2013 has come and gone. It’s time to look ahead to the future of gaming. 2014 promises to bring us the first big titles for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The Wii U will be put through the paces, as 2014 is the last chance for the console to really take off and be a success for Nintendo.
Want more top 10 lists? Check out these lists I made detailing the most disappointing, most underrated, worst, and best games of 2013:
Of course, it’s now time for the honorable mentions! There are 10 games that I am looking forward to the most in 2014, but these games also deserve a mention. I feel if I just knew a little bit more about the titles, then they may just have wound up in the actual list instead of some of the other titles included.
Game of Thrones (TBA) – Telltale has done an admirable job at revitalizing the adventure game genre. Their episodic Walking Dead series has propelled the studio to new levels of awareness and gamer trust, which has opened the door wide open for them to work on other projects. While I am afraid they are juggling too many projects at once, there’s no denying that the quality storytelling is still in place with all of their games. Currently I am enjoying both The Wolf Among Us and The Walking Dead: Season Two, and I am excited to see what they’ll do with Tales from the Borderlands…but after having just recently discovered the amazing show that is Game of Thrones, I am most excited to experience their take on Westeros. The first episode of Game of Thrones will drop at some point this year.
Sunset Overdrive (Xbox One) - Insomniac Games has had a few less than stellar releases lately, but let’s not forget that the team is also capable of churning out supremely high quality products as well. Sunset Overdrive marks a huge departure for the studio, as they are creating a brand new IP that is going to be exclusive to Microsoft’s Xbox One, whereas Insomniac has traditionally stuck with Sony in the past. This is definitely a big “get” for Microsoft, and the conceptual video that they showed at E3 to debut the game was very exciting. I need to see actual gameplay, but if it is even as close to as cool as the E3 video, the Sunset Overdrive will undoubtedly be one of the best reasons to pick up an Xbox One in 2014.
The Evil Within (360/PC/PS3/PS4/Xbox One) – Shinji Mikami is one of my all-time favorite developers. Seeing him return to his survival-horror roots is great. The man is behind some of the best survival-horror games of all time, including the original Resident Evil, Dino Crisis, and Resident Evil 4. My only reservation with the game is that it is cross-gen. I am worried this means that the truly creepy looking game won’t reach its full potential because of this. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how The Evil Within turns out in 2014.
10. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (360/PC/PS3/PS4/Xbox One)
Tolkien’s world is never leaving our pop culture. Ever since the books were published decades ago, we’ve seen animated films, epic movies from Peter Jackson, video games, and more. Shadow of Mordor is a brand new tale in Middle-earth, revolving around a brand new character, and set in a time unexplored by the other Lord of the Rings media. Like The Evil Within, I am a little worried that the game being a cross-gen title is going to keep it back from its full potential, but Shadow of Mordor sounds awesome and will undoubtedly be one of the games to watch in 2014.
09. Mario Kart 8 (Wii U)
I actually got a chance to play Mario Kart 8 at one of Nintendo’s traveling E3 events. After having some hands-on times with the game, I can safely say Mario Kart 8 certainly has the potential to sell Wii U systems. It features the same Mario Kart gameplay that fans love, but with new innovations to keep things fresh as well as highly improved graphics that makes the exciting racing pop like never before. Mario Kart Wii sold over 5 million units in its first year on sale, making it one of the best-selling games of the entire seventh generation. If there’s one series that can help give Wii U the chance it needs to compete with Xbox One and PS4, then Mario Kart 8 just may be that game.
08. Infamous: Second Son (PS4)
The Infamous series has been great on PS3, and while Second Son doesn’t look like a significant leap forward on PS4, it doesn’t mean it looks any less entertaining. Second Son boasts gorgeous particle effects, a new protagonist, and a variety of superhero powers to keep the combat exciting. Second Son is set to be one of the most high profile PS4 games in early 2014, and it should help keep the momentum of the system going.
Infamous: Second Son will be available as a PlayStation 4 exclusive on March 21st.
07. Halo (Xbox One)
One of the most exciting moments of last year’s E3 was this:
I don’t think anyone thought that the game was going to be a new Halo title. It actually looked like Destiny at first, until the hood blew back to reveal the iconic helmet and armor of Microsoft’s most famous video game character, Master Chief. We don’t know a whole lot about Halo’s debut on Xbox One, but that hardly matters, honestly.
343 Industries has proven that they are able to do great things with Halo, with Halo 4 being my absolute favorite entry in the series so far. I can’t wait to see where they take the series next and what Halo will look like in the eighth generation on Xbox One. Microsoft has promised that the new Halo will be released by the end of 2014…which makes E3 2014 extremely exciting for Xbox One users.
06. The Elder Scrolls Online (Mac/PC/PS4/Xbox One)
Bethesda has numerous projects in 2014, but none are more exciting than The Elder Scrolls Online. Bethesda is taking their most valuable IP and entrusting it to a studio owned by their parent company, ZeniMax Online Studio. The Elder Scrolls Online takes the beloved RPG franchise and brings it to the realm of MMOs.
The eighth generation is opening the door for genres that have never really had a hand in the console space before. The Elder Scrolls Online, due for release this summer after first releasing on PC in the spring, is one of the first steps into the MMO space by home consoles. Co-op Elder Scrolls sounds like a dream come true, and I can’t wait to see the finished project.
05. Super Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii U (Nintendo 3DS/Wii U)
If Mario Kart 8 can’t save the Wii U, then it is up to Super Smash Bros. While I disagree with Nintendo’s decision to release the game on 3DS as well (or at least, they should wait a while before making a 3DS Smash Bros. so people actually have a reason to pick up a Wii U), the Super Smash Bros. series hasn’t let me down yet. There have been some surprising new characters announced, such as Mega Man, exciting new stages based on Super Mario Galaxy and Animal Crossing, and whole hell of a lot of potential. Super Smash Bros. will be available for both 3DS and Wii U in 2014, with some differences between the two versions. The 3DS version will have stages and trophies based on handheld games and systems. The Wii U version will have stages and trophies based on console games and systems. We’ll have to wait and see which version of Smash Bros. reigns supreme in 2014.
04. The Order: 1886 (PS4)
Ready at Dawn is on the cusp of becoming one of Sony’s most valuable studios. They have put out some of the PSP’s best games, such as Daxter, two God of War titles, and they also have done exceptional job with some highly rated ports. Now for the first time in the history of the studio, Ready at Dawn has a chance to create their own IP, and it is an eighth generation game exclusive to PS4 that looks absolutely incredible. I’ve already gone into a lot of detail regarding The Order here, but rest assured that The Order has potential to be one of the best games of the year.
03. Destiny (360/PS3/PS4/Xbox One)
The big story of 2014 is the rivalry between two big shooters from two studios comprised of some of the most famous developers that have ever worked in the genre. The folks at Bungie are putting together Destiny, an extremely ambitious shared world shooter that looks to be a huge advancement in the genre, perhaps the biggest step forward since Bungie pioneered how to make a console FPS with the Halo: Combat Evolved on the original Xbox. For more on Destiny, check back here next week for a massive preview of the game!
Destiny will be available for all systems that it is releasing on simultaneously on September 9th, 2014, continuing Bungie’s tradition of releasing games in September for whatever reason.
02. South Park: The Stick of Truth (360/PC/PS3)
I have a lot of faith in the ability of Matt Stone and Trey Parker. The creators of South Park have never let me down. In the film industry, they created some of the most hilarious movies I’ve ever seen such as Cannibal! The Musical, the South Park movie, and Team America. Of course, they’ve dominated the animated television scene with South Park, and they most recently conquered Broadway with The Book of Mormon. No matter the medium, Matt and Trey pull out all the stops and always put out a quality product. Because of this, combined with the RPG history of Obsidian, I have full faith that South Park: The Stick of Truth won’t only be one of the funniest games ever made, but also one of the best games of 2014.
South Park: The Stick of Truth will be available on March 4th.
01. Titanfall (360/PC/Xbox One)
When the dust settled at E3 2013, there was one game that everyone was talking about. That game was Titanfall. An ambitious new shooter from the same guys behind the best Call of Duty games, Titanfall combines on-foot shooter gameplay with cool mechs. Titanfall hopes to blend online multiplayer and single-player experiences into one seamless package. It’s a huge gamble, but if anyone could get it done, it’s the people at Respawn Entertainment. Titanfall is the game that everyone is going to have their eyes on this year, and it could hugely influence people to purchase Xbox One systems after it drops.
Titanfall will be available on March 11th.
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What games of 2014 are you looking forward to the most? Sound off in the comments below!
Here’s to another fantastic year of gaming!