Upcoming Video Game Releases - February 2017
Longtime fans will know that when I am not complaining about something, watching Supernatural, or complaining about someone not watching Supernatural, quite a lot of my spare time is spent playing video games. The ever abundant Christmas period is still the prime spot for many triple A title releases, but there seems to be a bit of a shift in the winds as of late. I remember a time not long ago where if you were an avid gamer or had enough disposable income to shame a small African nation, you still would be about $500 and three sexual favors short of being able to afford the fucking landslide of new game releases between late October and Christmas day. Thankfully it seems like publishers have realized that if they give our wallets a break from the lovemaking long enough to have a sports drink and a cigarette then we will be much more enthusiastic about round two. As a result, the first quarter of the year has started to finally see some actual fucking game releases.
For Honor – Alright I’m going to come out the gate rather lukewarm on this one, but that is more because it is not for me personally, and less because of some inherent awfulness. For Honor is the upcoming action hack and slash game that is one part “Deadliest Warrior” and one part “Fight Club.” You pick from amongst the three various factions: Viking, Knight, or Samurai and after that, you pick a subclass: the fast but weaker Assassin, the slower but more resilient Heavies, the well-rounded and therefore boring Vanguard, or the KFC bargain bucket class, Hybrid, which is an amalgamation of the various sub-classes with “uncommon” skills. While this is a multiplayer heavy game, there apparently is a single player campaign for those who are interested in the concept, but who don’t have the time needed to master every element like a hyperactive 12 year old on summer vacation. For those of you interested in For Honor, you may have to wait a little longer than you want to play it as the game comes out on Valentine’s Day. To me, that smacks of a condescending “We know our audience and they are DEFINITELY going to be free that day,” kind of vibe. Then again, what better way to tell your significant other “Hey I love you, but sometimes I you do things that make me consider suffocating you in your sleep, but I don’t want to go to prison, so let’s use this as a middle ground because it’s cheaper than counseling.”
Halo Wars 2 – Halo Wars 2 is a bit of a niche pick as it is both a RTS (Real Time Strategy) game which is already a niche genre, and it is based in the Halo Universe which is no longer the mighty titan it once was back on the Xbox 360. The first Halo Wars was unique in that it was built from the ground up as the game that would successfully transplant the RTS from the PC to the home console, a concept many believed to be impossible due to the number of different commands necessary for gameplay as well as mouse precision; two things that a console simply could not provide. Upon release the game rated positively amongst critics and went on to sell over a million units making it the bestselling RTS on console. Those new to the genre appreciated the streamlined approach, but RTS Veterans found them to be lacking. I tell you about the previous game mainly because if it sounds appealing to you, then you can expect more of the same from Halo Wars 2 now with a greater focus on improving controls and mechanics. A warning to those who are interested but have not played a Halo game up to this point: the single player campaign is set to take place after the original Halo Wars, and after the events of Halo 5: Guardians which came out in 2015. If you have not played any of the games, you may be a little lost, but that’s nothing that an hour on the wiki can’t fix, right? You can pick this one up for either Xbox One or Windows 10 for PC on February 21st.
Horizon Zero Dawn – Horizon Zero Dawn is not just three random words thrown together but actually the most interesting new IP to come out in quite some time. You play as Aloy, a young woman living in a distant future Earth where machines are the supreme beings (you see what they did with her name there?). But these are not walking death robots trying to kill everything with a shotgun and a stolen motorcycle, oh no. Instead, the robots we see throughout the trailers are built to look and act like real animals of today as well as the enormous dinosaurs of our past. Imagine if Jurassic Park and Terminator had a baby and it all takes place in the future where the human of today are called mythological “Old Ones.” This open world action adventure will have you hunting robot animals, fighting against other tribes, and discovering the mysteries of the Old Ones that have long since been lost to time. With gameplay and graphics that are professionally described as “fucking sweet” Horizon Zero Dawn should be the main draw for anyone who owns a PS4 on February 28th.
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