That’s a lot to play! A few of those were fantastic, too. But the games industry doesn’t slow down, and we thought it’d be worth taking a look at what we’re most excited about in the lead-up to E3 in June.
Starting with Kratos himself…
God of War
No surprises, this is at the top of our list. There’s no such thing as a bad God of War game.
This instalment is very different, and sees an older Kratos setting out on a journey with his son, Atreus. Its combat has taken a few cues from Dark Souls, and its story is heavily influenced by The Last of Us. That adds up to being one very different God of War game.
This is one of the bigger releases of the year, and we’ll be covering it quite heavily — stay tuned for lots of God of War content on FANDOM.
God of War comes out on May 20th exclusively to PS4.
Sweet freezing nuggets, count us excited for some Frostpunk. This survival-based city building game is in the vein of Surviving Mars, or Aven Colony, and the developers are bringing a unique story-based approach to the genre.
Tasked with keeping a town alive in a post-apocalyptic winter wasteland, you’ll have to balance practical things like resource management, and more human factors like crime and morale. You’ll come across irreversible decisions designed to yank at your empathy chains. What you decide, for better or worse, becomes the law of the town.
If you haven’t checked out the previous games from 11 bit Studios, you’re in for a treat. It started out by bringing a unique take to the tower defence genre in Anomaly: Warzone Earth, which it described as “reverse tower offence.” After that it enjoyed lots of acclaim with This War of Mine, a game about staying alive while a war is breaking out around you.
Both the resource management and moral decisions in those games are clearly shaping Frostpunk, with probably a little more focus on This War of Mine.
Frostpunk comes out on the 24th of April, on PC.
Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
A series known for its wonderful visuals and story, this sequel packs everything up and sails to a foreign chain of islands. It’s had one of the most successful crowdfunding campaigns in recent gaming history, and as a result its feature list has kept getting larger and larger.
We’ll see plenty of new races, factions, spells, and adventures. Naval combat will be a new feature, though this will mostly play out as a text adventure until you’re actually boarding — at which point the normal combat system is used.
We recently spoke to a producer (see above) on the team about the new archipelago you’ll be exploring, and all the different cultures you’ll encounter. Given the nature of an archipelago, it won’t be hard to keep adding unexplored islands to the game.
Deadfire will be out May 8th on PC.
Warhammer 40k: Inquisitor – Martyr
This Diablo-like in the 40k universe, in which you play an Inquisitor cutting through hordes of heretics, is apparently worth two subtitles. It’s a solo power fantasy campaign, with four-player co-op for the side challenges and timed missions.
Games Workshop has reserved a sector of space for this click ’em up, so it doesn’t interfere with the main 40k storyline. Like the abilities of the Inquisitors, that could be a blessing and a curse, as this definitely won’t be an “all your favourite characters” kind of adventure. But the developers want to continually add to the game through seasons, where new factions like the Tao will be brought into the sector.
There’s no shame in admitting we’re purely into this one because we’re fans of 40k. We haven’t played it yet, and have no idea if it will bomb or not. But we’re sure as hell going to give it a try.
That’s the funny thing about Games Workshop games. Once upon a time, it was an incredibly selective franchise. Video games bearing the Warhammer name were few and far between. It even famously denied Blizzard the rights before the veteran game studio went on to create Warcraft and Starcraft.
Nowadays, it seems like the Warhammer licence is granted to anyone who can spell their first name. Hilariously, this hasn’t affected the ratio of good games to bad games. It was always about 50/50, as it remains to this day.
As such, we look at every upcoming Warhammer game with one eyebrow raised. Total War: Warhammer was a great win, and there have been other successes such as Battlefleet Gothic: Armada. We would love so much to be drenched in the flaming giblets of mutants, heretics, and xenos. But we’ll maintain a healthy skepticism until trying it out.
Expect Inquisitor – Martyr on May 11th, across PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
Pixeljunk Monsters 2
Recently announced at GDC, this is a sequel to a popular tower defence game with a cutesy art style and 100% more dancing than you usually see in the genre. You’ll build up defences against waves of enemies as they try to walk down a static path, and adapt your towers to their weaknesses.
While not even our favourite brand of tower defence, we’re just all up inside any kind of tower defence game. This belongs squarely in the “hero” category of tower defence, in which you control a character who walks around, building things, attacking things, and choosing when to supercharge towers with the power of dance.
But who are we kidding, we’re just suckers for any kind of tower defence. It’s an incredibly addictive genre. Shut up and take our money.
This sequel promises four-player co-op, and will be on PC, PS4, and Switch on May 25th.
Another one we’re not entirely sure about, but has definitely piqued our interest. You play Dr Jonathan Reid, a man greatly concerned with the well-being of his fellow humans — which, as a recently converted vampire, conflicts with his desire for human blood.
This one comes from the studio behind Life is Strange, so you can expect story and dialogue to play a huge part here. What it’s aiming for is smart interplay between story and actions in the world.
But it does have a combat system, which like many games these days, seems to have taken inspiration from the Souls masterpieces. In fact, the most apt comparison is probably Bloodborne, given the setting.
You can expect this one on June 6th, on Xbox One, PS4, and PC.