2016 promises more stunning open-world immersion, Nathan Drake’s last hurrah – and the arrival of virtual reality gaming on your smartphone.
Horizon: Zero Dawn
PS4, release date TBC
Mixing open-world exploration, survival drama and sci-fi RPG elements, Horizon may be the most beautiful game yet due for 2016. Set in a post-apocalyptic world a millennium hence, it follows hunter Aloy as she tries to eke out an existence on a ruined Earth overtaken by cybernetic titans.
If developer Guerrilla Games can deliver solid gameplay and a story as good as the stunning visuals, this could be incredible.
PC, PS4, Mobile
Whether virtual reality convinces mainstream consumers remains to be seen, but the gaming community seems ready for immersive experiences. Oculus Rift leads the PC pack, with innovative indies breaking new ground and blockbusters-in-waiting such as EVE: Valkyrie and Rock Band incoming, while Sony’s PlayStation VR offers a first-party avenue for PS4 developers. Samsung’s Gear VR even makes it mobile, turning your smartphone into a VR projector. Expect big things.
PC, Mac; 5 February 2016
It’s a testament to 2012’s XCOM: Enemy Unknown that, four years on, it’s still one of the finest modern strategy games. This long-awaited sequel picks up 20 years after alien forces invaded – and humanity fell. With you now playing as Earth’s resistance fighters, the game expands with guerrilla tactics, new weapons to research, and dynamic maps ensuring no two play-throughs are ever the same. Expect to lose weeks playing this.
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Image via www.gamespot.com