* Afrika for PS3 is out and getting good reviews. There has been no official announcement that it will be released outside Japan, which is too bad for Sony because it's one of the few console-exclusive titles that might convince me to buy a PS3. If you like the idea of Afrika but don't have a PS3 or don't read Japanese, you may enjoy "Safari Photo Africa: Wild Earth" for PC, by Ubisoft.
* October is a big month for Xbox 360 owners who like free-roam games:
-- Saints Row 2 will let you visit the Stilwater of the future. The first SR offered first-rate customization options for your avatar, clothing, and vehicles, and this one aims to build on that precedent. (My favorite SR1 car: the Gunslinger, a heavy yet sleek early-1950's 2-door sedan.) SR1 also had very entertaining gameplay and a great UI -- so well-designed that GTA IV took some pointers from it. The writing and setting were crude enough to make the GTA series look like it was written by a bunch of hoity-toity snobs, and the humor was hit-or-miss, but it was enough fun to get me to play through it at least 3 times.
-- Coming out a week after SR2 and on the same day as each other: Far Cry 2 and Fable 2. Far Cry 2 is Afrika with guns instead of cameras, in a world roughly the size of Just Cause (which is to say, massive), and the only wildlife is herbivores, sorry. Fable 2 is a big slightly-post-medieval-fantasy world (i.e., it has guns, but might not yet have steampunk). Both look very promising and both could betray that promise. I have Far Cry (360) and Fable (backwards-compatible on 360) and have never finished either, so we'll see what happens. Which will I play first (assuming I can finish SR2 in the week before they come out)? I'm guessing I'll try Fable first because after SR2 I'll probably be ready for a change of pace from submachine-gun fire.
-- Fallout 3 is from the makers of Oblivion and uses a lot of the same technology. Like Oblivion, it's got a big open world and stylish visuals. Unlike Oblivion, it takes place after a nuclear war and everything looks to have been designed in the mid- to late-1950's. I'm hoping it will also be unlike Oblivion in the number of game-killing bugs present in the initial release.
Sep 29 2008, 6:38 pm (Edited on Sep 29 2008, 6:48 pm)