SURVIVAL AND EXPLORATION GAMES, PART ONE
TBA (Early Access) | Crytek | Link
One of the most visually stunning games we’ve seen in some time, according to our own preview, Hunt: Showdown mixes the monstrous horrors of Resident Evil and Stalker with the permadeath combat of DayZ. Five teams of two hunters scour miles of swampland for up to three demons to kill, procure their loot, and attempt to make it out without another team stealing the prize.
Monster Hunter World
January 26 2018 | Capcom | Link
Monster Hunter is finally coming to PC, complete with overhauled graphics and an actual open world no longer segmented by loading screens. Monster AI looks the best it’s ever been, with creatures coexisting in their own unique, tangible ways that make the world feel like a true ecosystem, among other significant changes, like damage stats popping up during attacks.
Skull and Bone
Fall 2018 | Ubisoft Singapore | Link
The high-seas buccaneering of Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag is expanded on in this multiplayer pirate ship sailing game. Team up with friends for five versus five matches or build up your own gang of raiders to take down trade routes and establish your own pirate empire.
Late 2018 | Twirlbound | Link
In a world where humans never dominated the planet, societies of weapon-wielding moose, mammoths, and alligators run the show. A young boy named Hue is tasked with finding a new home for his small tribe of humans. The anthropomorphic animal species of Pine will give Hue quests that change their attitudes towards him. You and Hue can carve out a palace for humanity by fighting other tribes for dominance or by diplomacy. Given that the humans are outclassed even by foxes, diplomacy is the encouraged path forward. Pine’s open-world adventure setting is the playground for its emerging stories between tribes.
A Knight's Quest
2018 | Sky 9 Games | Link
A Knight’s Quest gives a comedic spin to the classic adventure story, featuring a hero named Rusty who’s tasked with saving the kingdom from an evil spirit that he accidentally unleashed upon it. It’s self-proclaimed inspirations are Zelda and Metroid, which manifest in its focus on exploration and acquiring various tools and weapons to solve puzzles.
We Happy Few
April 13 | Compulsion | Link
The unsettling tale of a society controlled by mind-altering drugs and an authoritarian police force, We Happy Few mixes a full-length campaign with three playable characters, with more than 250 encounters set in a procedurally generated world. After existing as an Early Access “rogue-lite” for quite some time, the game’s expansion has pushed its original $30 price tag to $60.
TBA | Robot Gentlemen | Link
Like its 2015 post-apocalyptic predecessor, 60 Parsecs! puts players in charge of a group of people, in this case Cold War astronauts, who are 60 seconds away from disaster and death. Their space station is about to blow up, so there’s only a minute to gather supplies and get everyone ready for the 60 parsec jump into the unknown. For the rest of the game, you’ll need to live (or die) with the consequences of those 60 seconds while dealing with rationing, radiation and the horrors of space travel.
2018 | Chibig | Link
Deiland is a relaxing sandbox RPG that calls to mind both Stardew Valley and Mario Galaxy. As 10-year-old Arco, you’ll take care of your tiny planet, building, crafting and even exploring other worlds, befriending their inhabitants. There’s combat too, of course, and some survival elements, but it’s not meant to be stressful. A mobile version is already available.
March 30 | Madmind Studio | Link
Doom might currently have a monopoly on the most twisted video game depiction of Hell, but this survival horror romp is clearly aiming for the throne with its stairways of flesh, stained glass windows segmented by tendons, and doorways made of teeth. That’s not even mentioning the more taboo imagery. When you’re not slinking through the shadows avoiding demons, you’ll be possessing one to exploit its demonic strength as you search for the queen of the underworld.
2018 | Team Fugl | Link
Voxels are back! Fugl is a game about soaring through colourful voxel worlds as a voxel bird that can shapeshift into other voxel animals. It’s in Early Access at the moment, and should be roosting there for another three months or so.
2018 | Glumberland | Link
As long as there are video games, there will be people who enjoy collecting adorable monsters in them. Ooblets combines elements of Pokémon, Harvest Moon, and Animal Crossing, letting you build a farm full of cute little creatures, explore a charming town, and battle other Ooblets.
2018 | Zoink | Link
Fe is a 3D action-adventure romp starring a fox-like beasty, the titular Fe, as it protects its lovely forest from the ominous Silent Ones. Fe can sing to communicate with other creatures, as well as the forest itself, getting them to lend a hand. Sing to some flowers, for instance, and they might let you jump on them to reach a new area. Thanks, flowers!
Thief of Thieves
Early 2018 | Rival Games | Link
Based on Robert Kirkman’s comic series by the same name, Thief of Thieves will be an episodic stealth adventure following Celia, the protege of the comic series’ hero. The game’s art style pays plenty of homage to its comic book origins, with brightly-colored, high contrast scenes and actual speech bubbles.
Call of Cthulhu
2018 | Cyanide | Link
A first-person survival horror game with a sanity system, Call of Cthulhu resists the familiar hide and seek tendencies of the genre with investigation scenes. As you peruse tomes full of ancient knowledge you are at risk of developing phobias and awakening ancient horrors.
2018 (Early Access) | Phoenix Labs | Link
If you’re looking for a more accessible, less grindy Monster Hunter, Dauntless might be for you, featuring a bunch of “behemoths” sporting ethereal spikes, giant wings, or flame-spewing orifices, among other pleasantries. Our preview detailed some of its free-to-play shortcomings, but you have the chance to join its closed beta to get an idea for yourself.