February 21, 2012

Play More Games: Living in Syndication

Having never played the original 1993 real-time strategy incarnation of Syndicate, I didn’t quite understand what all the hubbub was about when Swedish developers Starbreeze announced that they would be rebooting the series in 2012 as a first-person shooter. The trailers that I saw for the new game showed a fast-paced, sci-fi themed, cover-based shooter in which an augmented agent infiltrates competing organizations in a battle for corporate supremacy. While I saw hints of Deus Ex: Human Revolution on display, Syndicate loyalists saw…not Syndicate.

Regardless of where you stand on that debate, the freshly realized version of Syndicate (PS3, 360, PC) is here today and, while it has abandoned its isometric roots, it seems to be garnering some positive notices (including a surprising 5-star review from the frequently cantankerous Jeff Gerstmann at Giant Bomb). The four of us here at VGH Industries posted our playthrough of the multiplayer co-op demo a few weeks back and found it to be inspired and fun.

A game whose demo failed to resonate with the team, Asura’s Wrath (PS3, 360), is also out this week. This bizarro amalgam of elements from Dragon Ball Z, God of War and, strangely enough, Heavy Rain left us scratching our heads. Check out Episode 38 of the podcast for our color commentary on the title.

The last new release that I want to call out this week is the sequel to one of my faves from 2010. In Alan Wake’s American Nightmare (XBLA), the creepy shooter wisely skips a full retail release and instead goes the downloadable route as part of Xbox Live’s House Party promotion. The devs at Remedy are promising a full Alan Wake experience, though, as the tormented horror writer continues to battle his shadowy alter-ego, Mr. Scratch.

Also out this week:
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater 3D (3DS)
Shinobido 2: Revenge of Zen (PSV)
Army Corps of Hell (PSV)
Touch My Katamari (PSV)
Dynasty Warriors Next (PSV)
Tales from Space: Mutant Blobs Attack (PSV)
Hustle Kings (PSV)
Plants vs. Zombies (PSV)

  • Might just have to add the Syndicate to my radar. As for the rest of the new releases, I’ll be knee deep in Vita titles starting tomorrow! 

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