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New Releases: Pride Cometh Before the Fall

/ Jun 12th, 2016 No Comments

Gears of War 4

E3 is this week. Oh my god. It is already here. It felt like last year’s E3 just happened. After all the razzle and dazzle dissipated we were left with a great 2015 and a ton of delays. 2016 once again is seeing a good deal of shuffling with several games already hitting that 2017 slate. However with a strong first half and a seemingly strong Fall, the delays aren’t too hard to swallow.

At the end of 2015 with looked upon the exciting first half releases of 2016. With an empty week of new releases in light of E3 2016, we will look ahead at what the second half of 2016 has to offer us. While July to December is full of cool new releases, E3 should announce a few more, but here are five new releases to get excited for right now!

No Man’s Sky – PS4, PC – August 9

No Man’s Sky like every other game in 2016 wasn’t immune from a delay. Fortunately, the delay was only a month-ish from an original June 21 launch date to August 9. This means we won’t have to wait too long before we finally discover what exactly No Man’s Sky is about. It’s been described as a space flight sim with the ability to discover what seems like an infinite amount of computer generated worlds in a seemingly endless universe.

No Man's Sky

No Man’s Sky.

Outside of general exploration and surviving whatever dangers these undiscovered worlds hold for eager space travelers, pilots can trade and fight in this massively open game. More than that you’ll encounter alien races and learn alien languages. It is hard to get a handle on what No Man’s Sky is about. We’ll just have to play it for ourselves to understand it, but you do need to be excited about it.

Final Fantasy XV – PS4, Xbox One – September 30

Final Fantasy XV follows Crown Prince Noctis and his childhood friends as they fight against the aggressive empire of Niflheim after the empire stole the crystal in a peace treaty singing gone awry. The story will unfold with brotherhood running as a central theme as the bonds between Noctis and his friends develop over the course of the game. FF XV marks a stark departure from the style of combat the series is known for. With a more active, action-oriented style of gameplay it will give the series a new feel. To go along with a new style of gameplay, the game will utilize an open-world setting to give it a more immersive feel. This is a bold, new direction for the series.

Final Fantasy XV

Final Fantasy XV.

After years in limbo as Final Fantasy Versus XIII, Final Fantasy XV will be in eager Final Fantasy fans hands this September. It took over a decade, and a name, system, and director change to do it, but GD if it isn’t finally about to be out. In the final stretches of development we’ve gotten multiple active time reports revealing new details, and two demos to prove it isn’t just a fantasy. When Final Fantasy XV hits shelves on September 30 we will see if it was worth the wait.

Gears of War 4 – Xbox One – October 11

Taking place 25 years after the events of Gears of War 3, the latest in the saga picks up on Sera with the Locust and Lambent a former threat and humanity in rags. J.D. Fenix, son of Marcus Fenix and Anya Stroud along with Del Walker and Kait Diaz must venture forth and deal with a new threat to humanity’s survival on Sera in addition to the other problems the planet faces. Even though this game follows the exploits of Marcus Fenix’s son, the gameplay is just like daddy likes it.

Cover based shooting returns in all its glory with some new tricks. The crew can use a Combat Knife to perform melee attacks and new executions, as well as charge short distances at enemies to knock them off balance. In the tradition of the Lancer, J.D. will be able to utilize the Dropshot that fire explosive drills and the Buzzkill that fires ricocheting saw blades. Additionally, the environment will feature dynamic weather affecting how players approach combat. It took a while, but Gears of War 4 is going to be the biggest thing on Xbox One this year.

Dishonored 2 – PS4, Xbox One, PC – November 11

Dishonored 2 takes players from the gritty and industrial setting of the corrupt Dunwall to the southernmost city of the Empire of the Isles called Karnaca. Karnaca is a brighter and warmer setting with lush planetlife, new deadly wildlife, and picturesque beaches. Along with a new location, players will take control of a brand new character, Emily Kaldwin. Well, not an entirely new character. It has been fifteen years since the Dunwall Plague and the Empire is in chaos after Emily has been dethroned by a usurper like her mother before.

Dishonored 2

Dishonored 2.

Now it is up to Emily to follow in Corvo’s footsteps to regain her thrones. Like its predecessor, Dishonored 2 will allow you to play the game how you like either stealthily or with an action bent (a third path has been teased). Additionally, players can choose to play the game as Emily or Corvo with different perspectives and paths for each. Dishonored was a delightful surprise, and hopefully Dishonored 2 can live up to its lineage.

Watch Dogs 2 – PS4, Xbox One, PC – November 15

Watch Dogs 2 sees Blume returning with a vengeance as ctOS 2.0. Where Blume shows up, so does DedSec, but ctOS 2.0 also has a new hacktivist vigilante ready to fight against it. Marcus Holloway is a young hacker from Oakland who joins forces with DedSec to battle back against the meanace of ctOS as it operates in a more insidious version from the heart of the Silicon Valley. Marcus will roam around the Bay Area trying to shut down ctOS 2.0 with the ability to move around three districts of San Francisco, Oakland, Marin County, and Silicon Valley resulting in a huge open world to explore.

Unlike Aiden Pearce, Marcus has a much wider range of options when it comes to gameplay. He can hack anything electrical in the game from the obvious cell phones of pedestrians (even able to hack on a person-by-person level) to remote controlling cars to hacking larger-scale systems like electrical and traffic grids. The stealth options improve with the ability to use these improved hacking abilities to keep him at a distance from the action. When things heat up, Marcus can use a 3D printer to craft a bevy of useful weapons like disposable drones and weapon upgrades. He has lethal and non-lethal options to use in combat like a taster or a cue ball attached to a length of power cord to incapacitate enemies. Oh and the driving will be vastly improved with each vehicle offering a unique feel.

Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2.

There was perhaps no greater disappointment recently than Watch Dogs (sure you can make a case for others). It was riddled with issues and flaws, but overall it had a lot of promise in its premise. When Ubisoft announced Watch Dogs 2, it was hard to judge whether to be excited or indifferent. However, the early signs point to Ubisoft learning from the mistakes of the first game in order to make Watch Dogs 2 worth your attention.

Kalvin Martinez

Kalvin Martinez

Senior Editor at Gaming Illustrated
Kalvin Martinez studied Creative Writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He writes reviews, prose and filthy limericks. While he is Orange County born, he now resides in Portland, OR. He is still wondering what it would be like to work at a real police department. Follow Kalvin on Twitter @freepartysubs
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