by Matthew Thompson
I’m taking a slightly different approach to my most anticipated games this year for a couple of reasons. I usually go a bit more in depth on my picks, but I have talked about many of these games over the past couple years already. I was also able to come up with a good twenty games I am looking forward to. So I am going to do a quick rundown of all twenty. I even included links to trailers or demos for each of them if you click on the game’s title. This way if you haven’t heard of one, you can give it a look. Here it goes!
20. Dreams: I don’t tend to do a lot of creating, so I remain unsure what Dreams will have to offer me, but my love of developer Media Molecule is enough to get their first original PS4 title on this list.
19. Doom: I’m not the biggest FPS fan, but this new Doom looks like old-school, bloody, run-and-gun fun so I will be keeping an eye on it this year.
18. Scalebound: This isn’t exactly the kind of action game I was hoping for from Platinum Games when I first heard about Scalebound, but their track record is enough to have me intrigued. Plus dragons!
17. Ni-Oh: This looks like a combination of Ninja Gaiden and Onimusha, which could be pretty damn cool. Can I trust today’s Team Ninja to deliver though? That I’m not so optimistic about.
16. Cuphead: After so many years of gaming, it is nice to see fresh artstyles and Cuphead’s old-timey animated look certainly fits the bill. Throw in some hardcore shoot ‘em up gameplay and we should have a winner here.
15. Unravel: While this seems similar to a lot of charming, cinematic 2.5D platformers that have released in the past five years, Unravel looks to have some real substance to the gameplay with some clever platforming and physics puzzles making use of the trailing yarn mechanic.
14. Hunger: After helping out for years on various Media Molecule IPs, Tarsier looks to step out on their own with this interesting take on the 3D adventure/platformer. I love the look and atmosphere present in the initial trailer.
13. ReCore: Not a whole lot here to go on other than a prerendered trailer, but I like the stylized art direction – especially the lead character and little robo-doggie designs – and the general ideas I can glean about this new IP which has some talent working on it.
12. Gears of War 4: It has been long enough that I am ready for more Gears and I am hoping The Coalition can deliver with their first original entry in the series.
11. Rime: This looks to be taking a bit too much inspiration from Team Ico with the game’s recent disappearing act, but what I have seen of the title looks very promising and beautiful. Hopefully Rime resurfaces soon.
10. Yooka-Laylee: I’m not a huge Banjo fan, but cartoony 3D platformers like this are so rare these days – and I love cartoony 3D platformers – that I find myself really excited for this one. The cute character designs are a plus.
9. Far Cry Primal: I remain a little unsure of this next entry in my favorite FPS series, but I like the setting and am hoping the beast master abilities make up for some of the typical Far Cry things that won’t be present.
8. Quantum Break: With Remedy at the helm, I expect Quantum Break to deliver an intriguing narrative and the fast-paced third-person shooting looks like my kind of thing as well. One of many reasons I’m glad I got an Xbox One last year.
7. Gravity Rush 2: Moving through an open-world has rarely been as fun as “falling” around in Gravity Rush. More of that and what is perhaps gaming’s happiest protagonist in Kat – she is seriously like pure joy in playable character form – has me excited for this sequel.
6. The Last Guardian: Honestly I am tired of waiting at this point and probably won’t believe this game is coming out until it is in my hands, but given Team Ico’s previous games – especially Shadow of Colossus – I’m sure I will enjoy the heck out of The Last Guardian.
5. Horizon: Zero Dawn: Bows. Robo-dinosaurs. A world that begs to be explored. Fast and fluid third-person shooting. A cool-looking lead character design. I love what I have seen of Horizon so far. I hope Guerrilla can deliver on what looks to be a promising game.
4. Ratchet & Clank: I am so ready for another Ratchet & Clank game. While I do wish it was a completely new adventure taking place post-Into the Nexus, this still looks like a blast and much more than a mere remake.
3. The Legend of Zelda: What can I say? It’s Zelda. And this game looks to deliver one thing that has been uniformly missing from recent entries in the series: a fresh, new, big overworld to explore. The artstyle looks rather pretty too which doesn’t hurt.
2. Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst: Everyone has a cult classic game they desperately hope gets a sequel. Mirror’s Edge was mine. There are a lot of changes in store for Catalyst, but I generally like what I have seen. If the platforming is close to as good as the original’s, I will be more than happy.
1. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End: Naughty Dog’s next game is pretty much always my most anticipated game. They just make the kind of games I love. This is also allegedly Naughty Dog and Nathan Drake’s last Uncharted game which really adds to the excitement. Of course, Uncharted 4 happens to look amazing too with improved core gameplay, worthwhile new additions like the grappling hook and the power of the PS4 to help it take some steps forward for the franchise. I can’t wait to play Drake’s next – and perhaps final – adventure.
Honorable Mentions: I didn’t include downloadable content in this list, but I am super excited for two upcoming expansions for my two favorite games of 2015. Rise of the Tomb Raider’s Baba Yaga: The Temple of the Witch DLC looks like a great reason to spend even more time with a game I can’t quite get enough of while The Witcher 3’s Blood and Wine expansion is another must-buy for me after the excellent Hearts of Stone.
That will do it for my list of most anticipated games of 2016. Hopefully at least half of these release this year! What games top your must-have list for 2016? Let me know in the comments below. As always, thanks for reading!