The Top 10 Most Anticipated Video Games of 2014: Watch Dogs, Dark Souls II, Titanfall, Telltale And More!
While 2013 brought on two new consoles from Sony and Microsoft, it wasn't exactly the end of a generation. Many games slated to come out in 2014 are still getting PS3 and Xbox 360 releases, along with the next gen exclusives and a few PC and mobile games to get excited about. That means that the next 12 months are going to be jam-packed with games from developers looking to get the most out of the last generation one last time, and others testing the waters of next gen and everything the PS4 and Xbox One is supposed to offer.
With that, we're happy to bring you the top 10 video games we're most anticipated in the upcoming year, and what a year it could end up being. And this year, our top 10 is fairly eclectic, thanks to graphic adventure games, MMOs, open world games, a PC space sim, a first-person shooter and so much more. We'd like to think that here's something here for everyone.
As with part one, the list was compiled by Chief Editor George Prax and Special Contributor Matt Bradley, based on our own tastes and thoughts of what expectations might be for the biggest releases of the upcoming year.
Check out a rundown of Part 1 below, and then the top 10 most anticipated games of 2014!
HM: Uncharted 4
HM: Assassin's Creed V
20. EA Sports UFC
18. Dragon Age: Inquisition
17. The Last Guardian
16. The Year In Nintendo
15. The Witness
14. No Man's Sky
11. Broken Age
The Top 10
10. STAR CITIZEN
Developer and Publisher: Cloud Imperium Games
Release Date: TBA
We might be breaking our own rule of including games that probably won't make the 2014 cutoff, but Star Citizen is definitely worth mentioning, even if it might only arrive next year. Star Citizen set the gaming community on fire in 2013 with whopping total of $31 million through its website as well as Kickstarter, insane totals for any sort of crowdfunding project, even gaming. Add to that that it comes from Chris Roberts, the mind behind games like Wing Commander and Stalancer, and the crazy things he's offering in the game, and it's hard not to get excited for what mind end up being one of the biggest PC projects in a while.
Star Citizen takes players to a 30th Century Milky Way where a fictional empire from earth has conquered the galaxy, running it like the Roman Empire. In this MMO, players will trade, fight space battles and, ugh, pay taxes and complete military service, on their way to earning citizenship and the ability to own vessels and have influence on the game's economy. It's a very ambitious project, and one that has a lot of eyes paying close attention, with many having contributed money to get it funded, and that makes it highly anticipated.
9. TOM CLANCY'S THE DIVISION
Developer: Ubisoft Massive
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: TBA late 2014
Pre-Order Tom Clancy's The Division on Amazon
While everyone was busy getting excited for Watch Dogs (more on that later) over the course of the year, Ubisoft sneaked in the reveal of yet another surprise original title this past year, showing off The Division at their E3 press conference. From the team that brought life back into the Far Cry series, the latest in the Tom Clancy series of branded games, and unfortunately the first since Clancy's passing over the fall, pits players in a world where the United States has collapsed five days after a disease began to spread, speficially a snowy but nearly-abandoned New York City, where they must work to save whatever remains of humanity. The twist? The game is actually an MMO. While you can play through a single-player campaign, friends and other players can pop in and out of your world with ease, which seems like it will be a growing trend on console games this upcoming year. While the attention this year will most definitely be on Watch Dogs, The Division might be the next gen experience most will have been waiting for.
8. THE ELDER SCROLLS ONLINE
Developer: ZeniMax Online Studios
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac
Release Date: April 4th, 2014 (PC/Mac), June 2014 (PS4/XB1)
Everything about The Elder Scrolls Online should be infuriating to gamers. The fact that it's a subscription-based MMO in a world moving to the free-to-play model, even the simple fact that it comes from Bethesda, which usually has trouble putting out any game on multiple platforms. Imagine them trying to handle a highly-anticipated MMO and the weight that's going to put on their servers. But what interested me the most is that this comes only months after Rockstar (more or less successfully) launched their own online game, giving it away essentially for free to everyone who bought a copy of of GTA V. I know, I know, it's apples and oranges, but you have to wonder whether it will end up being a mistake for Bethesda to try and launch an MMO this late in the game when others haven't been successful in toppling the current kinds of the genre. It could certainly work, and it has the following, but a lot of what's surrounding TES Online is bothering me for some reason. But it still makes our list at number 8, because it's a freaking Elder Scrolls game, and no matter the circumstances, people are going to jump all over that.
Online will take players to the continent of Tamriel again as a prequel to Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim. Most of the continent will eventually be explorable, although locked off at first for future expansions, and players will have the choice of joining various factions and playing as different character types. Much like previous games, players will be encouraged to explore, which should make for a lot of great Youtube videos. And if that isn't enough reason to get excited for a game, then what is?
Developer: Respawn Entertainment
Platforms: Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: March 11, 2014
Pre-Order The Elder Scrolls Online on Amazon
How do you get revenge on Activision and the people that fired you from Infinity Ward and the Call Of Duty franchise? By making a competing game with a crazy amount of buzz, of course. It's so fitting that after everything, Titanfall has wound up being a Microsoft exclusive published by EA. You would think that Jason West and Vince Zampella would have learned something after their experience in their very public breakup with their former bosses, but instead, they wound up signing a deal with another set of devils. And it's a shame, because Titanfall actually looks like a pretty great first-person shooter.
If 2014 can be no other things, then I hope it ends up being the year that the current reign of terror of First-Person Shooters will finally be toppled. Choosing another FPS from another gaming giant might not be the best heir to the thrown, but there's only so much that we could ask. If Titanfall delivers on that, even if it does so through yet another multiplayer-based FPS, then we'd be okay with that kind of a deal with the devil.
6. inFAMOUS: SECOND SON
Developer: Sucker Punch Entertainment
Release Date: March 21, 2014
Pre-Order inFamous: Second Son on Amazon
If people can agree on anything about the PS4, it's that it's sorely missing exclusives. No slight against Knack and the latest Killzone, but the launch line-up for the console was most certainly lacking. We're accepting of that because we know that with a bounty of first-party development studios, the games would start eventually coming in. We already know that Naughty Dog is working on a new Uncharted game, about The Order: 1886 from Sony Santa Monica, about Driveclub and how Capcom has Deep Down coming exclusively to the console, but the most tangible example has to be the upcoming inFamous game, Second Son. Taking place years after what happened to Cole MacGrath at the end of inFamous 2, Second Son puts you in the shoes of Delsin Rowe (voice by Troy Baker), a Conduit who can tap into the powers of smoke and neon. Only problem is that after what Cole and the Beast did, destroying the US eastern seaboard and the worldwide economy, the government has outlawed any surviving Conduits as bio-terrorists, setting up Delsin's moral dilemma fairly clearly. On top of having all-new powers and abilities, Sucker Punch has added an entirely destructible city based on real-world Seattle (a change from the fictional cities of the two prior games). Otherwise, this looks like it's going to be just another great inFamous game, and that's pretty exciting in and of itself.
5. METAL GEAR SOLID V: GROUND ZEROES
Developer: Kojima Productions
Platforms: PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
Release Date: March 18, 2014
By Matt Bradley
Pre-Order Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes on Amazon
When Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain was fully unveiled at this year’s E3, it was received with, quite possibly, the most amount of pre-emptive praise out of any game on show. It looked stunning, the gameplay seemed better and more open than ever, and series director Hideo Kojima touted it as his most ambitious project yet. While The Phantom Pain itself still seems to be a long way off (with a release date of at least 2015), that hasn’t stopped him from releasing a small taster for the fans in the form of Ground Zeroes (and we truly mean smaller; Kojima has promised that The Phantom Pain will be "hundreds of times larger", in terms of map size).
Ground Zeroes can be seen as the prologue to Metal Gear Solid V. It features the new FOX Engine, developed in-house at Kojima Productions, uses the new gameplay system, and has a fully open world to explore. Everything that will be in the final product is all there, released in the form of a sort of interlude between Peace Walker and The Phantom Pain. The mere fact that Ground Zeroes allows us to taste just a small amount of this fantastic looking game a year or two before release warrants a high position in our list. What's more, it will be offered at a lower price point than your average major release. This one will definitely be one to keep your eye on.
4. THE YEAR IN TELLTALE GAMES
Games: The Wolf Among Us, The Walking Dead Season 2, Tales From The Borderlands, Untitled Game Of Thrones graphic adventure
Developer & Publisher: Telltale Games
Release Date: Various
Also Read: The Walking Dead S02E01 Review: 'All That Remains'
Is it safe to say that Telltale Games has become a top five game developer? They were arguably the best studio of 2012 thanks to The Walking Dead, and continued their hot streak this past year by teasing us with the first episodes of The Wolf Among Us and the second season of The Walking Dead, both of which measured up with the expectations we've had for what the studio produces. That will continue in 2014 with four more episodes from both series, as well as the recently unveiled Tales From The Borderlands and a Game of Thrones adaptation, all of which are expected to at least begin in 2014.
That's a lot for one company to have on their plate though, and we're kind of worried that at least one of them will end up being a dud, especially considering the different genres that they're now venturing into and able to work on thanks to their successful run with The Walking Dead. The law of averages, their previous track record and even the sheer number of projects they have open (regardless of how big their studio now is) would dictate that at least one of them might end up being not so great. But that might just be our way of mitigating expectations, considering it seems like the developer can do now wrong at this point. Still, assuming past price points, those four projects probably ensure that most of us will be giving the company about $100 each over the next twelve months, or at least for a couple of those upcoming seasons. And if that's not anticipation, we don't know what is.
3. THE WITCHER 3: WILD HUNT
Developer: CD Projekt RED
Publisher: Warner Bros
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: TBA 2014
By Matt Bradley
Pre-Order The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt on Amazon
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is one of many games at the moment that are heading for the Skyrim crowd, much to its core fan base’s dismay. Whether it manages to get there or not is a question for another day. Right now, however, it’s definitely looking like its going to come out high up on the huge list of WRPG’s to get excited for next year. It looks big, ambitious, and like it could very easily low its chosen rival away.The recent announcement of Charles Dance as a lead character is sure to pull in many Game of Thrones fans, and the mere proposal of a large open world to explore is sure to attract the Skyrim crowd by default.
Currently boasting a massive open world, many branching choices to influence your story, a revamped combat system, and release for PC, XBOX ONE, and PS4, there’s no reason right now not to be excited for this game. With the track record of the previous two games to go on, it’s likely to be visually stunning, narratively compelling, and very fun to play, which is everything you need out of an RPG.
2. DARK SOULS II
Developer: From Software
Publisher: Namco Bandai Games
Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Release Dates: March 11, 2014
Pre-Order Dark Souls II on Amazon
Few games have come close to capturing gamers imaginations more than the original Dark Souls. With its expansive, well hidden lore, mysterious setting, engaging Action/RPG gameplay and sometimes torturous difficulty, what’s not to love? Dark Souls 2 currently promises more of the same basic formula, with added difficulty and better gameplay design than its precursor (because as good as the game is, it definitely has its flaws).
From the information that fans have managed to claw out of data files found within the beta released a few months back, it seems this game maybe set quite a long time after Dark Souls. Many items allude to events that happen within the first game now being ancient history, or long forgotten events cast into the river of time. This is fitting for the series, as the games have always been designed around fearing the unknown, fearing every new fog gate or boss encounter. The best place this game could be set is in the murky future of a land plunged into complete darkness, plagues by untold amounts of demons. We wouldn’t want gamers to get comfortable with the past game’s surroundings now would we?
With many enemies now sporting gear that can counter the fabled backstabbing and circle-strafing of days gone by, as well as far more advanced enemy AI, this particular instalment in the ‘Souls’ series could very well be a rebranding of the formula that many gamers know and love. It’s looking as though there will be just enough change to keep newcomers and long time fans firmly on their toes, making it a major title to watch out for next year.
Developer & Publisher: Ubisoft
Platforms: PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC, Wii U
Release Date: TBA 2014
Pre-Order Watch_Dogs on Amazon
You're not getting deja vu. Yes, Watch Dogs was high up our list last year as well, but Ubisoft ended up delaying the game not long before its intended release, and right in the middle of an impressive marketing campaign. Which was disappointing, because for many, Watch Dogs was the number one reason to jump to next gen on day one. Without it, the launch slate for both the Xbox One and PS4 didn't really have a game that could be unanimously qualified as great. That doesn't make us any less excited for the game however, especially if Ubisoft is only delaying to make it better. The mega-publisher is a deadline-driven company, as yearly Assassin's Creed releases have proven though, so a delay might also be a bad thing. Still, we can only hope that we'll get the best possible edition of the game when it does indeed hit store shelves for all those platforms. And by every account, there's no reason to doubt that the game that had us excited this time last year with only one gameplay trailer shouldn't excite us at least as much with another year of teases and gameplay reveals.
If you don't know by now, Watch Dogs is an open world game that takes place in a near-future version of Chicago, where we take the role of master hacker named Aiden Pierce, as he fights the surveillance and control system of the city. Ubisoft is promising that the player's decisions will affect the story, or at least how the world reacts to you. Aiden can be heroic or villainous, and it's up to you to decide who you steal from, who you help and who you go up against. But it remains to be seen whether that promise is empty or not, like it has been with so many previous games. What's especially appealing is the dynamic multiplayer, in which players can drop into your game, and by the looks of certain teases, that might only be the beginning of the interesting take on multiplayer that Ubisoft plans to introduce us to with next gen.
Add to that Ubisoft's track record as of late (they've made three appearances on this list for a reason, and another reveal is entirely possible with one of their many other franchises in the coming weeks and months), and the added excitement of being the first true reason to buy into next gen, and it's easy to see why Watch Dogs is our most anticipated game of 2014. But if you're not sold quite yet, here's one of the many gameplay trailers we were talking about to help you see our side of things: