The summer is upon us, ladies and gentlemen! College students are just getting out of classes, everyone else has a few weeks left and the only thing I can bring myself to think about (besides the imminent job interviews and such) is what games are coming out this summer! The past few months have been pretty slim pickings when it came to games, with the best titles being Bioshock Infinite and Tomb Raider. Now that we are past that, the summer is looking pretty hot for titles. I’ve asked a couple of Kaboom Shark writers to tell me their most anticipated titles, and here’s what we came up with. It’s the Kaboom Shark fantasy draft!
Jake Thomas – Feature Editor
Pick: Killer is Dead
Flowing well under the radar in comparison to his last release, Killer is Dead, the newest game from now famous video game director (and man of my dreams) Suda51, looks to be significantly better than the adventures of Juliet. Killer is Dead has me excited, no doubt. Not only because Suda51 gets better in design with each subsequent release in polish and style, but because Killer takes more of a form of the works that brought Suda into cult fame: his Tarantino-esque action romps No More Heroes and Killer 7.
Overwhelmingly cool anime style mixed with the cell-shaded graphics give everything a grindhouse vibe, only aided by the main character’s suave appearance coupled with mechanical arm. Mondo exudes more swagger than just about any game character ever (besides Suda’s own Travis Touchdown and Garcia Hotspur). His geeky glasses atop secret service assassin-like posture and professionalism will make him ultimately one of the coolest characters of the year. It’s a shame this one isn’t getting more attention, because it looks to be Suda’s melding of all of the great things he’s learned over his last few games. This will be a game no one played, but everyone loves. It’ll be one to play. In Japanese, no less.
Michael Urban – Associate Editor
Pick: Ride To Hell: Retribution
A stylish open-world action/adventure title featuring bikers, babes and all-around badness, Deep Silver and Eutechynx Studios’ unique Ride To Hell was originally due for release in 2009, but a troubled and prolonged development cycle meant it ultimately went the way of roadkill and was eventually cancelled. Now revved up and revitalized, Deep Silver is releasing the game under the new name Ride To Hell: Retribution. It’s set to release this June.
Not very many (if any) games have ever explored the rowdy and raunchy 60’s motorcycle culture, and the kind of rough, hard-edged atmosphere the game is going for would serve as a refreshing change of pace in the current gaming market. The story, which involves a Vietnam vet named Jake Conway returning to America and attempting to fit back within society, shows a lot of dramatic potential, and the gameplay’s well-rounded fusion of brawling, racing and shooting could make for a rollicking fun time. Let’s hope the final product is badass and not just plain bad.
Milin Phillips – Writer
Pick: The Bureau: XCOM Declassified
Way back in 2010 was the first time we heard anything about this new XCOM project. The game was announced as a first person shooter taking place in the 1960s, and evoking the same “humans vs aliens” story seen in other XCOM games. With the release of XCOM: Enemy Unknown just a year later, many assumed this project had died silently behind closed doors. But now here we are in 2013, and The Bureau: XCOM Declassified is right around the corner. The XCOM we saw back at E3 2011 is now a third person shooter, but it won’t be straying too far from the story outline we saw then. You are William Carter, a 1960′s operative who has bouncing between different government agencies for years. As you can probably guess, he soon finds himself at The Bureau, which becomes the birthplace of XCOM itself.
While XCOM: Enemy Unknown is the only game I’ve played in the XCOM series, I can’t help but get excited for this game based on its predecessor alone. Enemy Unknown was a brutal, yet highly rewarding experience, and 2K Games suggests that The Bureau will be even tougher. The Bureau: XCOM Declassified comes out on August 20th 2013 for PS3, Xbox 360 and PC, so we barely have to wait at all!
Joshua Hugo – Writer
Pick: Tales of Xillia
I’m going to be quite honest; one of the main reasons why I’m excited for this game is because of JRPG reasons and the fact that I’ve been heavily starved of JRPGs on the PS3. I missed out on Tales of Graces f when the game made its arrival, but I’m not willing to let this one off the hook. Since I played Tales of Symphonia on my Gamecube, I’ve been a fan of the Tales series, however lacking I may be in the titles that I’ve played and own. I’m a bit excited with the approach they’re taking with this Tales game when it comes to the two different character storylines (I’m always up for a more layered and dynamic storyline). Also…an updated combat system.
Always though…JRPG reasons.
Ryan Taylor – News Editor
Pick: The Last of Us
I think it would be a goddamn travesty to go through an entire “Summer Anticipation” list without including one of the most sought after titles of 2013 as a whole, The Last of Us. As many of you already know, The Last of Us tells the story of a father and daughter as they take on the challenges of living in a seemingly post-apocalyptic setting. While the concept has been done before, there’s just something about Naughty Dog being on the project, combined with all the gameplay demos, trailers and other various media that has me thinking this game is going to be different. Not to mention that we will be getting a break from zombies. That couldn’t have come soon enough; After TwD: Survival Instinct I don’t think I can do full blown zombies for a while.
Being Naughty Dog’s latest release since Uncharted 3 puts a lot of focus on The Last of Us in quite a few ways. However, if the game ends up being anything like the demos and trailer suggest, we are in for quite a contender for 2013′s Game of the Year. While I may not be picking up The Last of Us on release, it’s definitely something I will end up trying before the season is over.
Make sure you check out for next weeks Fantasy Draft where we draft our favorite developers!