by Goran Damnjanovic, Gaming Columnist
Published in Gaming on 2nd July, 2019
Death Stranding, Doom Eternal, Borderlands 3, Control, The Outer Worlds, Jedi Fallen Order are just some of the video game behemoths slated for release in the next six months.
The first part of 2019 was full on amazing when it comes to video games. Resident Evil 2 Remake is the best remake/remaster ever, The Division 2 shown everyone how a live service game should launch and Devil May Cry 5 was a massive return to form for a franchise that was in cryosleep for basically a decade (DmC was okay but fans never saw it a part of the series).
Judgment brought a detective story to the world of Yakuza, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is another action masterpiece from From Software, Super Mario Maker 2 looks like a worthy successor to one of the best Mario games ever, F1 2019 continued the trend of awesome F1 games, Mortal Kombat 11 was another blockbuster hit (although the game's microtransactions did leave a sour taste in the mouth) and Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is a tribute to Castlevania that's as good as the best titles from the famous series.
That wasn't all for the first half of 2019. Days Gone wasn't welcomed too warmly by critics but gamers loved it. Apex Legends had a massive launch and despite the fact that it lost a huge chunk of playerbase as months passed by the game is still one of the best multiplayer shooters around.
Then we had a highly original Groundhog Day-like space adventure Outer Wilds, Dirt Rally 2.0 which is better than the original, and a superb remake of the 90's kart hit, Crash Team Racing. And let's not forget about Kingdom Hearts 3 and Metro Exodus, early releases that jumpstarted 2019 with quality storytelling and amazing worlds.
The first half of 2019 also was filled with sleeper hits and indie gems such as My Friend Pedro, A Plague Tale: Innocence, or Void Bastards. Strategy fans have gotten a new Anno game, which is awesome. Ace Combat VII ended as a positive surprise and a no brainer pick for every flight sim fan.
And Nintendo Switch continued to receive new games in troves, some are remasters others are rereleases, and there were also lots of exclusives. So yeah, the first six months of 2019 were more than opulent with quality video games. Dozens of excellent titles were released and you couldn't possibly finish every cool title even if you played games 24/7.
And the second part of 2019 looks as good as the first, with a huge lineup of potential blockbuster games just waiting to be played. Let's check out 10 hottest games slated for release in the second part of 2019.
The granddaddy of looter shooters should return in September and the game looks prettier than ever. While visuals didn't really look upgraded and shiny in trailers, E3 gameplay footage showed something else. For all of you who worry that Borderlands isn't a looker anymore, don't.
The game looks beautiful and its unique cell-shaded style embraced lots of new and shiny lighting and particle effects as well as much more detailed models along with ultra-sharp textures. Overall, Borderlands 3 looks better than ever.
Gameplay wise the game offers the same old winning formula we loved in previous games. Shoot, loot, and then shoot for even better loot. There will be more guns than ever and this time Pandora will only be one of the planets Vault hunters will visit during their adventures.
That's right, Gearbox announced Borderlands 3 will take place on multiple planets! And no, that doesn't mean huge open world environments. Like its predecessors, Borderlands 3 is based on levels; wide, semi open-world levels. They are larger than before but are still relatively small hubs without open-world maps.
The game will feature 4 new Vault hunters and we like the Gunner Moze the most. Her special ability is a giant mech which she can enter and shoot from for a limited time, which looks and feels explosively fun. Another great improvement is shooting.
This time it feels much better than in previous games. Guns have more strength and their kick and impact are much more profound. Gearbox almost managed to match Bungie with their Destiny 2 shooting, which means a lot for a looter shooter game. You can play Borderlands 3 on Xbox One, PS4, and PC starting September 13.
Remedy always delivered unique, story-driven games that featured lots of supernatural stuff but their last game (Quantum Break) was all style and zero substance.
After the game-changing Max Payne 1 and 2 and Alan Wake, one of the best and most unique survival horror games of all times Quantum Break felt more like an interactive TV show than a game.
Yes, visuals were (and still are) stunning and more than beautiful but gameplay was lacking in lots of areas. Well, Remedy listened to their fans and they tried to remedy the problems Quantum Break had with their new title, Control.
As with other games from the cult Finnish studio, Control includes lots of supernatural elements. The story revolves around Jesse Faden, who arrives at the FBC (Federal Bureau of Control), a US state agency dealing with unknown, supernatural, and science-defying phenomena. Jesse suddenly arrives at the center of otherworldly invasion of the "Oldest House," FBC headquarters that contains a huge number of secrets and weird things.
Controlling and throwing objects, levitation, mind powers that let her control enemies are just some of Jesse's powers. She also has access to a unique gun capable of changing its form and fire modes depending on the situation.
The game looks stunning and will incorporate the latest RTX effects from NVidia. The story looks eerie and weird in the best possible way. And gameplay looks tight and sort of free flow.
You can use your powers in various combinations as well as combine gun with powers, or elements in levels to create explosions, and in some cases to completely transform levels and environments. The game arrives on 27 August on Xbox One, PS4, and PC.
When Hideo Kojima left (or better to say, when he was kicked out) Konami everyone wondered what's next for one of the greatest persons in the world of video games.
He couldn't continue work on Metal Gear games since Konami holds rights to it so the only way for his newly established Kojima Productions studio was to create something new. And after a slew of rumors (surrounding the cast and the game's name), Death Stranding was announced and the whole internet went into a state of total hype.
This game looks unreal, eerie and bizarre at the time, combining dark humor and full-on insanity of Kojima's previous work with state of the art visuals and a cast worthy of a Hollywood blockbuster.
Norman Reedus, Mads Mikkelsen, Benicio Del Toro, Lea Seydoux, Margaret Qualley, and Troy Baker are just some of the names tied to Death Stranding and when it comes to visuals and acting performance we can already say that Death Stranding will reach new heights and will surely become the ultimate cinematic experience in video games.
But when it comes to gameplay nothing is confirmed. Recent story trailer has shown some gameplay elements like shooting, sneaking, and traversing huge and photorealistic open world maps but what the game will offer in terms of gameplay is still mostly unknown.
Nevertheless, this PlayStation 4 exclusive will sell like hotcakes once it comes out on November 8 and is definitely the most awaited game in 2019.
Doom 2016 was a great game. The best shooting ever (although Rage 2 did come really close), insane pacing, excellent visuals, and a stellar soundtrack were enough for Doom to become the new king of shooters.
And its sequel will keep the winning formula while adding small improvements that should make Doom Eternal even better.
Bigger levels with lots more demons, upgraded visuals, even better movement system, new powers, and badass new weapons are all the things we saw in previous gameplay trailers. Doom Marine can now use a grappling hook to reach distant objects or to launch into enemies and climbing and jumping sequences add to the variety of the game.
The story takes us to Earth, which is overrun with demonic forces and levels look massive compared to the original. And it looks like we won't only visit Earth and Hell; it seems Doom Eternal will take us to heavens, which wasn't featured in any previous Doom game. Doom Eternal will be a prime choice for all shooter fans. This one comes out November 22 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.
Bigger, longer, and prettier than ever, that's the promise Gears 5 makes to the fans. The game should feature a massive story-driven campaign which will visit places not seen before.
Visuals are slightly better than in Gears 4 and the sequel should also incorporate new multiplayer mode called Escape, where 3 players must cooperate in order to survive hordes of enemies while trying to demolish their base and escape before the bomb detonates.
But at its core, this is just another Gears game which means a solid campaign, bloody gameplay, excellent multiplayer, and pretty visuals. Gears 5 comes out On September 6 on PC and Xbox One for owners of the Game Pass Ultimate. Those who want to buy the regular edition or play the game on Xbox or PC Game Pass will have to wait till September 10.
Ghost Recon: Wildlands didn't really make an impact immediately after release but over time it became one of the first major live service success stories.
Constant content updates combined with a massive campaign, excellent co-op gameplay, impressive visuals, and regular patches contributed to constantly strong sales across three years, which is remarkable in the modern gaming market. Its sequel should continue the trend of superb co-op experience mixed with insane graphics.
This time the game takes place on a fictional island called Aurora (this is the first time Tom Clancy game uses fictional location) that is home to one of the biggest corporations in the world which focuses on military tech.
Rogue army called Wolves led by former Ghost commander - played by Jon Bernthal of The Walking Dead and The Punisher fame - arrives at the island and occupies it in the name of their employer, Sentinel.
The player arrives at the island as a member of a Ghost team with the purpose of investigating the disturbance. What it follows is a battle against nature and a private army that utilizes the same gear and cutting edge equipment available to Ghosts.
The game will support 4 player co-op as well as AI teammates with the added emphasis on survival element. Players will have to survive harsh conditions while at the same time trying to weaken Sentinel presence on Aurora.
This looks like an awesome co-op experience (Wildlands are amazing when played with friends) and another massive Ubisoft Open World live service game so expect tons of content along with constant updates.
Ghost Recon: Breakpoint comes out on October 4 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC. If you want to check out the game before it releases sign-up for beta access which takes place September 5 - 8 here.
Iceborne is just a DLC for the Monster Hunter World but it is a chunky one like Blood and Wine was for The Witcher 3. A new icy biome that looks pretty nice, new monsters to hunt, new difficulty level, new crafting recipes, new tools, new attacks, and new story content.
All that and more are part of this superb piece of DLC (or better to call it a full-fledged expansion). Monster Hunter World: Iceborne should bring millions of fans back into the fantasy world of giant monsters once it comes out on September 6 for Xbox One and PS4. The PC version is planned for winter 2019.
Finally, a single player Star Wars game with the focus on its story! Yes, Fallen Order didn't really blow the crowd with its visuals, animations, or level design but the game looks promising when it comes to combat and force powers.
Trailers did reveal some large levels featuring AT-ATs and open environments and Respawn talked about a subtle nonlinearity in level design so we hope that levels found in the game will be fairly large and ripe for exploration. The game takes place few years after the Episode III and focuses on Cal Kestis, Jedi Padawan in hiding trying to escape the Empire.
Respawn are masters of action games so we don't worry about the gameplay. We just hope that the Fallen Order will offer a long and interesting campaign along with some cool lightsaber duels.
The game should deliver when it comes to star power and acting performance with Cameron Monaghan (Shameless) playing the role of Cal Kestis (the main protagonist of the game) and Forest Whitaker as Saw Gerrera. Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order comes out for Xbox One, PS4, and PC on November 15.
The remake of cult classic Game Boy Zelda game looks absolutely adorable. Keeping the point of view of the original, Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening remake upgraded visuals and turned itself into a cute living diorama that plays great. Really, this game looks stunning, you really should check gameplay videos.
This is one of the biggest releases for the Switch in 2019 and we are sure that Link's Awakening will sell in millions. Great gameplay, perfect soundtrack, adorable visuals, and the possibility to play Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening again on the go, but this time with new visuals and on the Nintendo Switch. The game comes out on September 20.
A new RPG from masters of the genre, Obsidian, is a space adventure with first-person shooting, lots of quality humor, and brilliant dialogues. The game reminds us of Fallout: New Vegas, (which was a major inspiration for The Outer Worlds) also developed by Obsidian.
The story includes mega-corporations, space rebels, lots of wacky situations, and multiple planets to explore. While The Outer Worlds features FPS shooting the game is a classic RPG at its core.
You will be able to talk your way out of every danger, even finish the game without firing a shot, which sounds great. But for those who like a bit of action, there are lots of weapons to choose from and some interesting powers.
When it comes to visuals The Outer Worlds doesn't disappoint. Just don't expect a visuals masterpiece in the vein of some other titles mentioned on this list (Death Stranding, Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, or Control) and you'll be fine. The Outer Worlds comes out on October 25 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.