What's next for the PC's biggest series

Shooters

Battlefield

EA has to have at least one big shooter every year. Last year we got Battlefront (and Battlefield Hardline, though that was supposed to release in 2014), and this year it’ll be another Battlefield. EA said so during one of those investor calls we all love to listen in on. Presumably BF is going back to DICE (Hardline was primarily developed by Visceral) and may be called Battlefield 5, but we don’t know for sure. We expect to see it at E3 this summer and, if it follows tradition, a late October release date. Looks like we’re getting Titanfall 2 this year, too.

Battlefield 4 1

Borderlands

Back in 2014, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford said that Borderlands 3 wasn’t in the works, but told Polygon that they’ve got big ideas. “It should be massive,” he said. Then, in January of last year, recruiting began for “the big one.” So, it’ll be big. That’s what we know, and it sounds like Gearbox has put about a year of work into it so far. It’s possible that we’ll see what they’ve been up to sometime this year, but I’d wager that we might not see a trailer until next year.

Meanwhile, we also learned last year that a Borderlands movie is in the works, and then that the series creator, Matthew Armstrong, left Gearbox. The parting sounded amicable, at least.

"I could leave without damaging Borderland or Gearbox too much if I did it at this moment, so now was the time," said Armstrong. "I think Gearbox will do great in the future, and I think Borderlands will stay strong and awesome. I've been thinking about it for a while. I'm not quitting out of anger or getting fired. It's just time for new adventures. I'm an inventor. I'm ready to make something new. Not just new to me, but new to everyone."

Borderlands The Pre Sequel

Call of Duty

As long as the sun rises in the west there’s no worry of Call of Duty missing a year. It was just revealed on an Activision investor’s call that this year’s CoD will be made by Infinity Ward, which last contributed the somewhat disappointing Ghosts. We expect to hear someone say “wait” and then instruct us to take the guy on the right. Outside of that, who knows? Maybe they’ll surprise us and it won’t be a near-future war with terrorists.

Call of Duty Black Ops 3

Doom

The Doom reboot releases on May 13th, and we know lots about it: movement is emphasized over Doom 3’s horror, it’s said to have a 13 hour campaign, and we’ll get a map editor but no mod support outside of that. As for the future of the series, it’s probably a wait-and-see sort of deal.

Doom

Half-Life

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Garry s Mod

Max Payne

Tough to say what the future holds for ol’ Max. The Rockstar-developed Max Payne 3 felt a bit like the end of the line—or as Max would say, the final bullet, silhouetted against the thundery sky of everything. We haven’t heard anything that suggests Rockstar definitely isn’t pursuing another Payne game, but outside of some highly suspect rumor reports, there’s equally no sign that the series will continue. If it does, it might not be for some time, when we’re really hungry for it. It was nine years between Max Payne 2 and Max Payne 3, after all, and Rockstar has GTA to worry about.

In an ideal world, Remedy ties up Quantum Break and gets to do another Max Payne, maybe ignoring the events Rockstar Studios put in place and spinning off into whatever noir timeline it wants. But Max doesn’t live in an ideal world and nor do we.

Max Payne 3

Strategy

Civilization

There’s no suggestion of when Civilization VI might be announced, but it seems clear enough that Civ V is in the hands of the modders now, with no more expansions planned—which doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll be seeing a new game soon. The gap between Civ IV and Civ V was five years, and though five years has passed since Civ V (feels like yesterday, probably because we were playing Civ), with Beyond Earth as a midday snack it’s reasonable to assume we’ll have another year or two before we hear about the next one. Civ games don’t need yearly iteration to stay relevant, though, so there’s no rush. We’re just curious to find out how Firaxis might further alter the board game—doesn’t seem to be much point in releasing a game with Civ V’s rules but prettier graphics, so if a new one is in the works we expect a divisive change or two.

Beyond Earth Front Page

StarCraft

Legacy of the Void is the end of this StarCraft story, but surely not the end of StarCraft. Back in August of last year, producer Tim Morten said that Blizzard may consider returning to Warcraft, but that more StarCraft is also possible. “Anything is possible.”

Also last year, we saw that Blizzard was looking for a "Senior Software Engineer, Classic Games," which might suggest that it’s planning to re-release some oldies.

StarCraft II LotV Singleplayer Siege Line

Total War

Total War: Warhammer is next for The Creative Assembly, and it’ll be out on April 18. We had some substantial time with it last year: Wes wrote about six observations he made while playing it, and Dan Griliopoulos talked to the devs and penned us a feature about their ambitions.

Meanwhile, Creative Assembly says work on the next historical Total War game has proceeded uninterrupted, though it hasn’t been announced yet. The free-to-play Total War Arena is also in development, and is currently in closed beta.

Total War Warhammer Chaos 5

XCOM

We can expect an expansion for XCOM 2, but after that it’s anybody’s guess. Unlike Enemy Unknown, XCOM 2 has all the longevity that modding affords Civilization, so a quick turnaround on a new one feels unnecessary. Enemy Unknown came out in 2012, so even if XCOM 3 is coming, it probably won’t be until 2020 or later. And by such a futuristic-sounding date we have to assume we’ll be living on cities built of flotsam lashed to tankers and cruise ships.

XCOM 2 new tom screen 15