Wii U Previews
The good, an Avengers game is coming to the Xbox 360 and the Wii U. The bad, the Xbox 360 version will require the Kinect. You may now throw your arms in the air and scream at the gamer gods. We will wait until you are done. Finished? Good, now please read on.
In Avengers: Battle for Earth by Ubisoft, the Skrulls have landed and now it is up to you to embody your favorite Marvel superheroes and save the planet. The game is built around motion control gameplay and features interactive environments inspired by iconic Marvel comic artwork and the Secret Invasion storyline.
Marvel Avengers: Battle for Earth features 20 different characters, including Avengers such as Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America and Thor, as well as other fan-favorites like Loki, Spider-Man, Venom, Iceman, Dr. Doom and Wolverine. Use motion to trigger unique super attacks and hone special moves. Winning the battle will unlock special content and raise you to the top of the online leaderboards. Play with friends or against the AI in a wide variety of game modes including Arcade, Campaign and Co-op and Versus.
Avengers: Battle for Earth will be available Fall 2012. Check out the official website.
Cinematic super-spy James Bond will celebrate his 50th year on the big screen this fall with the theatrical debut of Skyfall and the last Bond movie Daniel Craig in contractually tied to. Rather than create another half-ass movie adapted game, Activision and developer Eurocom opted to revisit what they say are five of the most beloved past storylines
The array of video games focused on the zombie apocalypse does not look like it will be dying any time soon (pun intended). At Ubisoft’s press conference they showed off the first official launch title for the Nintendo Wii U, ZombiU.
ZombiU will combine common survival horror elements, like inventory management and limited ammunition, with FPS elements. As a survivor, you must search and loot bodies to find necessary equipment, while taking out zombies with whatever weapons you have handy. You will use the screen on the WiiPad for a multitude of different game mechanics. You can access your inventory in your backpack, scan objects, enemies, and the dead, hack into keypads, and also use it as a scope to take out zombies from afar – and those are all but a few of the scenarios we’ve seen so far.
One gameplay mechanic that has always hampered the zombie genre of video games is the sense of urgency when you interact with the environment. In ZombiU everything happens in real-time. For example if you are searching through boxes, the content will appear on your WiiPad screen and you can simply drag and drop what items you want using your finger. During this time the camera setup will move behind your character so that you can constantly watch over your back for zombies. Talk about raising tension and your blood pressure.
Not everyone can survive the zombie apocalypse, and with that in mind, ZombiU treats death in a unique way. Once your character dies at the hands of a pack of zombies than that’s it for that character. You will then begin to play as a new character (with a completely new arsenal) and continue where you left off. That doesn’t mean your old character and key items just vanish. He/she has now joined the zombie armada and you can kill them in order to loot any keys and supplies that you may need to progress. This certainly adds something new to the zombie genre, and will make you realize that everything you did with your previous character mattered.
In addition, once your character is infected, your online friends are alerted to your death and can go hunt down your zombified character and ransack your goodies. Unfortunately, it is not clear whether this is exclusive to an online mode or if this can actively occur in single-player. There is also a safe house mechanic which provides the player with somewhere secure to stock up on weapons, ammo, and supplies, but not much more is known outside of that.
In addition to the single player mode, there is also a multiplayer mode where one player takes the role of the Zombie Master. The Master has a top down view of the level on the GamePad and can spawn enemies and spring traps with the touch screen, while a second player tries to survive using the classic controller.
Hopefully Ubisoft’s track record of releasing launch titles for Nintendo gets better after the lukewarm reception of Red Steel for the Wii. With the clever applications of the Wii U GamePad, as well as some unique twists on zombie gameplay, ZombiU may just be worth keeping an eye out for. ZombiU is expected to launch this holiday season.
Everybody has a soft spot in there heart for Mickey Mouse, but are we ready to sing along with him? Releasing in September 2012, Disney’s Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two picks up directly after the 2010′s Wii exclusive Epic Mickey. Taking a cue from the book of cliche, gamers will now be able to play alongside a friend and cooperatively control both Mickey and his less famous ancestor Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. Like the first game, EM2 is set in Wasteland, an alternate world filled with 80 years of forgotten Disney characters and theme parks. Mickey uses his magical paint brush, Oswald his remote control, which allows him to command electricity.
Disney claims the game is the first that can be described as a musical. At points throughout the game the characters have to “express themselves in song” to progress the story. You’ll hear tunes that change depending on your choices, a mechanic that Warren Spector and his team at Junction Point said lets you conduct your own unique soundtrack. Emmy award-winning composes James Dooley and lyricist Mike Himelstein have created these musical elements which will be accompanied with a fully-voiced cast of Disney characters.
The PS3 version of Epic Mickey 2 will use the PlayStation Move accessory to replicate that experience but using it is optional. Gamers will be free to control Mickey’s paintbrush with the right analog stick of the DualShock 3 as well. The regular controller even retains a bit of motion control, allowing you to shake the DualShock to do a spin attack.
Junction Point reps have commented that “Kinect support wouldn’t be part of the Xbox 360 version”. Hopefully gamers who have missed the original Epic Mickey will be treated to a downloadable HD version.