…Why I Don’t Have Time To Explain

What feels like an eternity ago, I pounded out a lackluster but honest article about the three most pivotal games of 2016.

For the nerdy, the subtitle probably tickled some funny bones. In the ever-controversial game “Destiny,” a character fittingly called “The Stanger” famously says at one point, “I don’t have time to explain why I don’t have time to explain.” The Stranger, for the record, is voiced by Lauren Cohen, who plays Maggie in AMC’s The Walking Dead. When I started playing Destiny, I’d never watched The Walking Dead. As of today, I’m 100% caught up and awaiting the back half of season 7. The point of all this? Destiny has been part of my DNA for…a while. I grew up with this game, by God. It’s a part of me.

It’s strange, therefore, and oddly fitting (and in equal parts exciting and surreal) that two of my most anticipated games of 2017 are callbacks to my college years. It was 2010, I was a senior in college, and I split my nights between two games: Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption and Bioware’s Mass Effect 2. For the gamers out there, these two titles speak for themselves. For those of you who don’t game, suffice it to say (in the words of the venerable Joe Biden) they were a big fucking deal.

Without further ado, the games I’m looking forward to most in 2017.

Zelda: Breath of the Wild

This one goes even further back. The first Zelda game I ever played (much like the majority of my generation) was the Ocarina of Time on the Nintendo 64. I will never forget the first time I struck out into the tall grass in that game and found a boulder that, when pushed, revealed a secret tunnel through the face of a cliff. I think there was a maze hidden on the far side of that tunnel. It was revelatory to nine-year-old-me. The world of that game felt massive. I could get lost in it.

With Nintendo’s upcoming game Zelda: Breath of the Wild, slated to come out March 3rd 2017, the game world will actually be massive – and not just in my imagination. Gameplay looks crisp, colorful and beautiful – something Nintendo could really capitalize on in a world in dire need of colorful games. My not-so-inner child will no doubt spend far too much time climbing up hills and jumping off them with Link’s super-nifty hang glider, not to mention picking fights I’ve got no chance of winning with gangly monsters with huge heads and even bigger teeth. Here’s to 2017 being awesome…and to the return of a childhood friend.

Red Dead Redemption II

What do I even say about this one.

Red Dead Redemption was the Western of my time – I showed up too late on the scene to really experience the glory of the spaghettis. I never got the experience of seeing Clint Eastwood up on the silver screen, squaring off to an iconic soundtrack by Ennicio Morricone. John Marston and his adventures in the nameless American west will live on forever in my imagination, and with the announcement of Red Dead Redemption II, I have high hopes that we will get a sequel worthy of the predecessor. The brief, just-enough-to-make-you-mad teaser trailer floored me, boasting stunning environments and the familiar dust and gunpowder tone of Red Dead Redemption.

While facts concerning this sequel-to-the-sequel are sparse, we have a few guesses: this game is going to be huge. Consider the map size of Grand Theft Auto V, which was bound by the limitations of the previous generation. It was vast and dense (made even moreso in the well-advised current generation update) and had a good story, to boot. I prefer the Red Dead franchise to begin with, so I absolutely cannot wait to see what Rockstar does with this game. Let’s go back out West. 2010 is making a comeback. Which brings me to…

Mass Effect: Andromeda

What’s there to say about this one. If you’re a Mass Effect fan you understand. If you’re not…go play Mass Effect and join the cult. Brace for the worst “last-ten-minutes” of any game ever. (Also, Mass Effect 3 was depressing beginning to end, so…there’s that.) Mass Effect: Andromeda has been kept pretty well under wraps, with a release date of March 21st 2017. Whether that’s because it’s terrible or because it’s going to come out and absolutely blow us away, only time will tell. What I’ve seen of the gameplay is…promising, but also cautionary. Mass Effect tipped me towards science fiction during a formative period of my life – it’s my hope that Andromeda will revitalize the franchise, and take us back to the stars.

That’s all for now, friends. Look for a review (and in depth thought process) about the recent film La La Land.

-R

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-A & R, Intercoastals


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