Let's take a look at VGChartz.com has in their quickie Year-in-Preview for DS, Wii and PS3.
DS: I haven't seriously pursued DS stuff in a while. Last year it was a few imports, Pokemon, Layton, and a last-second appearance by Ninjatown. That's not a lot. That's definitely an all-time low for me and handheld gaming. Nintendo has pretty much abandoned the DS to third party Petz titles, kids movie tie-ins and RPGs. And it shows.
2009 will bring a new Kingdom Hearts game that I'm not that excited about because it looks like more Square and less Disney and I would much rather have it be the other way around. I suppose I'm interested in Suda51's Flower, Sun and Rain by default. Possibly Rhythm Heaven, which looks silly in the way that WarioWare used to own.
But March brings GTA: Chinatown Wars, which I need to get on the preorder stick. I have a nasty feeling that somebody out there is going to drop the banhammer on the DS getting GTA. Just about all GTA games arrive with a scandal, and this being the first GTA to land on a system that is still mostly in kids' hands... well, somewhere some Crusadist is busy getting facts wrong to attack this one. Maybe I'm getting paranoid. My advice: buy it early. I know I will.
And I am in for a DSi. Although I think we're ready for a brand new architecture (the DS launched over four years ago!) and a new generation of improved handheld gaming, I'm still extra-interested in what Nintendo does with the new DS online store and included SD card support. You can see the Nintendo plan in effect: DS was a big risk that paid off, so the Wii follows the DS's lead... and now a new DS is following the Wii's lead.
Knowing Nintendo, they probably DO have a new hardware generation in the pipe for Fall 2009, and the DSi is simply a last iteration much as the GBA Micro sounded the bell on the GBA's run.
WII: There's some great stuff coming for Wii in 2009... although the early release lists include almost nothing from Nintendo themselves. Sigh. Back when Nintendo was in the doghouse, their super-secret release schedule wasn't as much of a concern because we still knew we were getting something incredible. From Pikmin to Chibi-Robo, Nintendo supported the GameCube with great games every year.
As October through December of 2008 proved, the scene is now entirely different. Not only do we not know what games are coming, there's the highly probable fear that the only games to show up will be casual frilly bullshit (plus the Play It On Wii GameCube reissues, which are nice and all, but I already freaking own all of them.) The angry sting of City Folk and Wii Music would not have been near as hot had Nintendo also fielded something meaty... either a new installment in a familiar franchise, or a risky new contender like, oh I don't know, maybe Fatal Frame 4, which is totally finished and could have shipped and been awesome and been positioned as a great alternative/addition to the light meals.
So, Madworld, yes. Klonoa, yes. That was a great PS1/PS2 series and I would love to see that magic happen again. Interested in Fragile, if only because it's from the Baten Kaitos team. Little King's Story, probably. Cursed Mountain, a hesitant yes... want to hear more about it. Same with Deadly Creatures.
Wii Sports Resort. A begrudging yes. Want accessory. I'm sure the minigames will run the same scale as Wii Sports and Wii Play... some are fun, most suck, and none are truly compelling enough for serious playtime.
Can we freaking get Fatal Frame 4 in 2009 please?
PS3: I've definitely been on the PS3 a ton more than the other two, all totalled for 2008. Huge play-forever games like LittleBigPlanet, GTAIV and MGS4 certainly help run up the clock. Plus, I've been enjoying the DLC/downloadable stuff far more, since there's actually a place to put it.
Will we really get DC Universe Online in '09? I'm watching and waiting. Fat Princess, yes. Ghostbusters, probably maybe depends. Heavy Rain will likely break me since it seems to be all about making difficult, permanent decisions with the storyline.
InFamous, again probably. Resident Evil 5, instant yes. Uncharted 2, please arrive with 100% less stupid alien monster crap. I guess there's another Ratchet & Clank coming?
Oh! And Flower!
So what's on The Don't List for 2009?
Street Fighter 4. Nothing for it, sorry. Soulcalibur partisan.
Killzone 2. Meh.
God of War 3. Of course not.
Final Fantasy 13. It's not a personal choice, I've just never played a Final Fantasy game so I can't imagine suddenly playing one now.
Sonic and/plus/versus the Black Knight. Oh, please.
Sin & Punishment 2. They're going to have to go a long way to get me in on this one, given the ghastly terribleness of the game's controls on the Virtual Console.
Punch-Out. I doubt it. Although it's nice to see Nintendo leveraging nostalgia in ways that make sense on the Wii, rather than reinventing the wheel just to add wrist-burning motion controls.
The Conduit. No interest at all, really. A bunch of completely dark screenshots in Nintendo Power did not convince.
Endless Ocean 2. Sorry, I did my part on that front already.