2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

Remarkable stories from an extraordinary year

Thirteen of the biggest games for 2013

From Grand Theft Auto V to the rebirth of Sim City, 2013 is set to be a big year for gamers.

When the world looks back at gaming's finest years, it's fair to say 2012 won't be topping the list.

Despite the release of Nintendo's WiiU, and a few big-name sequels such as Halo 4, Assassin's Creed 3 and Hitman Absolution, the past 12 months have seen dwindling sales of consoles.

But with 2013 expected to see the unveiling of the PlayStation 4 and a successor to the Xbox 360, things could be hotting up.

There are also a wealth of exciting big name titles already in the works for existing machines, all ready to ship in the year ahead. Here's a quick look at 13 of the best games coming up in the first part of 2013.



Grand Theft Auto V is coming spring 2013.Grand Theft Auto V

Slated for release in the Spring, GTA5 is the most eagerly-awaited of the games coming out in the first half of 2013.

Set in the city of Los Santos - a re-imagined version of the area around Los Angeles - it promises the same open worlds that have helped sell more than 114 million copies of the franchise worldwide, with three interlinked stories, including a middle-aged bank robber drawn reluctantly out of retirement.

Given that the last GTA adventure came out in 2008, makers Rockstar have had five years to design something special and judging by the trailers it looks like they've succeeded.


The new Tomb Raider is a reinvention for the series - taking Lara …Tomb Raider

Going back to basics with the Lara Croft phenomenon, players experience the story of gaming's top heroine before she became the woman millions of gamers now know and love.

With a stripped back and gritty story, we're expecting this to be a fresh, reimagined look at Lara, with writer Rhianna Pratchett promising: "Seldom do we get the opportunity to reimagine and reinvent a legend, so getting my narrative hands on Miss Croft was a once-in-a-life-time opportunity. It was going back to the genesis of videogame action heroines and exploring how to make such an iconic character meaningful for gamers today."

Microsoft's hit sci fi shooter is going back to its rootsGears of War: Judgement

The epic Microsoft shooter returns with a story set before the previous trilogy, focusing on when the Locust horde first burst through the ground. With new characters and a new spin on the intense multiplayer experiences, it'll be a must for anyone who owns an Xbox 360.


The new Metal Gear game is a gritty reinvention of the sagaMetal Gear Rising: Revengeance

Designed to feature more action than previous Metal Gear Solid titles, this version sees Raiden use free-running and super fighting skills to catch his enemies off-guard and destroy them. Martin Schneider, of Konami, said: "Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is a new direction. There was the urge for something new."

Bioshock Infinite is a radical rethink of the undersea shooter-RP …BioShock Infinite

Already the winner of awards at E3 2011, this long-delayed game is now promised for February. The first-person shooter is set in a city literally falling from the sky, with action taking place among the clouds using weapons and superhuman powers.

The new version of Dead Space 3 promises faster-moving thrillsDead Space 3

The third title in the horror series sees players forced to survive subzero and icy conditions - sounds just like Britain in the grip of a cold snap. But instead of facing slippery roads and delayed trains, you must battle huge monsters in your bid to save the destiny of mankind.

Crysis 3 sees the hero face seven deadly zones in New York CityCrysis 3

Set in 2047, this game continues the Crysis story as hero Prophet returns to New York to find the city has been encased in a giant dome. Within it are seven different environments to fight through, known as the Seven Wonders, with the corrupt Cell Corporation once again pulling all the strings.

The classic city-building game returns next yearSimCity

It was a game that defined a whole generation of strategy simulations and gave creator Will Wright the base to go on to change the face of PC gaming with mega hit The Sims. This re-imagining of the city-building title will be released on PC and Mac and brings a truly modern flavour to the franchise allowing players to collaborate and address real global threats such as climate change and natural disasters.

The new Splinter Cell adds a more complex plotTom Clancy's Splinter Cell Blacklist

Sam Fisher returns as the head of a new secret unit tasked by the President of the United States to hunt down a group of 12 terrorists determined to unleash a series of attacks on US interests around the world. With a new ability to despatch multiple enemies in one strike, Fisher must also use ruthless interrogation measures to find out more information about the next impending attack.

Cartoon Universe will launch in Europe next year.Cartoon Universe

One for kids and big kids alike, this free-to-play online world from Warner Bros brings together all the famous Looney Tunes characters alongside Scooby-Doo and his pals for an adventure like no other. With puzzles and mini-games, bosses promise plenty of fun and humour in what they say will be a safe and social world for youngsters. It's currently in BETA to try.


God of War Ascension is the 'most ambitious' God of War yetGod of War: Ascension

Spartan warrior Kratos returns to the PlayStation 3 with what is described as the "most ambitious" God of War adventure so far. In a similar style to the Tomb Raider and Gears of War experiences, this title also harks back to the beginning as players are shown the origins of Kratos and control his first steps on his legendary quest.

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