13 games we want announced in 2012

Zelda Wii U

From the Legend of Zelda in-engine tech demo seen at the Wii U’s unveiling, we were able to catch a glimpse of what we might be in store for the next game. The high-resolution, Twilight Princess-style graphics makes us wonder if Zelda will be returning to “realistic” visuals instead of the more cartoony look of Skyward Sword and Wind Waker. Either way, we’re excited to see how the Wii U’s peripherals will be integrated into the series’ gameplay. It may call for more drastic changes to the Zelda formula than ever before.

The Wii U’s tablet controller alone could theoretically introduce almost unlimited gameplay possibilities; at the very least, we’d expect the controller’s touchscreen to make for a super-efficient inventory system. Nintendo’s first-party games have always been a showcase for their consoles’ more innovative capabilities, and a Zelda game would make us want to try them all out immediately.

Epic Mickey HD

Epic Mickey didn’t have a great camera, or great controls, or – thanks to its exclusivity on Wii – the greatest visuals. What those flaws distracted from, however, was one of the best, most wonderfully imaginative game concepts of this generation. Mickey Mouse enters a wasteland version of the Disneyland theme park to confront and redeem his predecessor, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit – the very unlucky mascot that, if not for a twist of fate, would have enjoyed Mickey’s decades of fame and adoration instead. In the process, he platforms past a virtual museum of Disney trivia and fan service, from gleaming statues of Donald Duck to dusty piles of Mickey Mousecapade NES cartridges.

Now that Epic Mickey 2 is heavily rumored for release on 360 and PS3 later this year, gamers need a chance to catch up on the original… but this time, with an interface that works and an HD presentation that is as crisp and beautiful as Walt’s classic animation.

Super Mario Bros. Wii U

Once there was a time when the air was clean, gas was cheap, and every new Nintendo system launched with the best Mario game ever. NES, SNES, Game Boy and N64 all came out alongside another tour de force of Mario platforming, then all of a sudden things went wrong. Nintendo launched the GameCube with Luigi’s Mansion, GBA with a Mario 2 remake, and the Wii and 3DS didn’t even start out with a half-step Mario title. Wouldn’t it be great if Nintendo could actually launch a console with the successor to Super Mario Galaxy?

Nintendo has gone on record multiple times bemoaning the poor software launch the 3DS had, and how it doesn’t aim to repeat it on the Wii U later this year. So wouldn’t a totally new Mario adventure be the perfect antidote to a bummer launch? Something new and unique that completely changes the platforming genre would make any number of crummy launch titles bearable. What would be the magic fix? Well, we aren’t the geniuses at Nintendo who’ve been tasked with coming up with that, but we bet it’d involve a simple yet nuanced use of the new tablet controller, while keeping a classic Mario feel. Of course, it could just be a sequel to New Super Mario Bros Wii (which was a tech demo shown at E3), but at this point we’ll settle for New Mario Anything if it’s a launch game.

InFamous 3

InFamous 2 was a big step in the right direction for developer Sucker Punch’s new-ish franchise, improving on the original in countless ways while still retaining the things that made it fun – but it could have been so much more. And after the way it ended, we’re really curious to see what – if anything – will happen next.

[WARNING: POSSIBLE SPOILERS FOLLOW] It’s difficult to talk about a possible sequel to InFamous 2 without getting at least a little spoiler-y, because short of a really anticlimactic contrivance by the writers, only one of IF2’s two possible endings left the door open for a follow-up game. However, that ending carries some pretty interesting implications for a possible sequel, which we imagine would involve a new protagonist torn between whether to protect the dying remnants of humanity, or to join up with a rising master race of super-powered Conduits. If that’s the case, it’d be kind of a refreshing change to start back at square one with a new set of powers, wielded by a new character who, like Cole in the first game, is still coming to terms with what he’s become and what he can do.

Mikel Reparaz
After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.