Starhawk releases on PlayStation 3 on Thursday in Australia, in what is seemingly one of the quietest launches since...well...Resistance 3. Why this is the case, I'm not so sure: Sony just doesn't seem all that intent on pushing out the marketing agenda for its first-party titles.
That's surprising, because Starhawk is a big game, at least for PS3 gamers. Well, it should be a big game for them, because it's actually a refreshing multiplayer experience, driven by a campaign mode that is actually included just to get gamers ready for the competitive side of things.
What really gets me thinking about this game is how late it's actually coming into this generation, at a time when Microsoft is focusing (perhaps a little too much) on Xbox Live, and Nintendo is readying itself for a Wii U launch.
It's coming late, almost six years after the console launched, and yet it seems like just a normal release for the PS3: owners of the console certainly don't have any difficulty finding exclusive games for the platform. Starhawk's uncanny ability to remain traditional to third-person multiplayer games, while offering plenty of off-center and original elements to the experience, makes it an especially refreshing multiplayer experience, one that certainly wouldn't go astray on the Xbox 360.
Is Starhawk better than Gears of War 3, the last big multiplayer exclusive for Xbox 360? I'll leave that up to you to decide, but this game, I think, is considerably more original and unique. The interplay between single-player objectives and multiplayer goals makes for a deep and layered experience, something Gears of War just really doesn't have in its attempt to offer award-winning storytelling.
The first 20 minutes of Starhawk
That's not to say that Gears of War 3 is bad, but it's any one's guess why Microsoft isn't investing and pushing its in-house developers to create unique and engaging experiences for its online community, as opposed to simply allowing Activision dominate the Xbox Live charts with Call of Duty. Sure, Halo 4 is on the way, and while it will undoubtedly offer plenty of new experiences, at the end of the day it is another Halo.
As an Xbox 360 gamer, I simply want more Starhawk-like games on the console.
By Gaetano Prestia
Are you excited for Starhawk? Why/why not?