ABOUT CLIMBING AROUND ON STUFF AND STABBING DUDES: Assassin’s Creed III
Award Probability: 82%
be fair, we haven’t seen anything yet on the next Assassin’s Creed, and we
don’t expect to for a couple months yet. In fact, we’re not even sure it’s
going to be called Assassin’s Creed III. But we know it’s going to be awesome,
because Ass Creed is always awesome.
And even if it stars wet-blanket Desmond, even if it continues the diminishing
story returns we saw in Revelations, we can at least rest easy in the knowledge
that (so long as Ubisoft doesn’t do something to throw a wrench into the
gameplay) running up walls, exploring cities via rooftop and finding creative
ways to kill dudes with a Hidden Blade will still be a huge source of murderous
fun for hours and hours and hours and hours.
what else is fun? Running up the sides of skyscrapers at breakneck speed, then
jumping off the roof to hijack a nearby helicopter and crash it into a sidewalk
full of civilians before carving up the survivors with your giant blade-arm and
absorbing them into your horrifying mutant body. Yeah, we’re a little excited
for this one.
THOUGHT-PROVOKING, MAN: Papo & Yo
Award Probability: 82%
games,” such as they are, tend to be perceived in one of two ways: they are
either Serious Works That Merit Serious Discussion, or they are pretentious
dreck. This latter perception exists because art-games uniformly spring from
the minds of privileged collegiate types with lots of free time and no
experience with real adversity.*
& Yo, by contrast, is the creation of Vander Caballero, a full-time game
designer who wants to use the game to communicate his experiences growing up
with an unpredictable, drug-addicted father. And while that might sound like
the kind of premise that makes joyless, stony-faced intellectuals stroke their
pointed beards in approval, Papo & Yo doesn’t lay its misery on thick. Instead,
it takes players on an imaginative romp through a South American favela filled
with magic graffiti, world-manipulation puzzles and a giant pink rhino who’s
your best friend… so long as you can keep him from eating frogs, which turn him
monstrous and homicidal.
yeah, it’s a colorful, fun-looking game aimed at kids. And it’s also about
showing the consequences of addiction for a drug user’s loved ones, something
no other commercial game has seriously attempted to tackle. And also pink
rhinos. Deep, man.
data provided by the Institute of Making Up Inflammatory Overgeneralizations For
The Sake of Comedy.
Blow is a smart man and his games are smart and he’s making The Witness and that
means The Witness is a smart game and not just a remake of Myst. The End.”
Reparaz, Age 6
BEST JUSTIFICATION FOR HAVING BOUGHT MOVE:
Award Probability: 79%
we… we honestly don’t know why you felt you needed to go and buy Move. Was it to get a little
more accuracy in first-person shooters? To play light-gun games? Were your kids, like, really into the idea? We hope it was
one of those, because otherwise you spent a hundred bucks for the privilege of
playing a bunch of underwhelming casual games and the exhausting Medieval
Moves: Deadmund’s Quest. But that may change soon, and the game that might
change it also happens to be one of the year’s most anticipated.
Sony’s press conference at E3 last year, Bioshock creator Ken Levine made a
rather sheepish confession: while he had originally been pretty down on motion
controls in general, he and his team had taken a serious look at Move, and saw
a lot of potential in the motion-control wands. Not just for aiming, either;
according to Levine, Bioshock Infinite will take advantage of Move in
innovative new ways that’ll make sense for both the controller and the game. We’re
a little skeptical, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s Levine and Co., so
we’re curious to see what they come up with.
if Bioshock manages to knock it out of the park, Move-wise, you’ll still want
more than one game that takes advantage of it, right? Sorcery was one of the
first Move games ever shown, and in the time since then, the third-person
adventure (which uses Move gestures to cast spells) has looked a little better
with each successive (but rare) showing.
OF THE YEAR: Journey
Award Probability: 82%
hasn’t put a whole lot of marketing behind this one. And why should it, when
game journalists everywhere have been tripping over each other for more than a
year to tell you how great it is? Of course, we’ve got excellent reasons for
cheering this one: the product of the same minds that brought us Flower and
Flow, it’s an innovative, beautiful and
surprisingly relaxing platformer that tasks players with finding floating
scarves and exploring a huge, desert landscape on their way to a distant,
unlike anything else on the market, and seemingly everyone who’s played it has
come away impressed, so we can see word of mouth (and not just ours) gradually
making this one huge.
original Prey was fun, and we really like the idea of being a fish-out-of-water
human bounty hunter, and of tracking down hapless alien thugs in an open-world sci-fi
city we can explore through free-running and assorted space gadgets. However,
the first Prey came and went without really leaving much of a dent in the
collective gamer psyche – and even if it had, this one doesn’t look to have a
whole lot in common with it – so we’re guessing name recognition won’t be
enough to sell this one. Hopefully, that means it’ll make it on quality alone.