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Which game are you looking forward to the most?

Fallout 4
Super Mario Maker
Halo 5: Guardians
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Star Wars: Battlefront

 Written by Matt Swider  on December 06, 2012

PS3 Games Guide 2012: The best PlayStation 3 games that are new in 2012 don’t come from Sony in disc form. The company is leading the downloadable game trend.

The Gift Guides
  • PlayStation 3
  • Xbox 360

  • The two of the three best PS3 games made by Sony and in time for 2012’s holiday season are downloadable titles, not disc-based games. This interesting twist from last year contrasts with Sony’s heavy-hitters like Uncharted 3, Killzone 3 and Resistance 3. In 2012, the company flexes its creative muscle with PlayStation Network games and, for the most part, leaves third-party publishers to the disc-based retail store warfare.

    Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time amazon

    Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time

    We’ve always had a soft-spot for good-guy criminal Sly Cooper, and his return to the home console in the fourth installment of the Sly Cooper series steals the limelight once again in 2012. His gang - including returning characters Bentley and Murray - poses new stealth moves and take on epic bosses. With humor thrown into the mix and cross-play that allows you to download a version of the same game for PS Vita, this is the one Sony disc-based game that should steal some of your holiday cash.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Unfinished Swan download

    The Unfinished Swan

    The Unfinished Swan continues Sony’s streak of making digitally distributed games that are out of the ordinary. This long-in-development game has you explore a mysterious, hidden kingdom and incorporates creative gameplay mechanics like splattering a white world with paint to unearth the environment around you. It’s certainly the most interesting game to release on the PS3 in 2012 and, with an open mind, something you’ll enjoy if you’re up for out-of-this-world puzzle-platformer gameplay.

    Price at GameStop

    Joruney PS3 download


    Journey for PS3 is another fascinating game, this time by the known creative geniuses at Thatgamecompany. The developer successfully delivers a sense of smallness, forcing you to travel through a seemingly endless desert and meet other robbed players who you cannot communicate with. With artistic graphics surpass those seen in the developer’s previous PS3 games, Flo and Flower, and a level-themed soundtrack that evokes more than the usual game, Journey is worth the trip (and $14.99 price) to the PlayStation Store.

    Price at GameStop

    Black Ops 2 PS3 amazon

    Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

    Treyarch had a hit on its hands two years ago with the first Black Ops game. Now, the same team returns with Black Ops 2 and even more of the fan-favorite zombies. With a futuristic FPS campaign mode that, while hokey sometimes, gives you a taste of what a Future Warfare game would look like, this one is worth playing through - and yes we say that about CoD games every year. But it sells billions of dollars worth of copies in record time for that very reason. Since you or whoever you’re buying it for has friends who have it, it’ll likely be their multiplayer game of choice all-year-round.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    FIFA 13 amazon

    FIFA 13

    FIFA 13 returns to the field a year after one of our favorites, FIFA 12. New to the best-selling sports franchise are First Touch Control and Match Play bring more realism to the game. They are joined by enhanced physics, tweaked AI and an all-around-better-looking game. FIFA 13 is not as groundbreaking as FIFA 12 was, but it’s improvements make it more than just “level pegging.”

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Mass Effect 3 amazon

    Mass Effect 3

    It’s easy to forget about Mass Effect 3 because the game released in March and much of the hype has died because the third installment wrapped-up the trilogy. With over 1,000 variables pulled from Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 3, this game will prove to be unique if you played through the entire Commander Shepard story arc so far. Even if you haven’t the campaign gameplay and the new multiplayer are worth checking out - original, highly criticized ending and all.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    NFS Most Wanted amazon

    Need for Speed: Most Wanted

    Need for Speed have been it for miss in recent years, but with the Burnout team at Criterion taking over, this arcade racing reboot is the one we recommend this holiday season. The controls are tight - essential for a good arcade racer - and the open-world is anything but tight or restrictive. The only aspect of Need for Speed: Most Wanted that remains “most wanted” is split-second multiplayer support. Online multiplayer is like having an automatic when all you really want to do is drive a stick shift. Split/Second is still fun because of its split-screen mode, so we’re hoping Criterion rethinks this for future NFS games.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Assassin’s Creed 3 amazon

    Assassin's Creed 3

    Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed franchise is on this list just about every year, and for good reason. It has built an intriguing storyline and impressive open-world environment on top of historical accuracy. That’s pretty rare in video games. But while the first AC games dealt with Renaissance era characters, the latest game dawns a new protagonist and era: Connor during the American Revolution. You might even be able to pass this off as educational on your Christmas list.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Far Cry 3 amazon

    Far Cry 3

    The newest release on this list is Far Cry 3, but one that shouldn’t be missed if you’re a fan of open-world FPS games set in the jungle. Yes, it’s a Mature-rated game, but it’s the type of game that is driven but an unpredictable story and fascinating characters - especially the evil ones. It’s also teach you to never visit the fictional Rook Islands.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Hitman: Absolution amazon

    Hitman: Absolution

    Have you played Hitman: Absolution yet? Agent 47 returned on the 47th week of the year and made his PS3 debut at the same time (the previous Hitman did come out on Xbox 360, but is’ really been that long). By creatively using the environment as a way to stealthy get around levels and either complete killings or evade capture, Hitman: Absolution does what a good Hitman games does best. It doesn’t feature multiplayer, which at one time had been rumors and would’ve been interesting, but this Mature, single-player-only affair is worth playing through.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

    Borderlands 2 deal

    Borderlands 2

    Finally, it’s impossible to forget about another action RPG, this one taking the form of an FPS, Borderlands 2. You only need to love two things to really enjoy this game: humorous gameplay and an incredible arsenal of guns. It’s enhanced if you’re going through the game with friends thanks to its online collaborative campaign gameplay.

    Price at Walmart
    Price at Amazon

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