I've been keeping an eye on what's being hyped for release in the future and whilst most offerings end up being the sort of thing I'd glance at if a demo or free trial comes along, there's often a game or two in the midst of the release schedules that I pay attention to.
Right now, I've got my eye on Borderlands 2
and The Secret World
in particular.Pandora's Vault
The original Borderlands
was an FPS with RPG elements and co-op play game that initially passed me by. I saw a friend play it at a Halloween LAN party a couple of years back and whilst I do like post-apocalytpic-esque settings and sniper rifles that set stuff on fire, it just didn't interest me all that much. I acquired a copy of the game on Steam eventually after various parties had waxed lyrically about it and after a bit of a rough start (I absolutely loathe
the jumping mechanics in the game) I finally got the hang of the thing and decided that sniping skags
in the mouth from half a kilometre away was where it's at.
Whilst it can get grindy trying to find decent weapons, the game is more fun in co-op mode than solo and there's plenty of entertainment to be had from the NPCs and antagonists even if the
missions are the usual 'go here, pick up this item, kill that guy'. Whilst my interest in the game waxes and wanes, it's one of the more popular cross-platform games out there and when Gearbox
announced a second game, there was much excitement.
The story continues where the first game left off with a new set of player characters (the original Vault-hunters are apparently lurking about as NPCs). Thusfar one of the new character types is the dwarfish 'Gunzerker' pictured above, going by the name of Salvador. It seems to be something of a cross between the berzerking close-range Berzerker
and the gun specialist Soldier
by going up close and personal with a pair of heavy guns. Another confirmed character is some sort of variant on the original Siren
by the name of Maya, who won't have the Phasewalk
ability. Further Power details haven't been released yet.
Gearbox has stated that the interactions between the players and the world have evolved, and that choices, time taken and actions performed will all have story-changing consequences. NPCs will react more, the characters will interplay (in the style of Left 4 Dead
series characters) and the game equipment will be given a more differentiated look so you can tell roughly what sort of weapon it is without having to read the fine print on the stats. Screenshots so far hint at the iconic graphical style being retained and ramped up.
The game is slated for release sometime in 2012 on the PC, PS3 and the XBox 360. More information can be found here
and there's a short trailer for it here
.Begin the Beta Tests
The Secret World, formerly known as Cabal and The World Online, is about to start sign-ups for beta testing and was recently one of the featured titles at Gamescom 2011
. It's another FUncom
game, which means I'm wary indeed: not about the storyline, which is in the safe hands of Ragnar Tørnquist
, but about everything else.
The inital viral marketing
for the game was quite successful with the message "Dark Days Are Coming" and a faked tourism webpage for Kingsmouth
, one of the in-game locations. Pitched as a modern-day conspiracy/supernatural 'horror' MMORPG (yes, FC are trying to pimp the RPG aspect), there is much hype surrounding the fact that characters are not restricted by a class or level based system and that there are three mutually antagonistic factions they can choose from; the righteous crusading Templars
, the corporate puppet masters of the Illuminati
and the chaotic and mysterious Dragons
. Set in various locations throughout the modern world
(and perhaps the near future and near past as well), the game world focuses on battles for dominance between the three factions and at the same time in dealing with monsters, demons, parallel dimension entities and other weird stuff that the rest of humanity has no idea about.
There's plenty of screenshots and snippets of data about the game so far through the official website linked above, with interviews and community speculation about how the game play will work, and recently there has been a reveal about large scale PvP zones
. Combat mechanics are unclear at this point.Electronic Arts
is going to be handling distribution of the game, which has caused some concern over a possible Origin
requirement. Origin is horrid along the same lines as Games for Windows Live so I sincerely hope that this won't be the case. Still, I'll toss my hat into the ring for the beta testing because I like the premise and it'll be a long time before the World of Darkness MMO shows up or the Anarchy Online revamp hits.EDIT:
The latest TSW trailer has just been released and can be seen here:
Animations look dodgy but the setting is coming along nicely.