Posted on Friday, August 24 @ 11:30:00 Eastern by Alex_Osborn
As the fall draws near, the ever approaching torrent of games will undoubtedly keep our thumbs busy well through the rest of 2012. But seeing as how there's still a slight lull before the storm (I say slight because we were just graced with both Sleeping Dogs and Darksiders II), there's no better time to catch up on some of the great games that released earlier this year you may have missed out on.
That's where we here at GameRevolution come in. The first half of 2012 was loaded with fantastic games, so many in fact that a handful were bound to get overlooked. To keep you busy right up until the holiday rush, we've compiled a list of five stellar titles that quite possibly flew under your radar.
The Darkness II
There is so much to love about The Darkness II. Right off the bat you'll be blown away by its gorgeous art style, probably the most noticeable change when comparing it to its predecessor. The decision to go with cel-shading visuals totally lends itself to the dark and disturbing atmosphere this game aims to convey.
Then there's the combat. With so many ways to gun down and tear apart your foes, you won't ever grow bored of the game's deep and engrossing combat. Many were quite wary of the change in developers, but Digital Extremes did a great job in taking the series in a different direction that ultimately was for the best.
This little indie puzzler simply demands your attention. Thanks to an adorable retro-styled presentation layered atop a suite of innovative and mind-boggling gameplay mechanics, Fez stands tall as easily one of the best XBLA titles of this year. While, yes, the game is certainly not without flaws, the myriad of hidden collectibles and its unique approach toward exploration makes Fez the ultimate modern-day take on the retro experience.
Spec Ops: The Line
The third-person shooter genre has been done to death at this point, but I just had to include Spec Ops: The Line. While the combat and fundamental gameplay mechanics aren't anything special, the game's setting and story alone are worth the price of admission. A sandstorm-ravaged Dubai? Uh, yes please! Believe me, you don't want to miss out on this dark and disturbing tale that chronicles a soldier's moral struggle as he seeks to rescue armed forces that were caught in the storm-ravaged city.
The Walking Dead (Episode 1&2)
I love Telltale Games' take on the The Walking Dead universe. The developer is known for making great adventure games and the first two episodes in The Walking Dead are no exception. I'm afraid that because it is a digital title, many may opt to gloss over this series, but I beg you, please don't. This is episodic gaming done right. This is storytelling done right. This is a modern day adventure game done right.
Even if you don't like zombie-related entertainment or adventure games for that matter, I still implore you to give this game a look. Aside from Mass Effect 3 (which I absolutely adored), The Walking Dead is far and away my favorite game of 2012. Give it a look. You won't be disappointed.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
Perhaps the most underrated and overlooked game of this year so far has been Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning. It truly is a tragedy that 38 Studios and Big Huge Games are no more, as we'll likely never see a proper sequel or the ambitious MMO that was set in this universe. If you're looking for an action RPG that has compelling combat that is actually fun to play, look no further, as Reckoning is the most enjoyably fluid role-playing game I've ever played. The art is gorgeous and the world is massive and expertly designed, just begging to be explored. The story, however, does leave a bit to be desired, but all in all the sheer fun you'll have playing this game totally outweighs this game's faults. It really is that great.
Well, that about does it. We're only weeks away from game release overload, so do what you can to squeeze in some time to play these five fantastic titles if you haven't done so already.