This week we've taken a look back at the games that we enjoyed most so far this year, but what about the games still to come? Here are our personal shouts for the most anticipated games still to come in 2014...
Matt Gardner -- Dragon Age: Inquisition
This one would have been all kinds of easy had CD Projekt RED not pushed The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt back into next year. As it is, that delay does rather give us all spring to enjoy Geralt's next adventure and frees up a bit of space in the winter for some other games to get a look in.
The Master Chief Collection is high on my list. It's a sure thing that I'll be buying an Xbox One come this autumn just so I can be a part of that launch and go hands on with the Halo 5 beta come December. Far Cry 4 looks set to be just as open and outstanding as its predecessor, with new elements and elephants to keep things fresh. Destiny wasn't on my radar really last year, but after playing the alpha is totally there now, and I know I'm not alone there.
But the game I'm most eager to check out is perhaps the one given a lifeline by CDPR. I lambasted Dragon Age II for being a shell of a BioWare game -- a fairly average RPG by most standards, but a lazy, repetitive shambles by BioWare's own. It was a game that felt too rushed, too fragmented, and too separate from the massive events we'd helped set in motion in Origins. Inquisition looks to rectify all of that by being more expansive, more tactical (thank god the tac-cam is back), and more of an RPG.
I can't say that I feel Dragon Age: Inquisition will be the best game of the Holiday season; I just don't know. But there's a lot riding on this game in my mind. BioWare have gone to great pains to try and convince us in advances that they've learned from the mistake of the previous game, that this will be a more involved experience, a deeper and richer RPG that harks back to the promise of Origins. The game world looks phenomenal, the fort capturing sounds intriguing, but can BioWare pull it off? Only time will tell.
Carl Phillips -- Dreamfall Chapters Book One: Reborn
Here’s another one that shouldn’t be too much of a surprise pick from me – especially as I awarded it the same personal accolade at the start of the year – but even with big hitters such as Destiny and Civilization: Beyond Earth on the horizon, there’s really only one game I’m eagerly awaiting this year.
The recent news that Dreamfall Chapters will be going episodic will no doubt have disappointed some fans, but the promise of a larger and more satisfying story more than makes up for it in my opinion. After all, we’ve already waited years to find out if Zoë Castillo would return (and the fate of April Ryan, for that matter) and in fairness breaking it up means people such as myself won’t binge on it in one go, overindulging themselves and becoming bloated on great storytelling with a side of feels. So, in theory, Red Thread Games have saved us all in the long run.
They’re goddamn heroes.
As the developers have told us, a focus on the narrative, as well as making the puzzle elements somewhere between the fiendishness of The Longest Journey and the trivial nature found in Dreamfall, should hopefully make this an accessible and enjoyable return for the series. The brief gameplay demos we’ve seen over the last year have been promising (and teasing, those teases) so when Book One does emerge later this year, you can be sure I won’t shut up about it. Mainly because of Crow – the inventor of Twitter.
Brendan Griffiths -- Destiny
I’m pretty sure that Assassin’s Creed: Unity is going to be awesome thanks to Ubisoft committing to the new-gen consoles and not stretching development over the old ones too. Far Cry 3 was a previous GOTY for me, so yeah, part 4 is going to be another contender for sure.
But I’ve not played any of these games yet. I’ve played Destiny though, and I really want some more of it. Having maxed out characters during the recent Alpha test, I’ve enjoyed both the co-op, solo and competitive multiplayer modes.
I’m hoping Destiny is going to fill that Fallout-shaped hole in my life and that’s certainly the familiar vibe I got when exploring the ruins of Old Russia. I’ve already discovered areas with enemies too formidable for the level cap in the Alpha, so I can’t wait to see what they’re ferociously protecting once I have some beefed up weapons in September.
The dynamic co-op where you meet with random people in the always-online world was really smooth during the Alpha and I can tell it’s going to be an essential part of those raid-like Strike missions – hopefully there’ll be more spider-tank bosses rather than floating giant robot eyes though.
The competitive PvP mode I’ve played was the familiar battle to hold territory and the first map was nothing special. But the lunar base level was amazing, mainly thanks to the inclusions of vehicles. The hover bike is fun in the PvE modes, but the addition of weapons for MP is all sorts of fun. Oh, and if you see someone parked in a base gate with a Devastator hover tank cackling maniacally while blasting people away like flies, come and say hi. Then prepare for that respawn screen.
Jonathan Lester -- BROFORCE!
Oh ambassador, with this 2014 release slate you are really spoiling us. From Bayonetta 2 and Persona Q to Sunset Overdrive and Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair, there's going to be plenty of fantastic games to play and nowhere near enough time to play them.
However, as I've said time and time again, I reckon that you might be able to play one of 2014's best games right now in early access. BROFORCE.
I'm not suggesting for one moment that Free Lives have somehow managed to enter my dreams and create my perfect game... because this hasn't happened yet... but BROFORCE is shaping up to be an absolute blinder. Outrageous 4-player run-and-gun action, crazy level destruction (and level of destruction) and ridiculous homages to all my favourite action films (BROBOCOP! YES!) make this one of the most entertaining games on the market right now.
And it's not even finished yet.