20 MASSIVE games of early 2010

As the wisely regular reader of Radar you no doubt are, you’ll be aware that at this time of year we traditionally start putting together our pre-emptive list of Christmas joy-discs; a jolly festive round-up of the almighty release schedule clusterf*ck you’ll be hacking your way through with a tinsel-wrapped machete come November and December. This year however, it’s different.

A certain little shooter release in November has put the fear of CoD into a large portion of the industry so, barring a couple of brave examples, late 2009 is a sparse period indeed. As the months have gone on, more and more ’09 games have been delayed into early 2010 in an effort to avoid the snipes and AC-130s of outrageous financial misfortune. And the best bit? By barrelling blindly into the air-raid shelter, they’ve found themselves packed like sardines and gasping for air. Good work, games industry! Spring is the new Christmas, and you’re going to need our help to get through it. So here is that help.

1. BioShock 2 - Multi

Expected release: February

Should you care?

Opinion is split amongst BioShock fans, and it depends which side of the argument you come down on. Some of us love Rapture so much that we’d slice off our arms and play with our feet for another run through the darkly beautiful dystopia and a new side-story to explore. Some of us love Rapture so much that we’ve cried “Rape!” ever since the sequel was announced, and loath the idea of a different team messing with 2K Boston’s masterpiece. Objectively, BioShock 2 will be a good game. Subjectively, it comes down to how passionate you are about the original.


Yep, BioShock 2 was originally slated for November ’09. Officially, vague quality reassurances are the reason. Unofficially, this is a big, complex-to-manage, four-team project and also an FPS.

2. Splinter Cell:
Conviction - Xbox 360

Expected release: February

Should you care?

Most definitely. After many year’s of going the way of old bread, Ubisoft’s once-killer stealth series finally looks to be getting its renaissance. Faster, slicker and more brutal, and with far more options for improvisational evasion and combat, Conviction looks to be Splinter Cell’s Resident Evil 4. It’s been a long wait, but we’re really looking forward to getting to know old Sam anew.


Hell yes. Conviction was originally slated for 2007 before, just like Resident Evil 4, a total production reboot knocked it back to Quarter 3 of 2009. Another delay for extra perfectionising (and possible avoidance of rival military killers), and we’re now looking at next year.

3. Red Steel 2 - Wii

Expected release: February

Should you care?

As mortifyingly bad as the first game was, we really do think so. The first Red Steel had killer app potential, but was prematurely forced out of the womb to catch the early Wii buzz. Deftly side-stepping the twitching, malformed foetus of the first game in favour of a polished, steampunk-wild-west-with-ninjas reboot, RS2 looks like everything we originally hoped for and more, thanks in no small part to the contemporary availability of the Wii’s MotionPlus hardware upgrade.


It’s a Ubisoft game without the word “Creed” in the title, so yes. We were supposed to get this in November, but once again, the need for extra polish has pushed it back. A stark and welcome contrast with the first game’s release, and possibly even wiser given that the usually shooter-light Wii is now getting a port of CoD 4 at the same time Modern Warfare 2 hits.

4. Heavy Rain - PS3

Expected: March

Should you care?

Yes you should, but again, opinions are split. Proffering a staggering, previously unseen level of humanity and emotion in its characters and promising a genuinely malleable narrative in which main characters can quite easily die without ending the story, Heavy Rain could be a turning point for video game story-telling. But at the same time, current experience hints that its core gameplay could be little more than an excessively QTE-heavy point-and-click with pretensions. Whether that turns out to be true or not though, for narrative aspirations alone, Heavy Rain deserves your attention like few games in recent years.


Yes, and they’re being admirably honest about it. Echoing what has been our sentiment for years, Exec Producer Guillaume de Fondaumiere recently admitted that Christmas is “a very crowded place to be, and certain games need more space to live their life”. We agree wholeheartedly, but it’s a quite ironic statement given the current situation.

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  • TURbo - October 2, 2009 4:41 p.m.

    Some of those games will get screwed over by other releases
  • NotBraze - October 2, 2009 5:03 p.m.

    Funnily enough the top of my list is the top of your list: BioShock 2. Other than that there's not too much that I'd be willing to open up my college abused wallet for. Splinter Cell Conviction does look interesting but I haven't played a Splinter Cell game all the way through since the first, so I'd have a lot of catching up to do.
  • helix92 - October 2, 2009 5:10 p.m.

    WOW! This has just reminded me of how many games i want next year. Heavy Rain, Red Dead Redemption, AvP, Split Second and now after playing the BETA (and loving it!!)MAG!! Best start saving then.
  • RoxasXXion - October 2, 2009 5:12 p.m.

    Is the last gaurdian coming out next year????
  • nadrewod999 - October 2, 2009 6:22 p.m.

    Normally the Christmas season is when all the good games come out and Easter has basically nothing, yet this year we have to wait until November for our favorite sequels and 2010 for most new IPs. Man, do I feel stupid for thinking 2009 would be the ultimate year for gaming.
  • hybrid616 - October 2, 2009 6:26 p.m.

    i'll definitely get NMH 2... As soon as i find somewhere that stocks the first one...
  • crumbdunky - October 2, 2009 6:58 p.m.

    I think there's bery littl;e argument to be made for SC:C running away from MW2-they're hardly the same kind of thing, now, are they? More than likely they saw just how great Uncharted2 looked and MS said "away with you and polish like a crazy polishing/game developing hybrid machine!" so it could come back next year and make a real fist of challenging NG's opus for best current TPS game. I sau this because MS and Ubi seem really determined not to have this rushed like Gears2 was by Epic/MS so it can really challenge what the PS3 only devs have been doing lately-I've always felt the shorter time available to 360 exclusive devs was [partly to blame for the graophjical shortfall between 360 and PS3 exclusives and now we shall see with both this and AW! And anyway, I'd have run from U2 as well-it did look amazing even back at E3 and if they need more time to reaxch that level then fine-it';s great for all gamers that this comettion is going on!
  • misfit119 - October 2, 2009 7 p.m.

    It's funny but Nintendo absolutely destroyed my interest in anything Suda 51 does. NMH I found to be a game with prospect but in the end a fairly uninteresting experience. I'll probably play it more when I buy a Wii again but after ten hours I was really disinterested. Then I find out that he was working on Fatal Frame 4 which is then summarily not brought to the states even though all of the other games had been. So now and forever his name is attached to one of the most frustrating things I've ever heard since Fatal Frame is my favorite survival horror series. Now hearing Suda 51 is like hearing Uwe Boll mentioned. That's how bad it is.
  • brettsmellson - October 2, 2009 7:12 p.m.

    Did you forget mass effect 2 or just not think it's an important game
  • crumbdunky - October 2, 2009 7:13 p.m.

    Oh Misfit, please don't start me on my Fatal Frame 4:MotLE soapbox again and how it finally shows once and for all that Ninty hate anyone who had a Gamecube! Esp in the west! Christ! It was even advertised with a release date in some EU mags! One day we'l;l hear what went on between everyone but if Ninty owned the western rights to publish then I see the buck stopping with Reggie myself! If a man considers AC hardcore enough to carry a whole holiday season on it's own just why would he support a survival horror game? That said I'm a big fan of NMG and am looking forward to NMH:DS AND his two mooted games for the PS3(one multi with Mikami and one PS3 exclusive for G'hoppper-both horrory as well)but thje loss of FF4 to the western Wii aygience was the final straw for a few of my now former Wii owning mates-it was a real watershed moment for me as I realised that Ninty just dopn't care about mature Wii games that they didn't actually make.
  • Unoriginal - October 2, 2009 7:36 p.m.

    O_O No more Heroes, Bayonetta, Red Steel, Final Fantasy, God of War etc. Never thought to many games could be a bad thing but how the hell can I find the time (and money) to play all of theese?
  • TrigunGunner - October 2, 2009 8:07 p.m.

    man, I gotta hurry up and get the first No More Heroes. But first I have to move my wii out of the living room. The amount of swearing in No More Heroes won't be taken by my parents too well. After all, according to them, the Fire Emblem and metroid games are too violent for teens
  • TheGoddamnBatman - October 2, 2009 8:11 p.m.

    Really looking forward to Red Dead Redemption. I watched a demo of it at PAX and it looks amazing, although it was very obvious that a lot of work had to be done on it when I saw it. I'm glad they've pushed it back to '10 so it can be finished into a great game, because I intend on buying it.
  • hardcore_gamer1990 - October 2, 2009 8:12 p.m.

    Ah fuck, there goes my savings until christmas 2010.....
  • CH3BURASHKA - October 2, 2009 8:29 p.m.

    I'm going to buy a Slim so that I can play Heavy Rain and Last Guardian. Speaking of, WHERE THE FUCK IS LAST GUARDIAN ON THIS LIST! I thought Split/Second was dumb, until I played it; I could NOT get enough. Everyone should consider it their duty to purchase it.
  • oryandymackie - October 2, 2009 8:31 p.m.

    When will there be another huge part-RPG role-player such as Fallout 3 or Oblivion? All I want is a gigantic, beautiful open world that I can immerse myself in for a few decades. Is that so much to ask?
  • Cyberninja4 - October 2, 2009 8:39 p.m.

    no mass effect 2? :(
  • PinkLenny - October 2, 2009 9:12 p.m.

    There is absolutly no way Dark Void will be rated higher than a 7. I would bet anything
  • ShineALight - October 2, 2009 10:41 p.m.

    Was it necessary to spend over half of the NMH write-up talking about how bad the Wii is?
  • Harmonator - October 2, 2009 11:07 p.m.

    I still think one hallway would be the best level design ever for a shooter... ever since I played the Bespin: platforms level in Star Wars Battlefront, I've been arguing this fact ever since...

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