E3 is over, thank god, and with it comes a bevy of games to watch for on the horizon. It's an overwhelming number, but we've rounded up what we expect to be the best new games of 2018 to make it easier to see what's coming - and what's already arrived. Our guide to the new games of 2018 is split up by genre: RPGs, shooters, action games, and more.
They're not all big games, of course: there are the small indie games we're excited about right alongside triple-A blockbusters. Each upcoming PC game is listed with its expected 2018 release date (although plenty are considering themselves early access), and we're keeping this list updated with more upcoming games throughout the year.
Table of contents
Action games and fighting games
Platformers and Metroidvanias
Survival and exploration games
Sports and racing games
If you are based in the UK and fancy trying out upcoming games like Biomutant and Warhammer: Vermintide 2 then book tickets now for the PC Gamer Weekender in the London Olympia this February. It should be an exciting year, and we have already lined up a bunch of predictions for PC gaming in 2018. We've also made some PC gaming new year's resolutions that we definitely won't break.
ACTION GAMES OF 2018
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
September 14, 2018 | Crystal Dynamics | Link
Lara ditches the tropical islands and snowy peaks of past adventures for dense jungles and what appears to be Mayan architecture on her third modern adventure. Combat is the same familiar blend of third-person stealth action, although it’s implied that sneakiness will play a larger role this time around, with an ability that lets Lara slink into a wall of moss like John Rambo. The plot revolves around Lara accidentally triggering an apocalyptic cataclysm by removing a sacred Mayan dagger from its resting place, plus all the secret society stuff that’s de rigeur in treasure hunting games. Check out our full preview here.
Just Cause 4
December 4 | Avalanche Studios | Link
Rico Rodriguez is back surprisingly quickly after Just Cause 3. This time, he's battling evil in the South American country of Solis. Expect a lot of the same parachuting and wingsuit gliding action, but joined by extreme weather events like tornadoes, tropical storms, and falling helicopters.
November 13, 2018 | IO Interactive | Link
For a while there, the future of the Hitman franchise was up in the air, following Square Enix's move to sell developer IO Interactive. After a year of relative silence, recent rumors turned out to be true as Warner Bros. announced Hitman 2 shortly before E3. The game won't be episodic this time around, but will feature six levels at launch, including an F1 racetrack set in Miami seen in the trailer. At least two post-launch DLCs are planned and available through limited edition SKUs. Folks who pre-order the game get immediate access to Hitman: Sniper Assassin mode, not to be confused with Hitman: Sniper for mobile. Just like an assassin to keep you confused. Warner Bros. is hanging out with us to share more details during the PC Gaming Show next week.
Monster Hunter World
Autumn 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. Our own Steven Messner called it “the bold evolution the series needed.”
2018 | Experiment 101 | Link
This peculiar looking action-RPG mashes up ancient Wushu martial arts, gun-fu, and plenty of anthropomorphic beasts to take down, all in the name of protecting a vast, mystical land. Weapon crafting and the ability to infuse your character with psychic mutations or robotic limbs promise to let you bash heads in your own unique way.
2018 | Bandai Namco | Link
“Anime Dark Souls” is the Code Vein’s pigeonhole. You fight huge demons with even bigger swords in an crumbling, interconnected world. There’s a vampiric undertone too, and the game invites you to “give into the bloodlust fully and risk becoming one of the Lost, fiendish ghouls devoid of any remaining humanity.” Yes please.
MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries
December 2018 | Piranha Games | Link
In this singleplayer follow-up to Piranha's MechWarrior Online, you take charge of a mercenary operation in the Inner Sphere, the region of space surrounding earth, and melt some robots in the first MechWarrior campaign in 15 years. Developed in Unreal Engine 4, players will have the freedom to choose their house, travel anywhere, and fully customize their mechs for 12 versus 12 battles.
2018 | One More Level | Link
Harry and Judy, angel and demon, are not the pair you’d expect to find teaming up to stop the four horsemen of the apocalypse but apparently they have their reasons. God’s Trigger is a fast and bloody top-down action game where a quick trigger finger and a bit of communication help you take out hordes of supernatural enemies. You can take on one of the main characters, but God’s Trigger is better experienced alongside another player.
May 31, 2018 | Italo Games | Link
Riffing on the 70’s Italian action flicks that inspired the likes of Quentin Tarantino, Milanoir tells the hardboiled tale of Piero, a recently released convict on the hunt for revenge on the guy who framed him. Expect a lot of top-down shootouts, car chases, and trenchcoats, all with a friend through an additional two-player co-op mode.
Spring 2018 | Llamasoft
A new Tempest game from Jeff Minter ought to be a treat. You play as a spaceship called the Claw and must shoot villains coming out you down a psychedelic pipe. As you’d hope, efficiency is rewarded with points and pretty explosions.
June 5 | DONTNOD Entertainment | Link
The developer behind Life Is Strange expands its horizons with this early 20th-century vampire fable set in London. As recent vampire Dr. Jonathan Reid, you must find a cure for the city’s disease-ridden population while balancing the politics of the undead bloodsuckers around you. When not fighting off vampire hunters or zombies, you’ll be deciding which citizens to feed on for progression points, with plenty of narrative consequences to follow.
Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner
September 2018 | Konami
It's never too late. Kojima's beautiful mech action game first arrived on the PS2 back in 2003, and the PS3 a decade later with an HD collection, and now that 15 years has passed, it's finally coming to PC. Konami's also throwing VR support into the mix, which sounds extremely cool and extremely nauseating, considering the speed at which Zone of the Enders moves. If the port holds up, The 2nd Runner will immediately enter the ranks of the best mecha games on PC.
Summer 2018 | Reinkout | Link
Earth is enslaved and it’s up to you to beat back its alien invaders in this top-down, physics-based action game. More than 30 vehicle types let you sow chaos and solve explosive puzzles, or bring a buddy in co-op.
2018 | Cococucumber | Link
“Legend of Zelda meets Castle Crashers,” as the developer puts it, Riverbond pits you and up to three other friends in a shimmery voxel world full of enemies to hack-n-slash as you traverse down the River of Light. Between the incredibly destructible environments, each level is full of neat hidden secrets and alternate weapons that can drastically change how you approach a battle.
ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove
2018 | Humanature Studios | Link
From the original creators of ToeJam & Earl, the funky alien duo and friends are back for another rogue-like adventure on Earth. With nine playable characters (and online/couch co-op for up to four players), explore through randomly generated levels to recover parts of your ride, the Rapmaster Rocketship, and jam out to 15 new songs.
July 26, 2018 | We Are Fuzzy | Link
In Sleep Tight, monsters are invading your bedroom, but instead of cowering under your sheets, you can construct pillow forts and turrets to push back the nightmares and finally get a good night’s sleep. It’s a twin-stick shooter meets a tower defence game, inspired by the likes of Ratchet & Clank and Pixar movies.
2018 | Gunfire Games | Link
Fury, one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse in the Darksiders universe, takes center stage for the third installment in the popular action franchise. You’ll make use of her bladed whip, a revamped combat system, and plenty of magic abilities to take down the Seven Deadly Sins, and collect some solid loot in the process.
The Moon Fields
TBA | lunarsignals | Link
The Moon Fields is a fast-paced sword and sorcery action game that developer lunarsignals intends to turn into a single-player adventure with a large overworld, but right now, in its ‘first access’ phase, it’s a multiplayer versus game for up to eight players. Pick from 18 characters with hundreds of character variations and then go batter your mates.
FIGHTING GAMES AND BEAT 'EM UPS OF 2018
2018 | Studio Koba | Link
Fight some street thugs, demons, and maybe even a giant toad made out of monochrome PC monitors in this heavily atmospheric beat-em-up. Channeling some serious Kung Fury-esque vibes (you will at some point hang ten on a floppy disk), you play as Narita Boy, a hero destined to save the Digital Kingdom using the legendary techno sword.
2018 | Project Soul | Link
With SoulCalibur 6, the long-running fighting series is finally making its way to PC. SoulCalibur’s fights are 3D duels, with each combatant wielding with a unique weapon with particular quirks, strengths and weaknesses. If you’ve played previous iterations, 6 should feel familiar, though it does introduce some new features, like the Reverse Edge, a move that halts time and makes both players duke it out in a rocker, paper, scissors confrontation.
BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle
June 5, 2018 | Arc System Works | Link
The next BlazBlue game ditches some of Arc System Works' famous complexity for simpler 2D fighting game systems and inputs (nothing harder than a quarter circle), aiming to be a more beginner-friendly tag fighter. It's also aiming for some cross-series appeal with characters from BlazBlue, Persona 4, RWBY, and Under Night In-Birth.
Late 2018 (currently Early Access) | Sirlin Games | Link
Fighting games can be difficult to get into for anyone without a photographic memory for combo lists and the manual dexterity of a classically trained pianist. For the rest of us, there’s Fantasy Strike, which attempts to lower the skill bar for actually enjoying a fighting game. Every move takes only one button press, not an elaborately timed sequence. Where classic fighting games are hard to learn and hard to master, Fantasy Strike attempts to at least be easy to pick up. It’s currently in early access with a full release planned for later in 2018.
RELEASED AND DELAYED TO 2019
2019 (Delayed) | BioWare | Link
Enter a world of “freelancers” clad in mech suits protecting the world’s last bastion of humanity, and collect some loot while you’re at it. Similarities to Destiny aside, the multiplayer-focused Anthem promises the chance to soar through the skies (and underwater) on rocket boots, battle giant monsters, and contend with dangerous weather effects like “shaver storms.”
Devil May Cry HD Collection
March 13, 2018 (Out now) | Capcom | Link
Some of the finest action games ever made (well, Devil May Cry 3, anyway) get a fancy re-release on PC in one bundle. The first two games were originally PS2 exclusives, while DMC3 had a poor attempt at a PC port that is actually still available on Steam. This one will hopefully fare better, because the combat is excellent, and Dante always fills our dark souls with light.
2019 | Andrew Shouldice | Link
Formerly known as “Secret Legend,” Tunic evokes the charm and beauty of The Legend of Zelda, all wrapped up in a beautifully fluid cel-shaded art style. Challenging combat demands plenty of dodge-rolling and pits you against huge bosses.
February 23, 2018 (Out now) | Phantom 8 Studio | Link
If you know what’s going on in Past Cure, it’s probably because you work at Phantom 8. Nobody else could make sense of the trailers. All we know is that Ian, a soldier, has been experimented on and now he’s trying to… get revenge? He’s also losing his mind. In the real world, it’s an action game, but there’s a nightmare world too, where the game becomes a survival horror affair with some puzzles thrown in for good measure.
Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition
January 16 (Out now) | Capcom, Dimps | Link
Arcade edition is Street Fighter V repackaged with a proper arcade story mode, after launching as a bare bones multiplayer experience. 60 characters can access 200 possible endings by beating the campaign and achieving certain conditions, like perfecting a particular round.
Dragon Ball FighterZ
January 26 (Out now) | Arc System Works | Link
The studio most known for 2D anime fighter hits Guilty Gear and BlazBlue throws their weight into the world of Dragon Ball Z, incorporating a distinct mix of 2D and 3D graphics to make each fight feel like an epic Super Saiyan battle. A new story mode features three separate arcs that follows the return of the androids, along with the mysterious new Android 21.
Dynasty Warriors 9
February 8, 2018 (Out now) | Koei Tecmo | Link
Jungle dozens and dozens of enemy warriors for thousand-hit combos in the latest Three Kingdoms brawler in Koei Tecmo’s long-running series. The series is moving from distinct battles to an open world that will offer different approaches to taking enemy strongholds. Don’t worry, you still get to hit thousands of dudes.
Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet
March 2018 (Out Now) | Bandai Namco | Link
Okay so this game is not online and, rather than swords, features guns rather heavily. In fact the virtual world you’re fighting for is called Gun Gale Online. It’s the first Sword Art Online game to come to PC, which might be good news for fans of the books and anime series, if the game turns out to be any good. Expect snappy third-person combat and lots of big brown areas to explore.
April 10, 2010 (Out Now) | Iron Galaxy Studios | Link
Channeling some serious Attack on Titan vibes, Extinction throws you into a world full of 150-foot tall ogres and their minions intent on destroying humanity. As one of the world’s last defenders, you’ll scale great heights and leap through the air to reach their weak points, severing limbs in a bloody spectacle of violence. You’ll need to work fast and smart though, before each fully destructible environment is laid to waste.
February 8 (Out Now) | Roll7 | Link
Avoid the rotating laser barriers and claim the nodes in this futuristic sport designed for local competitive play. It’s in Early Access at the moment but it’s generating some good buzz, and we love a good multiplayer couch game on PC.
Attack On Titan 2
March 14 (Out Now) | Koei Tecmo | Link
Chop up more grinning naked giants with more “omni-directional action”. The game follows the second season of the anime, promising new Titans, new Titan behaviour, and new ways to surgically strike at the giants’ nape weak spots.
Never Stop Sneakin'
February 2018 (Out Now) | Humble Hearts | Link
Most of what you need to know about Never Stop Sneakin' is contained in this sentence from its Steam page: "If you're going to fix history, you'll need the help of the world's most elite stealth operatives: The Department of Sneakin'."
If you'd like to hear more anyway, Never Stop Sneakin' is inspired by Metal Gear Solid, but veers more towards the arcadey action side of the stealth action mix. Also, there's a boss named Vice President Helicopter.
April 9 (Out Now) | Nodacoy Games | Link
Explode your enemies, explode your surroundings, and explode your own face in hack and slash and shoot-em-up Heckpoint. You can take on randomly-generated levels with several characters and customized weapon loadouts in several strange environments. Heckpoint released on Early Access in October of 2017 and is planned to remain in EA for about six to nine months to expand on some of its explosive features.
TBA | Kojima Productions | Link
Hideo Kojima and weird paramilitary nonsense are like peanut butter and jelly. The game’s first two trailers showed us a naked Norman Reedus, Guillermo Del Toro holding a fetus in a jar, and Mads Mikkelsen patrolling a sewer with skeleton-faced soldiers. The latest trailer, below, is a horrifying nightmarish sequence full of towering shadow monsters and a cheerful baby. How will it play? Kojima has revealed little, except to say it's an open world action game with interesting death mechanics.
2019 | Reagent Games, Sumo Digital, Cloudgine | Link
Leap like the Hulk across a futuristic neon metropolis and live out your supercop fantasies by systematically taking down a network of crime bosses and kingpins. A competitive multiplayer mode allows for skyscraper-smashing destruction through some cloud computing wizardry, but you’ll have to settle for a more restrained sense of action in the single-player/offline campaign. According to a report from Kotaku, two sources familiar with the game's release plan say it's been pushed back into 2019.