Christmas is going to be on us sooner than we think – and there will be the a flurry of new releases clogging up the October-to-December window after the always-quiet summer months.
The big guns are going to be firing so fear not, AAA junkies: your annual fix of Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty and a raft of EA Sports titles is just a few short months away. Better yet, the development teams have had a few more years to get their heads around the latest PC and console technology so you can expect the upcoming iterations to be brimming with new features and snazzier graphics. There are some returning favourites to look out for too, with Need for Speed and Star Wars: Battlefront blazing back into the mainstream again.
On a personal level, my AAA-appetite has Star Wars: Battlefront at the top of the list because it’s, well, Star Wars – gimme! But… I’ve been challenged to give the latest Call of Duty a whirl and, having not played an entry in the series since Modern Warfare in 2007, accepted this challenge. Expect to see our coverage increase as the release date nears.
It’s not just established series that have been sucking up all the big budget dollars, as 2K are entering the fray with Battleborn and the LEGO Group will be taking on Skylanders and Disney Infinity with their Dimensions product. Microsoft have a range of exclusives up their sleeve in the shape of Halo 5, Forza 6 and Rise of the Tomb Raider; throw in some tasty looking bundle prices and their Christmas sales figures should look very healthy indeed. Don’t forget that Valve will be getting in on the act too with their Steam Machines and controllers hitting the scene. It’s too close to call as to whether they’ll be a game changer or flash-in-the-pan but 2016 will be a very interesting time.
The keen-eyed among you might have noticed one glaring omission from the above and that’s because the biggest has been saved for last. Fallout 4 is coming and it’s going to be massive! Bethesda’s ambition is huge and from what they’ve shown to the public so far the game has the potential to take up vast swathes of people’s free time from November. The gaming world is going to go bananas for this one when it’s released – you have been warned.
Don’t forget the little guys though as there will be a constant stream of top quality titles at very reasonable prices made by passionate, independent developers. In a year that’s already seen Her Story, Monstrum and Eden Star there’s Beyond Eyes, Volume, Mighty Tactical Shooter and the continuation of Knee Deep to look out for. And that’s just the start because once you scratch the surface of the indie world, there are games being released weekly that are innovative, creative and trying to push the medium in ways that have never been tried before.
So sit back, enjoy the summer sun and make sure you’re refreshed and ready for the gaming bonanza at the end of the year.