Ten Movies and Video Games to Keep an Eye on for 2015

As we roll into 2015 I decided to try something a little different this year. While I was going through the 2015 in Film and 2015 in Video Gaming for this year, I thought wouldn’t it be interesting to make a list of both video games and movies that we can keep an eye on for 2015. So with that in mind I have decided to include 5 video games and 5 movies that are hyped for the 2015 season. Odds are if they are making this list then you will see a review on them from me coming up.

Just to keep in mind these lists are my own personal opinion based on the hype of the masses and how much attention, both positive and negative these games and movies will receive in 2015. Keep in mind THIS LIST IS NOT ITEMS I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING! That is a completely different list. This list is a collection of games and movies that I feel will cause quite a stir when they are released and are something, as the title suggests that we should keep an eye on as we march forward into the new year. Also keep in mind when it comes to video games that the game does not have to be released in 2015 but can be a rerelease or a remastering to make the list. With that being said, let’s start with the video games.

Video Games

Honorable Mentions

Mario Party 10
Assassin’s Creed Victory
Dead Island 2
Dying Light
Mortal Kombat X

250px-Hotline_Miami_2_logo5. Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

So at number 5 on the list I wrestled with for some time. Considering that we have 5 honorable mentions, it tells you just how many candidates we had. But instead of listing off the tenth edition of a fun series, what feels like the endless sequel of Assassin’s Creed games that I have absolutely zero interest in, a shitty game from a shitty franchise made by shitty developers, a bit of new monotony, or a bit of nostalgia; I decided to look at a game that may very well be the best indie game to come out in 2015. Of course I am talking about Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number.

Hotline Miami is one of the best games I have played in a while. It is simplistic in design and heavy in story. Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number from the previews seems to be more of the same quality from Dennaton Games. It is guaranteed to be cheap, on Steam, and with a strong likelihood of being an amazing game at a great value.

Battlefield_Hardline4. Battlefield Hardline

I hate First Person Shooters. I never was a fan of them, I played one or two of the early Call of Duty games and even they were mere distractions on the road to the grave. I do not like competitive multiplayer, I do not like the culture that they breed, and I take no fun in them. So I think you can see how my feelings towards Battlefield Hardline may be a little biased towards the negative. But after the abysmal release of Battlefield 4 which featured such gems as horrifically broken glitches and bugs as well as a shallow and non-existence single player that is only featured in the game to be ‘there’, the game franchise has fallen on hard times even for the fanboys of the series.

So when the announcement came that Battlefield would be releasing a cops and robbers version of their game franchise before they had fixed the hopelessly broken version of the games that just hit markets, it is needless to say that people were a little… pissed to say the least. From the game play that they have released, Battlefield Hardline is just another game of protagonist burly white dudes killing a bunch of inferior brown people in a showing that racism is still alive and well in our culture with one ethnic character thrown in their to say ‘I’m not racist, see I have plenty of non white friends.’

The reason Battlefield Hardline makes this list is what it will represent in 2015. It is the game that is looked at for the continuation of the FPS genre and one of the driving factors that leads video gaming down the road it is on now. I am interested to see after the reaction of anger that Battlefield 4 received even from fans of the genre if they will out right reject Battlefield Hardline forcing the company to make substantial changes to a monotonous and tired genre or if it will be the same crap wheeled out for the consumerist machine.

Evolve_Box_Art3. Evolve

Seeing as how my friend and Hitbox Stremer Jate Nott has been anticipating Evolve for quite some time now, I have been kept constantly in the loop about the game and its development. As it stands right now, I find Evolve to be one of the games coming out in 2015 with the most hype built around it and with that comes either one of two scenarios: 1) The game lives up to the hype and becomes one of the best video games of 2015 or 2) The game does not live up to the hype, is torn apart by critics, garners a moderate following of fanboys and sympathizers before ultimately falling into obscurity only to be brought up in conversations to mention what could have been.

If you would to ask my opinion on which of the two that Evolve will fall into, I would wage a bet that it would be on the former. From what I have seen of it, Evolve looks to be a solid game and a unique one at that that can also open the door to new types of competitive multiplayer genres. If a game where one monster takes on a handful of hunters becomes a success, just imagine if this games gets off the ground then the multiplayer game where one player takes on the role of a slasher movie villain and the others the victims would be an almost certainty. Turtle Rock Studios is also solid when it comes to gaming so them failing is not likely to happen. However nothing is for certain and the games release date has been pushed back multiple times which could spell trouble. It is certainly a game worth noticing for 2015.

Halo_Guardians2. Halo 5: Guardian

Of course we need to talk about the fifth installment in the famous Halo Franchise. It is a game that has become synonymous with gaming. Most of the culture, at least the FPS, dorito eating, and mountain dew drinking gamer culture revolves around it. I was never a fan of the series nor will I ever be. Not my cup of tea, read Battlefield Hardline for proof of that. But I can see the appeal and I can understand that the hype that comes with it is huge. If there is any game that could force the buyers who have yet to commit to a Xbox One, this will be the game that will push many of them over the edge to step up to the ‘next generation’ of console gaming. So to say that it is something that we need to keep an eye on would be an understatement.

The real question that follows Halo 5: Guardian is will it be the game to finally push people into saying that owning a next gen console is truly worth the experience. Watch Dogs, Dead Rising 3, and other ‘next gen’ games have fallen into the category of abhorrent disappointment. There have been a few shining rays of light. Dragon Age Inquisition and Shadows of Mordor are both proof positive of that. But there has yet to be that game that makes people rush to the stores and purchase a next gen console. The one game that really makes people desire them just so they can play this game. Will Halo 5: Guardian be that game? Not in my opinion the game that I feel will succeed at this is the game we find at the number one spot, but we will just have to wait and see.

Batman_Arkham_Knight_Cover_Art1. Batman Arkham Knight

Ah… Here we have it, the golden goose, the holy grail. It is the game that can unite gamers and push even the most cynical to purchase a next generation console. It is the fourth installment of the Arkham series by Rocksteady Studios (with Origins being made by Warner Bros. Montreal). The Batman Arkham series has been consistently some of the best games ever made. Arkham Asylum was excellent, Arkham City competes for the title of greatest game of all time, Arkham Origins wasn’t that bad, and now we have Batman Arkham Knight to follow the story after the death of the Joker and to see what happened to Gotham after the Arkham City fiasco.

The running theme of this list has been the concept of next gen and its consistent trend of producing nothing but mediocrity and leaving all gamers with a feeling of either disdain or apathy as they rush back to their desktops and laptops to play the better video games out there. There have been a few stand outs that have caught our attention at one time or another, but on the whole the market is filled with a lot of crap. Batman Arkham Knight has the possibility to be the game that propels us further into the next generation of video gaming. It won’t change everything, let’s be realists. But it can give gaming a foundation from which to grow. Batman Arkham Knight is the hope for console gaming in the immediate future. If it were to fail, I can only imagine the levels of apathy from the gaming public who has already had enough crap piled on them for a lifetime. It is certainly the video game to look for in 2015.


Honorable Mentions

Divergent Series: Insurgent
Cinderella (Live Action)
Ant Man
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Furious_7_poster Jem_Movie_Teaser_Poster5. TIE: Jem and the Holograms and Furious 7

Okay I’m cheating a little bit here. I debated for longer than any sane man should on which of these two movies to put on the list. But after I thought about the fact that I only wanted to hit small points for each movie, I decided why the hell not? I’ll add them both as a tie for No. 5 instead of having a six slot and messing with anyone with OCD tendencies.

Jem and the Holograms… They made a Jem and the Holograms movie… Oh I have to see this. I can only imagine where this is going to go. They made live action movies out of GI Joe and Transformers so it shouldn’t surprise me. But where I worry is the fact that Jem and the Holograms is pretty well set in the 1980’s. Are they going for some retro theme or are they just going to pay lip service to the original and make their own stuff? At either rate, I can only imagine where this is going. While I think it will be a Hollywood Train Wreck, I’m more than willing to check this one out.

I never was a fan of the Fast and the Furious movies. Racing and cars never interested me and the action just screams early 2000’s which makes my blood curdle. The reason we are looking at Furious 7 with any more than lip service to anyone who is not a fan of the series is that this is the last movie to feature Paul Walker before his coincidental passing in an automobile accident. While I never was a fan of Paul Walker’s work and feel his death will garner some unwarranted positive reactions to the movie, it is certainly going to add an interesting situation to the movie and I look forward to seeing it.

JurassicWorldComicConPoster4. Jurassic World

It has been a long time since Jurassic Park 3 slipped out of the anus of Hollywood and plopped onto our movie and television screens. The idea of Sam Neill trying to speak to raptors is the stuff that makes anyone who is a fan of the series cry themselves to sleep at night. Jurassic Park just hasn’t been able to capture the lightning in a bottle that they did with the original. As much as I like the second movie as a guilty, it isn’t well received and poorly paced and the third one is just utter shit to pile on top of the great big shit pile. After some time away from the series you would think Jurassic World could learn from their mistakes. But instead I fear that there will just be more of the same when it comes to the movie. With the trailer that hints at the concept of a ‘dinosaur whisperer’ and a genetically enhanced super dinosaur, I can only roll my eyes in apathy. Besides InGen missed a grand opportunity to create little pet dinosaurs and instead they give us a big super carnivore that could eat them. Mistakes were made.

But that being said, I would be lying through my teeth if I said that I wasn’t looking forward to seeing Jurassic World. Maybe it is the tightly secured nostalgia goggles, but I am interested to see what the movie could become. Who knows? Maybe the movie can be something fun and entertaining. After all, I do enjoy Chris Pratt and I love the fact that the movie looks like the vision John Hammond intended with a Sea World like experience with the dinosaurs so points on that end. Let’s just see where it goes when it comes out this summer.

Avengers_Age_of_Ultron3. Avengers: Age of Ultron

Marvel continues to produce more and more movies each year. This year we have a whole slew of Marvel movies for the general public as the grandiose story continues to unfold. One of which is Ant Man which god love the character has no need to be made and if you say it is because it needs to be told to tell the narrative. Wonderful, so now they are making movies for the mere point of tying loose ends that could be explained in the movie, screw off! Mini rant over, other than that I am looking forward to the new Avengers movie. The only thing that I worry about when it comes to it is if the movie can live up to the hype.

Avengers continues to build its empire higher and higher and at some point the grand journey needs to come to an end. The tragedy is that knowing the industry like I do, it will be a lot less of a satisfying conclusion and a lot more of a painful trailing off of crap. The next couple of years we have a slew of movies in the works and leading them into the next stages is Avengers: Age of Ultron. This movie could tell us what we will expect in the years to come? Will it be well received? Oh yes, fanboys will cum in each of their respective pants over it. Will it live up to the hype? That is yet to be determined.

FSOG-teaser2. Fifty Shades of Grey

Oh you will see a review of this. I have to see this movie. I have to see how they can make a movie like Fifty Shades of Grey and not have an NC 17 rating right out of the gates. The sadomasochistic marvel that you happen to find your mother reading is being released in the up and coming months and this thing has the highest likelihood of any movie in 2015 to be a wonderful Hollywood train wreck. Do I think this movie will be good? I have serious doubts that it will. I think it will be fan service incarnate, but what I wonder is if it will be passable or if it will be so horrible that it is absolutely wonderful. I love being proven wrong, but my prediction is one of the former statements.

Fifty Shades of Grey makes it to number 2 on this list because out of all of them it has the most confusion behind it. Even fans of the books are wondering how they will be able to successfully capture the movie on the big screen and still keep all the sadomasochistic violence that made it popular to begin with. It certainly is an enigma that I am ready to see first hand.

Starwarsviitheforceawakens1. Star Wars: Force Awakened

Could it be anything else at the top spot? The once mighty science fiction series has fallen on some hard times as George Lucas ran the series into the ground with the Star Wars Prequels. When most of us heard there were now going to be sequels to the classic series, the majority of us let out a loud and audible groan… Please stop! Please stop destroying our childhood and nostalgia. Then we heard George Lucas wouldn’t be apart of it, there was rejoice. Then I heard JJ Abrams would be taking on the job and on that day I let out a groan of sheer pain. I hate JJ Abrams’ work. I think he is overrated and overappreciated for what is by all accounts sub par writing, directing, and all points in between. Out of EVERYTHING that he has done Super 8 and Alias is the only thing I give a passable nod to and I take guilty pleasure out of Armageddon which he wrote. Other than that, the rest has been crap in my opinion and yes that includes the Star Trek movies, Lost, and Fringe so don’t ask. So when I heard he was going to be directing Star Wars: Force Unleashed I was not thrilled. But I still hold on to the idea that we may be able to have a decent Star Wars movies past the original trilogy.

This movie more than any other movie of 2015 has the biggest weight on its shoulders. This movie features the actors who are way past their expiration date and a new set of ideas for the series. The problem is that this series has had a serious falling from grace. The prequels have made Star Wars a joke in the nerd communities on what was once a great series. A bad movie made out of this film, one that is CGI heavy, or just plain cheesy will be enough to put the final nail in the once great series. However on the other hand, if the movie were spectacular it could breathe new life into the series and bring in a whole new fan base. Time will tell on whether or not this series will die or become new and exciting once again.

Thank you for reading and I hope you are as excited about 2015 as I am. Come back Thursday for another review from me.

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