We’re finally heading into the fourth and final quarter of 2016, which means two things: Santa is coming soon, and there’s a wealth of big video games releases coming our way. So, to keep tabs on which titles you should keep your eyes out for, we’ve rounded up the 15 most anticipated games of October 2016.
Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide
Release date: 4 October 2016 (Xbox One, PS4)
Warhammer fans are in for some more chaotic medieval fantasy action this month, as Warhammer: End times – Vermintide releases on consoles. Vermintide takes the Left 4 Dead formula of four-player co-op first-person slaughter and translates it from a zombie apocalypse to the Warhammer fantasy universe. The game takes place in and around Ubersreik, a city overrun by Skaven. Players will assume the role of one of five heroes, each featuring different play-styles, abilities, gear and personality. Working cooperatively, players must use their individual attributes to survive an apocalyptic invasion from the hordes of relentless rat-men, known as the Skaven. Battles will take place across a range of environments stretching from the top of the Magnus Tower to the bowels of the Under Empire.
Release date: 7 October 2016 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Mafia III has been a long-time coming, but the colossal open-world crime drama is finally arriving in October. Mafia III tells the story of Lincoln Clay, who has just returned from the Vietnam War. He’s taken in by the “Black Mob”, but just as he starts to believe he’s found somewhere he can belong, the Italian Mob wipes them out. Clay vows to have his revenge – and that’s when the car chases, shady dealings, and bloody gunfights kick off. The game is looking absolutely spectacular and the 1968 New Orleans setting is a refreshing setting for the chaos that’s to unfold in Mafia III.
Paper Mario: Color Splash
Release date: 7 October 2016 (Wii U)
Wii U gamers finally get some new Mario-love this month, as Paper Mario: Color Splash releases on Nintendo’s console. Continuing the spin-off RPG adventure Paper Mario series, Color Splash sees the persistent plumber head to a haunted hotel run by Toads. Players will need to rely on Mario’s Paint Hammer to paint colourless elements, characters and parts of the environment in order to progress in the game. The RPG elements seen in past games in the series have been toned down a fair but, but like those games too, Color Splash is charming, fun, and gorgeous to look at. Mario fans should keep an eye out for this one.
Gears of War 4
Release date: 11 October 2016 (Xbox One)
Just about everything of Gears of War 4 screams something new. A new developer, new characters, and a new setting, Gears 4 is looking to take the franchise into the new generation with some fresh ideas, albeit with the same brutality that made the original a hit. The sequel will follow protagonist JD Fenix (son of Gears of War‘s Marcus Fenix) and his squad, along with the new enemy that plagues the world post-Gears 3. In addition to the usual chainsawing, cover shooting action, the new entry will also feature new weapons, some giant new enemies, some familiar faces, and some mech segments (yip, that’s right).
Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration
Release date: 11 October 2016 (PS4)
If you need a reminder of your age, Square Enix is set to release Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration this October, which will see the return of everyone’s favourite female treasure hunter. The game, which, as the name suggests, is the PS4 release of the critically-acclaimed Rise of the Tomb Raider (which first released on Xbox One last year), along with a whole bunch of extras. The new 20 Year Celebration edition features the full game and all content from the Rise of the Tomb Raider Season Pass, which includes Baba Yaga: Temple of the Witch, Cold Darkness Awakened, two new DLC episodes called Blood Ties and Lara’s Nightmare, all DLC outfits, weapons, and Expedition Cards. and a new Extreme Survivor ultra-hard difficulty for the main campaign.
Release date: 11 October 2016 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3)
Grab your spandex and tights, WWE is rolling back into town in October! As with most annual sports instalments, WWE 2K17 will enhance and improve the foundations set by past entries in the franchise. In addition to the rock solid fighting mechanics, the biggest addition is a reworked WWE Universe Mode. For those new to the series, WWE Universe Mode is a sort of gamified take on the weekly antics you might catch while watching an episode of Raw, SmackDown or NXT. This year’s WWE game will feature a new “Show Presentation” system, made to make players feel like they are plowing through the weekly scheduling rotation. Unlike standard matches, this mode offers all of the drama and rivalries you see on TV, along with the possibility of run-ins, attacks before and after matches and more. Also new to this year’s WWE Universe mode in 2K17 are promos. The game actually incorporates a “Promo Engine,” creating the kinds of events and banter you’d see between weekly bouts.
Batman: Arkham VR
Release date: October 2016 (PS4)
There’s just something about the Dark Knight that taps into what we all truly want – to be a vigilante prowling the night with cool gadgets and nothing to lose… oh yeah – and billions of dollars. While most of us will never achieve that, the closest we can get is Batman Arkham VR, the next game from Rockteady Studios, who delivered us the brilliant Batman Arkhamseries. The upcoming augmented reality game you allow you to put on the iconic cow and descend into the Batcave, equip Batman’s gear, and then experience Gotham City and Wayne Manor from Batman’s eyes.
Shadow Warrior 2
Release date: 13 October 2016 (PC)
2013’s Shadow Warrior reboot wasn’t the best game to come out that year, but it was a sadly overlooked throwback to the age of brutal first-person shooters. Shadow Warrior 2 is the natural evolution of Flying Wild Hog’s offbeat FPS following the further misadventures of former corporate shogun Lo Wang. The sequel sees the return of the “bullets and blades” combat style, allowing players to switch between guns and swords on the fly, as well as introducing co-op to the game. It’s also said to include an enhanced damage and dismemberment system, and procedurally generated environments.
Release date: 14 October 2016 (PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U)
Skylanders: Imaginators, the sixth instalment in studio Toys for Bob’s action-adventure toy bonanza, will finally let Skylanders players have been dying to do: create their very own Skylanders. Players can use the flexible build-a-character feature to design their very-own Skylanders hero. Everything from its look, weapons, powers, techniques, and even voice can be customised. The game itself promises a long single player adventure, local two player co-op adventure and multiplayer kart racing. Skylander Academy will again return as the game hub and custom character photos can be taken at selfie spots which are then used to decorate the Academy.
Batman: Return to Arkham
Release date: 18 October 2016 (PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U)
After a delay, the Dark Knight returns in October with Return to Arkham, a remastered compilation of the two award-winning Arkham games from Rocksteady Studios, Batman: Arkham Asylum and Arkham City. The two games will be upgraded using Unreal Engine 4, giving the game a cosmetic makeover with “improved graphics, as well as upgraded models, environments, lighting, effects and shaders”. In addition to the visual makeover, Return to Arkham will also feature all the DLC and Game of the Year add-ons for both games. What the collection won’t include, however, is Batman: Arkham Origins, which was made by Warner Brothers’ Montreal studio.
Release date: 21 October 2016 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
Arguably the biggest game of the year, Battlefield 1, unleashes on eager gamers in October, and the latest entry takes the series back to World War 1 – an often overlooked period in blockbuster video games. You can expect Battlefield‘s usual mix of land, sea and air warfare, but WWI brings its own challenges. This is the most technologically divergent war in history, as rumbling war machines and newly invented automatic weapons came up against horse-mounted cavalry and bayonets. Epic battles, visceral combat, and gorgeous visuals (thanks to the Frostbite 2.0 engine) await – with hefty multiplayer and single-player portions set to soak up our weekends for the foreseeable future.
Release date: 21 October 2016 (PC)
The fan-beloved Civilization franchise returns this month with the sixth and most ambitious instalment in the series. Civilization VI has been re-built from the ground up using a new engine. Unlike most previous “vanilla” iterations of Civilization, Civ VI will include a number of features in the core game that previously required multiple expansions, including trade routes, religion, archaeology, espionage, city-states, tourism and Great Works. Though all features have been rebuilt for the new engine, most are based on the gameplay of Civilization V, with some notable changes and improvements.
Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
Release date: 28 October 2016 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Built on the impressive Unreal Engine 4, Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 is looking to be the biggest and best Dragon Ball game to date. The previous Xenoverse was a sizeable game, with around 47 playable characters along with an additional 5 with the DLC. However, at present there are around 68 characters known of in Xenoverse 2 with a total roster closer to 87. What with the addition of more challenging co-operative modes, where you and your friends take on things like Vegeta’s Great Ape form, it’s clear that Xenoverse 2 is going big in terms of its content.
Release date: 28 October 2016 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Titanfall 2 looks to not only fix, but enhance and round-off the experience that the first game touched on. The sequel will deliver a faster, more balanced multiplayer experience, but most importantly, there will also be a fully-fledged single-player campaign for the game (something that should’ve been there in the first place), which will focus on the relationship between Titans and Pilots. Respawn Entertainment are looking to turn Titanfall from a once-off multiplayer distraction into a fully-realised franchise, and we’re on board.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim — Special Edition
Release date: 28 October 2016 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Winner of more than 200 Game of the Year Awards, the Skyrim Special Edition brings the epic fantasy to life in stunning detail. The Special Edition includes the critically acclaimed game and add-ons with all-new features like remastered art and effects, volumetric god rays, dynamic depth of field, screen-space reflections, and more. Skyrim Special Edition also brings the full power of mods to the PC and Xbox One. New quests, environments, characters, dialogue, armor, weapons and more – with Mods, there are no limits to what you can experience.
Which game are you most excited for? Let us know by tweeting @MenStuffZA and commenting below.