2013 is a few days away. With a new year comes a new line-up of must-have games, and boy, is 2013 filled with them. While changes to release dates will be sure to happen, as of now, there's a solid list of games that should have everyone excited. Unfortunately, I can't list Watch Dogs and Rainbow Six: Patriots among those, because who knows if those will release by the end of 2013. But even without those, there are 10 games NOT NAMED Grand Theft Auto V that every gamer should be looking forward to. The following list is in no particular order, so don't freak the f**k out.
Crysis 3 2/19/13
Have you seen the screenshots or videos for Crysis 3?! They're freakin' beautiful. The CryENGINE is going to push the visuals to new heights, and being able to run around in the New York City as an urban rainforest is pretty cool. Set 24 years after Crysis 2, I'm jubilated to explore the Seven Wonders environments.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf Q1 2013
It just became the best-selling 3DS game in Japan in the shortest amount of time, and the Japanese can't be wrong. If you own a 3DS, one of the games on your radar should definitely be Animal Crossing: New Leaf. In this one, you're the new mayor — but don't worry, Tom Nook's store is still around to help you out. There's new villagers, new stores, more bugs and more fun.
Splinter Cell: Blacklist Spring 2013
From the moment I saw it at the Xbox 360 E3 presentation, I've wanted this game. Sam Fisher leading the Fourth Echelon unit in a mission to hunt down terrorists before the Blacklist countdown reaches zero? Sign me up. The action is fast, but there's still the stealth gameplay Splinter Cell is known for. You can traverse the environment and string together kills easily and fluidly. The game just looks amazing and might be the best Splinter Cell game yet.
LEGO City: Undercover Q1 2013
A Wii U exclusive, LEGO City: Undercover offers sandbox-style action in the first LEGO game published by Nintendo. Taking place in LEGO City, you play as undercover cop Chase McCain, equipped with various moves at his disposal as he switches between disguises, giving him additional abilities. Think of it as a LEGO Grand Theft Auto, except you're on the good side of the law. There's over 100 different vehicles to use, tons of puzzles and LEGO gameplay and humor that the games are known for. And with the GamePad, this LEGO game will be truly unique.
This might be my personal most-anticipated game of 2013. The next SimCity looks stunning; it's visually impressive and features an endless amount of possibilities, but what really sets it apart from other SimCity games is the addition of multiplayer. For the first time ever, you and neighboring cities affect each other depending on how you build your cities, and you can collaborate on projects. Be a good neighbor and send fire and police resources to your friends in need, or have your city specialize in industry and watch as the pollution make the Sims in your neighbors' cities sick. With true multi-city scale, city specialization and multiplayer, this will be the best SimCity yet.
Tomb Raider 3/5/13
Dat. Lara. Croft. This is a Tomb Raider game like no other. It is an intense and gritty origin story for Lara Croft, and we get to see the tribulations she goes through that turns her into a hardened survivor. This action-adventure game is changing everything in a true reboot that is a massive improvement to the earlier games. It combines action-adventure, platforming, exploration, RPG elements and survival mechanics in an open world to create one of the best games of 2013, and possibly even this console generation.
Rayman Legends 2/26/13
Another Wii U exclusive, Rayman Legends is a sequel to the awesome Rayman Origins on PC, Vita, PS3 and Xbox 360. The Wii U GamePad has a dedicated character named Murfy that can interact with the world like no one else. There's more great platforming, this time with timing and rhythm that are set to music, and the game boasts five-play co-op, with one on the GamePad and four on either Wii Remotes or Pro Controllers. There's 80+ levels of gameplay and the Wii U console lets you play on the GamePad when your TV is turned off. I just feel bad for the gamers that want to buy it but don't own a Wii U…
The Last of Us 5/7/13
I'm hoping by this point I don't have to justify this game to anyone. Naughty Dog appears to have struck gold again with The Last of Us, a survival-horror action-adventure game that is exclusively on the PS3. Set in a post-apocalyptic America, the player controls Joel and is accompanied by the AI-controlled Ellie. This game has been hyped beyond belief, and some people are hating on it by saying it's the same as Uncharted but against different enemies. Those people don't know what they're talking about. With new 'dynamic stealth' and a story that is sure to rival Uncharted's cinematic prowess, The Last of Us is a can't-miss hit.
BioShock Infinite 3/26/13
Outside of a delay in release date and a hatred of the bro-centric cover art that caused a vote on an alternate cover, BioShock Infinite has looked nothing but impressive. With the political backdrop and the design style of the flying city of Columbia, jumping from high-speed Sky-Lines and battling a vast cast of enemies is going to be exhilarating. Just from the first few minutes of the game, I can already tell that, as a BioShock fan, this game is going to be everything I want it to be. And the combination of powers between Booker and Elizabeth looks awesome.
Injustice: Gods Among Us April 2013
NetherRealm Studios did an amazing job with Mortal Kombat, and from what I've seen of Injustice: Gods Among Us so far, they've created another great game. Injustice was one of my favorite games from E3, and since then, I've only become more impressed by it. With a cast of your favorite DC Comics characters and stages where each characters interacts with the environment differently, the combat is going to be among the best for fighting games. There is a cinematic element to the fights that other fighting games can't match. This will probably be the best fighting game of 2013, and is one of the reasons that 2013 can't come soon enough.