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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A Guide to Next-Gen RPGs (Part 4)

Today I'll continue to look at the Xbox 360's upcoming RPGs. If you missed my previous next-gen RPG guide posts, check them out: Part 1 (next-gen RPGs that I've played), Part 2 (current next-gen Xbox 360 RPGs that I'd like to play), and Part 3 (next-gen RPGs coming to the Xbox 360).

The Xbox 360 has so many great RPGs headed its way over the next year. Let's continue to look at some great role-playing games hitting the 360 soon.

Fallout 3
Developer: Bethesda Softworks
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Release Date: Q4 2008

Trailer:




My thoughts:

Bethesda knows how to make a good RPG. And from everything I've seen and read, Fallout 3 is gearing up to be a real contender for Game of the Year. I loved Fallout and Fallout 2; I can't wait for Fallout 3! There's very little else I can say at this time. I hope we'll see some new trailers soon. And I'd like to see some of the gameplay in action as well. Come on Internet Hype Machine: let's get the party started!



Fable 2
Developer: Lionhead Studios
Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
Release Date: Q4 2008

Trailer:



My thoughts:

I tried Fable on the Xbox and never really gave it a chance. Although Fable 2 looks interesting, I'm not sure if the game was designed to be something other than what I look for in games. I can tell you that I'm not interested in living a "second life" in a video game. For example, I have a wife and kids in real life and I'm not interested in living that same reality within the constructs of an Xbox 360 game. But if Fable 2 can put together an intriguing story, good combat, and nifty graphics, I'll be all over it when it gets released later this year.



The Last Remnant
Developer: Square Enix
Publisher: Square Enix
Release Date: Q1 2009

Trailer:



My thoughts:

The Last Remnant looks like it could be the next best thing to Final Fantasy if the trailer above is any indication. I really hope that they have a confusing, drawn-out, and over-the-top storyline that really gets me invested in the outcome of the game and its effect on the various characters along for the ride. One thing I do know is that Square Enix is saying that The Last Remnant was developed with both a Western and Japanese audience in mind. I will be interesting to see how well Square Enix knows its global audience.



Alpha Protocol
Developer: Obsidian
Publisher: Sega
Release Date: Q1 2009

My thoughts:

There's no trailer for Sega's Alpha Protocol, due for release early next year. The game itself is a third-person RPG involving high-tech espionage as opposed to the typical "sword and armour" RPG. You can read more about Alpha Protocol on GamesRadar.

I'd definitely give this game a shot once it's released if the reviews are even half-way decent.



Star Ocean: The Last Hope
Developer: Tri-Ace
Publisher: Square Enix
Release Date: 2009

Trailer:



My thoughts:

I've never played any Star Ocean games. But again, we're talking Square Enix so you known that The Last Hope is going to be great. And the trailer looks pretty cool too! Final Fantasy in space? Count me in!



Venetica
Developer: Deck 13
Publisher: DTP Entertainment
Release Date: 2009

Trailer:



My thoughts:

The debut trailer for Venetica looks pretty good for an early build of the game. I like the animated, cartoony look to the game. I don't know why more developers don't go for this approach; I'm getting sick of realism in my video games. The trailer does very little to give any insight into Venetica's story but it's still a little early anyway. Here's the scoop on Venetica's story from Kotaku:
In the era of Venetica, Death is more than just the end of existence...Death is a job, with the holder voted into office by the mysterious Corpus organization. Even the most foolproof hiring methods have their flaws (I'm living proof!), and when a cunning necromancer assumes office, bent of using his newfound powers to spread death and destruction across the land, it's up to Scarlett, the daughter of the currently dispossessed Death, to set things right.
I've always had an interest in all things related to the Grim Reaper (aka. Death), from On a Pale Horse (Book 1 of Piers Anthony's Incarnations of Immortality) to Meet Joe Black to Guitar Hero's Grim Ripper. I hope that Venetica lives up to my expectations.



Dragon Age
Developer: Bioware
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Release Date: Q1 2009

My thoughts:

Still no trailer for Dragon Age but it's not due out until next year given BioWare's recent announcement of delays.

Dragon Age is a fantasy-setting RPG created by BioWare. Will it be good? It's BioWare! Dragon Age is going to be great! I can't wait to find out more about this game in the coming months!

Here's what BioWare has to say about Dragon Age:
Dragon Age is a blockbuster fantasy role-playing game set in a vast new world created by BioWare.

Your adventures will take you across the kingdom of Ferelden. Explore blood-soaked battlefields, ancient forests and intriguing urban settings. Resist the corrupting power of magic as you discover the abandoned wizard's tower; then descend into the halls of a dwarven kingdom. But beware! Dwarven politics may prove as deadly as their blades. This is a world as real as our own, but where the dark allure of magic ultimately shapes every facet of society. It is a world where willpower and cunning can claim a kingdom!

Explore Dragon Age through a deep, cinematic storyline. Choose how you interact with the other inhabitants of the world: your interactions will influence how this immersive world changes in reaction to larger-than-life world events. Build a party of unforgettable companions you can befriend, romance, or simply exploit. Engage in tactically challenging, party-based combat against a cast of diverse opponents. In Dragon Age you will uncover hidden magic, battle horrific creatures, and challenge power-hungry nobles.
Mark my words: Dragon Age will be a must-buy game once it gets released.



Part 5 of my next-gen RPG guide will take a look at the Playstation 3's current and upcoming line-up of quality RPGs. I love my Xbox 360 but my first love was the PS2. Sony may have let PS3 RPG enthusiasts down but will this trend continue?

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