2013: Upcoming Games

Here's a quick list of games I'm looking forward to this year.

Quadrilateral Cowboy is the next game by Blendo Games, makers of Gravity Bone and Thirty Flights of Loving. This is how they describe their game:

Hacking. Dial tone. Cyberpunk. Cassette decks. Robotics. Espionage. Sabotage. Suitcase decks. Simulators. Brainbox injectors.

When you have a top-of-the-line hacking deck armed with a 56.6k modem and a staggering 256k RAM, it means just one thing: you answer only to the highest bidder.

From the images, trailer, and developer diaries (http://blendogames.com/news/), this game has me pretty excited. It's basically a badass hacker mercenary game set in the nineties where you can use a virtual computer to hack stuff. There will also be climbing mechanics (parkour!). Definitely non-conventional, definitely awesome. Here's the first and only trailer so far:

The Witness is Jonathan Blow's next game. Blow is a sort of figurehead for the indie and art games movements, and his game Braid did extremely well with both critics and gamers. The Witness is a 3D puzzle game like none before it. What's the game about? In Blow's words, "At it's heart, at it's core, it's a game about epiphany, that instantaneous transition of the mind that takes you from confusion to understanding." How awesome is that?

The game's first trailer was shown at the PlayStation 4 reveal show earlier this week. I highly recommend watching Blow's short talk before the trailer as well. He makes bold statements and promises about his game, but I know he'll deliver. You can follow the game's progress on the official blog: http://the-witness.net/news/. I'm sure the game will be crazy good and genre-defining when it launches later this year. Here's Blow's talk and the first trailer:

Notch has passed over the Minecraft reigns to his colleague and has started work on his next game, 0x10c. It's a game set in space where you build and run a space ship. There will be in-game programming involved, this time directly instead of a system like Minecraft's redstone programming.

Not a whole lot is known about the game yet, and it probably won't be finished this year, but Notch has said that the game will be available in beta form whenever it reaches a certain level of fun. You never know, we might get to play it this year. This (and perhaps Quadrilateral Cowboy) might be the perfect time to start learning how to program since it will be used in-game. I like the idea of programming inside a program as intimidating as it seems to me now. You can keep up with their updates here: http://0x10c.com/.

Image from 0.10c.com

Mew-Genics is the latest project by Team Meat, the guys who gave us the incredible Super Meat Boy and The Binding of Isaac. What started out as a game jam project became their primary focus when they saw the potential of Mew-Genics, even putting their new Super Meat Boy game on hold.

The team has been teasing Mew-Genics for a while now (http://supermeatboy.com/blog/), but details about the actual gameplay have been scarce. As of today, there's a description of the game on the official blog. I found this pretty funny:

I think most would describe Mew-Genics as a cross between The Sims and Pokemon with a sprinkling of Animal Crossing and a dash of Tamagotchi, but at its core the game really isn't like anything we've seen before.

Given how fun Super Meat Boy is and how utterly hooked I was/am on The Binding of Isaac, I have high hopes for this game. Since there's no trailer, here's the theme song:

Well, that just about covers the upcoming indie games. The only AAA game I'm really excited about is BioShock Infinite, set to be released next month. Despite its few glaring flaws, I love the original BioShock for its medium-transcending narrative and crazy setting. I wasn't so much a fan of BioShock 2, feeling it was only a typical big-budget sequel, adding more of everything but not innovating. I've since learned that Ken Levine, the guy in charge of the original BioShock, was not responsible for BioShock 2 and has returned for Infinite.

There's a ton of videos and articles about Infinite out there, and with its new setting, characters and style, the game looks mighty promising. Let's hope that Levine will give us another masterpiece. Here's a cool trailer that gives me hope that Infinite will deliver spectacle, explore political and ethical questions, and much more:

Honorable mentions: MonacoThe Last of Us, GTAVGorogoaPikmin 3, Slender: The Arrival

2013 is still young, but there are already lots of cool games to look forward to. Game on!

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