E-Sports – The Current Landscape
I had a lengthy discussion the other day with a friend of mine with whom I share a common interest in game genres. We are also both fans of watching, but not playing, Starcraft 2. Currently, the biggest games being played as E-Sports are League of Legends, Halo: Reach, Call of Duty, and Starcraft 2. The genres are rather limited. There is one RTS, one MOBA game, and two FPS games. Why aren’t other genres represented?
Well folks, Arena.net has finally announced a retail launch date for Guild Wars 2: August 28th, 2012. For those of you who pre-purchased, you’ll be glad to know that you will be getting a three day head start, with access open on August 25th, 2012.
If you haven’t bought your copy, you should do it now, as they have not officially given a cut-off date to still be eligible for the head-start, so why risk it if you were already planning to buy it?
- Windows XP Service Pack 2 or better
- Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0 GHz, Core i3, AMD Athlon 64 X2 or better
- NVIDIA GeForce 7800, ATI Radeon X1800,Intel HD 3000 or better (256MB of video RAM and shader model 3.0 or better)
- 25 GB available HDD space
- Broadband Internet connection
- Keyboard and mouse
I’ve been meaning to do some updates on some other games as I’ve been busy lately, but there are a few games I am looking forward to that I wanted to highlight for the second half of 2012.
Torchlight 2 – Summer 2012
This action RPG looks incredibly polished and created by some of the older Blizzard North developers who worked on Diablo and Diablo 2. From the look of the gameplay videos coming out of beta so far, it looks like it’ll be a great and simple game that stresses the funadmentals of ARPGs. With four character classes and a new overworld system, 30 hours of gameplay, and mods, I think this game will do great, especially at $19.99.
Guild Wars 2 – Fall 2012
I’ve mentioned this MMORPG a couple times before on this blog and I think it is one of the best titles to come around in a while. With the DAoC-like WvWvW system, dynamic combat, and an e-sports emphasis, I think this game will go far. The F2P model concerns me (more of a social/community issue that I’ll touch upon in another post) but the game will be good regardless.
Natural Selection 2 – Q4 2012
First person shooters are fun. Real-time Strategy is fun. But combining them both? It works! In this sequel to the popular Natural Selection game on the Half-Life engine, the game has a new engine, better graphics and animations, tweaks, and new gameplay mechanics. Definitely a game to look forward to if you enjoy labyrinth-like levels and team-based strategy.
More updates to come!
According to a Blizzard slideshow presentation on their 2011 Q4 financial results, they reveal on page 18 that they will be aiming for a Q2 launch for Diablo 3, the latest game in the Diablo franchise. The same slide also reveals that more information will be out for World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria on March 19th. Mists of Pandaria will be the 4th expansion pack and will feature the new continent of Pandaria, a raise in the level cap from 85 to 90, as well as new game features.