No joke, there are only seven titles worth checking out this month. Coming off of March’s rather stacked calendar, April is looking pretty light in comparison. However, don’t be sad. Dry those eyes. Think of it this way: you get to enjoy five games while also having time to take advantage of the season and its (hopefully) beautiful weather. That’s right, we’re actually recommending you gamers get outside and get some sun. Go on, get!
Devil May Cry HD Collection
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3 / Release Date: 4/3/2012
What It Is: Collecting the first three Devil May Cry titles, the Devil May Cry HD Collection lets you relive the adventures of Dante with sexy, high definition visuals.
CraveOnline’s Call: This collection comes easily recommended if you’re a fan of the Devil May Cry games. Sure, Devil May Cry 2 wasn’t the strongest, but the original and third entry more than make up for the second’s downfalls.
Kinect Star Wars
Platforms: Xbox 360 (Kinect) / Release Date: 4/3/2012
What It Is: The long-awaited, much feared Kinect title from a galaxy far, far away finally hits shelves at the beginning of the month. Kinect Star Wars offers up five distinct game modes: a story mode called “Dark Side Rising”; a destruction mode where you get to rampage as Jabba’s favorite pet, a rancor; a podracing mode; a lightsaber battle mode called “Duel of the Fates”; and, lastly, a dance mode that simulates what you’d find in Dance Central, only with far more Twi’leks and Death Star disco balls (*shivers*).
CraveOnline’s Call: This one is an enigma. On one hand we love Star Wars and anything it breeds. But on the other hand, what we’ve seen of Kinect Star Wars has not impressed. The game looks sloppy, frankly. It doesn’t look like the peripheral-saving messiah we’re being told it is. This is a title we’re cautiously optimistic about. You should be the same.
Platform: Wii / Release Date: 4/6/2012
What It Is: After two years of waiting, Americans will finally be able to purchase the incredibly popular Wii role-playing game, Xenoblade Chronicles. Since its initial launch in Japan in 2010, Xenoblade Chronicles has racked up dozens of review scores exceeding 9s. We’re not geniuses, but that’s considered pretty good.
CraveOnline’s Call: If you’re a Wii owner and an RPG fan, Xenoblade Chronicles seems like a safe bet. The drip of games for Nintendo’s console has been incredibly slow ever since The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword released late last year, so if you’re looking for something to give you a reason to dust that sucker off, this looks like a solid pickup.
Platform: PC / Release Date: 4/12/2012
What It Is: The Tribes franchise returns with this free-to-play first-person shooter. The game has been in beta the last few months and our own Mike White has been playing and enjoying the experience to date. But on April 12th Tribes: Ascend exits the beta period and enters full-blown final build mode (barring any patches post launch). This is classic Tribes action with a few upgrades, namely weapon loadouts and classes.
CraveOnline’s Call: This game is free. If you’re a PC gamer there’s no reason not to download it and give it a spin. Tribes is one of those classic franchises with a huge cult following. It’s also a first-person shooter experience that requires patience and eventually skill to succeed. This isn't your run-n-gun Call of Duty experience where you just blinding spam the fire button and pray. If you’re looking for a FPS that actually challenges you as a player, Tribes: Ascend is for you. And again, it’s free. Free.
Platform: Xbox Live Arcade / Release Date: 4/13/2012
What It Is: Fez is an independently developed title from studio Polytron. The game was originally announced back in 2007 and has been subject to a long and turbulent development cycle (chronicled in detail in Indie Game: The Movie). However, development hell is now behind Polytron as Fez finally sees release on the Xbox Live Arcade platform this month. The game is a 2D platforming with shifting 3D landscapes, not unlike Paper Mario and the lesser known Crush.
CraveOnline’s Call: It’s been a long time coming, but we’ll finally get our hands on Fez in just a few short weeks. The game has cleaned up during award circuits, making us understandably excited to play it. We’re expecting great things from this title. Hopefully it doesn’t let us down.
The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
Platform: Xbox 360 / Release Date: 4/17/2012
What It Is: The absolutely amazing The Witcher 2 from developer CD Projekt RED finally makes the transition from PC to Xbox 360. The “Enhanced Edition,” as this version is being called, introduces new story elements as well as new gameplay missions to flesh out the world of The Witcher and make the game’s third act feel more robust and engaging.
CraveOnline’s Call: This one is an easy recommendation. If you’re an Xbox 360 owner that has not yet dabbled in The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings, do yourself a favor and pick up this game when it releases. Our PC guru, Mike White, loved the shit out of this title when he reviewed the PC edition last year. The Xbox 360 version might not look as slick as its PC brother, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that it’s still a great looking title with fantastic gameplay and a truly memorable narrative (that plays out differently every time you fire it up).
Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3 / Release Date: 4/24/2012
What It Is: The Prototype franchise returns with a new lead protagonist. This time around you play as James Heller, who is on a quest to destroy the Blacklight virus and exact his revenge on Alex Mercer for inadvertently killing his family during the original Prototype. This sequel will feature more powers, smarter enemy A.I. and a reimagined New York City split into three distinct “zones” which open up as the player progresses forward.
CraveOnline’s Call: The original Prototype was a hit-or-miss type of game. It did some things really well, but other things were all botched up. We’re hoping Radical Entertainment learned from their mistakes and took that knowledge into the development of Prototype 2. We played the title at the New York Comic-Con last year and enjoyed what we saw. However, we’re not going to give a firm recommendation on this one just yet. We’re on a wait and see policy.
If you want to see the full April release schedule, head over to VG Releases.