Here is my list of 10 games to look out for from PAX East this year. They are in no order as there is NO WAY I could sort them or choose one over another. Each of these games have my eyes for various reasons so read on, to see why.
This game is something to look at for a few reasons. One, it’s the only iOS game I even bothered going out of my way to look at during PAX East, and it’s the only iOS exclusive I will be talking about after PAX East. Two, it’s dev team, GiantSpaceKat, and entire cast are female. Now in my opinion this is something huge. Game development is typically saturated with males and I find it refreshing to finally have not only some female devs but a whole team and game populated with them.
The game itself is described as “Heavy Rain meets Mass Effect” and I couldn’t agree more. It’s quick time event heavy, but it works well for it, the tactics for combat are interesting as well, and from what I have seen of the story it too is superb. The animation is reminiscent of old RareWare games like Jet Force Gemini or Perfect Dark.
Duck Tales Remastered:
What can I say about this game that shouldn’t be known already? It’s an HD remaster of the amazing game on the NES. I remember spending 3 days not turning off my NES just to beat this game. I played it very often and no matter how many times I played it never lost its challenge or fun. This remaster is being done by the folks over at WayForward, the same folks who recently did Double Dragon Neon, so I know it is in capable hands. Sadly the team was not at PAX East with the game, so I can’t tell you much more than it looks great so far.
Hawken looks purely stellar. As someone who spent at least a year of my life with a dual Saitek joystick and Mechwarrior 4, I cannot wait to actually sit and play this and lose my life to it. I am a huge mech game fan, be it Armored Core, Mech Warrior, or a fighter like Tech Romancer, I love them all. This looks like it will satisfy fans of Mech Warrior greatly, and takes place in a dystopian future. I, unfortunately, didn’t get to play this at PAX East this year and only got to watch it from afar, but it looks beautiful and well developed. It’s in beta now, and has been since December. If you like mech games and aren’t feeling the MMO direction Mech Warrior has gone, this may be the game you need to fill that void that’s been there the last few years.
Saints Row 4: (No art or game play footage available, Keep checking for updates.)
I mean, come on! It’s Saints Row! You knew this was going to be on here. For those that don’t know, THQ, former owners of Volition; devs of Saints; and the Saints franchise went under. Deep Silver came to the rescue and picked up both Volition and Saints Row. They kept the dev team intact and in return are getting the mostly done Saints Row 4 without having to put in much time. Great move for them and for us. The game looks simply fantastic. You are now starting as the President of the US and your Saints Lt.s are now your Executive cabinet. You can bet this game tops the crazy present in Saints Row The Third and brings more customization, action, and story than ever before. Definitely a day one pick up for me.
Assassins Creed Black Flag:
It’s Assassins Creed like you haven’t seen it before. On the high seas as a pirate! the game is beautiful so far, Ubisoft put a lot of work into this. They did a lot of research to make sure the historical accuracy of the pirates, particularly Blackbeard is correct, and not based on common folk-lore, but known facts. I was really impressed looking at this game at PAX East. I am not a huge fan of the AC games, I don’t hate them, but they are not something I get excited for. However, this one is different. I like where they are taking it and hope the final product is as good as what I saw at PAX East.
I am a HUGE Splintercell fan. Since the first debuted on Xbox and my cousin brought it home. I have been hooked. It has taken some interesting changes over the years, but I have always enjoyed them. Blacklist looks to bring back some of the classic stuff from Splintercell’s earlier games, as well as expanding on what games like Conviction have brought in. Ubisoft have added in a nice customization feature for your base of operations, and a new difficulty called “Perfectionist” in that it’s like the first game, and you will be killed with one bullet, if you get seen at all you’re done. I didn’t get to see this play style due to time constraints. They also, as should be expected have a whole slew of new gadgets, enemy types and take down kills added to the game. Blacklist looks to be the best Splintercell yet.
Secret Ponchos is a new take on the classic 8-way or twin stick shooters. The left stick moves like in your typical 8-way, a la Geometry Wars, but the right stick doesn’t shoot, it merely aims. Now this is where it breaks away from your standard twin stick shooters. You use the right trigger to shoot, the left trigger to take cover. Each of the characters get 2 weapons. Reload is done manually ONLY to add tactics to the game, and it works. Well. If you forget to reload before a shoot out it could cost you. Cover breaks line of site and adds a level of stealth to the game. It’s completely based in a spaghetti western setting, and it works well. Think Lead and Gold meets Geometry Wars and you have an IDEA of how this game plays. It’s nice, it’s fresh and anyone who is a fan of westerns or 8-way shooters should check this out.
Guacamelee! is an old school inspired platfoming beat ‘em up, in the Metroidvania vain. Completely rooted in ancient Mexican folklore, you play as a luchador jumping, running and headbutting your way through levels. The game is flawless and has tons of subtle and not so subtle references to both pop culture and classic games. It has dual world kind of feature where you must jump back and forth frequently from the realm of the living to the realm of the dead. It creates a new tactic for getting around as the platform you need to be on may be in one realm and not the other. It also makes fighting groups of baddies interesting as some will be shadowed out unable to be harmed but can harm you. You get various upgrades and powers throughout the game which I wasn’t shown all of for obvious reasons, but cannot wait to play the full game to see them all. The game comes out within the next week or two on PSN for PS3 and Vita.
Last year at PAX East Vlambeer showed off their game Super Crate Box. This year they showed off Luftrauser. A dogfighting side scroller. It reminds me of a mix of Combat on the Atari 2600 and Ikaruga. It’s simple, but very challenging at the same time. There isn’t much I can say about it, so check it out for yourself.
Guns Of Icarus Online: ( Help Kickstart the Adventure Mode HERE )
Guns Of Icarus Online is an Airship based combat game. I played the Beta extensively and the full version is even better. You NEED to work as a team in this game to win, you cannot play this as a lone gunner. Each ship is customized with various guns chosen by the Captain. There are different classes and all are needed on a ship. They have a Kickstarter up now for a new adventure mode. So go get the game on Steam, and if you like the game, help fund the Adventure Mode. Muse Games has made something great here and definitely deserve it.
All of these games are worth a look at very least, and there are so many more that were at PAX East this past weekend, this is just a list of some of my personal favorites.