Until we can all just jump on our Tron light bikes and zoom around in a real virtual reality world here are some titles due for release this year that might help tide you over.
It’s finally here! Well, almost. It’s been over five years in the making but will it be worth the wait? DC Universe Online is as you might have guessed an MMO based in the DC Universe. The designs for the universe and characters were done by legendary artist Jim Lee so everything looks exactly how you would want a game set in the DCU to look. The overall story arc was written by one of the best writers in the industry today, Geoff Johns, and a ton of the side missions were written by long time comic book guru Marv Wolfman so you can be sure it’s all going to feel like your comic books have come to life inside your computer/console (DCU Online will be available for the PC and PS3).
Where DCU Online differs from the majority of MMOs is in its combat system. With most MMOs, the combat is turn based, giving a certain amount of time before you can attack or be attacked, this works fine for World of Warcraft or Guild Wars but in a universe populated by your favourite comic book heroes and villains you are going to want to come with the thunder. Maybe you want to put the smack down on Superman BLAM! Or get all up in the Joker’s grill-piece and make him spit teeth through that moronic shit-eating grin POW! Or step up and pimp slap the Dark Knight KABOOM! And thankfully with DCU Online that’s what you are going to get to do.
The combat system is in real time allowing you to go toe-to-toe with your arch nemesis or their gangs of henchmen and sidekicks in a much more dynamic way than has really been seen in the majority of MMOs up until now.
DCU Online also operates a Mentor system allowing you to choose an iconic hero or villain and have them guide you through the process of becoming the next Man of Steel or the next Sexiest Cat Burgling Vigilante. In DCU Online you have almost limitless scope for character customization so you can be whatever you want to be, whatever turns you on.
I’m not going to make any bones about it, Arkham Asylum is one of my favourite computer games ever! That’s a fact. Take it to the bank.
It looked amazing, had great performances from the voice actors, a nice little story to keep everything ticking along and it felt excellent to play. Swooping from rooftops onto insane inmates, beating the snot out of escaped thugs, using your detective skills to solve clues or just flying around for the hell of it. I pretty much thought it was going to be the closest I would ever get to being the Bat. Until now…
After winning Game of the Year 2009 and being re-released in a 3D Game of the Year edition it was only a matter of time until a second helping of Gotham greatness was ready to grace our games machines.
And so it came to pass, at the tail end of last year the first teaser trailer for the new game was released showing us what appeared to be a Gotham City gone straight to Hell. In Arkham City it seems like a section of Gotham has been closed off, Escape From New York style. With lunatics, violent offenders and your occasional supervillain running amok. Where with the first game you found yourself in a closed environment, the sequel appears to be an open world adventure, similar to the sandbox style of GTA or Red Dead Redemption. It’s also been rumoured that there will be a multi-player option in which you will be able to team up with a friend to clean up the streets of Gotham. No word yet as to whether or not this is definitely the case or whom your possible team mates might be but I’m loving the idea of being able to team up with other members of the Bat Family. Nightwing, Catwoman. Heck, I’d even be happy with Batmite, anythings possible here as it was never really established what continuity Arkham Asylum was set in.
So tell your friends, tell all your friends, Arkham City should be in the shops sometime during Autumn this year. And I’m Batman!
A really, really long time ago in a galaxy far far away…….
The Old Republic is, strangely enough, an MMO set in the Star Wars Galaxy. Set millenia before Luke Skywalker and his rebel scum started tearing it up all over the galaxy…bunch of yahoos! This is a time when the Old Republic (presumably just the Republic at this point?) are at war with the Sith Empire.
Those of you who have played Bioware’s other Star Wars titles, Knights of the Old Republic I and II, will be familiar with the era as it is set not long after those games concluded.
With still no release date set it looks like you probably wont be seeing this until the second half of the year at least but if you are desperate for a taste you should check out the trailers online. Quite simply, they are everything Star Wars should be. Mark my words, you will be blown away!
The gameplay and combat system appear to be a bit more like the classic MMO style with a more turn based combat system, although it actually looks a lot more interesting. Maybe that’s just my Star Wars prejudice coming through.
No Star Wars title would be complete though without the obligitory space battle or two and in The Old Republic when traversing the universe you get to have dog fights in space. Whether you are a smuggler trying to shake a bounty hunter off your ass or an Old Republic war ship trying to outrun an entire Sith fleet, this is a welcome addition to a game like this where it can often seem like you are doing the same thing over and over and over again, and lets face it who doesnt want to be like Han and Luke and fight off squadrons of enemy fighters before making the jump to lightspeed?