After a monster May, the CBR Games Roundup has returned to look at the video game releases for June 2010. This month isn’t as densely packed as the last one was, but June still has plenty to offer. The much anticipated next chapter of the Metal Gear Solid saga arrives for the PSP with “Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker.” From the creators of “Crackdown,” the cops and robbers MMO “APB” is coming later this month, and High Moon Studios hopes to deliver the Transformers game fans have been waiting for with “War for Cybertron.” And those are just a few of this month’s highlights. Sports gamers, RPG fans and shooter junkies will also find something to love this month in the Roundup.
As always, please remember this list is not inclusive of all releases for the month, and release dates are subject to change. Now let’s get into the good stuff!
Alpha Protocol (PC/PS3/Xbox 360) – June 1 (http://www.sega.com/alphaprotocol/us/index.html)
Sega and Obsidian’s new espionage RPG draws inspiration from all of the genre’s icons. CIA operative Michael Thornton has to go deep undercover after a mission goes awry, becoming the target of his own government. The game features a dialogue system that allows players to approach conversations like James Bond (suave), Jason Bourne (professional) or Jack Bauer (aggressive). Player choices will affect Thornton’s reputation and the overall storyline.
Backbreaker (PS3/Xbox 360) – June 1 (http://www.backbreakergame.com/)
Making a football game without the NFL license is an uphill battle, but 505 Games and developer Natural Motion are hoping that “Backbreaker’s” customization options and unique presentation will win fans over. The camera is pulled back behind the player controlling the ball, and the controls are more simplified than most football sims, as the right analog stick will control all of a player’s special moves. “Backbreaker” will ship with about 50 teams, and everything from player names to logos is customizable. The game will run on the Euphoria engine (“GTAIV,” “Star Wars: The Force Unleashed”), and instead of canned animations, each collision and tackle on the field will be unique.
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (PSP) – June 8 (http://www.konami.jp/mgs_pw)
The next installment of the Metal Gear Solid saga arrives this month on Sony’s handheld platform. Series creator Hideo Kojima is directing the game himself, and a huge development team has been working on it since around the same time “Metal Gear Solid 4” was coming together. “Peace Walker” follows the story of Naked Snake and his group Soldiers Without Borders, who are called into Costa Rica to deal with a military group called the Peace Sentinels. The game combines the classic MGS stealth gameplay with more straightforward shooter action and players will be able to customize Snake’s armor and weapon loadouts in order to tailor them for certain situations.
The game is built around co-op play, allowing players to play through regular missions via 2-player co-op, and team-up with an additional two players for boss battles. Co-op tactics include the ability to ‘Snake-in,” where one player guides the movement of both characters, allowing the second player to focus on taking out enemies.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 (PS3/Wii/XBox 360) – June 8 (http://tigerwoodspgatour.easports.com/)
The annual iteration of EA’s golfing juggernaut is arriving this month, and it features two big additions. The first new feature is support for PlayStation Move, Sony’s new motion control system. The second is the addition of the Ryder Cup for the first time in the series, a mode which will allow up to 24 players to compete online for either the European or American Ryder Cup teams. As with last year’s Tiger Woods game, the Wii version will support Motion Plus controls.
Transformers: War for Cybertron (DS/PC/PS3/Wii/XBox 360) – June 22 (http://www.transformersgame.com/)
High Moon Studios has created what they believe to be the definitive Transformers experience with “War for Cybertron.” Hasbro seems to think so, too, as they are recognizing the game’s story as canon for the Transformers universe. “War for Cybertron” takes place on the Transformers’ home planet, delving into the battle that started it all. The game will include both Autobot and Decepticon campaigns, which are playable in up to three player online co-op. “War for Cybertron” also features a class based multiplayer component, where players can create their own Transformers and compete in a variety of game modes.
CBR recently spoke with High Moon’s Matt Tieger about the PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game, and you can read what he had to say here.
Sin and Punishment: Star Successor (Wii) – June 27 (http://www.sinandpunishment.co.uk/)
This on-rails shooter is a sequel to 2000’s “Sin and Punishment: Successor of the Earth” for the Nintendo 64. Similar to “Space Harrier,” players can move their character around the foreground while the action comes straight at them. “Star Successor” takes the shooter action a step further, however, as players can also melee attack enemies that get close to them. Developer Treasure has a long history of creating great shooters, and “Star Successor” looks to be no different. The action in the game is nonstop, featuring scores of enemies on screen at the same time as well as huge boss battles, all of which will require lightning fast reflexes on the part of the player.
“Sin and Punishment: Star Successor” will allow players to use the Wiimote and nunchuck, the Classic Controller, the Wii Zapper or a GameCube controller.
APB (PC) – June 29 (http://www.apb.com/)
The developers behind “Crackdown” are finally ready to unleash their cops and robbers MMO on PC gamers everywhere. Players join the side of either the Enforcers or Criminals and battle for control of the city of San Paro. Each side becomes a major part of the game for the other, as missions for the Enforcers will consist of trying to stop Criminals from completing their missions. Up to 100 players at a time will be linked together in a map called an Action District, where players will be matched with and against one another for specific missions. The action takes place in third person, and a variety of vehicles, weapons and tactics are accessible to both factions. Players will earn money and unlock additional clothing and guns as they progress.
Realtime Worlds is using unique subscription model for “APB.” With their purchase of the game, players will have 50 hours to play in the Action Districts of the game. After that, they will still have unlimited access to the Social District (non-combat) and the marketplace. Players can purchase unlimited gameplay for $9.99 a month or buy smaller amounts of gameplay time, like 20 hours for $6.99, for example. There are also ways for players to earn playing time through their actions in the game.
LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 (PC/PS3/PSP/Wii/XBox 360) – June 29 (http://games.kidswb.com/official-site/lego-harry-potter/)
It’s time to go back to Hogwarts in the latest LEGO adaptation from Traveller’s Tales. The game’s storyline will follow the first four books in the Harry Potter series (“Sorcerer’s Stone” through “Goblet of Fire”), and the core gameplay will be similar to previous LEGO games. “LEGO Harry Potter” will be less combat heavy than Batman and Indiana Jones, but players will be able to cast spells, unlocking more as they progress through the game. The game will also feature local splitscreen co-op and the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions will include online co-op.
Naughty Bear (PS3/XBox 360) – June 29 (http://www.naughtybearthegame.com/)
What happens when a mischievous teddy bear gets scorned at a party? He goes on a murderous rampage, that’s what. “Naughty Bear” puts players in control of a maniacal teddy bear seeking revenge against his fellow bears for shunning him. Naughty Bear will cause chaos and assault his brethren with a variety of weapons and environmental attacks, and players earn points for scaring and injuring other bears. The more mischief Naughty Bear causes, the more points he earns, and earning a certain number or points will lead to boss battles. Naughty Bear also levels up through earning points which unlock new abilities. The game takes place on a large island and each area has objectives that can be tackled in different ways, lending a sandbox-style element to the way players make their mischief. “Naughty Bear” will feature online multiplayer capabilities as well as worldwide leaderboards, so players can see who the naughtiest bear in the world is.
Singularity (PC/PS3/XBox 360) – June 29 (http://www.singularity-game.com/)
Raven Software’s new first-person shooter uses time manipulation as its main gameplay element. Players will take on the role of Air Force pilot Nate Renko, who becomes stranded on an island where an event occurred that is affecting the timeline. Nate was sent to investigate the island, where Russian experiments conducted during the Cold War led to a catastrophe called the Singularity, and the island itself is shifting between years 1950 and 2010. Nate comes into possession of the Time Manipulation Device (TMD), which allows him to affect time on a smaller scale, changing objects and enemies in different ways. Nate can move things forward and backward or even freeze them in time, and he’ll use the TMD to solve puzzles as well as dispatch enemies. His goal is to find his co-pilot and figure out a way to stop the Singularity from ever occurring in the first place.
“Singularity” will feature online multiplayer, but details on the exact modes have not been revealed yet.
Sniper: Ghost Warrior (PC/Xbox 360) – June 29 (http://www.sniperghostwarrior.com/)
This military shooter from City Interactive puts players in a squad of elite soldiers that are sent to South America, where a military coup has occurred in a place called Isla Trueno. Their job is to aid the rebellion in taking back Isla Trueno, and players will alternate between a stealthy sniper and a run and gun special ops soldier as they make their way through the game’s 16 missions. When in sniping mode, a perfectly lined up shot will activate a slow motion bullet camera that follows the round to its target. Perfect shots won’t come easy, though, as players will have to account for things like bullet drop, as well as manage their breathing in order to be precise.
And so ends the CBR Games Roundup for June 2010. Stay tuned to CBR for interviews with creators and developers, and we’ll be back next month with a look at July’s game offerings.