TA Top Five: Most Anticipated Games of 2016

By Marc Caccamise, 2 years ago
With the passing of that one final second of a year, the mindset of the gaming industry shifts away from reflecting on the past year’s releases to anticipating what lies ahead. While there’s always a little room for excitement of the unknown releases that will spur up unexpectedly (see Fallout 4), most of us have already pinpointed the games that we are most excited to get our hands on. As we are already only a day away from February (how the hell did that happen?), it’s time to take a better look at what remains to be played in the next 11 months. This week’s Top Five reflects on TrueAchievements’ Most Anticipated Games of 2016.

5. Mafia III
reveal 2

2K could have settled on making another Mafia game set in New York or Los Angeles featuring a white mobster in an Italian or Irish gang, but they didn't. Instead they're bringing the series to racially-charged New Orleans in the aftermath of the Vietnam War. Racist and anti-war sentiments will face black protagonist Lincoln Clay, as will the continual threat of mob life. Developers Hanger 13 and 2K Czech have a real chance to tell a great gangster story here, with plenty of compelling material to back it up. They've attempted to tell interesting stories in the past entries of the series to varying success, but what has been pinpoint is the depiction of where the game is taking place. While perhaps lacking the amount of content that you'd hope to see in a massive open-world city, the atmosphere is what the Mafia games really get right. Considering that New Orleans hasn't had much previous videogame love, it'll be fascinating to see it come to life in the 1960s era, not to mention that Mafia II protagonist Vito Scaletta is making a return to the series.

4. Mirror's Edge Catalyst
09/06/2014 - Concept Art 1

Having not personally played Mirror's Edge in the past, it wouldn't make much sense for me to explain the presence of Catalyst on this list. But since the game was a hot item among the TA News team, I've enlisted the help of our own Andy Mills to sum it up:

Love it or hate it, the first Mirror's Edge was undoubtedly one of the more unique experiences in gaming, with its free-running/parkour gameplay allied with a colourful and clean visual style. As someone who loved the first game, I was initially overjoyed at the announcement of another game in the series, whether it was to be a prequel, sequel or reboot. However, I'm also curious - and a little worried - to see if a 7-8 year gap between the original and Catalyst has been a help or a hindrance. Either way, I'll be there day one.3. Gears of War 4
Gears of War 4 Screens 2

It's hard to imagine that anyone who's been involved in the Xbox line of consoles, or videogames in general, hasn't heard of the Gears of War series. Beginning with its Xbox 360 release in 2006, and followed by three more releases in the years since, it goes without saying that the third-person cover-based shooter has been a staple franchise for Microsoft. With Gears of War 4, it appears that we're sailing into the unknown. For starters, Marcus Fenix and other recurring characters have been nowhere to be found thus far. From what we've seen, Gears 4 also seems to have a much darker atmosphere and teases of the survival genre. With Microsoft now acquiring the franchise, Gears of War 4 will be the first game of the series to be developed by The Coalition, not Epic Games. With a new development team handling the reigns, it'll be interesting to see how radical of a new direction the franchise heads in.

Gears of War 4 is also one of the most anticipated games of the community, receiving 30.2% of the total vote in a recent poll.

2. Mass Effect: Andromeda

While Mass Effect has always intrigued me and remains high on my ever-growing "To Do" list of games, I've never made it further than a few hours into the original. However, Marc Hollinshead has a far better grip on why players should be looking forward to Andromeda:

The Mass Effect trilogy has managed to become one of the defining franchises of the last generation. When the first game released all the way back in 2007, BioWare had created a universe rich in lore, characters and epic moments for millions of gamers across the globe. Fast forward almost a decade, and people are still talking about Commander Shepard and the crew, in more ways than one. The journey captured the hearts of many, but the finale left a sour taste in a fair few mouths. The series' reputation has been vigorously shaken as a result but nonetheless it is still widely regarded as a masterpiece by fans. Now that a new chapter in the saga is beginning, there is a lot riding on the new game. With Shepard and the beloved companions gone, BioWare needs to reinvent Mass Effect so that it feels new, but still recognizable. With the ending fiasco on top of that, Andromeda has to also win back a lot of gamers. After the critically acclaimed Dragon Age: Inquisition and the fact that Andromeda has had a lengthy development cycle, there is no denying that there is a lot of anticipation and general excitement surrounding the next adventure in the Milky Way Galaxy.1. Quantum Break
Jack Joyce

It's been close to four years since Remedy Entertainment released Alan Wake's American Nightmare, and it's almost time to get our hands on what they've been doing since. By all indications, Quantum Break will be as narrative-driven as Alan Wake was, and will probably be filled with plenty of twists, turns, and confusing arcs to make theorists happy. The use of time manipulation as a gameplay mechanic looks pretty damn cool and will infuse that same feeling of creativity that Alan Wake instilled with the use of flashlights to defeat enemies. Remedy's plan to combine videogame with TV to tell Quantum Break's story is still fascinating and intriguing to see how it actually turns out and if it functions well. If it does, we could be seeing the beginning of a new trend for games going forward. Quantum Break could very well be the game that everyone talks about throughout the year and beyond.

Limiting this list down to five means that quite a few high-quality and exciting games have been excluded. Rather than list an endless amount of Honorable Mentions, it seems to make far more sense for the community to discuss it all. So, which games listed above are you personally looking forward to, and which games not listed do you think everyone should keep their eye on?
Marc Caccamise
Written by Marc Caccamise
Writer of news, features, and reviews for TrueAchievements since June 2013. Discovered the incredible world of video games at a young age with Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf, and haven't looked back since. Outside of gaming, I'm usually found reading up on various history topics or rooting for the lowly Buffalo Bills and Sabres.