Shoot to thrill - Page 2

FALL ARTS PREVIEW: Gamer stops, drops, and rolls into fall's fiery pit of video-game releases

Just another day on the job in Sleeping Dogs.

Fan favorite Resident Evil has slowly evolved from its deliberately-paced survival horror roots into an action series — resulting in both uproar and increased sales. And we all know which result matters more to publishers. But in an effort to satisfy fans new and old, Resident Evil 6 has two protagonists, and for all intents and purposes two separate storylines. One plays it slow and scary while the other delivers on the explosions and firefights that likely mean big sales this October.

Another series that developed a new identity based on fan feedback, Assassins Creed III brings the time-traveling franchise to the USA during the American Revolution. Playing as a Native American assassin, you hobnob with the likes of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson in a dynamic recreation of 18th century Boston and New York. You'll probably also murder a lot of redcoats. Like Call of Duty, Assassins Creed has a new entry each year, and its dependable quality is its greatest asset.

Then there are games whose futures are less certain. New IP Dishonored looks to take BioShock's steampunk aesthetic one generation earlier, into the Victorian era, with a stealthy first-person-shooter soaked in atmosphere. Borderlands 2 takes its predecessor's successful basic characteristics — a boatload of loot, focus on cooperation and tongue in cheek humor — and ratchets them up to 11. Also, releasing in the typically untouchable month of December, Far Cry 3 explores an entire tropical island, complete with psychedelic mushrooms and a very nasty pirate villain.

All of the above for the new season, without even touching Nintendo's new Wii U. We know it's coming, but no release date, price, or game lineup yet. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that Nintendo's slow approach to starting the next generation of hardware may be a case of wanting to fully size up the competition before committing. With games like these, it's never been clearer that people crave good games above new hardware.

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