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GamesRadar E3 2011 Awards: Guiltiest Pleasure

Fact: Gordon Ramsey, that TV chef who screams at everyone all the time for putting too much pan-seared fennel in the sous de l’orange, loves chili dogs and tater tots.

Okay, that particular fact is probably not true because we just made it up. But we bet there is something he loves that you can get in a drive-through. The point is a meal doesn’t need a five-star chef’s intimate knowledge of ostrich curd and starfish sauce to be enjoyable. And by the same token, a videogame can absolutely fantastic even if there’s no highbrow artistic statement mixed in with the action. Here are the games we can’t wait to dive into, even if they appeal to the summer popcorn-movie side of our brains instead of the snooty, art-critic lobe.

 

The Nominees:

Asura’s Wrath
Asura’s Wrath is a brawler that starts with God of War’s angry anti-hero, throws in Bayonetta’s sense of sanity (or lack thereof), and smears a vaguely Hindu-inspired visual design over the whole thing. In the battle we saw, the main character (a god out for vengeance upon six fellow gods) pounded an elephant-sized dude into submission. Elephant guy then reappeared, mountain-sized and made of stone and firing missiles. Our hero beat him up a second time. And elephant man reappeared again, now basically the size of the stinking moon and rippling with glowing energy, and the fight continued. And somewhere in there, our hero grew four extra arms. Take it from us: this is going to be crazy.



Rise of Nightmares

The game that proved to us that Kinect works in the dark, Rise of Nightmares is basically a motion-controlled take on the House of the Dead franchise. In true Hostel style, you awaken as the prisoner of a mad scientist and have to fight your way out. Rise isn’t the prettiest game on the shelf, but it just plain goes for it with the weapons; by the end of the first level, we’d carved through zombies with everything from a spiked bat and chainsaw to electrified brass knuckles. It’s simple, but oh-so satisfying. Preview


 


Prototype 2

Look, the whole concept of Prototype is ridiculous: there’s a vicious plague that makes most everyone into monsters but just gives you super-powers. Good thing that doesn’t actually exist or we’d be signing up for it. But who really cares why you have the powers? The point is, you can run up buildings, turn your arm into a scythe, make people explode into bloody atoms, and tear tanks in half. Is there any way to not feel like a total badass when playing this game? No. There is not. Preview 



Saints Row the Third

Saints Row the Third may look at first glance like the most normal game on this list. But then you read things like LINK our E3 preview and hear about the sheer volume of craziness the developers have included: a Looney Tunes-level of violence, fed by devices like a car that sucks up pedestrians and shoots them from a cannon, or a pair of giant fist-shaped gauntlets that make people explode when you hit them, and you realize it’s just as crazy. They’re just doing it without gods, undead or aliens. We think. As an added bonus, the two career-mode levels we saw nailed the mark that Duke Nukem Forever completely missed; they were genuinely entertaining in a rough and ribald, lowbrow-but-mostly-harmless kind of way. Preview 


 


Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon

If you missed Earth Defense Force 2017 when it hit 360 awhile back, please do yourself a favor and check it out. This series is everything you love about schlocky sci-fi monster movies, combined and amped up for the modern day. The beauty of it is the way the games constantly one-up themselves. In 2017, the giant robots gave way to swarms of ants, then UFOs, then a four-legged robot so big it was giving birth to more giant robots as the UFOs and ants all ganged up on you… that kind of thing. And all signs so far point to Insect Armageddon being more of the same – only gooier. Preview



Neverdead

Neverdead may look like just another corn-filled, film noir wannabe, with a  gruff main character who looks a little past his prime and can’t seem to catch a break. But in this case, that character is also immortal even though he gets literally blown to pieces pretty much every time he gets into the ring with one of the demons he seems to be hunting. The end result looks hopelessly campy, but when was the last game that enabled you to roll around as a disembodied head? We’re in. Preview 


 



And the winner is…

Saints Row the Third
This was a tough one, because every game on this list looks to offer the kind of so-dumb-it’s-fantastic thrills we love. But the sheer size and depth of Saints’ open world and all the bizarre, borderline tasteless shenanigans we’re going to be able to get into – especially given the expanded multiplayer modes we’re promised – and the choice is clear. We’re going to have a ton of fun with this one, and it’s going to be jackass-level stupid. We can’t wait. Preview


Jun 21, 2011



MONDAY:
Most graphics | Coolest character reinvention
Best response to fan feedback 
TUESDAY:
Best trailer | Most satisfying gore | Guiltiest pleasure
Most shameless rip-off 
WEDNESDAY:
Best new game we know nothing about
Worst first impression | Best game for masochists 
THURSDAY:
Most likely to consume our lives | Artsiest-fartsiest
Most tasteless 
FRIDAY:
Might not actually suck | Proof that 2D isn't dead | BEST OF SHOW 

Topics

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11 comments

  • Yeager1122 - June 23, 2011 2:19 a.m.

    I would have given it to asura personally trailer looked awsome.
  • 435 - June 22, 2011 2:06 p.m.

    @MyCoolWhiteLies: I still hold that State wasn't a bad game, just one that was severely overhyped by the media as another GTA3. Which it wasn't, which it didn't strive to be. I used to play SoE quite a bit after I got it... It helps that I was working holiday retail and the second level of the riot simulator was in a mall.
  • LIKEUCARE - June 22, 2011 2:46 a.m.

    Saints Row 3 really seems over-the-top! I'm surprised Postal 3, Brothers in Arms: Furious 4 weren't here though, as they are quite over-the-top too.
  • bobob101 - June 22, 2011 2:21 a.m.

    for me, Asura's Wrath seems like a must play, but i like the japanese voice acting more than the english
  • shadowreaper72 - June 22, 2011 8:21 a.m.

    I loved the first EDF game. For a budget title, it sure was fun as hell!
  • sgloomy - June 22, 2011 5:10 a.m.

    Asura's Wrath and Neverdead seem very interesting. Prototype one was a little disappointing for me but maybe the second one will be good. here is hopin!
  • NanoElite666 - June 22, 2011 4:58 a.m.

    I am now interested in Neverdead. Bonus points for having Megadeth.
  • MyCoolWhiteLies - June 22, 2011 3:56 a.m.

    Anyone else remember that shitty game, State of Emergency, I believe made by Rockstar after the success of GTA3. I feel that Saint's Row 3 will be the kind of game that that one really strove to be. One that's built around just screwing around in the environment.
  • NightCrawler_358 - June 22, 2011 2:33 a.m.

    While a lot of these games look cool, asura's Wrath looks really interesting! I haven't had any over-the-top japanese satisfaction since Dragon Ball!
  • TheHungryLemur - June 22, 2011 2:06 a.m.

    Saints Row 3 looks loopy, crazy and just a bit vulgar... just a tad. I'm really interested in NeverDead and I think it's a great concept. I always like characters going through era changes :P
  • Baron164 - June 22, 2011 2:02 a.m.

    I'm so excited for Saints Row 3, but EDF looks good to, it'll be nice finally having online coop.

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