Just to counterbalance my sombre article last week about the biggest disappointments in 2016, I’ve decided to look optimistically, albeit cautiously, into the next 12 months and what gaming delights may occur. Whilst this list obviously won’t include any titles yet to be announced, primarily because I, unfortunately, did not get the Crystal Ball I requested from Santa, but it will include titles and dates that may move after the time of writing. That, my friends, is the way things work around here.
Despite January giving us potentially great titles, such as Resident Evil 7 and Tales of Berseria, the latest games that were released from their respective series didn’t interest me all that much, with the former further losing sight of what made it great and the latter almost failing to have an identity whatsoever. So, instead, the 28th of February will bring me what I consider to be the first must-have title of the year, being Horizon Zero Dawn. Developed by the team behind Killzone, Guerilla Games, Horizon is a new IP featuring Aloy, a hunter who lives in a world run by robotic dinosaurs. If that alone doesn’t pique your interest, you’re dead inside. Featuring RPG elements, an open world and, quite frankly, ridiculously beautiful graphics, this is certainly one to watch out for.
Nier: Automata follows shortly after at the beginning of March. Gameplay will remain largely the same as the original title, with the key difference being that PlatinumGames have come on board as the developers, meaning you can certainly expect their own unique brand to be implanted wherever possible. Following on from the original Nier’s fourth ending, Automata will introduce new characters, stories and, whilst it shares the same universe, will more than likely not reference too heavily on the originals story considering the weak commercial success it had upon release. Incidentally, the Nier series is set in the same universe as Drakengard, one of the greatest PlayStation 2 games of all time, and one that fellow NG writer Dean introduced me too.
April happily answers a question once asked by Mike, specifically being “Whatever Happened To The 3D Adventure Platformer?” with the release of Yooka-Laylee, a beautiful return to the days of yore when the platforming genre had the same level of popularity that FPS games have now. Considering that the team behind it, Playtonic Games, consist of key members of Rare during their Nintendo 64 era, meaning that you can rest easy in knowing that this will be one of the games of the year. While the platforming genre is being mentioned, the Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy is also due to be released in 2017, but the specifics are as of yet unknown.
Whilst the above are a few examples of games I’m looking forward to, there are certainly a lot more, such as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (and the Nintendo Switch, alongside that, considering that Nintendo have returned to form), Sonic Mania and, hopefully, the first system-selling titles for VR platforms. As long as we don’t get another title like No Man’s Sky, I think 2017 looks rather promising indeed.
What are you looking forward to this year? Let us know!