We all have our favourite game series’, our hopes and dreams of what could be revealed, and a whole host of events where these dreams could be realised throughout the year. Here’s a few games from my wishlist that I’d love to see announced this year – maybe you’ll share some of them!
With the return of classic PlayStation heroes Ratchet and Clank this year in the form of the reboot of the same name, very fond memories return of two historically associated characters also dear to my heart – Jak and Daxter. In my earlier gaming years on PlayStation consoles, a large portion of my gaming time was spent playing the Jak games, a series that combined sharp, witty humour, guns, fast-paced action, a solid storyline, bigger guns, and some of the most memorable characters I’ve ever come across. The series is also rooted in my memory as one that provided genuine challenge in the missions and objectives the player had to complete, something I’ve come to miss over the years with the surge of hand-holding seemingly everywhere nowadays.
Come on Naughty Dog, it’s been over a decade since Jak 3, stop teasing us with re-releases and give me a reason to buy a PS4!
Resident Evil 7 (Done Properly)
Resident Evil is at a strange time in its lifespan, the series which birthed the survival-horror genre has mutated (see what I did there?) into a confusing blend of all-new action-horror games and repeatedly re-released classics. Since Resident Evil 6 in 2012, we’ve had the episodic console sequel Revelations 2 in 2015, an “Ultimate HD Edition” re-released for RE4 on PC in 2014, an HD remaster for RE1 almost a year ago, an HD remaster for Resident Evil Zero coming in less than a week, and a full remake for Resident Evil 2 has recently been announced with an as-yet unknown release date. Seeing a pattern here? It’s intentional, Capcom themselves stated last year that remakes/re-releases are now forming a significant part of the business plan for the series, but hopefully that doesn’t mean they’ve forgotten about looking to the future.
Yes, RE6 was good as a generic action game featuring an all-star cast of fan-favourite characters, but the fear was almost non-existent, and it just didn’t ring true to what RE fans fell in love with so many years ago. As I covered a couple of years back, Resident Evil’s peak was the timeless classic RE4, which blended action, survival, fear and horror to near-perfect precision, and it’ll be hard to ever get back to that formula, if at all possible. However, with the series having been on a steady decline away from classic RE, it should be easier than ever to do a u-turn and change course. Find a convenient reason to get lost in a creepy mansion, castle, base, cave system, wherever, throw in a few zombies, evil villains and plot twists and you’re onto a winner, Capcom. If they took a few cues from the cancelled RE4 concept known by the community as the “Hook Man” version, it’s safe to say they can’t go too wrong.
(Whilst on the topic of horror games that need to return to their roots, it would be nice to see a Dead Space 4 too. If you’ve played the Dead Space 3 DLC you’ll know why we need answers. Also, make the game just like said DLC please? Ta.)
Assassin’s Creed, Skipping a Year and Going Further Back Than Ever Before
Recent rumours and supposed leaks are pointing towards Ubisoft skipping 2016, breaking their yearly release cycle for the main series, and releasing the next main Assassin’s Creed in 2017. They also suggest that it could be set in Ancient Egypt. Both of these things I would like to have confirmed later this year please, Ubisoft.
Why? An extra year of development can only improve the game (unless your name is Duke Nukem), and it should also help the fanbase ease off some of their AC fatigue, something I know even I’m starting to experience after the onslaught of AC games over the last few years, some of which have been arguably weak. In addition, the setting could be one of the most interesting yet. The series has been taking steps further and further toward present day, going from the Italian Renaissance, to the American Revolution, to the Golden Age of Piracy, to the French Revolution, and now the Industrial Revolution. How better to take a step away from modern technology and break the cycle than to jump WAY back into Ancient Egypt? We’ve seen the strength of both the Assassins and Templars as far back as the Crusades, but how about over a millennium before that? What was the dynamic like between the two orders? What equipment did they have? Who might we come across in-game? So many exciting questions… All I know is this could be one of the greatest entries in the series, if all this is true.
There’s not a whole lot to say here. Those who have played the first two “Portal” games know why having another entry in the series would be the best thing since the Companion Cube – those who haven’t need to go home and rethink their lives.
Seriously though, Portal has been immortalised as one of the best marriages of humour, puzzles, challenge and storytelling ever. Get on it, Valve, it’s the perfect excuse to put off Half Life 3 another few years.
Splinter Cell 2016
Anyone who’s been following the Splinter Cell series will know it’s had a rocky path so far. Seemingly going from strength to strength, it took something of a stumble a few years ago with the likes of the divisive “Conviction”, but after the most recent game “Blacklist”, Sam Fisher seems to be getting back on his game. Bearing in mind the leaps back to form that Blacklist started making – a commitment to stealth play, a wider variety of paths the player can take and the return of the insanely fun SvM – one can only hope the next game in the series will not only live up to its predecessor, but take it a step further.
The story of Splinter Cell’s universe was left neatly wrapped and open for expansion at the end of Blacklist, so the team at Ubisoft have a wealth of story opportunities to look into. It’s been three years since the last game, which is the same gap between it and Conviction, so perhaps the pattern will repeat. Let’s hope this is the year we can pick up our green goggles again for some more stealth action!
Of course, there are plenty of other games we’d all like to see – what’s on your wishlist?