By Jason Venter | 06-03-2012 | 1:30PM
The industry moves at such a rapid pace that we don't always have enough time to provide detailed coverage for some of the exciting stuff that happens between the bigger announcements. Each week, we'll gather some of those news tidbits and share our thoughts on why we believe they deserve to be highlighted, even though for one reason or another they didn't quite make it to center stage during the preceding seven days. We think you'll agree that they're still quite interesting.
SimCity Reboot Coming Early 2013
On Friday, EA issued a press release indicating that the forthcoming SimCity reboot will arrive in February of 2013. Maxis originally put itself on the map with that franchise, but hadn't returned to it in a long while (thanks to even greater success with The Sims, presumably).
Lara Croft Officially Returns Next March
The recent delay of Tomb Raider led some to wonder when the game might actually debut. On Thursday evening, in a trailer released ahead of E3, Crystal Dynamics revealed that the game will now arrive on March 5, 2013. That puts it in a good position to boost Square-Enix's numbers for the fiscal year, since most of the game's sales will likely follow within a few weeks of release.
Robert Bowling, at one time the Call of Duty Creative Strategist, has since left the company to form his own studio. That studio is known as Robotoki, and this week we finally learned that its first game won't be coming until 2015. Called Human Element, the new title pits players against zombies in a struggle for survival. According to Bowling, who spoke with Game Informer, the game will offer three different character classes. “How you choose to start in the world will determine how you can engage and impacts the scenarios you will be presented with on a physical and morality level,” Bowling noted.
LEGO Lord of the Rings Announced
There have been a number of successful games based movies that tell the story of The Lord of the Rings. Now, there will be a new one, also based on the films (and including voice acting from that source) with a helping of LEGO pieces on the side. LEGO Lord of the Rings should arrive on all of the expected platforms this fall.
Valve's DOTA2 to Be Free-to-Play
Now that Valve has tended to any DotA licensing issues with Blizzard, it's time to start talking about what we can expect from the forthcoming DotA 2. According to Valve, the game will be free-to-play but will feature an in-game store where players can purchase gear and customize heroes. Anything purchased in the store will have cosmetic value only and won't affect gameplay. Considering how many people get into the DotA experience, though, that should still be enough to earn Valve some hefty coin. It should also benefit some players; DotA 2 is part of the Steam Workshop, so especially talented gamers will be able to create content that will make its way to the store. Valve will then share a portion of the profits with those players. Look for DotA 2 later this year, on PC and Mac.