It’s beginning to look a lot like your respective non-denominational gift-giving holiday … or just October. Although for many businesses, that is the first month of the “season.” Likewise, many customers are bracing themselves for a merry December by preparing their gift-receiving wish lists.

In regards to video games, consumer-tracking firm Nielsen determined customers’ most anticipated titles for holiday 2012.

Let’s break this down by console.


GamesBeat Next 2023

Join the GamesBeat community in San Francisco this October 24-25. You’ll hear from the brightest minds within the gaming industry on latest developments and their take on the future of gaming.

Learn More

Most anticipated Xbox 360 titles:

  1. Halo 4
  2. Call of Duty: Black Ops II
  3. Assassin’s Creed III
  4. Resident Evil 6
  5. NBA 2K13
  6. Need For Speed: Most Wanted (2012)
  7. Medal of Honor: Warfighter
  8. WWE ’13
  9. Hitman: Absolution
  10. Fable: The Journey

Most anticipated PlayStation 3 titles:

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops II
  2. Assassin’s Creed III
  3. Resident Evil 6
  4. NBA 2K13
  5. WWE ’13
  6. Need For Speed: Most Wanted (2012)
  7. Hitman: Absolution
  8. 007: Legends
  9. Medal of Honor: Warfighter
  10. LittleBigPlanet Karting

Most anticipated Wii titles:

  1. Just Dance 4
  2. Zumba Fitness Core
  3. Lego The Lord of the Rings
  4. Just Dance: Disney Party
  5. Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
  6. NBA 2K13
  7. WWE ’13
  8. Transformers Prime: The Game
  9. Skylanders Giants
  10. Nickelodeon Dance 2

Most notable about this data is just how similar the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 lists are. In fact, they’re nearly identical except for Microsoft’s pair of exclusives (Halo 4, Fable: The Journey) and Sony’s one exclusive (LittleBitPlanet Karting.) It’s possible that the companies reallocated the bulk of their first-party resources to next-generation systems, which many expect the manufacturers will debut next year, and third-party publishers are hesitant to restrict any of their big games to a single console.

Every single game on each list is either a sequel or part of an existing franchise. Again, we’re at the end of a generation. That’s when publishers tend to withhold new franchises so they can prep them to ride the hype of a new console launch.

Nielsen did note that Bethesda’s Dishonored, a new property, only narrowly missed the top 10 most anticipated games on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

The Wii’s list is the most depressing, but Nintendo has the Wii U due out in November. Nielsen did not provide a most-anticipated list of Wii U games.

GamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. Discover our Briefings.