2012 should be a great year for gaming. First of all there’s rumors saying the next Xbox and Playstation consoles will be announced at E3 (though there are also plenty of people saying this isn’t likely. I prefer to believe it will). Master Chief returns in Halo 4 this December (it may be 11 months away, but it will be on gamer’s minds all year long), and Blizzard’s beloved Diablo series returns with Diablo III (hints point at it being released early next month). We have a new Final Fantasy title on the way (well not entirely new, Final Fantasy XIII-2 expands on XIII but does change quite a bit of the gameplay).
I’m excited for all of these games and many more (Torchlight 2, Mass Effect 3, Max Payne 3, Minecraft on XBLA) but I’m also excited to get some more details on games that might not release in 2012. I can’t wait to see what happens with Star Wars: The Old Republic this year, I’m hoping to hear some more about Blizzard’s next MMORPG, and I really want to see more Dragon Age III and Grand Theft Auto V.
2012 will be great for blockbuster games, but it’s depressing to note that every game I’ve talked about so far (minus Minecraft and Blizzard’s secretive MMORPG) is a sequel. I love blockbuster sequels and continuations of series as much as the next gamer, but I think all of us deep down want to see something new. Minecraft proved that originality can have explosive success (as Minecraft has not only become a critical hit but a fan phenomenon). What unique titles will 2012 bring us? I can only hope there are some killer new titles out there waiting to explode onto the scene. Original titles are risky and can fail, while the “tried and true” sequel or continuation is a sure thing most of the time, but without risk the gaming world starts to feel stagnant. Let’s hope risks are taken in 2012 for the good of all of us.