2009 PlayStation preview – part three
Yesterday we looked at the sleeper hits of 2009, the games that have the potential to surprise and be as big as some of the more established franchises. Today we’ll be looking at rumoured games, some brilliant PlayStation Network games and what the future holds for PS3 in 2009. So without further ado…
Games coming to a Store near you soon.
Flower is supposed to show us what happens when flowers dream. Starting the game in a grey cityscape, Flower actually tells a story through music and the movement of your petals as you guide them toward other flowers and explore the environments in an attempt to brighten up the world.
Ragdoll Kung Fu Sony/Media Molecule
Media Molecule has seen a great deal of attention regarding LittleBigPlanet, and rightly so, but what many of you may not know is that prior to that killer PS3 app, the company produced a magnificent title called Ragdoll Kung Fu. It’s a completely free-form fighting game, from which you can see the earliest rumblings of LBP. Perfect for the Store.
Half-Life 2: Episode Three EA/Valve
Episode 3 will be the last in this story arc. Much of the artwork released for this final addition seems to be set in a citadel environment, with plenty of the ghastly advisers floating about menacingly. Rumours abound that it’ll also feature the Portal Gun from Portal in some way. We certainly hope so.
Burnout Paradise Island EA/Criterion
Burnout’s going to see a massive amount of downloadable content in 2009. Big Surf Island, for example, (which won’t be offered free, as previously expected) concentrates on stunts rather than racing. Then there’s a bunch of new toys, plus legendary and boost motors coming from Criterion. Surf’s most definitely up, dudes.
Rat Race Super Ego
Developed by New York-based Super Ego games, Rat Race is a comedy adventure title set in an office much like yours or ours. The adventure could best be described as lewd, incorporating numerous dodgy goings-on, such as a mad scientist’s obsession with the lab monkey, office stationery theft and sordid use of the photocopier.
Fat Princess Sony
Simple but wonderful is the name of the game here. Fat Princess sports 16 versus 16 online multiplayer. The idea is a kind of ‘capture the flag’ affair, only your flag is a morbidly obese member of royalty. Change classes at the change of a hat and make sure all 16 players work together to rescue that princess.
PS3 in 2009
What does the year hold for your beloved console?
The PSN movie store is the polish on Sony’s iron fist in the US, but there’s still no announced launch date for its UK counterpart. Still, David Reeves did say it’ll arrive in 2009 at E3, so it’ll have to surface eventually – it’s all just a matter of obtaining rights and sealing deals at this point. With Sony’s extensive movie library leading the charge, though, it’ll be worth the wait.
As for firmware updates, it’s been rumoured that PS3 owners will be able to take screenshots of their games, next year, but Sony can’t confirm or deny this for the time being. Something on its way in February is VidZone, a service announced at Leipzig that enables users to stream music videos through their PS3s, choosing from a selection of thousands. Already a popular online destination, Vidzone will be reformatted before it makes the leap to the console, as to fit the PS3’s controller-centric interface. These videos can be streamed to the PSP through Remote Play, so it sounds pretty sweet. Sony must have plans beyond this, though. Just remember what cool additions we received in 2008: PlayTV, Trophies, the in-game XMB, custom soundtracks, themes… there’s definitely going to be some impressive add-ons in 2009.
Rumour Mill 2009
What’s rumoured to be coming out this year?
New Team ICO game Sony/Team ICO
Until it’s announced, we can’t specify exactly what we’ve seen of this. Officially, the only image released is this one here, with a chain. It will be the best game ever made.
GRAW/Rainbow Six Ubisoft
We reckon new entries in both these Ubisoft franchises are on their way, but, in light of the fact that Rainbow Six Vegas 2 was released last year, GRAW 3 is the most likely for 2009.
Ratchet & Clank Sony/Insomniac
At the end of Quest For Booty, Insomniac confirms that Ratchet will be back during autumn 2009. We hope it’ll be a full Blu-ray release… and better than Tools Of Destruction.
Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Activision/Infinity Ward
Could also be called Call Of Duty 5. This from Infinity Ward game is speculated to be a sci-fi-tinged FPS, but with 11 million copies of COD4 sold, the team might want to stick with the modern context.
LittleBigPlanet PSP Sony/Media Molecule
Supposedly leaked to dpadmagazine.com by a Sony employee, Media Molecule has apparently been working on a PSP version of LBP for four months. Sounds ace.
Star Wars Battlefront III Activision
When LucasArts culled loads of its staff, last year, some revealed that Battlefront III was in development. Free Radical and LucasArts struck a development deal in 2006 – they’re making it.
Mass Effect 2 EA/BioWare
The first one (pictured) was a 360 exclusive, but with EA calling the shots on BioWare, it may be pressured into making this outstanding space RPG series multiformat.
Bizarre Creations racing game Activision/Bizarre Creations
Activision bought Bizarre in 2007. The Project Gotham developer has presumably been creating a new racing franchise, using the Kudos system from PGR.
MotorStorm PSP Sony/Evolution Studios
Leaked, as above. This seems the likelier of the two, given that Evolution’s offshoot studio, BigBig, is working on an unannounced project.
Successfully launching on PC last year, this ‘everything’ simulator, focusing on creativity and, to a lesser extent, micro-management, is likely to extend its reach to next-gen consoles in 2009.
Twisted Metal TBA
Hinted at by the Twisted Metal: Head-On PS2 port and later confirmed by David Jaffe, it’s almost certain that a new entry in the series will come from his Eat Sleep Play studio.
The Sims 3 EA/Maxis
Only announced on PC at the moment, but sure to crash the PS3 with a bunch of Network features, The Sims 3 promises open neighbourhoods and unique personalities for each resident.