Resident Evil The Mercenaries 3D

It used to be an unspoken rule that gamers put their thumbs on ice from May through August to indulge in Hollywood's big blockbusters or perhaps briefly poke their heads outside to catch a glimpse of the summer sun.

Not this year. Instead of squeezing all of their heavy hitters into the holiday shopping friendly period of the late fall, publishers are breaking the traditional summer dry spell and releasing some high profile games.

Here's a look at what will rock our gaming socks off this summer.

Red Faction: Armageddon

(Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
June 7

The somewhat tedious sandbox-style game structure of THQ’s shooter-on-Mars is gone in “Red Faction: Armageddon” but the action that lofted the mass destruction of buildings into a kind of explosive art remains.

As Darius Mason, the grandson of the hero Alec from “Red Faction: Guerrilla,” you’ll be taking on all sorts of crazy cultists and aliens on the Red Planet with a nice arsenal of weapons such as a Singularity Cannon -- which creates a miniature black hole that can suck an entire structure into it. Yep, sounds a bit dangerous.

Duke Nukem Forever

(Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
June 14

The temperature is rising, but hell may be freezing over now that “Duke Nukem Forever” is finally being released after 14 long years of lingering in video game purgatory. But the question remains: Will Duke’s famous catchphrase “Hail to the king, baby!” still ring true
after all this time?

It sounds like “Forever” developer Gearbox is on the right track by aiming for a ridiculously over-the-top shooter with knowingly self-conscious humor and plenty of Mature-rated hi-jinks -- big guns, gore, and scantily clad (or no clad at all) babes.

Dungeon Siege III

(Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
June 21

Forget the “Dungeon Siege” movie, a fantasy flick so laughably bad that star Jason Statham look embarrassed to be in it. The action-role-playing game franchise hopes to get its good name back when “Dungeon Siege III” hits next month.

Like the host of other Diablo-style RPG’s, the emphasis in Dungeon Siege is co-operative play, button-mashing action and plenty of booty (of the swords and magical rings kind.)

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

(Nintendo 3DS)
June 28

Considering the best game for the Nintendo 3DS still might be “Face Raiders” -- it’s an understatement to say that the little portable has a bit of an underwhelming library of games thus far.

That’s why we’re looking forward to the new Resident Evil so much. It’s an updated
port of "The Mercenaries" modes from the past three Resident Evil games -- usually unlocked after completing story mode -- where you square off against a zombie horde and a time limit. Zombies in 3D? Yes, please.

Dead Island

(Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
August 1

Zombie games might be a dime a dozen these days, but there’s another title that could very well stand out from the rest of the horde. “Dead Island,” in which the undead apparently have their own island paradise, has already managed to jack some serious hype because of the
haunting trailer released this spring that sent chills down the spine of even the most jaded of gamers.

The game appears to be living up to the buzz, as it combines the frantic cooperative action of “Left 4 Dead” with the weapon customization of “Dead Rising.”
 

Follow Ryan Smith on Twitter: @RyanSmithWriter

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