50 – Sonic the Hedgehog 2010 (Multi)
Project Needlemouse. The very name sends shivers down our spines. Why? Because Sonic was called Mr Needlemouse internally at Sega before he was called Sonic. This is it – the game where they make Sonic like it's 1991, only now they've got Xbox 360 and PS3 hardware to do it with. Time and time again, our hopes are dashed, but if ever one last fragile hope burned in the void, it's in the shape of this game. And it has to be perfect. Nothing less will do.
49 – Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 (Multi)
The first game was a solid 7. We're going to predict that the sequel will be a solid 7 too. We'd love to be mega-optimistic and say it'll be a 10, but we've got used to reining in our expectations when it comes to Star Wars games made by LucasArts. But we're still excited. After all, it's hard not to have fun when you're dual-wielding lightsabers and ripping shit up with the Force. Let's hope we get to kill some wimpy Jedi younglings this time around.
48 – Enslaved (PS3)
Created by developer Ninja Theory (of Heavenly Sword fame) and loosely based on the Chinese novel Journey to the West, Enslaved is a postapocalyptic adventure that focuses on Monkey, an acrobatic brute of a warrior, and Trip, a young woman who forces Monkey to defend her with the aid of a high-tech slave headband. There’s a “tactical” element to the action as well, which in this case means that each area must be carefully scouted – using a robotic dragonfly – to discover the best route through.
47 – Crysis 2 (Multi)
Unless you’re a PC gamer with an apocalyptically powerful rig, the first Crysis probably passed you by. Which is a shame, because for all of its niggles (variable AI, duff vehicles and a disappointing last act), it brought us a real taste of super-soldier power along with the tantalising aroma of gaming’s graphical future. And now, despite earlier claims that Crysis’s stunning looks couldn’t be recreated on a console, developer Crytek has done just that, cunningly designing its new CryEngine 3 to deliver the goods on all HD platforms.
46 – APB (Multi)
GTA online, anyone? APB’s raucous multiplayer cops and robbers action is being birthed by the venerable folks at Realtime Worlds - they made Crackdown and are headed up by David Jones, the guy who invented Grand Theft Auto in the first place. After choosing the side of law or crime you’ll be thrown into a persistent, reactive city and wage a constant 24-hour battle for control. A kind of localised MMO (around 25 players in each game), progression is based around pure skill rather than level grinding, promising compulsive, rehab-worthy addiction for WoW-geek and headshot-nut alike.
45 – Puzzle Quest 2 (Multi)
Truth be told, Puzzle Quest: Galactrix was disappointing. We were excited for the ways it was switching things up, with its science-fiction story and fresh-looking gem grid, but in the end it failed to meet the standard of its predecessor. So we’re glad it looks like Puzzle Quest 2 is returning to a form that more resembles the original. That said, we do hope it’s not just a rehash of the first (and insanely addictive) Puzzle Quest.
44 – 3D Dot Game Heroes (PS3)
We’re kind of afraid to bring this game up anymore. Look at it – a loving homage to NES-era Zelda, complete with blocky graphics, an overhead view, underground labyrinths with special hidden items… pieces of health to collect… octopus enemies that shoot rocks… overworld music that sounds extremely familiar… hm. We’re scared if we draw too much attention to it, Nintendo’s gonna finally realize what’s going on and shut it down. If Heroes apes Zelda as thoroughly as the screens, we’re gonna love it to death.
43 – Golden Sun DS (DS)
Though loved by hardcore RPG enthusiasts on the GBA, it seemed like this series had seen its last moment in the sun. So we couldn't be more happy that Golden Sun is returning with creator/developer Camelot at the helm. Taking place some years after the second game, it seems to star the son of Isaac, who was the protagonist of the original game. There were certainly enough plot threads for the sequel to pick up, and you can see our predictions here. If the first two are any indication, this will be one of the best DS games of the year.
42 – Super Street Fighter IV (Multi)
Why get excited about the potential for yet another slew of Super Turbo EX Alpha Hyper Championship Editions to complement a perfectly good Street Fighter game? Because Street Fighter IV was just that – perfect. If the extra characters and gameplay tweaks that Super brought to Street Fighter 2 back in the day can work similar magic on current-gen Street Fighter, this will be immense. Plus Capcom’s planning on offering it at less than full price - $40 fight club, anyone?
41 – Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep (PSP)
It's already out in Japan, but we still have to wait just a little longer to get our hands on the first PSP game in the Kingdom Hearts saga. It's a prequel to the first game and even features little kiddy versions of Sora, Riku and Kairi (awww, bless 'em), though not as major characters. The game's director, Tetsuya Nomura, has said that the game is full-size and just as important to the series as Kingdom Hearts or KHII. Count us in.