10 of the most hotly anticipated game releases of 2018
- Murray Robertson
- 14 December 2017
Red Dead Redemption 2
Ten titles we're most excited about coming out in the new year
We're about half-way through the current generation of games hardware and the upshot is that developers are now pretty savvy about how best to work with the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Next year's biggest titles range from safe-bet sequels to brand new licenses, plus a management sim based on a huge film franchise. Here's what lies ahead.
Monster Hunter: World (PS4/Xbox One/PC)
After years languishing on handheld devices (most recently the Nintendo 3DS), the Monster Hunter franchise finally breaks out across current-gen hardware. Early word suggests that scaling up the gameplay has done great favours for this open-world action RPG.
ETA: 26 Jan
Sea of Thieves (PC/Xbox One)
Pirate-themed games are surprisingly scarce, although the success of 2013's Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag suggested an eager market. Legendary developer Rare (GoldenEye 007, Perfect Dark) are working on this open-world co-op pirate adventure with cross-platform play.
ETA: 20 Mar
Far Cry 5 (PC/PS4/Xbox One)
It's been five years since Far Cry 3 stunned us with its lush open world and thrilling combat. After the slightly disappointing Far Cry 4 and the forgettable Far Cry Primal, here's hoping Ubisoft Montreal get things back on track. Set in rural Montana and exploring themes of religious fanaticism and the rise of the far-right, this sequel goes against the traditional Far Cry setting of beautiful archipelagos and mystical lands.
ETA: 27 Mar
Agony (PC/PS4/Xbox One)
This first-person survival horror has made quite a name for itself thanks to an extraordinarily visceral trailer. You play a Martyr attempting to escape Hell, a landscape depicted with sickening brutality.
ETA: 30 Mar
A Way Out (PC/PS4/Xbox One)
This linear adventure is designed for co-op play only (via split-screen or internet). Thankfully only one copy of the game is required between the two players, who must work together to escape from a prison before going on the run. Lebanese film director Josef Fares previously created the brilliant adventure Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons which employed co-op to unusually strong and emotionally powerful effect.
ETA: Early 2018
Detroit: Become Human (PS4)
From controversial videogame 'auteur' David Cage (Fahrenheit, Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls) comes another interactive neo-noir thriller with breathtaking graphics. Detroit has been in development for some time, inspired by Cage's own five-year-old tech demo, Kara. If it's anything like his previous fare then expect stunning visuals, hokey melodrama and a heavy-handed script.
ETA: Early 2018
Jurassic World Evolution (PC/PS4/Xbox One)
Sim City meets Jurassic Park in this business simulation game from Frontier Developments (Planet Coaster, Elite: Dangerous). It's been a while since we had a big management sim (Sim City released in 2013 with one of the most controversial launches of all time). The last time Jurassic Park featured in a game was 2011's ignominious adventure from Telltale Games who went on to learn from that mistake before creating the superb Walking Dead adventure series.
ETA: Mid 2018
Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4/Xbox One)
One of the most anticipated game sequels of all time, this follow-up to the 2010 Western action-adventure puts players in control of outlaw Arthur Morgan. Set before events from the previous game, expectations are sky-high that Rockstar Studios can marry the technical mastery of Grand Theft Auto V with the more mature storytelling from Red Dead Redemption. This has already slipped from a 2017 release, and Rockstar are smart enough to hold off longer should it require more polish.
ETA: Mid 2018
The Walking Dead: The Final Season (PC/PS3/PS4/Xbox 360/Xbox One/Android/iOS)
When The Walking Dead game series launched in 2012 it heralded an exciting new era of interactive adventures. While the series has declined over the years, anyone who's spent all this time in the company of hero Clementine will be anxious to see how the adventure concludes.
World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth (PC)
Thirteen years after its release, World of Warcraft is still the definitive MMO, having vanquished countless contenders. This seventh expansion will raise the level cap and introduce new races, continents, dungeons and raids. WoW's extraordinary longevity has prompted its developer to start work on a classic version of the game, set for release sometime over the coming years.