With the global economy in a shambles the past few years, many people have had to opt out of more expensive vacations and stay closer to home to be entertained. The gaming industry certainly has not suffered as has most of the economy when viewing their year-on-year sales growth for the past two years. Despite the economic ramifications, I would like to think that the continued growth of gaming also has to do with the quality of titles being released.
This year has already seen the release of some big titles, such as Assassin's Creed Brotherhood, Call of Duty: Black Ops, reboot of the NFS franchise Hot Pursuit, Dead Space 2, Dragon Age II, Fable III, Fallout New Vegas, Portal 2, L.A. Noire as well as the latest installment of the Mortal Kombat series. So far, 2011 hasn't been too bad at all, and has been a lot of variety in the various genres. In fact, I personally can't remember the last time we've had such an embarrassment of riches in the first 6 months of the year.
This is a good thing since developers and publishers are starting to realize that they don't need to squeeze everything into the 4th quarter of each year. In the past, too many games in such a small release window led to a lot of games falling through the cracks. By spreading out the titles evenly throughout the calendar year, I believe that more of the really good games will garner better sales overall. Even the PC has had a lot of good releases from Call of Duty, Crysis 2, Portal 2 Sims 3 Medieval, Shogun 2: Total War and the heavily anticipated Witcher 2.
Despite this, there are still a boatload of games that I am personally looking forward to before the end of 2011. Here are my picks for the balance of the year:
Gears of War 3 (duh), Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3, Battlefield 3, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Future Soldier, Aliens: Colonial Marines, RAGE
Batman: Arkham City, Devil May Cry, Assassin's Creed Revelations
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, BioShock Infinite, Star Wars The Old Republic (YES!!!)
Driver: San Francisco, Need for Speed: The Run, Forza Motorsport 4
I'm sure that there are other titles that I may have missed. Even this list would be challenging enough for me to pick up without breaking the budget. So what are you looking forward to? Add your feedback to the comment section below!