Aliens, sports cars and dragons should make this a banner year.
2012 is over. That said, it's time to look ahead to the New Year, which already promises to be the best ever for iPhone and iPad games. From beautiful racers to resurrected classics, we have more than enough titles to drool over. On that note, check out the games we're most looking forward to.
Real Racing 3
Electronic Arts put this highly anticipated sequel in our hands a couple months ago, and in the process, blew us away. This is the closest anyone's come to producing a photo realistic racer on iPhone and iPad, with real world vehicles dripping with detail, complimented by real-time reflections. Throw in asynchronous multiplayer, and there's a great chance Real Racing 3 will be in game of the year discussions come December 2013.
Infinity Blade Dungeons
Unless Epic pulls off a surprise release, it appears this promising dungeon crawler won't appear in 2013, which is perfectly fine, as it gives us something sweet to look forward to. A spin-off of Chair Entertainment's Infinity Blade adventures, Dungeons features a top-down perspective, the option to take on multiple enemies at once and plenty of loot. We haven't seen it since June 2012, and even then, it was addictive. Can't wait to enjoy the final version.
Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas
The odds of Nintendo bringing its Legend of Zelda franchise to iOS appear slim, so gamers will have to take the next best thing (we hope) with this promising and very Wind Waker inspired effort from Cornfox & Bros. Oceanhorn casts players as a young boy out to save his world from some intimidating sea creature. Suffice to say, it'll involve much dungeon crawling, though sailing apparently factors into the gameplay. Definitely keep an eye on this one.
The talented developers at Camouflaj turned a lot of heads with this gorgeous stealth-based adventure, where players guide a young woman to safety from a remote location. With little information to go by, Republique's visuals take center stage, and for good reason. It's without question one of the most attention-grabbing iOS games we've seen.
How bad does the gaming community want to play Shadowrun Returns? Developer Harebrained Schemes requested just $400,000 on Kickstarter to fund the project, and diehard fans helped the studio smash that figure to the tune of $1.8 million. That kind of cash has afforded new platforms and gameplay features, easily making this one of the hottest games of the New Year, and why not? Who doesn't want to lose themselves within a futuristic cyberpunk fantasy world overrun with dragons, elves and dwarves? With Shadowrun creator Jordan Weisman at the helm, this game's in great hands.
Angry Birds Next
It's a safe bet that Rovio Entertainment will release one or more Angry Birds games in 2013, along with updates for Angry Birds Seasons and Angry Birds Star Wars. At this point, though, it remains to be seen whether these new titles will involve some sort of Hollywood tie-in, or be wholly original. Angry Birds Space 2? Angry Birds Marvel? Angry Birds Disney? We'll have to wait and see.
Smartphone and tablet first person shooters often suffer from awkward virtual controls. DeNA and Scattered Entertainment will look to change that with The Drowning, a post apocalyptic romp through a world populated by nasty mutants, the byproduct of a weird toxic sludge. Instead of going with dual sticks, the developers transform a person's fingers into a weapon's iron sights. We're skeptical, but if early screenshots are anything to go by, both parties are off to a solid start.
It's been too long since we've had a quality Alien Vs. Predator video game. Developer Angry Mob Games will seek to change that with a phenomenal looking 3D beat-em-up starring these iconic movie monsters. With multiple Predator/Alien types and plenty of gore, we hope this title remains on our iOS devices for quite some time.
Full Control teamed with Games Workshop to resurrect the popular Space Hulk series for iOS. This new effort will once again pit Space Marine Terminators against the horrific Genestealers aboard a vessel adrift in deep space. One of its highlights, head-to-head multiplayer, should provide a welcome battle of wits.