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Monday, April 15, 2024

Aggie Arcade

Most Anticipated Games of 2014

A new year means new releases, and the schedule for 2014 is looking strong for last-gen and current-gen platforms alike. Here are five of the games I’m looking forward to most in 2014:

Dark Souls II

I spent years looking at Dark Souls from a distance, intimidated by its notorious difficulty and steep learning curve. I finally gave the game a shot in 2013 — 100+ hours later and I can now call it an all-time favorite. It certainly is a challenging game, but the feeling of triumph when I defeated a tough boss or finally made it to a bonfire was absolutely exhilarating. Dark Souls II looks to recapture that feeling in March, and somehow developer FromSoftware plans to ramp up the difficulty even more. Players can be invaded by other players at any time, and the help of a cooperative partner now comes with a strict time limit. That terrifies me, and yet I still find myself excited to explore Dark Souls II’s dark and desolate world.

Destiny

I’ve mentioned in the past how I’m not a Halo fan, but I do have the utmost respect for developer Bungie. The company’s allegiance to the videogame community over the past 10+ years has been wonderful, so I want to like a Bungie product. It looks like Destiny, an upcoming sci-fi FPS for PlayStation 4/Xbox One, may fulfill that wish. From the footage I’ve seen it looks like a deeper and more complex version of Borderlands, and that’s a good thing in my book. Bungie has also described Destiny as a “shared-world shooter,” so players may randomly come across other players on their journey through the game, adding a cooperative element that isn’t intrusive.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Metal Gear Solid is often silly, convoluted and too self-serious, and yet I can’t help but embrace the series’ special brand of lunacy. The trailers for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain show us that creator Hideo Kojima is not going to shy away from that narrative formula, but he does hope to elevate the core stealth gameplay. Kojima has promised that MGSV will be a more open experience in which players can better use stealth mechanics, and a downloadable prequel — Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes — will come out in March to help introduce fans to the new mechanics for the upcoming release.

Transistor

Bastion was one of my favorite games of 2011, and Supergiant Games plans to follow that up with Transistor, a sci-fi action game. Like Bastion, Transistor uses an isometric view, but there are notable differences between the two games. Transistor will include a planning mode, in which players stop time and input a series of moves to be executed in super-speed. Meanwhile, the story will focus on protagonist Red and her powerful sword called Transistor. If it’s anything like Bastion, then it will be a narrative worth seeing through to the end.

The Witness

The Witness, right down to its simple name, exudes mystery. It’s a first-person puzzle game that takes place on a secluded island, but beyond that we don’t have much information to go on. But anyone who played 2008’s Braid knows that designer Jonathan Blow has a penchant for creating fresh, innovative and exciting games that push the boundaries of modern mechanics. Something tells me The Witness will be a very special game — heck, even if it’s a disaster, it will still probably be a fascinating experience.

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