Though some of us may still be working our way through last year’s video game releases, that doesn’t mean we can’t look ahead to what 2018 has in store. Today, our writers present their tops picks for the games they’re most hyped about in the New Year.
Earlier this week, our staff discussed the top five movies they’re looking forward to, and in similar fashion, they’re now breaking down the video games they’re anticipating the most::
Jordan: It’s weird talking about the games I’m looking forward to in 2018, knowing full well I’ve only played a portion of the games I wanted to tackle in 2017! That said, a massive backlog sure isn’t going to stop me from trying to play the slew of great games on the horizon.
Marvel’s Spider-Man - Since Spider-Man 2 (the one based on the movie) on the PlayStation 2, the Spider-Man games have been a guilty pleasure of mine. The webswinger has always been my favorite superhero, and the ability to swing around a massive city was cathartic. Sadly, the franchise lost its way, and it’s been a generation since we’ve had a genuinely good Spider-Man game. Insomniac looks poised to break the trend and deliver on something truly impressive.
Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom - It’s inevitable sometimes, but if you look back, Ni No Kuni II was on my most anticipated games list from LAST year. That’s the way these go, and the delays have only increased my excitement for the quirky looking JRPG. It’s predecessor remains one of my all time favorites, and while this one is taking a different gameplay approach, I’m no less enthusiastic.
God of War - I admit that I fell out of love with the God of War franchise. Where it was once one of my favorites, I didn’t even bother to pick up the last couple games (or remasters). I felt like the story/gameplay had run its course, but the reveal of the new God of War, with its Norse inspiration and new features, has me feeling excited once again. Each piece of footage has looked incredible, driving my hype to a level I didn’t think God of War could reach again for me.
The Last of Us: Part II - This one may be wishful thinking, considering we don’t even have a release ‘window’ for the game, but I’m crossing my fingers we’ll see The Last of Us: Part II at some point next year. The first game remains one of the most impressive pieces of storytelling in gaming and I’m anxious to see where they take that story next, and how Naughty Dog steps it up.
Jurassic World Evolution - I know this may not seem like the most obvious choice, but I’ve long dreamed of a new dinosaur park building sim that wasn’t only on the PC (my computer is not great for gaming). Though we haven’t seen much from the game, what we know about it is enough to put me on the hype train.
Honorable Mentions: Anthem, Sea of Thieves, Skull & Bones, Dragon Ball FighterZ, all the Switch things!
Days Gone – A game filled with World War Z Zombies may not sound like a good thing but the demo video/trailers for this game were freaky good. I am Hoping that there is a good story to go along with this gameplay, and when I say good story, I mean along the lines of ‘The Last of Us’ and not just another ‘Resident Evil’ clone.
The Last of Us: Part II – And speaking of TLOU we’re getting a Part 2 and I couldn’t be happier. TLOU was a game I had played a demo for and didn’t like it only after Part 2 was announced at Playstation Experience in 2016 did I give the game another shot. Even when I started playing the game I hated Ellie, almost as much as Joel hated her in the game. I really just wanted to get this kid to the Fireflies and be done with her. Then winter came, I had to play Ellie as the main character and god damnit I started to like the kid. If this game is anywhere near as good as the first I expect to get hit in the feels with a sledgehammer at some point.
Detroit: Become Human – If you’ve played Heavy Rain or Beyond: Two Souls you pretty much know what kind of gameplay and story you ‘re in for with Quantic Dreams Detroit: Become Human. However, this is not a game I’m going to rush out to get, mainly because the replayability of Quantics’ games are damn near non-existent once you are done playing. The only reason to replay is to get one of the many endings that quantum puts into their game, Heavy Rain has 22 & Two Souls has 24 endings. The games are heavily story based so you will spend A LOT of time just trying to get a different end game cutscene.
Anthem – Action shooter. The word “Destiny Killer” was thrown around a bit after the demo for this game was shown at E3 2017. The game looks very impressive. I know it doesn’t sound like it but I am looking forward to this game release, but it’s also a shooter so no matter how you dress it up or what cool powers and abilities they give you it all boils down to running around a map & shooting the other guy in the face.
Skull and Bones – This is my #1 anticipated game for 2018. First introduced in Assassin's Creed III and refined in Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, Ubisoft has pulled the ship combat system from those games to make it, its own standalone game. There was one point where I stopped the main mission of Black Flag for 3 months and just sailed around being a pirate. Even the fact that it will primarily be an online multiplayer game I’m still in, I hope they do incorporate a single player mode but whatever. I’m just waiting for Oct. – Nov. to get here so this game will be released.
God of War - I fell in love with the God of War series when it first debuted back in 2005. It was brutal, intense, and flipped the Greek mythology I grew up with on its head. By the time 3 rolled out, it was pretty obvious that Kratos needed a new change of scenery and SIE Santa Monica was more than happy to oblige. This new God of War, set in Norse mythology, looks like its updated with today’s style of gameplay while still maintaining that ruthlessness we’ve grown accustomed to. I love that Kratos is older, more mature, and has a son. That’ll change any man. I’d just love to see how he got to where he is and I hope they show us.
Marvel’s Spider-Man - You can’t show us an 8 minute trailer and NOT have the game come out sometime in 2018. That would be just be mean. Everything about this game looks like it’ll be a winner in 2018. It’s fun, dramatic, with terrific gameplay mechanics. More importantly, it brings us back to those nostalgic days of web slinging through New York. I have a sneaky suspicion that Insomniac Games’ open world interpretation will outdo anything we’ve experienced before.
The Last of Us: Part II - The next chapter of Naughty Dog’s post-apocalyptic survival epic, The Last of Us has been, in a word, cryptic. For most games that would be extremely annoying and questionable, but this isn’t most games. With The Last of Us series, the less we know, the better. By now, we’re aware of what we’re getting into and from the trailers it looks like they are turning the extreme level up from 11 to 15, and I’m more than ok with that.
Days Gone - Sons of Anarchy meets World War Z with Zombie Bears. Is there really anything else to say?
Anthem - Some games under the umbrella of most anticipated aren’t necessarily something we’re excited for. That’s how I feel about Anthem. I am looking forward to its release, but I’m not all that excited for it. That may seem a little confusing, but bear with me. Lately, EA hasn’t had the best track record and the same could be said for Bioware, Anthem’s developer. EA has been dealing with a lot of backlash from the Star Wars Battlefront II debacle. Meanwhile, Bioware has been developing Mass Effect and Dragon Age sequels that are just OK. So, when they come out lauding that they’ve got the “Destiny Killer” and such, my take is to douse a heaping helping of salt on that message. Anthem, by the one gameplay trailer we’ve seen, looks great but I need to see more to believe it could ever rival the likes of Bungie’s Destiny, especially Destiny 2.
Sea of Thieves - This Pirate epic from Rare is just too good to exclude from this list. The trailers I’ve seen, the demos I’ve played, and the Rare people I’ve spoken with have all assured me that this will be a top game of not just 2018 but of 2019 and the years after. This is the co-op adventure game we’ve needed and we’re finally getting it in the early part of 2018.
Honorable Mention: Kingdom Hearts III - This is Honorable Mention because once again Kingdom Hearts III has been rumored to release in the upcoming year. Princess Leia once said that “Hope is like the sun. If you only believe in it when you can see it... You'll never make it through the night.” Square Enix, I still have hope even though you’ve given us nothing but a series of trailers for the last 3 or so years! If this game comes out in 2018, this will be the greatest collection of video games to come out in one year. I say that and even if it doesn’t, it still could be.
Marvel’s Spider-Man - I am excited for this not only because I’m potentially the biggest Spider-Man fanboy here at Cinelinx, but because of other instances. A while back I realized Spider-Man was switching hands and that Sony potentially got their hands on the license, ever since I’ve been excited to see who was doing it. Come to find out my favorite company in the industry is making it, and right after the brilliant Sunset Overdrive too. Then there is also the business side of things. It seems Disney is started to license out Marvel on a “per-game” basis instead of just throwing the entire license at one company. It’s something I hope works out, but also spreads to Star Wars because I’m tired of companies simply sitting on these great IP’s. Competition is good for the industry.
Firewall Zero Hour - I barely jumped into the VR world, and honestly it was because of this game being shown at PSX. Firewall is basically Rainbow Six Siege in VR, and that’s honestly been my favorite title released this entire generation. From the hands on previews it seems the game actually plays extremely well too. We had teases of this type of game with titles like Bravo Squad that simply end up like your typical Time Crisis knock off, but this one actually has my interest. I hope it’s fantastic because it will sell PSVR like hotcakes.
Death Stranding - Right below my fanboy meter for Spider-Man is Metal Gear, or anything Kojima touches, and I’m surprised I’m the only one listing this here. It could be because Kojima takes forever and this game might not be out for yet another two years, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed. I hope to see actual gameplay and a release date by E3 in June. Worst case scenario it gets delayed to Early 2019. Kojima’s studio needs money pumping though and unless they pop out another title to bridge into this, I think it needs to come out this year.
Red Dead Redemption - Talking about games I’m honestly shocked that haven’t been put into every single list so far, Red Dead Redemption is probably going to be the biggest titled released. Rockstar has A LOT to live up to, but it’s friggin Rockstar and they’ve honestly never let us down. This is their baby and it’s going to be godly. The only question is, how will it affect GTAV?
Tomb Raider 2018 - Not only do we get a movie, but a new game. Square Enix has noted that the game will “release shortly after the reveal at a major event.” In other words, I expect to see it at E3 and then in my hands by the end of the year. I may have to go buy another Xbox One to play this one…. That’s the good news, the bad news is a new studio is behind this one and it seems the game is trying to be on schedule with the upcoming movie. Two issues that could bring down the quality of the game, I hope I’m wrong. However the new rebooted style of the franchise is miles better, and I can’t wait to explore the next chapter.
Marvel's Spider-Man - There is literally only one game i care about in 2018. And that is the new Spider-Man game. I am so excited for it, that I'm buying a PlayStation 4 just to play that game. I have never cared for, or wanted, a PlayStation; have never been a PlayStation supporter; but seeing as how Spidey is going to be exclusive to PS4, I guess I'll have to get one. It will likely be the only game I buy in this entire year. It looks incredible. From game mechanics, to graphics. The old Spider-Man games were always fun, and mixed superheroes with the world of Grand Theft Auto.
There’s certainly plenty to look forward this year in terms of new stories and worlds to explore. Now we just have to hope that these actually release in 2018 so we can enjoy them. Which new games are you looking forward to most in 2018?