InnerCityGeeks Top Picks From E3 2012

by: Alex N. (@alexnz)

My favorite time of the year is upon us! This week, all the major game publishers and developers are gathering in LA to show the world what they’ve been hiding under their skirts all this time and give us a glimpse at what’s to come in the next year of gaming.

I’m not going to waste too much time and just jump right in and show you what’s gotten me excited out of this year’s E3.

Watch Dogs

This is one of maybe two games showcased this year that is pushing some actual next-generation tech. Currently, Ubisoft has announced that this will be released on current systems (360, PS3, and PC) but this definitely looks like a new franchise meant for a new generation of consoles (the demo shown above is running on a high-end PC). I wouldn’t be surprised if this ends up launching on the “NextBox” or “PS4”, whenever those get announced.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Date: TBA

The Last of Us

Naughty Dog shows some actual gameplay from their newest jam and I am oh so delighted. Take their regal production values, which they’ve perfected on the Uncharted series, mix in a little Walking Dead, add a touch of Enslaved, and you’ve got The Last of Us.

Gameplay-wise, they’ve gone in a completely different direction from Uncharted. Instead of countless bad guys that just soak up bullets, you’re fighting a small number of people at a time that react realistically to you in combat. The feeling of tension and the desperation of trying to survive is just so palpable and unnerving; something you rarely see in games.

Platforms: PlayStation 3
Release Date: 2013

Splinter Cell: Blacklist

I’ve never been a fan of the Splinter Cell games, but this latest chapter is something else. Instead of sneaking around, trying not to be seen (causing an instant game over in the older games), this one has a very nimble Sam Fisher running around quietly, and efficiently taking out every terrorist unlucky enough to cross his path.

Returning here is the Mark and Execute mechanic that was introduced in 2010’s Splinter Cell: Conviction. Much like Assassin’s Creed 3, Ubisoft seems keen on keeping the action and momentum going while you’re taking out enemies. The developers in the gameplay demo referred to this as “killing in motion.”
Also returning is the multiplayer mode, Mercs vs Spies (introduced in Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow). As far as I know, this was not shown at all, but I’m super excited that they’re bringing back what is now a classic game mode.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Date: Q2 2013

Assassin’s Creed 3

I felt like the Assassin’s Creed franchise was starting to get stale, thanks to Ubisoft’s insistence on putting out a new game every year, but AC3 looks like it’s fresh again. New setting, new main character, new ways to murder fools. I get a nice Red Dead Redemption vibe thanks to the frontier setting and hunting aspects. The natural setting is also a really nice departure from scaling the samey looking buildings in the past games.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U, PC
Release Date: October 30, 2012

Beyond: Two Souls

The next game from developer Quantic Dream (Heavy Rain, Indigo Prophecy). Unfortunately no direct gameplay was shown, but this game looks amazing. Studio head, David Cage, has been fiercely touting the new performance capture technology his company has been working on, and it shows incredibly well here.
I can only assume this will play much like their past games; contextual, almost quick-time like controls with the story of a decent psychological thriller. And they’ve finally got an American actor with Ellen Page as the lead role. No more weird accents! (?)

Platforms: PlayStation 3
Release Date: TBA

Tomb Raider

This is a reboot of the franchise, exploring the origin story of series heroine, Lara Croft. This game looks to put Lara through hell and basically have her transform from a normal girl, to the badass heroine we’re all familiar with.

The team at Crystal Dynamics hasn’t put out a bad Tomb Raider game yet since they took over the franchise, but I get the feeling this could be a middling product at best. I hope I’m proven wrong.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac
Release Date: March 5, 2013

Need for Speed: Most Wanted

Criterion Games is back on the Need for Speed franchise! Creators of possibly my favorite racer this generation (Burnout Paradise), they’ve come back to follow up their work on Hot Pursuit.

This game looks like it’s taking a page out of the Paradise book and re-introducing the open-world racing formula, which was the cornerstone of that game.
I’m hype!

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Vita, Wii U, PC
Release Date: October 30, 2012

Honorable Mentions

I feel like I’ve gone on too long, but I also want to make sure I point out these other games that I can’t wait for!

Halo 4

Master Chief is back with a new development studio at the helm of what will be a new trilogy.

Platforms: Xbox 360
Release Date: November 6, 2012

Star Wars 1313

More next-gen pretty. I kind of feel bad for sneaking this in here, but the game is far from coming out, but it’s easily the best looking game I’ve seen this year. So far only announced for PC, but don’t be surprised to hear more when the next batch of consoles are coming.

Platforms: PC
Release Date: TBA


Devil May Cry reboot. Brought to you by Ninja Theory (Heavenly Sword, Enslaved). I want.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Date: January 15, 2013

South Park: The Stick of Truth

It’s an RPG in South Park. Apparently looks just like the TV show.

“Jews can’t be saviors” – Eric Cartman

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Date: March 5, 2013

Injustice: Gods Among Us

New fighting game from NetherRealm Studios (Mortal Kombat) completely with DC Comics characters.

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U
Release Date: 2013

So what are you guys excited for?



  1. Yeah, it really is insane how great everything looks. If I had to pick one thing, I’d say I’m MOST excited about Last of Us.
    Although next year will probably crazier when all the next-gen stuff starts getting announced!

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