10. Prey 2
It’s been six years since Human Head Studios released Prey. This FPS with a sci-fi story and great game mechanics, such as teleportation and manipulation of gravity, was a huge success, as it was praised both for its story, as well as its graphics and multiplayer, and now is considered a ‘cult classic’.
This year we’ll get the chance to step back into the world of Prey, only this time we won’t be controling the Cherokee Indian Domasi Tawodi, but the former soldier Killian Samuels.
This character has lost his memory and is now working as a bounty hunter on another planet, and in his adventures he will meet the previous game hero.
Prey 2 is not a linear shooter, but it offers an open-world map where you will find dozens of upgrades, weapons and missions. Since an open-world game requires a lot of resources in production, Human Head Studios chose to focus on the single-player and completely gave up on the multiplayer component. The game will be available in 2012 on PC, as well as Xbox 360 and PS3.
9. Bioshock Infinite
Irrational is one of the most reputed games producers, known for System Shock 2 and BioShock, two shooters with dystopian stories that are often included in “best games ever” tops.
After the success of BioShock, Irrational left people at 2K Marin developing the second part of the story and started working on BioShock Infinite, an innovative game, that only shares the name and moral of the story with the first.
If BioShock 2 made you pass a city populated by people who had become mutants, in BioShock Infinite you will be head in the clouds thanks to an adventure on Columbia, a floating city created by the Americans as a symbol of their power. Similar to every “BioShock” story, there is a difference between the hopes of the creators of this city and reality itself, and Colombia is now shattered by a civil war and threatened to collapse from heaven.
You will control Booker DeWitt, a special agent who must free a young woman from Colombia, but that teams up with her to get away alive from this nightmare city.
As far as gameplay is concerned, BioShock Infinite promises a lot of weapons and super powers and fights will not only take place on the ground, but also in the sky-lines, some tangled air transport lines, which will give you the feeling that you are in a roller coaster. The game will arrive on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 sometime later this year.
8. Risen 2: Dark Waters
Released shortly before the famous RPG Dragon Age: Origins and having some technical problems in the console versions, Risen has lost much of the public attention because of these reasons, though it used to be a very rich game. In Risen you controlled an unnamed hero who fought both humans and fantasy creatures on a volcanic island and had to choose between several factors allies.
Risen 2 continues the adventures of that unnamed hero, only it opts for a darker story with nautical theme – you will be looking for pirate treasures, battle with monsters and face the seas on board a ship.
Like the first Risen, this game is produced by German studio Piranha Bytes, the creator of the famous Gothic series. When you say Piranha Bytes, you think of a great RPG and Risen 2 is no exception. The game will be released on PC and consoles on April 27.
The PC has always benefited from excellent free games and in 2012 it will get another surprise: Firefall, a team-based online shooter produced by Red 5 Studios, a studio set up by ex-Blizzard employees.
Firefall takes place on our planet, in a quite distant future in which humanity is almost destroyed and struggles for survival.
The game has two components: campaign and multiplayer. In fact, campaign can be played both as a single player, but also with dozens of other players, and the story itself bears the signature of Orson Scott Card, the author of Ender’s Game, and that of Mark Kern, who worked on WoW, Starcraft and Diablo.
Multiplayer side, gamers can choose from several different classes: doctor, assault, engineer or reconstruction. Everything is packed in a graphical style that will remind you of Borderlands.
6. Max Payne 3
The Max Payne series, made by Remedy, who popularized the bullet-time mechanic, is now in the hands of another studio, a large scale one: Rockstar Games, which takes pride in the series Grand Theft Auto, Manhunt and Red Dead.
The third game of the Max Payne series sees the same retired policeman on duty and turned into a cynical guy who works as a special bodyguard for a major figure in the Brazilian political world.
In single-player Rockstar Games maintains the game mechanics that have made Max Payne famous, adding the option of cover and interactive cinematic sequences, in which the hero performs breathtaking stunts.
Max Payne 3 is the first game of the series to benefit from multiplayer, as Rockstar Games is adding dynamic game modes, that will complement the campaign story.
The most important of these is Gang Wars, made up of several rounds of challenges, each with its own story. The goals will be varied and their order will be constantly changed by the game, so that no episode is the same.
Max Payne 3 is expected to hit shelves on May 18 for Xbox 360 and PS3. On the PC it will arrive on June 1.
Tera is a classic MMO with innovative mechanics: the combat part takes place in real-time. In a normal MMO, when you attack another character, you just have to click on it and wait until it runs out of health.
In TERA, battles are much more dynamic. They take place as in a third person action game: you must have a good position and target, you can block attacks and you can avoid the enemy when you’re overwhelmed.
Tera uses Unreal Engine 3 and is developed by Bluehouse Studios, a company made up of producers who worked in NCSoft for the MMO Lineage III. TERA will be released in Europe on May 3, 2012.
4. Guild Wars 2
It’s been more than four years since the MMO Guild Wars received a major update (the expansion Eye of the North). This year, fans of the game will receive the long-awaited Guild Wars 2, which promises a story that will suit the players’ actions.
When you create a character, you can choose not only its strengths and weaknesses, but also its personality, affecting how he is perceived by NPC. This means that every time you create a new character, you have new options in the game and you can learn more about each factor that is involved in the central story.
Guild Wars 2 promises to increase the level-cap to 80 in order to avoid the grind.
3. Mass effect 3
The final chapter in the adventures of Commander Shepard, Mass Effect 3 will be the first game of the series to have a multiplayer component.
Besides the campaign, in which Shepard must protect the planet from a massive invasion of The Reapers, the game will offer a co-op mode called Galaxy at War. Here, up to four players will embark on special missions that can affect the campaign. Here, up to four players will embark on special missions that can affect the campaign.
Each mission in which you must seize enemy bases, can help you get a “perfect ending” in the campaign. In co-op you will have to create an new character and you will have the option to choose from several races (Ansari, salarians and turians are several options), each with their own powers and special abilities.
As in the case of Mass Effect 2, you can import your savings from the previous game to customize your adventures – those who choose to start from 0 will navigate through interactive comics to make the decisions that influence the story.
Mass Effect 3 will be released on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 on March 9 – the Steam version won’t appear on Steam, as the game requires the Origin service from EA.
2. StarCraft II Heart of the Swarm
Gamers were upset when Blizzard announced that StarCraft II won’t be released in “one piece”, but in three separate episodes, but quickly forgot about the quarrel when the first part, Wings of Liberty, proved to be an excellent game.
Two years after its launch, Blizzard is getting ready to bring Heart of the Swarm, a sequel / expansion that focuses on the Zerg species.
Its campaign will have about 20 missions, two years after the events of Wings of Liberty and following the adventures of Sarah Kerrigan as she tries to regain control over the Zerg.
Multiplayer side, the expansion will bring eight new units for each race and matchmaking improvements to Battle.net.
1. Diablo III
The number 1 spot obviously belongs to Diablo III made by Blizzard, a game that producers intend to bring to the consoles too.
Initially, Diablo III was set to arrive this spring, but after feedback from the beta, Blizzard decided to make major changes to the combat and intends to release it in the fall.
Anyway, we’re anxiously waiting for it and we’re curious to see how the reaction of the Auction House, the service by which players can buy and sell items with real money.
The top doesn’t include all the major games scheduled for release this year, be they announced or delayed.
Other highly-anticipated PC games expected to arrive in 2012 include Far Cry 3, Hitman Absolution, DotA 2, Darksiders 2, Prototype 2, as well as GTA V, Metro 2033: Last Light and Borderlands 2, which are yet to be certainly set for release this year.