The cold frigid air has all but made you housebound. Stinging winds and unpleasantries such as snow have given you all the reason to stay within the confines of your sturdy four walls and leopard print Snuggy. Though you may be in school or working a full time job, there’s still that stretch of free time over the weekend that must be filled. Normally, you’d have several options to pass the time with, but both Christmas break and the bout of the Flu you had last week has already exhausted every book and movie you own. Luckily, 2013 is not like many other years. While the first quarter of the year is typically void of any noteworthy game releases, 2013 is surprisingly stockpiled with a selection of titles that will help warm you on those cold winter nights.
Most noteworthy game releases tend to occur within the second and fourth quarters of the year, but many developers have taken a liking to 2013’s starting quartet of months. So far this year, gamers have had the chance to travel to Limbo and back with Ninja Theory’s take on Capcom’s “Devil May Cry” series. Though on its surface “DmC” was nothing more than a retelling of the arrogant Dante, his brother Virgil, and their battle against the evil Mundus, it proved to be more than just a rehash. Ninja Theory put forth a fresh experience that started a trend for the year; a trend that will inevitably be continued in the early weeks of February.
Launching on Tuesday, Feb 5 is Visceral Game’s return to the dreaded universe of “Dead Space”. Though logic would put a game like “Dead Space” into a Halloween release, “Dead Space 3” will be warming up this winter season with an assortment of effective thrills, chills, and kick-ass weaponry. Introducing a customizable weapon system and co-op multiplayer, “Dead Space 3” takes the series to a depth it has yet to see. A demo released recently showcased the customization system, which proved that no two weapons are truly alike. This level of player involvement is sure to make “Dead Space 3” one of those games that see’s a surprising amount of second, third, and fourth playthroughs.
Shortly following “Dead Space 3” with a Feb 12 release date is Gearbox Software’s take on the “Aliens” universe. “Aliens: Colonial Marines” promises to go beyond just being yet another failed entry in the long list of xenomorph shooters with gameplay mechanics that have yet to be utilized against the exoskeletal foe. Teamwork is key in “Colonial Marines” as some scenarios will pit gamers with the heart pounding task of prepping a room with defenses for an incoming extraterrestrial swarm. Sticking with licensed devices and SFX from the movies ups the ante as items like the alarming Motion Tracker provides only a sense of what direction the creatures will be attacking from. Much like in the titular movie, the xenomorphs in Gearbox Software’s creation will utilize vents and ducts to move swiftly throughout the desolate LV-426. If its warmth you’re looking for, there’s nothing more warming than the genuine sense of fear that “Aliens: Colonial Marines” is sure to bring about.
While February has a steady focus on eradicating extraterrestrial lifeforms, there is one final title that breaks away from the concept of alien lifeforms to provide a cyborg-filled romp in the future. “Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance” may carry the “Metal Gear” monicker, but this fast-paced action title replaces series’ staple Solid Snake with “Metal Gear Solid 2’s” ill-received Raiden in his “Guns of the Patriots” cyborg-gear. Taking place four years after the events of “Guns of the Patriots”, Raiden has joined forces with a private military company on a question for revenge, redemption, and all those other staples of action titles. Just as the season starts to warm up and the concept of going outside isn’t as horrid as it were a month ago, “BioShock Infinite” is sure to muster up a few good reasons for you to remain indoors just a bit longer.
As the weather warms to the spring season in March, the game releases keep on coming. steps it up with a diversity of games that will surely keep gamers occupied until the warmer weather starts moving in. Titles such as Crystal Dynamics reboot of “Tomb Raider”, the fourth entry in the “God of War” series, “Gears of War: Judgement”, and the high-flying “BioShock Infinite” will land in March, creating a suitable follow-up to February’s slew of blockbusters.