Bioshock Infinite, Fire Emblem Awakening, Game & Wario, God of War: Ascension, Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, Pikmin 3, Professor Layton vs Phoenix Wright, Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time, Tomb Raider
For monetary reasons I have been a one-console gamer for many years. Nintendo will always be my favourite but my inability to play certain exclusives on other consoles in the detail I would like has long been a cause for regret. Well hopefully this year that will become a thing of the past and I will finally get round to getting a PS3. With this in mind my Top Ten Most Anticipated Films of 2013 will be taking into account several PS3 titles I find appealing, which is handy because despite the fact the year ahead is critical for Nintendo there aren’t a whole lot of major Wii U or 3DS titles on the horizon. Hopefully E3 will shed light on some big ones but until then these are the ten video games due for a 2013 release that are most on my mind.
10. Game & Wario (Wii U)
Wario is no stranger to a good minigame compilation; his Wario Ware series is among the best examples of the genre, but his first appearance on the Wii U looks a bit different. A collection of sixteen minigames that make use of the unique features of the Gamepad, the setup is very similar to Nintendo Land but no doubt it will be injected with some of the flatulent character’s unique personality and style. One to watch.
9. Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright (3DS)
This game was on last year’s list but still hasn’t seen release yet. The crossover between one of my favourite handheld series and one I’ve never sampled (Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright respectively) is an interesting prospect and with Level 5 at the helm seems guaranteed for success.
8. Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (PS3)
One of a number of PS3 games on this list that belongs to a franchise I’ve never actually tried before Sly always looked like fun to me. This fourth game in his series will play out similarly to his previous with the thieving raccoon and his buddies continuing to track down the Thievius Raccoonus. I like a good platformer and it will be nice to try one that doesn’t star Mario for once.
7. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (3DS)
Another game appearing on the list for a second year, Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon is the long-awaited follow-up to the popular Gamecube launch game in which Luigi must again hunt down and vacuum up ghosts, this time in several haunted houses. It looks like it could be an improvement on the rather limited original and is currently one of the most significant first-party releases for the handheld in 2013.
6. Bioshock Infinite (PS3)
I’m not a fan of first-person-shooters as a rule but the Bioshock games with their steampunk setting and worlds shrouded in mystery have always seemed to offer something more. This eagerly-awaited game, set in a retro civilization above the clouds looks set to again take the genre into new places and is clearly driven by more than just relentless action.
5. God of War: Ascension (PS3)
One of the franchise success-stories of recent years I’ve most wanted to play, God of War seems to define gratuitous fun. Kratos’ games ooze third-person action quality and this prequel seems to be a clear continuation of his glowing track record. I’ll probably by the HD Collection at some point too.
4. Tomb Raider (PS3)
Whatever Lara Croft’s iconic statues can be attributed to this reboot starring a younger Miss Croft is a clear and commendable attempt to bring her story into the modern era with a dark and realistic vision that focuses on more than just her breasts. Pretty much everything about the game looks absorbing and it could be contender for one of the games of the year.
3. Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (PS3)
A Japanese RPG designed by Studio Ghibli? Hell yes! I’m quite selective of JRPGs which I feel can often be a little too idiosyncratically weird but this long-gestating title seems to strike the fine balance between the charms of the genre and a universal appeal. The Ghibli visuals are gorgeous, particularly in motion and lend the game a massive sense of personality and it’s nice to have such a high-profile game that isn’t M rated.
2. Pikmin 3 (Wii U)
It’s been a long time coming but this is the first big hope for first-party Wii U software in 2013. Again you control a tiny spaceman in command of an army of colourful plant creatures as you explore a hostile terrain fighting indigenous creatures, building bridges and opening other paths and transporting objects. If the sequel can keep up the good work started by the first two games we’ll be on to a guaranteed classic.
1. Fire Emblem Awakening (3DS)
This is so far ahead of every other game on this list. As a huge fan of the series I’ve been clinging to every scrap of information I can get and all I’ve learned has amplified my already bursting anticipation. All the classic elements of the series you would expect are present, the plot is clearly packed with depth and mystery and the gameplay is layered with new concepts such as double-teaming. If this game turns out to be half as good as I’m expecting it will be the best game on the 3DS and stands a very real chance of being my game of the year.