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Crysis 3 Coming Spring 2013, Hunter Edition Revealed

 

Having recently played Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and Far Cry 3 in the same week, it wasn’t long before I started craving that FPS middle ground between ultra narrow linearity and a story-driven sense of direction. The “wide linear” design of Crysis 2 hit that sweet spot, and after a brief but satisfying hands-on session with Crysis 3, I’m pleased to say that I’m wholly optimistic about Crytek’s 2013 sequel.

The traditional FPS controls (and having reviewed Crysis 2 only last year) made getting into Crysis 3 nearly instantaneous. Nor did I need much orientation with the added bow and arrow, which is toggled with the d-pad. Its tactical advantages complement an already fortified Prophet, the game’s protagonist, particularly when it comes to stealth. You'll  find enough tools and environmental options that you can’t help but be proactive, and it’s a joy to mix things up during a firefight, confusing the enemy by dropping in and out of stealth and keeping steadily fortified with the armor.

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Company of Heroes 2

For as long as the RTS genre has been around, it's reassuring that talented developers working in it are still finding ways to stand out at all, let alone with all-too-familiar settings like World War II. Such is the case with Company of Heroes. It's been six years since the original game, and studio Relic Entertainment thinks it has had enough time with their new Essence Engine 3.0 to put it to work on a sequel that properly moves the series forward.

Company of Heroes 2 tackles a far more ambitious World War II timeline than the original game’s D-Day to Operation Market Garden schedule, here opening up the entire Eastern Front from 1941 to 1945, and all from the Russian perspective. No game could truly depict the WWII Eastern Front without the harshness of a Russian winter, and Relic makes it happen through their Essence Engine, by which snow is more than just a flat white texture with crunchy footstep sound effects layered over. Here in Company of Heroes 2, winter has a depth that demands tactical consideration, with snow that melts under the heat of grenades and flamethrowers, ice that soldiers can slip and slide on, bodies of water that can freeze over as bridges, and enemy ambushes that will seek to blow up these bridges.

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 Fuse

When looking at Insomniac Games’ portfolio, Fuse almost feels like the most natural thing for the studio to come up with in 2013. Announced first as Overstrike at E3 2011, the game’s original feel was as if Insomniac were bringing its shooter experience to the third person with the slick, cartoony tone of Ratchet and Clank along with that series’ emphasis on gadgetry. Since a name change to Fuse, its been given more grit and a serious edge, familiar territory for the creator of the Resistance series.

The key ingredient that Insomniac is counting on is the substance that gives the game its title. An alien substance originally discovered by the U.S. government in the 1940’s, ‘fuse’ has been kept hidden from the public ever since. It seems to be some kind of all-purpose juice that powers up your characters and weapons, making for guns that can create black holes or turn targets into mercury. With a rogue organization named Raven having stolen its source, it’s up to you and your squad of operatives to retrieve it and clean up any messes this rather unstable substance might have made on the loose.

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