IGM Awards: Most Anticipated Games Of 2012
This year we have a brand new category that asks readers to look into the indie gaming crystal ball and pick their most anticipated game coming out (hopefully) this next year. Everyone here at IGM is anticipating getting their hands on these upcoming games, but we thought it would be helpful to preview all of this year’s nominees and winners.
- Gratuitous Tank Battles (23%)
- Journey (16%)
- FEZ (15%)
- Battleblock Theater (10%)
- Chasing Aurora (10%)
- The Witness (9%)
- Monaco is Mine (9%)
- Snapshot (8%)
Winner: Gratuitous Tank Battles
Gratuitous Tank Battles (GTB) is from UK one-man-shop extraordinaire, Cliff Harris of Positech Games. GTB takes place in an alternate future where World War I never ended and continued to rage on for decades. It builds on the engine Cliffski created for his previous game, Gratuitous Space Battles, but introduces more real-time elements and traditional tower defense mechanics. With Cliffski’s track record with strategy games, it’s no surprise that GTB was the reader’s choice for most anticipated game of 2012.
Editor’s Choice: FEZ
FEZ is one of those games that I have been excited about for years. The fact that it still hasn’t come out makes me believe that Phil Fish and co are iterating over and over on the game to make it perfect. It has to come out this year! FEZ appears to be a 2D platform game, but this game is all about discovering the third dimension and allows the player to rotate the world in order to traverse it and solve puzzles.
Honorable Mention: Journey
If thatgamecompany can offer us anything, it is elegance. Journey is adding up to be a completely unique experience once again and one that we will experience with fated strangers. Gliding across the sand towards the distant light will be a journey of great proportion, both in distance and the discoveries that will be made on the way. Will you find a new side to yourself, encounter the art of teamwork, or greater still, realise the very essence of life itself! All of these are quite possible considering the developer’s previous work. With a game design philosophy that encourages freedom in expression, thatgamecompany are certain to deliver a memorable encounter in a vacant yet beautiful world with Journey.
The kings (and queens) of cartoony platformers are back! After previous successes, The Behemoth have been rather quiet as of late. Game 3, as it was called when first announced in 2009, has returned with a vengeance as Battleblock Theater. The premise of this co-op platformer, which should trigger the ‘must-buy’ response in your brain, is simple and horrific. With a mixture of traditional platforming, The Behemoth’s penchant for crazy weaponry and characters, and a handful of mini-games that include the harvesting of souls and the kicking of balls, it’s clear that Battleblock Theater is an interesting and exciting title that, while forcing you to collect gems through these plays, will actually become the gem itself when it is released next year on Xbox Live Arcade.
Chasing Aurora is a little more mysterious than some of the other titles on the list. What I can tell you about Chasing Aurora is that it features birds chasing one another. The presentation and graphics already look crisp and stylized. I’m guessing that the Aurora is that glowing chain that all the birds are fussing about, but only time will tell. Broken Rules, the developers behind Chasing Aurora, made a splash with their first game And Yet It Moves and we’re excited to see what their sophomore title is all about.
Being expertly crafted, The Witness is probably the most elusive game on the list. The brain-child of Jonathan Blow, the mastermind behind Braid, The Witness is clearly a game not to be taken lightly. In this exploration puzzle game you can expect a focus on the environment; in this case it is a beautiful, uninhabited island. Details are scarce beyond this which only adds to the game’s aura. We are to eager to find out what genius lies behind the inviting presentation of The Witness, but are happy to reserve our patience as we expect surprise and wonderment once we land on the compact island. What will we discover?
Monaco is Mine
Get rich or die trying is not the only the adage of a famous rapper but also the main idea behind the multiplayer heist game Monaco. Dubbed ‘Pacman meets Hitman’ by developer Pocketwatch Games, the premise of the game is simple – get in, get out and get rich. A top-down game, Monaco boasts 4 player co-op via local or peer-to-peer means, and stars you as a group of burglars rapidly stealing your way through levels. With the emphasis on engaging gameplay rather than visual panache, the one-man team of Pocketwatch Games look to have crafted an exciting title for us to look forward to in 2012.
In Snapshot, you will control the robot, Pic who has the ability to take photos of anything in the environment and absorb objects into his camera. Players can then paste the objects back into the environment to solve puzzles and overcome obstacles. Snapshot has me excited simply because it looks like it could run on my Super Nintendo. Developer, Retro Affect has changed a lot since I first saw this game. The graphics have been improved, the main character has changed, and the camera can now capture objects physics. The unique mechanic of Pic’s camera mixed with the nostalgic retro gameplay has me looking forward to it.