It's no coincidence that Spike named their 2012 Video Game Awards the Spike 10. Okay, well, it was probably named that because it's the 10th anniversary for the awards show, but it also probably had to do with there being 10 world premiere trailers. While that's a bit less than last year's 16, I believe, it's still plenty to be excited for in 2013.
We've already heard who the winners were, so how about we go through the reveals.
South Park: The Stick of Truth - Youtube
BREAKING NEWS: South Park: The Stick of Truth looks just like South Park, only instead of being a television show it's a role-playing game with turn-based combat. Seriously though, it looks exactly like the show, and while a lot of what's been shown is cut scene footage and not gameplay, it's still tough not to be excited as a fan of the show. It will be like one giant, interactive inside joke with everyone's favorite characters. Mix that in with a fantasy tale of elves, humans and wizardry and THQ has a hit on their hands.
The trailer also revealed some South Park: The Stick of Truth preorder DLC, and I only mention this because it sounds amazing. The "Good Times With Weapons" pack includes the Bulrog Chicken Attack, the Cartman's Kick-Ass Sai weapon, and a Samurai Costume. Of course I want those things, and I don't even know if they matter at all in the game.
South Park: The Stick of Truth is scheduled for release on March 5, 2013 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.
Tomb Raider - Youtube
Tomb Raider certainly hasn't had a problem staying in the eye of the media, though I'm sure Crystal Dynamics would prefer the attention not be due to controversy. Possibly as a result, the VGA "story" trailer for Tomb Raider felt quite a bit safe. For a story trailer, it was a little lacking in context and plot development, but it does help reinforce the inner turmoil that Lara Croft is likely feeling.
With the only friends Lara has on the island injured or in danger, it falls on her to become the hero she's unsure she can be and rescue the lot of them. This means she'll have to murder a whole island of pirates and bandits to do it. Can she gather he courage and become the Croft she knows she can be? Probably, otherwise it will be a very short game.
Tomb Raider is scheduled for release on March 5, 2013 on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.
Assassin's Creed III: The Tyranny of King George - Youtube
When we first heard about Assassin's Creed III's first major DLC content, The Tyranny of King George, I was quite skeptical, but their pronouncement of the DLC as an alternate history is piquing my interest. If they can embrace the ridiculousness of the premise then great things may be in store for Assassin's Creed.
The VGAs trailer isn't exactly the best look into The Tyranny of King George. In fact, there isn't even any gameplay to be found. It's still a really solid trailer, though, for one key reason. The focus of the trailer is a twitchy, sneering George Washington sitting upon a throne with a crown on his head. So you sit and watch and suddenly you think, "That's George-freaking-Washington. This is messed up." A simple trailer, but it sets the tone for how interesting Assassin's Creed III's upcoming DLC is perfectly.
There's currently no release date for Assassin's Creed III's The Tyranny of King George, but we expect that to change relatively soon.
Dark Souls 2 - Youtube
Wow, okay. What is there to say about this incredible surprise announcement? Who expected Namco Bandai, of all publishers, to decide to debut a sequel for one of the greatest cult-hit franchises of this generation at the VGAs? I certainly didn't. That's probably why this Dark Souls 2 trailer is my favorite reveal of the group.
Dark Souls 2, from all appearances, will be similar to its predecessor. The game's director has stated that they want the game to be more understandable, however, which is bound to make some die hard fans question the game's direction. Personally, I could definitely support a better introduction to the world, an ounce of narrative to tie things together, and maybe a bit of a tutorial. Tutorial? Who am I kidding, it would have to be titled, "How to die 1000 times and try again."
Dark Souls 2 is scheduled for release in 2013 for the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 - Youtube
I'm not as familiar with Castlevania: Lords of Shadow as I am with the other titles on the list. The trailer features, I believe, Gabriel rising from a long rest and taking on the role of Dracula in the modern era. The gameplay shown seems to be from the setting of the first game, so whether the modern era is actually where the game takes place or just a frame for the narrative is yet to be discerned.
The 3DS title that's already announced, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate will be a prequel of sorts to the events of Lords of Shadow 2. So if you want the full Lords of Shadow story, pick up Lords of Shadow 1, then Mirror of Fate, followed by this sequel.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 is scheduled for release in 2013 for the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Halo 4: Spartan Ops
Halo 4 fans may be wondering if a Spartan Ops world premiere trailer at the VGAs means something new was announced, but it was mainly to introduce folk to the second half of season one. For the non-Halo 4 players out there, Spartan Ops is a free download once you've purchased the game, essentially an episodic campaign to keep those not interested in multiplayer coming back week-to-week.
The first five episodes of Spartan Ops have gone over very well, but right now the typically weekly releases are taking a break. The second season will begin on January 21, exclusively on the Xbox 360 of course.
Gears of War: Judgment
It wouldn't be right to close out this generation of consoles without one more Gears of War game. With the original trilogy over, however, what are Epic Games and People Can Fly supposed to do? It wouldn't be right to start a new trilogy with a new generation of consoles to be released so soon. I know, it's time for a prequel!
The VGA trailer for Gears of War: Judgment sets up the beginning of the Locust War, when humanity is still trying to slug it out punch for punch. Oddly enough, the story starts with Baird and Cole arrested for treason, though it's unclear why. I doubt they stay in handcuffs for long though, there are monsters to chainsaw. At least there are no lambent.
Gears of War: Judgment is scheduled for release on March 19 exclusively for the Xbox 360.
The Phantom Pain
Here's the trailer that set off all the talk after the VGAs. At least during the show, mostly people thought The Phantom Pain was a new IP and a survival horror game. That didn't last long. It became very apparently that The Phantom Pain was much more than what it first appeared to be, and Hideo Kojima sat on the sidelines smirking the whole show through.
The Phantom Pain is Metal Gear Solid V, and while that's not official yet it would really be conceited of us to try and make the claim it was anything else. Several hidden messages throughout the trailer reference Metal Gear Solid 3, including the flower petals the protagonist sees at the start of the trailer. Check out the rumors yourself, and look forward to more Metal Gear soon.
The Phantom Pain, or Metal Gear Solid V, is an Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 title likely planned for release in 2013.
Now we're getting to the trailers everyone was anticipating prior to the VGAs beginning. It has been a while since we last saw BioShock: Infinite in action, and needless to say the final product didn't disappoint. The first half of the trailer shows off a bit of exposition between the two main characters of the game, while the second half is all about the gameplay. There's something for everyone and it all looks great.
I'm particularly impressed with the combination of skills and abilities the player uses to deal with enemies, throwing bombs, summoning birds, and alternating between machine gun fire and rocket launchers. Add in Elizabeth tossing ammo to you when necessary and BioShock: Infinite combat looks like an interactive cut-scene, scripted out and choreographed perfectly.
BioShock: Infinite is scheduled for March 26, 2013 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.
The Last of Us
Last, but not least, is The Last of Us, Naughty Dog's final game (probably) of this console generation. The tale of The Last of Us so far is pretty grim. There's an infection going around that turns people into grisly, fungus-faced monsters and if that wasn't bad enough normal folk have become treacherous and willing to kill to survive. This isn't Uncharted with its sexy people and treasure hunting. This is life and death.
The VGA trailer for The Last of Us gives a much broader look of the world than we've previously seen. There's obviously some areas that have a sort of local authority, as we see some sort of police force beating on a man. The line between these small settlements and the open wild where the infected stay is likely unclear, because in either area violence seems to be the law of the land. Everyone can probably agree, all this trailer did was make everyone want The Last of Us that much more.
The Last of Us is scheduled for release May 7, 2013 for the PlayStation 3.
There it is. 10 premiere trailers for the VGA 10. Are they everything you wanted and more?