In my opinion the Hack and Slash genre has been neglected recently. There haven’t been any new releases out for a good while now except for the occasional HD re-release and the odd hit or miss title here and there. Good news is on the horizon however, as some great titles are set to come out next year. Here is my pick of the best Hack and Slash games to look out for in 2013.
DmC: Devil May Cry.
When it comes to DmC there are two types of people. There are the gamers who are simply looking forward to this game, and the hard-core fans that would rather see it be crushed and destroyed by the hands of the legendary dark knight Sparda himself. In all honesty a few months ago I was one of the fans in favour of a good crushing, but the previews and video content that has been surfacing on the internet recently has swayed my opinion somewhat.
Firstly it seems that Ninja theory has made sure to include all of the fundamental game play elements that have made the Devil May Cry franchise distinctive. You still have style rankings that mark you on how well you are doing in combat and the ability to throw enemies up in the air and juggle them about with all sorts of weapon combos. This to me has the making for some great Hack and Slash game play. The devil trigger also makes a triumphant return powering up Dante for some more amazing demon slaying action. You also still have Ebony and Ivory at hand to keep all sorts of beasties at bay whilst you work out your next attack. Ninja Theory have also added some new game play elements that I am excited to try out. I am especially looking forward to trying the angel and devil abilities which will give you even more variety when it comes to vanquishing your foes.
Story wise Ninja Theory seem to have remained loyal to the overall Devil May Cry plot. What we now know is that Dante is in a city called Limbo. He has been branded as a terrorist and every now and again gets sucked into a demon realm where he has to destroy all of the demons that get in his way. There is also a cult group known as The Order who like a bit of demons fighting, and they are fronted by Dante’s brother Vergil. This sounds awesome for both fans of the series and new comers alike as the story promises to introduce the characters as well as to involve them in a completely new story line. Let’s hope the story lives up to the previous three games.
Dmc: Devil May Cry is due for release on the 13th of January 2013 for Xbox 360 and PS3. It will also be playable at this year’s Eurogamer Expo, so expect a hands on preview in October.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance.
This game has been in the pipeline for some time now, after being dropped by previously developers Kojima Productions and then picked up again by Platinum Games. Metal Gear Rising puts the player in control of Raiden, the cyborg ninja that oh so many gamers have fallen in love with over the Metal Gear Solid saga.
From what I have been reading, MGR is set to take Hack and Slash gaming to the next level. Instead of button combinations which hack you enemies to bits, you use the thumb sticks to control what Raiden’s sword does. This suggests that you can be quite creative with your sword slashes, mixing up vertical, horizontal and diagonal swipes of your blade until your foe has been cut up into mincemeat. Slicing up armed guards may be one thing but later in the game you will be pitted against cyborg enemies and massive mech robots meaning there is a lot more destruction to be had in this title. In true Metal Gear style this game promises to be over the top in both game play and story.Much like in the previous Metal gear games Raiden will still have his inner conflict with his memories of the civil war and being a child soldier. Hopefully this will boost his anger and make him a massive force to be reckoned with.
Metal Gear Rising Revengeance is due for release on the 22nd of February 2013 for Xbox 360 and PS3. It will also be playable and Eurogamer this year.
God Of War Ascension.
Ever wondered why Kratos was always so angry? Every wondered why he went to the extent of murdering his wife and child? Well the long awaited prequel to the series, God Of War Ascension will hopefully answer those questions and more.
Gameplay wise God Of war Ascension promises a revamped combat system including a rejigged quick time event mechanic. Instead of button mashing prompts you will have to time your attacks and evasion moves more carefully this time. Hopefully this should make for more immersive quick time events. It has also been confirmed that Kratos can pick up enemies weapons giving the player the opportunity to change weapons in mid combo. He will also be able to swing enemies in the air while simultaneously attacking them, giving the player even more creative ways to kill all sorts of mythical beasts. It will be interesting to see how the revamped battle system will play, but for now it definitely sounds like a lot of fun.
What is possibly the most interesting thing about God Of War Ascension is that it has a multiplayer mode. Not many Hack and Slash games support multiplayer gameplay so it will be interesting to see how the God Of War franchise does this. It has been confirmed that the multiplayer mode will consist of two teams of four battling it out for control of the map. From information that has been posted so far, this mode sounds like more of an objective based game than a team death match. Only one multiplayer level that has been showcased, and this shows a battle between Sparta and Troy. The objective of the mission is to collect as many cogs as possible and then bind them to the chains holding down the giant (and very angry) Cyclops Polyphemus to defeat him and win the game. Sounds pretty epic to me, let’s hope that the multiplayer proves to be as good as the iconic single player mode.
God Of War Ascension is due for release March 12, 2013 for PS3 only.
As you can see the hack and slash genre has some great titles coming out next year. Will 2013 be the great hack and slash revival? I have my fingers crossed that it is.