We have had many years specifically focused on one thing or another, 2013 was the year of Reboots and sequels, 2014 was all about the HD re-masters and remakes, 2015 looks like it could be the year of long awaited returns to franchises. I’ve had interest in many games every year and each time I felt heavily disappointed at the returns, Tomb Raider promising new mechanics and an improved version of Lara but leaving her feeling empty and pathetic in comparison to what I have known her to be and Destiny gaining so much hype to fall under the car a month into its life, at least to those expecting more than PvP matches.
There also seems to be a heavy emphasis on 4V1 games lately, but we will see if that pans out.
Whilst looking at the bad side of the gaming industry and the releases I didn’t get along with, there is always time to take a look at the better things to come out of the year. In this list I will be detailing some of the games I am most looking forward too, based on both my love for the company and the series as well as what the game has showed so far. You will definitely hear back from me when I have actually played them to whether or not they met the mark or sorely disappointed me.
Those that didn’t make the cut (but were very close):
- Tales of Zestiria
- Xenoblade Chronicles X
- The Legend of Zelda (TBC – WiiU)
- Shadow Realms (Sadly cancelled a few hours after this article was posted)
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain
I have been a fan of the MGS series for a very long time, from the first PS1 release of Metal Gear Solid, through all its remakes to MGS3. I missed out on 4 due to console exclusivity and never got round to playing it but I did spend a good amount of time experimenting with the new systems at play in Ground Zeroes, even hundred percenting the game. The more I played their prototype for the engine the more I got excited to play it in an open world setting with more ways to subdue and more emphasis on base building.
The Phantom Pain seeks to bring the series into the next gen, with incredible animations and flawless textures (from what we’ve seen) to the combat improvements and sneaking mechanic changes. MGS is one of the games that got me into gaming, besides Broken Sword and Final Fantasy VII (7), and I have tried to keep up with the series as best I could.
Main Site – http://www.konami.jp/mgs5/tpp/certification.php5
Persona 5 (7 year wait)
I have followed Atlus and all its releases I could ever since Shin Megami Tensei 3 (Nocturne), the unique view on Demons, Angels and the human condition really drew me in, and the dark themes and colour schemes really appealed to me at the time. The core games of SMT followed the Turn Based which I loved from RPG’s combined with social aspects by talking to party members and negotiating with enemies to get them on your side.
Fast Forward to the release of Persona 3, which I completely missed, and I fell in love again which I might not have found if not for my brother. The game expanded on the social aspect to the point of a dating-sim but with actual weight behind the relationships and impact on the combat itself, as well an improving and expanding on the story behind the demons and shadows you fight and I was hooked on the series, playing 4 then heading back to try out 1 and 2.
I’ve waited so long for Persona 5 and it seems to be worth it, with a new Engine, new combat systems and a new style and direction for the game. Persona 5 looks to improve on 4 with better socialising, core principles and a darker look on the world as you play as what seems to be the “bad guy” against the world.
While not much is known yet as the gameplay trailer has only just been released I am heavily awaiting the day it makes its way into my hands.
Main Site (Requires Translation) – http://persona5.jp/
Final Fantasy XV (15) (9 year wait)
Now, onto the monolith, Final Fantasy 15, skipping 14 it has been 6 years between this and FF13 which is quite a time to wait for a console Final Fantasy release. Being developed by 2 separate teams of Square Enix, one part the 1st Production team and the Kingdom hearts 2 team for in-game action we can expect to see a lot from this release, with the action packed battles to the systems that work in the background.
Following a darker world and theme to previous releases, FF15 is set around the hunted protagonist and his childhood friends. It feels like a FF version of Skyrim or Fallout 3, with enemies around every corner, developing stories and sleeping to level up, combined with the fact that an airship full of troops could drop at any time to attack your group, just imagine it with wings and you got yourself a dragon.
The combination of Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts has got me really intrigued, with the fantasy and lore of FF universes and the combat from KH in one game. The inclusion of a levelling system that allows us to grind how we want, along with eating and resting mechanics to make the game feel even more alive.
Main Site – http://finalfantasyxv.com/