Out This Week

Sniper: Ghost Warrior 2

One Shot, Four Kills

War in space. War in the heavens. War in the jungle. Fist war. Wake me up when there’s a war on tacos.

By Drew Toal • March 12, 2013

Out This Week is a roundup of new games that are out this week. These listings don’t constitute an endorsement or a review of any sort. We also don’t pretend that this is an exhaustive list. If there’s a game on the horizon that interests you, share it in the comments.

God Of War: Ascension
PlayStation 3—March 12

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul made waves in the Senate last week for filibustering—standing on his feet and talking to delay a vote—to protest the Obama administration’s secretive drone policy. I feel like this thing wouldn’t have gone five minutes under Spartan law, the law of God Of War’s terse antihero Kratos. The minute Paul started to question the proposition that might makes right, a hulking representative from Hélos or Thérapné would’ve moved that the gentleman from Kentucky be cleaved him twain. That dog won’t hunt in the house of Lycurgus.

StarCraft II: Heart Of The Swarm (expansion)
Mac, PC—March 12

As swarms of zerg (Zergs? Zerg. Definitely zerg.) spread like horrible alien locusts across the galaxy, the future doesn’t look good for humankind. But does it ever? Now, I’m not a military man, but what I’d recommend is sending waves of genetically enhanced tardigrades, the common “moss piglet,” (which may or may not itself be extraterrestrial in nature) against these alien invaders. Tardigrades, while small, can survive the most insanely insane conditions in the universe and are sure to be our adorable little super soldier-space pets of the future.

Sniper: Ghost Warrior 2
PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360—March 12

Sniping is a popular thing in games and popular culture. The idea of a lone warrior bravely shooting some guy from a mile away is emblematic of modern ideas of honor and heroism. But let’s not forget who started the craze. Four words: “One shot. Two kills.” That’s a little Tom Berenger for you—let’s give it up for the star of Sniper, Sniper 2, and Sniper 3. Come to think of it, I think his buddy in the first movie was Billy Zane. It’s basically a Gary Busey short of being the greatest film of all time.

Darkstalkers: Resurrection
PlayStation 3, Xbox 360—March 12

I’m not man enough for fighting games. Real talk.

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83 Responses to “One Shot, Four Kills”

  1. DrFlimFlam says:

    Sometimes I really want to play all of the classic Capcom and SNK fighting series. But I’m terrible at them, so I stick to Soul Calibur.

    • PaganPoet says:

      I have a love-hate relationship with fighters. I love them to pieces, and can beat the singler-player arcade mode on the hardest difficulty with no problem, but I get to a point where it seems like every single person I face in an online match absolutely destroys me. It’s frustrating. Is everyone else in the world really that much better at these games than I am?

      • ChicaneryTheYounger says:

         Nah, everyone is put off online by the “super” players, what with their spamming and exploitation of infinites. Local (or organised online) multiplayer with a set of fair play rules is the only way to have fun playing.

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          I am awful at fighting games and never ever play them online, but it seems like if you have to make rules that say you can’t do this move or whatever because there is no way to counter them then the game is probably not balanced enough to be played competitively. 

        • ChicaneryTheYounger says:

          @Douchetoevsky:disqus Oh, when we play we just ban OP characters and certain play styles (wall-spamming, infinite locks).

          Tekken Tag Tournament 2 we ban Jun and Unknown.
          Ultimate: MvC3 we ban Sentinel, Wolverine and X-22.
          BlazBlue we ban… The red sword guy whose name I forget.

      • Simon Jones says:

        Odds are, yes. You are the worst person at fighting games in the world who isn’t me.  Fighting games are one of those things that people can become very, very good at and occasionally you will run across a person who has burnt their combos into muscle memory and who can read frame data. It’s fine, though. Just practice with one dude and eventually you’ll do okay.

        Some of them are also younger than you and therefor have the reflexes of a cobra on speed.

        Keep in mind the arcade mode has very little relationship with the multiplayer. This is because the computer both cheats and is dumber than a sack of bricks.

    • George_Liquor says:

      I’m terrible at them, too. Evidently, my brain can only remember one fighting game’s set of moves at a time. 

    • GhaleonQ says:

      Well, lots of their single-player modes tend to be pretty good, and if you’re clever enough for the Soul series, Warzard and S.N.K. Gals Fighters should be just as much a cinch.  At the very least, the aesthetics are some of the best in video games, so you’ll forget when the S.N.K. final bosses are throttling you before you’re aware the round has started.

  2. rvb1023 says:

    What does it say about me when the only thing I plan on buying this week is Darkstalkers Resurrection and I am not even that big of a fighting game guy?

  3. beema says:

    Man, I got zero gaming in this past weekend. My life has been awful lately, but that’s just the shit icing on the shit cake. I don’t know where my free time goes anymore. Considering the fact that I only work a 9-5 and do zero outside activities, I should have tons of time for games. But every night when I finally am ready to play, I look at the clock and it’s 12:30 and I have to go to sleep. :”(

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      I know the feeling (the bedtime part). I had hoped to really dig into the Thieves’ Guild this weekend, but it never really happened.

    • ItsTheShadsy says:

      Find a game you can play in chunks. There are a number of games on my docket (including Dishonored) that I just can’t get to because I know they’ll be big projects, and I can never psyche myself up to sit down for 6 hours of gaming.

      It’s much much easier to find time for games when you can safely play for an hour and not worry about being disoriented when you jump back in. (I stopped playing Fallout 3 for this reason. I can’t remember what weapons I liked, what I wanted to sell, where I was heading, etc.)

      I finished Crysis 2 over the course of a few months because the chapters are only about half an hour long each. Sometimes I would play 3 hours at a time; other times I would only do one mission and be able to stop.

      • Aurora Boreanaz says:

         Fortunately, Dishonored has fast save/load times…I managed to play through it in 30-60 minute chunks after my daughter was born.

        • ItsTheShadsy says:

          For me, it’s less the ability to save at any point than the structure. Big, seemingly bottomless games are just hard for me to digest than ones with discrete sections.

      • Nick says:

        I just can’t seem to get into Dishonored. I know it’s a good game and there’s things about it I really appreciate and think are well crafted, but I just can’t seem to click with it.
        I suppose I just got caught up in all the hype and bought a game that really wasn’t my type of game.

        • Merve says:

          That’s BioShock 1 and 2 for me. I know that they’re well-crafted, narratively daring games, but I just can’t muster any enthusiasm for them beyond, “Yup, they’re okay.” On the other hand, Infinite makes it look like Ken Levine picked my brain for all my complaints about the original BioShock and then made a game to cater to my tastes. We’ll see if that’s true in a couple of weeks.

        • Fluka says:

          Dishonored *is* my type of game, and even I have at best a cold admiration of it.  Beautiful, well-designed stealth, great world building, but I’d be hard pressed to say that I feel passionate about it.  Maybe it’s the workmanlike plot and silent protagonist?

        • beema says:

          I’m of the same mind as @Fluka:disqus . Dishonored is exactly my type of game, but for the life of me, I cannot get excited or passionate over it. It just doesn’t have that …soul, for lack of  better word, to it. It’s perfect in most ways, but it feels hollow.

      • beema says:

        Yeah, problem is I really like those “deep” and involved games. More “casual” fare really doesn’t appeal to me. But even with a chunky game, I would probably still struggle to find adequate time to play. I mean, for me, most games need at least 2 solid hours of play time or it feels pointless. But I can’t even find ONE solid hour these days. It’s really not the games… more my own issues.

        • ItsTheShadsy says:

          Hey, as I said, I haven’t touched Dishonored yet, so there’s a good chance I’m wrong about it. But the feeling I got just reading about the game gave me flashbacks to the massive timehole that is the original Deus Ex.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      Yikes, man.  I’m sorry you’re having a tough patch.  Are games even appealing to you right now, or is it that you’re existing in a fugue state until bedtime?

      • beema says:

        I can’t really tell. I almost do feel like even games are becoming difficult to enjoy with my current mental state. My brain always puts up all these barriers to sitting down and doing anything. I spend more time worrying about what to do or trying to decide on something than I do actually doing things. 
        Definitely not a fugue state. I’m plenty busy, just with pointless bullshit.

        I’m starting therapy soon, and possibly starting a new medication this week. Praying it starts making a difference sooner than later. I don’t want to bog you guys down with the details, but I’ve had depression for my entire adult life, but more recently, like the past year, it has become more severe and in addition I have developed some anxiety disorders and OCD issues. The few times in my life when I’m not mentally overwhelmed are generally when I’m completely distracted by something, like watching a TV show I follow, or playing a game. So it’s pretty frustrating that I haven’t even been able to find time to play games, to give myself a break.

        • PaganPoet says:

          I’m sorry to hear it. I hope the therapy provides an outlet for you to deal with your depression (and the meds help too). Albeit I only know you by your posts here, but you seem like a thoughtful, smart individual, and I genuinely hope you get access to the help and support you need.

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          I hope therapy works out for you. I have depression and anxiety so I know what you’re describing. Shit sucks. Seriously hope something works out for you.

        • Fluka says:

          Liking seems the wrong response to this, so I’ll like @PaganPoet:disqus ‘s post instead and echo everything that he said.  

        • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

          That’s a lot to be dealing with.  I’m glad you’re taking the steps you can, and I hope they yield positive results.
             This may sound super lame, but what about some bite-sized iOS game or something like that?  Something you can immediately pick up and play, has no lengthy warm-up and can be played ad infinitum?
             I dunno, dispensing game genre advice into the storm of depression feels a bit underwhelming, but I know how important any refuge is when you feel buried underneath so much shit.

        • ChicaneryTheYounger says:

          I feel for you Bee, and I know what it’s like being unable to enjoy the things you love. Trust me, keep fighting, keep going to therapy (it’ll go well), keep taking medication, you’ll beat it. Depression is conquerable, it’s not easy, but it’s beatable.

        • beema says:

          Thanks guys, I appreciate the support. Even just talking about it on here helps, in its own way :)

          @Spacemonkey_Mafia:disqus Ehh, I mean, back when I commuted to work on the subway I played stuff on my Android a lot (Plants v Zombies, and such), but outside of a situation like that I usually find it pretty difficult to get interested in those type of games. I have a couple smaller indie titles on Steam that sort of fit that bill but I can never bring myself to sit down and play them because I always see the “bigger” games staring me in the face and saying “This is a gaming PC! Not a phone! You stupid head!” In general I like really atmospheric games I can really get immersed in. 

          It’s funny, I’ve heard other people talk about this same problem without having the issues that I suffer from. Generally in relation to getting older — the older you get, the less time you have to play because of other responsibilities, and the games you DO have time to play are the ones you don’t care about (at least for people with that taste in games). I hate to complain about there being too many good games releasing, because that is the best kind of problem to have, but it sort of does add to my depression. Although I think that also plays off my OCD tendencies — feeling compelled to have to play EVERYTHING that looks good, instead of just being okay with letting some things pass by. Although with the backlog that pretty much every gamer I’ve talked to has, it seems like a pretty common issue, mental issues aside.

          and man did I just ramble.

  4. 2 weeks until Bioshock Infinite everybody…

    ARE YOU READY!!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      First release game in the FlimFlam household since Dragon Age: Origins or something! Woooo!!!

    • Aurora Boreanaz says:

      I’m looking forward to that too.

    • ToddG says:

      This post is relevant to my interests, as well.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      I’ve been harassing and pushing around minorities all week in preparation!
         It’s been a lot more visceral than how I prepared for the first one, which was by reading The Fountainhead in the tub.

    • PaganPoet says:

      I have an irrational love of art deco, and a general distaste for steampunk (other than FFVI), so I’m a bit disappointed about the art direction. Other than that, though, I’m pretty excited to see what this game has in store for us.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

        Art Deco, yes! Steampunk, noooo!

        So yeah, I really liked the first bioshock’s art design and stuff, but the game wasn’t very fun for me. Never played the second and I’m not hyped up for the next one at all. Plus that lady character gives me bad vibes, man. 

        And yeah, steampunk anything is more than enough to put me off of a game if I’m on the fence about it.

        • Fluka says:

          Wait, is BioShock Infinite considered steampunk?  It seems more…brasspunk to me? Or maybe ragtimepunk?  

          *Chastizes herself for throwing around the suffix “-punk” all willy-nilly.*

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        I’d argue the style is more Chicago School/ Gothic Revival Neocolonialism with just enough Steampunk thrown in to lubricate the necessary engine of the game’s conceit.
           As opposed to a primarily Steampunk-driven aesthetic orgy of superfluous brass bindings and barrel slats that today’s trench coat and corset fetishists have clamped onto with such surprisingly undying fervor.

    • beema says:

      I want to play, but I’ve reached that point where I think I need to build a new PC. I COULD play it on lower settings, but really, what’s the point of that?

      Only problem is I have neither the time nor the money for that right now :(

      • George_Liquor says:

        I hear that. I start thinking of all the crap I could hawk on eBay to finance a new PC, but then I feel guilty about the amount of bills I should pay off by hawking said crap.

    • Raging Bear says:

      It comes in the middle of a visit from my friend from Japan, who probably doesn’t to come all that way to sit around watching me play Bioshock Infinite for a few days, but that’s exactly what’s going to happen.

    • The game seems to be on PSN already…

  5. djsubversive says:

    I know it’s not Friday yet, but: the Arma 3 alpha is available now, and has been for a week or so. Effigy, Mooy, and myself all took the plunge. Here’s Mooy and Effigy sleeping on the job (a known bug that sometimes affects people and sometimes doesn’t). Since pictures are almost always neater than the descriptions of them: my Arma 3 Alpha screenshots. so far, the pictures have mostly been of an “oh, that’s a neat feature” and “oh, look, something bugged out” nature.

    I like it so much more than Arma 2, even in an alpha version. It looks much better, sounds wonderful (Arma 2 sounded pretty good, though), and the AI seems to use a bit more tactical maneuvering. I haven’t had to deal with people hiding behind bushes and shooting me from 300 meters away yet, so that’s a plus. But they still seem to pick up on our presence from quite a distance, even at night. Also: the Short Grass mod is a default feature now!

    As far as the editor… A lot of the little problems and annoyances from Arma 2’s editor seem to have been fixed and a lot of the commands and outside-the-editor functions (creating tasks and briefings, placing predefined combinations of units and buildings for farms/villages/camps/bases) have been better-integrated. Some awesome things, like having an “elevation” setting for units, since the “setPos” command was one of the most-used when placing air vehicles and fine-tuning furniture and stuff (computers and radios sitting on top of tables). And adding the Functions Library and Debug Console right into the editor; the Functions library in Arma 2 was accessible by placing a radio trigger with a script call and a player unit in the editor, then starting the map and activating the radio trigger – this popped up the Functions library, which you could look at and copy functions to the clipboard, but in order to actually USE any of them, you’d have to exit the mission and go back to the editor. Now, I can just click the “Functions Library” button on the top of the screen. 

    Again, it’s in alpha, so a lot of the functions and documentation are missing, but what’s there seems to be working all right, and what’s not there is just teasing me (sites that can be “captured,” automatic task- and briefing-creation tools, and more buildings/objects/weapons/vehicles).

    This has been the most I’ve probably said about the game since I installed it, because I’ve been too busy playing (well, fucking around in the editor). 

    This means Skyrim will most likely suffer (but here’s a sweet picture of a dragon who circled overhead a few times, then flew away like a punk). PlanetSide 2, probably not so much, because I like playing with the Gameological folks, and I’ll need to take breaks from Arma-ing occasionally. :D

    • ItsTheShadsy says:

      God that game looks visually stunning and immersive, but I just couldn’t get over the every-button-on-the-keyboard controls of ArmA II. Is it the same deal this time around?

      • ChicaneryTheYounger says:

        Same deal. Also, helicopters are hard :(

      • djsubversive says:

        Yes. ArmA 2 is the reason I switched to using ESDF for movement, so I could have access to more keys quickly (A for the compass is really handy).

    • ChicaneryTheYounger says:

      Did you get a screenshot of my helicoptering skills?

      • djsubversive says:

         well, I got a screenshot of the RESULT of your helicoptering skills. That’s sort of the same thing.

  6. boardgameguy says:

    on the tabletop front, a new board game called KEYFLOWER gets wider release this week.  it’s super fun, mixing a lot of different game mechanics from euros seamlessly.  lots of strategies, lots of fun.  definitely check it out.  http://gamesalute.com/game-salute-announces-keyflower-publication/

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

      I tend to shy away from new releases in boardgames because a) I’m pretty new to the hobby and there are TONS of olderish games that I want to try out and b) it seems to me that people tend to dis-proportionally hype up new games.  It’s hard for me to find reliable reviews. So far Sit Down and Shut Up has proven to be my favorite review site (and they added a weekly news article recently!) but even then my tastes differ from theirs sometimes. 

      I think I’ve played enough games now though that I have a grasp on what mechanics I like and the types of games I will enjoy, but I’m still trying to sample all of the mechanics and stuff. I still haven’t played a worker placement game, for example.Boardgames are hard. 

      • boardgameguy says:

        i hear you about the hype that accompanies new games.  i only recommend KEYFLOWER because, in this case, i managed to play an advanced copy that was sent to a reviewer and i personally enjoyed it greatly.

        on the whole, i love that board games aren’t dependent on being backwards compatible with new technology so you never have trouble going back and playing the classics.  hearing other gameological commenters describe the lengths they go to in order to play early PC games does not sound enjoyable.

        no worker placement?  we need to get you a copy of agricola or caylus, stat!

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          So you’d recommend Agricola and Caylus to a relative nooby who plays with even more nooby people? I was looking at those and Castles of Burgundy which SD&SU recommended. Agricola sounds kind of cute. I like Harvest Moon enough. 

          And yeah, I didn’t mean to suggest that I didn’t appreciate your recommendation of Keyflower or anything. Just a trend I’ve noticed among boardgamers.

          Also, YES. I love the idea that a boardgame has everything you need right there in the box. It’s fantastic. Plus playing games with other humans in the same room is pretty much the best. I love games that take advantage of that physicality. One of my absolute favorite moments I’ve had playing a game was when I betrayed my friend in the Game of Thrones boardgame. He was Lannister and I was Greyjoy, so we had an alliance because I had never played before but he had. He never even suspected I would do it, and it changed the whole feel of the game. It was fucking spectacular. His face was priceless. 

          PLAY BOARDGAMES EVERYONE.

        • boardgameguy says:

          you have a fair point that agricola and caylus may seem a bit overwhelming at first, but if you are all learning together and you don’t mind difficulty, i don’t see any reason not to start with the best.  i too was introduced to agricola when i was a relative nobody to board games, but immediately fell in love with it.  i think where it works well is that the theme plays out so strongly and there is room for experimentation (if you don’t mind failing spectacularly).

          if that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, castles of burgundy is a really great option too.  using the dice as your worker placement is pretty fun and the game keeps your options open pretty broadly as long as you don’t repeatedly roll the same number.

          seriously though, everyone should at least give good board games a second chance, although i’m skeptical about how many people are still reading this thread apart from us.

  7. Tardigrades are simultaneously adorable and terrifying.

    • exant says:

      They will be chompin’ moss and lookin’ cute long after the Empire of Man has fallen.

    • The_Misanthrope says:

       Why do all electron micrographs look like some unreal non-organic thing?  It looks like some oddly-shaped pillow with a juice-box-style opening.

    • Raging Bear says:

      Simultaneously adorable and terrifying, hence their other name: “waterbears” (I guess also simultaneously watery).

  8. stakkalee says:

    Have no fear of Zergs, Drew!  Science shows that humanity would have a slight advantage over the other 2 races, and if we pursue a preemptive strategy we’ll eventually triumph, and we’ll be the ones spreading like locusts across the galaxy!  Ah, Science – telling humans how awesome we are for the past 3000 years!

  9. valondar says:

    There’s part of me that still sort of wants to buy Starcraft 2, but that’s mostly for the Galaxy Editor. I don’t like the idea that the game launched with what, one campaign, and it’s taken them this long to release the second one?

    • Travis Stewart says:

      The only reason I’m interested is to see what they’ve done with the side options in the campaign. I like the idea of playing a bit loose with mechanics in the single-player, especially when army customization is involved. Most RTS games don’t really bother with that, since the real action is considered to be in the multiplayer.

      Speaking of which: Was the campaign itself really the cause of the delays? My impression was that it had more to do with rebalancing the multiplayer to handle the new units and such. And that supposed “revamp” of Battle.Net.

      • valondar says:

         It’s more that this campaign is the kind of content that was available with the original Starcraft at launch and I don’t like expansions doing the job of core single player gameplay.

        But then I’m off living on some odd universe where single player actually matters in a Blizzard RTS.

    • HobbesMkii says:

      I would hold out for the third release (and then probably wait a bit for a price drop). I caved and bought Heart & Wings this weekend because the bundle was the price of a single full game, but if I had better willpower, I wouldn’t have done that.

    • DadlikedThomasEdison says:

      I get the “I want three races in one game” feeling. I don’t get the “it launched with one campaign” complaint when that tries to compare SC1 to SC2. How many missions per campaign is a better comparison.

      If the fact you don’t get to play all 3 races is enough to keep you from the game, fair enough, but for some people who complain about one campaign it’s hard to tell.

      • valondar says:

        Unless you’re saying the first campaign is actually as long in content as the combined campaigns of the original Starcraft, not entirely sure what you’re getting at.

        If it is, honestly first I heard, I haven’t paid a lot of attention to SC2 honestly.

        • DadlikedThomasEdison says:

          It’s one mission short of SC1 – I am not including Brood War. Four or five short if you do a complete run through but don’t touch the choice missions or the secret mission. It is possible to make it even shorter if you just rush to the end.

    • Ardney says:

      Does it still require a connection to Bnet to play the campaign? I’m assuming it does as it’s an “expansion” and that is pretty much what’s keeping me from getting it.

      Not that my one withheld sale will send any kind of message to corporate but hey, it’s the principle of the thing :P

      • valondar says:

         I’m pretty sure Starcraft 2 needs you to be always online, but at least it’s less stupid about it – or so I’m told – than Diablo 3.

        But yeah, plenty of reasons not to buy it outright.

        • Chalkdust says:

          No, SC2 doesn’t require always-online.  You have to login occasionally (doing so refreshes the ‘offline license’ for 30 days), but you can play campaign, VS AI and custom games offline otherwise.

  10. Effigy_Power says:

    “The idea of a lone warrior bravely shooting some guy from a mile away is emblematic of modern ideas of honor and heroism.”

    What happened to hand to hand combat? That was good enough for centuries.