Features// SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: March

Posted 27 Dec 2013 11:30 by
This month was host to one of the most glamorous suit-and-tie events we tend to see within the gaming world as the Video Game BAFTAs were held. This year’s event was especially notable for an awards show in that nobody could really complain about any of the winners.

While Bethesda’s brilliant but grim first-person RPG stealth-‘em-up epic Dishonoured took the Best Game crown the winner was perhaps Thatgamecompany’s beloved indie hit Journey which walked away with a fistful of awards in all of the artsy categories.

Thatgamecompany followed up with the admirable if ballsy move of declaring there would be no sequel despite the game’s runaway success. Score one for artistic integrity.

John Riccitiello
John Riccitiello
This month saw the resignation of EA CEO John Riccitiello after the company was disappointed in its financial performance over the last year. Most of the blame seemed to be placed on the disappointing MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic.

EA and Maxis’ woes continued with the troubled SimCity launch as the debilitating network problems that had plagued the game in the US spread across Europe and Asia as well, meaning that fans worldwide were having trouble playing the game.

I always got the feeling this SimCity would be more fondly-remembered if it only it had actually worked properly. In one of those moves that reminds you how EA got its reputation their make-up gifts to disappointed gamers didn’t come off as terribly heartfelt.

A recurring trend this month, possibly due to some of the new releases I’ll mention shortly, was the issue of strong female characters in games and their viability business-wise.

Whether or not games that primarily focussed on women were likely to sell as well as their more macho brethren was called into question after Remember Me developer Dontnod revealed that publishers had been resistant to their game. Other developers would throw their hats in on the debate, including Bioware writer Ann Lemay.

Fortunately this year we’d be given plenty of evidence that suggested female characters can lead successful games, including the first of March’s many hotly-anticipated titles - the Tomb Raider reboot.

Taking us back to the beginning of famed adventuress Lara Croft’s career, deveopers Crystal Dynamics hoped to give a fresh start to the ailing franchise. The reboot turned out to be Ms Croft’s finest adventure in years, earning strong reviews and going on to be one of the best-selling games of the month.

Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate was another big release this month, launching on both the 3DS and Wii U simultaneously.

It was a good month for the Wii U as we also saw the release of Lego City Undercover, a great family friendly adventure. Even now both of these remain some of the standout Wii U exclusives and the best reasons to own the console, which is good because at this point the console was not faring well at all.

We also got a double dose of GoW games this month with both God of War: Ascension and Gears of War: Judgment. Both received solid enough reviews but didn’t quite live up to the pedigree of their respective series, especially Judgment which alienated much of the series’ fanbase with its radical gameplay changes.

BioShock Infinite: Burial At Sea DLC
BioShock Infinite: Burial At Sea DLC
Finally we come to the biggest release of the month, and no doubt one of the most eagerly awaited titles of the year. Bioshock Infinite was quickly proclaimed greatest thing ever by many upon its release (even Tim liked it) and jumped ahead of Tomb Raider to become the best-selling game of the month and of the Bioshock series. Which is a pretty good note to end a month on.

Big Name Releases Due this Month
Army of Two: The Devil's Cartel - Electronic Arts
BioShock: Infinite - 2K Games
Gears of War: Judgment - Microsoft Game Studios
God of War Collection - SCEE
God of War Collection Volume II - SCEE
God of War: Ascension - SCEE
Killzone 3 - SCEE
LittleBigPlanet 2 - SCEE
Luigi's Mansion 2 - Nintendo
Metal Slug 4 - D4 Enterprise
Monster Hunter 3: Ultimate - Nintendo
Need For Speed: Most Wanted - Electronic Arts
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2+ - Tecmo Koei Europe
Racedriver: GRID - Feral Interactive
Rayman Origins - Ubisoft
Resident Evil 6 - Capcom
Resistance 3 - SCEE
Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time - SCEE
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Blizzard
The Amazing Spider-Man - Activision
The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct - Activision
Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 14 - Electronic Arts
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Future Soldier & Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 - Ubisoft
Tomb Raider - Square Enix
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves - SCEE
World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor - Blizzard

Read the Rest of Our Video Games Year in Review 2013
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: January
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: February
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: March
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: April
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: May
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: June
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: July
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: August
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: September
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: October
SPOnG's Videogames Review of 2013: November

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