2016 – for all the celebrity deaths – was a fairly kick-ass one for games. Uncharted 4 brought us closer than ever to Nathan Drake and added in an emotional undercurrent throughout, and the gaming gods themselves finally gave us the miracle that is The Last Guardian, some 10 years later.
After far too long, Doom returned better than ever with a modern cleaning of the slate, and even if their multiplayer wasn’t the best, 2016’s DOOM was still the best way to blow demons into a million pieces with the biggest guns in gaming.
Yet, with a new year comes the promise of new games. 2017 is just getting started and we are all eager to get our hands on the best upcoming titles of this year. But which should you be most excited for?
Here are fifteen specific games you should already be putting aside the funds to get.
Already long overdue, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was supposedly going to arrive in 2016. Alas, the cruelty of that year knows no bounds and it ended up being delayed by another year. On the bright side, this is Nintendo we are talking about.
Unlike other companies, Nintendo actually cares about the fans and will have taken the extra time to make everything just right.
In addition to a freer and less linear world to play in, it seems set to be packed with new and unique gameplay. Due to be released alongside the new Nintendo Switch, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is undoubtedly our most awaited game of the year.
Mass Effect 3 didn’t quite have the ending we all hoped for, crippling the series in the eyes of many, but Mass Effect: Andromeda seems set to change all that.
Set even further in the future (by 600 years at around 2783), the player will control the male or female child of N7 soldier Alex Ryder, with their sibling continuing to feature in the story.
Players can enjoy an open world universe and – considering the limitations of previous games – the new ability to jump. The idea of open galaxy sounds great, but that little voice in the back of my head keeps whispering ‘No Man’s Sky’.
We all remember the brave warrior Kratos and his magnificent war against the gods who plagued his life with ill fates. But with the Pantheon slaughtered, Kratos has decided to take a stab at the Odin family.
Having apparently moved to the land of the Vikings, Kratos has also taken on a foster-father-figure role to a young boy. There will also be some magical elements to this soft-reboot as we have seen ice spells and an enchanted axe in the E3 gameplay demo.
Although now in a distant land, it appears Kratos has not forgotten his Spartan heritage. A prompt for ‘Spartan Rage’ appears at one point and his new outfit is similarly arranged to his old one.
The only game that ever successfully made PC users lunge for consoles was Red Dead Redemption. With the sequel rumoured and leaked so much that you can wonder how the creators even hold together, Rockstar finally gave us a trailer to enjoy.
From what little is available, it seems that times have moved on slightly since the previous game.
Seven riders in the trailer could possibly indicate that the game might have a multiple story ideas to hop between, similar to GTA V. Quiet rumours and speculation also points towards what would be called Red Dead Online, but all I know is, they could tell us nothing else until release and millions would still turn up to buy it.
Play will centre around nomadic hunter Aloy as she fights robot dinosaurs for survival with simple bows and arrows. Trailers have shown that she is also an outcast from her tribe and present civilisation. The plot also delves into how technology and machines have repopulated the Earth, tying into some mysterious force known as ‘the Old Ones’.Between RPG elements similar to Fallout 4 and Elder Scrolls and with gameplay features similar to Assassin’s Creed design, Horizon will be a must for any Sony console owner.
If gaming has taught us anything, it’s how to survive in a zombie apocalypse. Despite that, we have never actually enjoyed a decent take on the aftermath of the undead invasion. That is, until now.
Days Gone is an openworld survival RPG. Unlike The Last of Us, you are not bogged down protecting others. Instead, you get dozens of literally hundreds of shambling creatures at once.
No, seriously – hundreds.
In the extended E3 gameplay, Deacon – the protagonist – abandons a man to save himself before leading a merry chase for the ragged creatures. From there, the game showcases its impressive crowd-rendering technology – something that will either make or break the experience overall.
Fans of the old turn-based RPGs of old like Final Fantasy enjoyed the immature South Park: The Stick of Truth when it hit shelves around the world. The Stick of Truth managed to balance the humour of the show with the normal ins and outs of an RPG.
The new game is set to follow superhero tropes, where instead of another run at fantasy, the player will be able to become their very own squat little superhero.
That said, we will probably not be seeing any Wolverines or Magnetos, as South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker are against dissecting their game to create DLC. At the very most, you might shell out a few pennies for some extra scenes.
Fans of Dark Souls, hack-and-slash games and samurai in general will love this one. Set in the Japanese 1600’s, you will take on the role of a master samurai known as… well, William. Maybe a little less traditional than we might have hoped, but doubtless there will be some story element to explain it.
Combat looks to flow smoothly as you will fight and defeat not only other humans, but deadly supernatural creatures known locally as Yokai. There are plenty of dark vibes to get the player to the edge of their seat and keep them there, as Team Ninja are looking to ostensibly be ‘the next Dark Souls’.
Everybody has that one game they always fantasise about but never expected to be made. Mine is the infamous cancelled Battlefront III with 99% of the work done, but Shenmue 3 broke all expectations.
After being announced on Kickstarter with the aim of raising two million dollars, it raised all that and more in under eight hours. The game will continue on from the events of Shenmue 2, as once again, we follow the story of Ryo Hazuki and that of his father’s killer, Lan Di.
There will also be a new antagonist known as Niao Sun joining the game as well, but as yet, that’s all we know.
Having recently played the original Prey, I can see the similarities between the old game and this new one. Instead of the slightly different branch of mythical ancestral powers, the new game is set clear along the sci-fi route instead. If anything, it reminds of the cancelled Prey 2.
Brought to you by the same team behind Dishonored, it seems to feature similar systematic designs from the game of mystical assassins and will allow players to pick and choose their own weaponry and abilities to explore and fight as they see fit.
With open-ended gameplay, few areas off limits and some bizarre yet brilliant powers, this is a game for people who love ideas like Skyrim.
Instead of stepping up the game once again, Ubisoft is actually stripping down their elite team and thrusting them into an open-world game similar to their famous Far Cry. Except that this is not just some island – it is a corrupt Bolivia.
Wildlands will pit you against local drug cartels, various rebel factions and the Bolivian government as you deal with short-term tactical work and long-term strategy.
You can scope out your targets and decide to storm in during daylight when everything is viewable or wait until you can creep in at night under the cover of the shadows.
From the variety of environments we’ve seen, this looks set to be a big game.
Following their success with Injustice, developers NetherRealm Studios have released the newest chapter in the world where Superman finally ignores the law and takes matters into his muscular hands.
Welcome to Injustice 2.
NetherRealm have promised a ‘massive roster’ of DC heroes and villains to pit against one another. It will also feature the use of a new ‘Gear System’, where battling through the game will reward players with loot drops of armour for their characters to give them varying stat boosts.
As well as those trying to resurrect the Superman regime, there will apparently be a ‘new threat’ to the world, though at time of writing that’s yet to be revealed.
With Battlefield 1 already taking the world by storm, the Kickstarted Battalion 1944 seems set to ride the same train. For those screaming in rage about rip-offs, Battalion was looking for funds before Battlefield’s return to the old school had appeared..
Battalion 1944 will be – much like Star Wars Battlefront – online only. Gameplay will be on dedicated servers with anti-cheat mechanisms to prevent ‘hacking’ and any additional content will be cosmetic only.
From the gameplay shown already, FPS players will be in for a treat, and if you’re looking for a World War II game to get in the mood right now, I would recommend Battlefield 1942.
Although the revitalising of our favourite little bandicoot is long overdue, it is being held back on the list by virtue of only being a remake, instead of another game.
Nonetheless, the ‘N. Sane Trilogy’ is big news.
Taking full advantage of the advancements in technology since their little orange menace first appeared, Vicarious Visions are creating all-new 4K textures and redoing the audio for the first three games.
Features not originally part of the game will be included as well, such as save systems instead of the password mechanic, time trials – which originally turned up in later games – and more. If Sony really want this to go smoothly, these will be release in one cost-efficient bundle, and they had best not try going for any DLC…
Possibly the worst execution of an otherwise good game, last year’s Star Wars Battlefront was forever a divisive release.
The game was heavily unbalanced, a hairs-breadth from pay-to-win and basically online only, which considering how beloved the original was, it could definitely have gone better.
Thankfully, Star Wars Battlefront II seems set to change that. The sequel is slated to include a single-player campaign, bring balance to the Force and DICE’s new iteration on the franchise overall. If they manage to keep the graphics and smoothness from the last game, Battlefront II might be able to overshadow the mistake of its predecessor by quite a substantial margin.