There are plenty of great games waiting for release this year, and more than a few of them have crossed my radar, but I'm actually more interested in where some of last year's new releases are bound over the course of 2012. Three games in particular have had quite the run of DLC going for them, and we've already been promised more in the case of two of them, so that's where my eyes are currently.
Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine
The crew over at Relic and THQ have already cranked out two great expansion packs to Space Marine
, with Exterminatus mode joining the ranks of several other great horde-style modes, and Chaos Unleashed taking that formula and reversing the roles, a la Gears Of War 3
's Beast Mode. There are still a few slots left for more downloadable content on the in-game download menu, and word has it that as soon as this month, we're supposed to expect some fresh material involving Dreadnoughts. Some fans have been clamoring for these beasts of battle for quite some time now, so it'll be interesting to see how they're being implemented, as well as how Relic plans to top their introduction with further DLC down the line.
Saints Row The Third
When THQ promised 40 weeks of DLC support for Saints Row The Third
, many balked at the possibility of that promise being upheld, or were convinced there had to be on-disc content locked away to make this possible. While the latter appears to have been the case, pricing seems to have been reasonable for most of the packs so far, and a season pass was available both via pre-orders directly from THQ and for sale post-release to ease the sting of some forthcoming mission packs. Some of these early packs have been better than others (chum shotgun, f'yeah!), THQ is at least upholding its promise to deliver further content as the weeks progress, and I, for one, cannot wait to see what the more involved DLC packs hold in store for the city of Steelport.
Even with Halo 4
expected for this forthcoming holiday season, 343 Industries went and bolstered the already-thriving Halo: Reach
multiplayer scene with a map pack tied on to Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary
, injecting some fresh fighting grounds in the form of overhauled classics into the mix. While there haven't been any announcements as to further content between now and this fall/winter, one has to wonder if there's room for a little more support for Reach
's multiplayer before 4
picks up the torch, and whether 343 are even going to implement a completely new multiplayer mode or not. History has shown, at least in Bungie's case, that support lingered on pretty much indefinitely for prior Halo
titles, what with servers being kept up for Halo 2
and Halo PC
until the original Xbox servers for Live were shut down, and servers still being up for Halo 3
so it'll be interesting to see how 343 handles the server side of things through this year and into the future.
And, to be fair, I'm totally stoked on Halo 4
itself, but there hasn't been nearly enough teaser material released to provide much to talk about, outside of blatant speculation.
As much as there is to look forward to this year in new gamage, it's more fascinating to me seeing how companies may finally be more thoroughly embracing the post-release content market, which may very well be a key component in the slow, steady creep towards digital distribution gaining a more valid stance. It's not like I'll even be caught up on 2011's games before the 2012 holiday blitz anyway, so it can't hurt to keep one eye looking behind.
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