If you own an Xbox 360 then by now you should know about the Summer of Arcade promotion that happens around this time of year. This summer marks the fifth installment of this promotion and we’ll be taking a look at which titles to expect! One thing to take note is that if you purchase three or more of the following titles then you will receive a 400 MSP ($5 USD) credit.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD
The promotion kicks off with an upgrade to a fan favorite. Tony Hawk games had their time in the sun roughly a decade ago cranking out sequel after sequel. Most fans can agree though that the best of the series was with the original titles which is exactly what Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD is looking to bring back.
High definition graphics are certainly the first aspect you will notice in THPS HD along with a return to the roots of what made these games so much fun to play. I was personally never a skateboarding fan but the gameplay just hooked me right in and made it addicting to pull off high scoring tricks and collect all of the little “knick knacks” (letters for SKATE, hidden video tapes). Seeing this title bring the core experience back to the glory days is definitely intriguing and should be worth the purchase for anyone who fondly remembers grinding on rails for days against their friends.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD will be the first release on July 18th and is priced for 1,200 MSP ($15 USD).
Next up we have a Kinect title. Much like how Fruit Ninja Kinect was the motion control game in the last Summer of Arcade promotion, Wreckateer fulfills that role this year.
Wreckateer is a physics based game where you used your body to pull back and fire cannonballs at various structures like castles and bridges. It has drawn some fair comparisons to Angry Birds in terms of gameplay alone. I will admit that the physics used is pretty impressive at first but much like most Kinect titles, there isn’t a whole lot of depth here. It’s certainly no Boom Blox based on what has been shown so far. This may be worth a download if there’s more to it than just simply smashing things.
Wreckateer will be the second release on July 25th and is priced for 800 MSP ($10 USD).
Now comes my most anticipated title, Deadlight. Think of a combination between Shadow Complex, The Walking Dead, and a dash of style from Limbo and that’s this game in a nutshell.
Post apocalyptic settings has certainly been the “in” thing lately. As long as it’s done well though then I have no problem with that being used as the setting for Deadlight. You play as Randall Wayne, a survivor of an event that has ravaged the world in the 1980’s. You will explore and gather supplies while searching for your family across Seattle and kill a few zombies along the way. The story seems like your standard fair much like the recently released I Am Alive however the setting and mood is what really draws me in. I’m not sure if I’m 100% sold on the way you aim your guns just yet but nitpicks aside, this is my choice for standout title in 2012’s Summer of Arcade.
Deadlight will be the third release on August 1st and is priced for 1,200 MSP ($15 USD).
Truly a testament to how no genre is left behind when it comes to XBLA games, we now look at a third person shooter (with jetpacks!) called Hybrid.
Those who like their shooters to be fast and frenetic ought to like this one. Hybrid appears to take what makes Halo multiplayer fun with fast moving and strategic gameplay all in a third person perspective. I particular like the level of customization you can give your character. Will different helmets and other items yield special stats or abilities? I sure hope so! In any case, this is looking like a sweet title and one no shooter fan should miss out on.
Hybrid will be the fourth release on August 8th and is priced for 1,200 MSP ($15 USD).
Dust: An Elysian Tail
Last but certainly not least is a surprising and gorgeous action RPG called Dust: An Elysium Tail.
I’ll admit, this game was not on my radar at all upon writing this. It has now fast become my second most anticipated game from the Summer of Arcade lineup. You play as Dust, a mysterious warrior on a quest to find out about his past. Your weapons and abilities can be upgraded as you battle enemies in an open world. Stylistically, I am in love with this game. There was a lot of devotion and care put into the look of Dust and it shows. Not only that, the gameplay appears to be real sharp as well! A good variety of attacks are available to really mix things up in combat and is accessible enough for gamers of all skill types. Color me impressed!
Dust: An Elysian Tail will be the fifth release on August 15th and is priced for 1,200 MSP ($15 USD).