Halo CE remake that are in the other Halos... (Hijacking and Skyjacking; AI can at least press the gass pedal). Also, isn't Dead Island kind of like Fallout? And doesn't Zelda Skyward Sword look kinda oversaturated and with less detail than with Twilight princess? 

Yeah... What the hell happened? From looking at the first two one can see a tanned elf and then you see a pale elf with eye liner and huge brows; Not to mention the incredible amounts of detail in Twilight Princess and how that surpases Skyward Swords... But hell the game hasn't been released yet so anything can happen.

Thanks - Tom

daddy midjet's picture

i have a 360 im getting revalations and if mw3 isnt that bad might get that and probaly saints row the third

AnalbagEd's picture

I was in the Battlefield Alpha, and honestly, it's nothing like BF2, seriously. You die quicker than in BC2, I hope they can improve it before it comes out, because It feels like It should just be Bad Company 3. 

ddan's picture

Just resverved battlefield 3 5 or more weeks ago

II RickyBFC II's picture

Resistance 3 seems to be catching my eye more than COD and Battlefield. Only a month left to wait :)

iWINuFAIL's picture

Well Twisted Metal got pushed back to 2012, but that doesn't change what an impressive group of titles Sony has.

@Analbag
You say it feels nothing like BC2, but then you say it feels like Bad Company 3.  Are you trying to say they SHOULD make the game more like BC2?

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