Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2
Live Arcade, PlayStation Network
EU: May 16
Sonic the Hedgehog fans haven't been very easy to please in
recent years, and even hotly anticipated reboots like Sonic the Hedgehog 4 have
earned their share of snide remarks – though we quite liked the first episode.
Who knows if Episode 2 will finally hit all the right buttons with the wider
fanbase, but it certainly seems like Sega is listening to the complaints from
the first release. Episode 2 adds co-op play throughout the entire campaign via
Tails, plus the physics have been reworked to focus more on the momentum-based
feel of past entries, along with some visual enhancements. It's not coming to
WiiWare this time around, but Xbox 360 and PS3 players can snag Sonic's latest
throwback adventure mid-month.
Mario Tennis Open
EU: May 25
Mario Tennis Open delivers the first new series entry in
eight years, and it comes with the expected modern amenities seen in many
Nintendo 3DS titles – such as customizable Mii characters, along with a
3D-enhanced behind-the-back view that uses the system's gyroscope to change the
view and direct shots. Online play is also a big component of Mario's latest
racquet-based outing, but we expect to spend a lot of our time digging into the
myriad mini-games included in the set. We're looking forward to whacking balls
at enemies and item blocks in a rendition of the original Super Mario Bros, as
well as hitting stars in the Super Mario Galaxy-themed court. Ah, sweet
Nintendo fan service.
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier
360, PS3, PC (June 12)
EU: May 25
May is a month pretty well occupied by huge games that took
a long damn time getting to store shelves. Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, for
example? Confirmed in January 2009! But the wait has only energized our
interest in the next evolution of Ubisoft's beloved tactical shooter franchise,
and Future Soldier looks well worth the layover. With cloaking tech that adds a
new wrinkle to subtle sneaking, Future Soldier offers a fresh take on the
franchise – and from our hands-on time with the game, the co-op action may
prove one of the biggest draws. We called it "the best co-op experience we've had since Modern Warfare 3's Spec-Ops
mode," and that's only one part of the bigger content offering alongside
solo play and multiplayer.
EU: May 25
Dragon's Dogma marks an unexpected new effort from Capcom, one
made by notable developers who previously steered past Devil May Cry and
Resident Evil entries. The game's a Western-style, open-world fantasy RPG –
with just a tinge of Monster Hunter influence – starring a customizable lead
whose heart is quite literally snatched from his chest by a massive dragon.
Curiously he survives, and thus kicks off a lengthy quest guided by a different
dragon to reclaim his vital organ. Players can recruit and command A.I. pawns
throughout the solo campaign, as well as climb upon and attack large beasts in
battle, even as they fly around. Also, buying the game grants access to the
Resident Evil 6 demo later this year, so there's that to consider as well.
EU: May 25
Shown at E3 a couple years back as one of the cornerstone
PlayStation Move titles in Sony's lineup, Sorcery promptly faded from view,
only emerging recently after the Move initiative seemingly hit a brick wall.
Likely hoping to hit a nerve with fans of Harry Potter, Sorcery has come a long
way since that early tech demo, and last we saw the game seemed much more like a full-fledged experience. Skewing away from the
typical hack-and-slash approach of many action games, Sorcery relies almost
entirely on casting spells, with waves of the Move controller used to launch
fire, wind, and ice magic, as well as lightning bolts. Can this Move exclusive
reignite interest in the dusty plastic wands?