2012 was another year where more kids chose to play video games inside instead of playing outside to stay active. There was even a huge video game sting here in St. Louis last year; the former East St. Louis police chief stole an Xbox 360 and plead guilty to the charges in January 2012. His sentencing occurred last April, which consisted of a year in federal prison, $2,200 in fines and two years of supervised release (FBI).
Two major video game systems were released this year in the U.S. Sony’s PlayStation Vita was released in February; it is a handheld that is the successor to the PlayStation Portable (PSP) and is the major competitor of the Nintendo 3DS. It has received great critical reviews, though has not sold to consumers as well as the PSP.
The other video game hardware came out in November; Nintendo’s Wii U is a console that succeeds the Wii. So far, the Wii U has been received positively by the critics and all units that were shipped to the U.S. were sold in the first week. Both of the new hardware are considered eighth generation.
Two minor video game systems were also released in 2012. Nintendo’s 3DS XL was released in August; it is very similar to the 3DS, but has better features: larger screen, longer battery life and it comes with a 4GB SD card, rather than the 2GB SD card. The other minor system was released in December; SNK’s Neo-Geo X is a handheld that succeeds the Neo Geo Pocket Color from 1999.
Three major events in video gaming continued this year. The Game Developers Conference 2012 was held in San Francisco, CA in early March, E3 2012 was held in Los Angeles, CA in early June and the Spike Video Game Awards were held in Culver City, CA early December. A list of 2012 and the past years’ winners and nominees can be viewed here. A full list of events can be viewed here.
Games were released on the following platforms in 2012: Linux, Macintosh / Mac OS, Microsoft Windows, iOS, Android OS, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and WiiWare.
A full list of video games that were released in 2012 can be viewed here, but let’s look at an overview for the top 5 video games of 2012, according to Spike’s Video Game Awards.
The winner of Spike’s Game of the Year award goes to The Walking Dead. The game is based on the comic book series, not the TV series, and the genres are point-and-click, adventure and role-playing. The setting is in Georgia in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. The retail version of the game was just released on December 11, with five individual parts released for download from April to November for the Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and iOS.
One of the four nominees for the same award was Assassin’s Creed III. The game is the fifth in the major series and the genres are historical, action-adventure, open-world and stealth. The setting is during or around the American Revolution (1753-83). The game was released in October-November for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii U and Microsoft Windows.
Another nominee was Dishonored. The game is an entirely new installment and has several popular actors’ voice talents for the characters. The genres are first-person, stealth and action-adventure. The setting is in a fictional industrial city called Dunwall. The game was released in early October for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
An additional nominee was Mass Effect 3. The game is the final chapter in the trilogy and the genres are action and role-playing. The setting begins on Earth, but most of the game takes place on Mars. The game was released in early March for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and in November for the Wii U.
The final nominee was Journey. The game is an entirely new installment, but is the third PS3-exclusive game by the developer Thatgamecompany. The genres are indie and adventure and the setting takes place in a desert. The game was released in March for the PlayStation Network and the Collector’s Edition (includes all three games from Thatgamecompany and their commentaries, artwork and soundtracks) was released in August for the PlayStation 3.
Well that’s it for an overview of 2012 in video games. For more information, check the websites below:
More articles by Trevor Roe: http://www.examiner.com/video-games-in-st-louis/trevor-roe
Game of the Year website: http://www.gameoftheyear.org/ratings/1-highest-rated-2012/1
Metacritic (Metascore) website: http://www.metacritic.com/browse/games/score/metascore/year/all?view=condensed&sort=desc
Spike Video Game Awards (2012): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spike_Video_Game_Awards
Wikipedia website: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_in_video_gaming
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