What games are you looking forward to in 2023?

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AtheistPreacher

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#1  Edited By AtheistPreacher

Welp, we're a few days into 2023, and so it seems like the right time to talk about what games (or gaming hardware/peripherals) we're most anticipating this year (following a thread by @gtxforza last year).

I want to make a list partly just for my own reference, so I can better keep track of what's coming that I actually care about.

So, here's the stuff that's caught my interest, listed in order of currently expected release date, so far as that's possible. Looks like a pretty jam-packed year from where I'm sitting, at least if all of this stuff actually comes out on schedule.

Persona 3 Portable (January 19)

I remain happy that Persona 3 will finally be available again for modern hardware rather than requiring a PS2 or PSP/Vita, but sad that Atlus did not see fit to do the work on a definitive edition that married the best aspects of FES and Portable. But it's what we got, and I'll probably still buy it and play it again at some point, though maybe not right away. I may wait a while in the hope that some dedicated modders can somehow manage to do what Atlus didn't.

Hitman 3 - Freelancer mode (January 26)

This one slipped from last year. IO are adding a whole new way to play Hitman that really looks like it could invigorate the game in a way it's really needed for a while. Once you finish all the missions and max your mastery, there's just not much incentive to keep playing (aside from the occasional elusive target), but this mode will add a rogue-lite progression to give you something to work toward, including buying tools and pimping out 47's safehouse. I'm really looking forward to sinking some time into this.

PSVR 2 (February 22)

I have not pre-ordered this thing, but my brother already has, so I'll be in the enviable position of being able to try it before deciding if I want to shell out $550 to buy it myself. Definitely interested to check it out.

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty (March 3)

I found Stranger of Paradise to be something of a disappointment despite having some good things going for it, gameplay-wise. But I loved Nioh and Nioh 2 enough that I am ready to jump into Team Ninja's next Souls-like effort anyway. They're known to be fairly responsive to fan feedback, and it seems like they've already implemented some good changes since that first demo.

Resident Evil 4 (March 24)

If you've read some of my posts from the last year, you may already know that I'm kind of an RE4 nut. I wrote a blog about the RE4 HD Project upon its release last year, and another one on my disappointment that this forthcoming reboot has added knife durability. Despite that, I think I'm still going to end up liking the new RE4 a lot... just not as much as the original.

Dead Island 2 (April 28)

I remember really liking that first Dead Island game way back in 2011, despite its jank (remember the controversy over that cinematic trailer?). And of course we've had Dying Light and Dying Light 2 since then, which I enjoyed fine. I really don't know if this new one will be any good given its long and troubled development history, but I'm intrigued to see how it turns out.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (May 12)

I never actually engaged much with the first one since weapon durability drove me up a wall. But I'm ready to give this new one a shot at some point, particularly if the weapon durability system is either gone or less pronounced.

Diablo 4 (June 6)

I've played the hell (heh) out of every mainline Diablo game and I expect to do the same with this one. Blizzard has been clear that it will not have the F2P hooks of Immortal... there will be a battle pass, but only for cosmetics. Which is fine with me. As long as I can pay a one-time fee for the game and enjoy breaking legions of loot pinatas (I mean killing demons), then I'm good.

Hollow Knight: Silksong (Q1/Q2 2023)

I loved that first game to death even though I never actually finished it (pretty sure I made it about 90% of the way through before getting distracted). I'm 1000% ready for a sequel. Possibly my only big issue with that first game was that it felt like the fast-travel locations were too far apart, the devs were too stingy with them. But the art and music and combat and every other aspect of that game was just brilliant.

Armored Core 6: Fire of Rubicon (2023)

I remember really loving that first AC game back in the mid-90s. I generally kept liking it a little less with every sequel; For Answer (2008) reinvigorated my interest a bit, but I never even touched AC5. Still, this is From Software we're talking about, and I'm pretty sure they're going to put out a great product. Looking forward to seeing what they do with this series after ten years.

Remnant 2 (2023)

That first game had its share of jank and problems, but that didn't keep me from platinuming it and playing through the story multiple times both alone and with a couple of buddies. I just hope that the sequel will both be less janky and have made some genuine design evolutions and improvements.

Lords of the Fallen (2023)

What a weird thing. Deck13 made one of the first Souls-likes in 2014 with Lords of the Fallen, and it was... really quite bad. Then they made The Surge (2017) and The Surge 2 (2019), which were much better. And now they're re-booting LotF. Why they didn't just create a new IP rather than link their new game to this old, bad game is sort of beyond me. But if the dev team applies the lessons they learned with the Surge games, this one has every chance to be totally decent. We'll see!

Payday 3 (2023)

This just recently got announced. I've screwed around with Payday 2 a fair bit over the years, a bit early on, and again once it went to a F2P model. I'm intrigued to see what they can do with creating a new one from scratch rather than just bolting new content onto a very old product (Payday 2 was first released in 2013!).

Hades 2 (2023?)

Supergiant has not announced any kind of release date for Hades 2, as far as I know, and so it may not come out in 2023 at all. But my guess is that they wouldn't have announced it at TGA if it wasn't going to at least enter early access sometime in 2023. Regardless, I'm definitely up for more Hades.

------

EDIT: Oh, and one other thing I suppose I should mention. Though nothing has been announced, I would be somewhat surprised if we don't get a paid Elden Ring DLC expansion in 2023. From Software has done this for all Soulsborne games save Demon's Souls and Sekiro, and Elden Ring has such a large install base that it would be odd if they didn't take advantage of it. I've specifically avoided entering NG+ so I can play any prospective DLC on the first cycle. If and when such a DLC does come out, I think I'll probably end up going through at least one whole NG+ as well. Would be fun to play through that game again knowing that I'd already collected all the spells and equipment.

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bigsocrates

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Man, with as many games left that I still want to play from 2022 and earlier and so much great stuff coming this year I already feel overwhelmed.

I'm trying to focus on enjoying stuff I already have or that I'm already playing and hoping that the wave of titles coming doesn't end up stressing me out or making me feel intense FOMO.

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brian_

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It's usually a million indies on my Steam wishlist, usually from a Wholesome Direct, that I look forward to the most these days. Spirit Swap is the first one that comes to mind.

I'm really struggling to think of any bigger name games coming out this year that I'm truly excited about. Is Spider-man 2 supposed to be out this year? A lot of stuff I'm just like "Yeah. I'll play Remnant 2 if it ends up on Game Pass". Not excited per say. More passively interested.

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Bogard

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Street Fighter, Diablo, Hollow Knight, and Zelda currently top my list.

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ALLTheDinos

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I’m paying attention to a number of early access games that are scheduled to release their 1.0 versions in 2023, at least according to Gamespot’s website. I don’t think any of them have a firm date yet but I could be wrong.

(Apologies for the lack of formatting, I’m on mobile.)

Baldur’s Gate 3 - announced as August during the Game Awards, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

Dune: Spice Wars - I keep meaning to check this out on PC Game Pass to see if I like it in its current state.

Everspace 2 - I played an hour or two of this last year, and it was a lot of fun but very obviously feature incomplete. I think Rorie played more and recommended it.

Songs of Conquest - the campaign is currently limited to two factions at 4 missions apiece; 1.0 should at least complete the story with the other two. Ideally it’ll include another faction or two, but the devs have made it known how difficult it is to maintain balance with new factions. This is already on my 2022 top ten though.

Terra Nil - played the demo in 2020, loved it.

Valheim - I think? Gamespot sure thinks so, but the version listed is 0.212 right now.

WarTales - I’ve been playing this in the extremely limited gaming windows that a colicky newborn allows. I’m having a great time with it so far.

World of Horror - it already seemed fairly complete, at least after they added the midgame save feature. I’m just happy this is getting a full release after the developer had a really rough go of things in 2020-2021.

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KevinWalsh

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From the backlog:
Finishing God of War Ragnarok
Spiderman Miles Morales
Jedi Fallen Order
Horizon I & II

From 2023:
Spider-Man 2
Hades 2


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mellotronrules

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my next purchase (provided critical consensus is positive) will likely be that next Fire Emblem.

after that- i have no history with the franchise, but that Armored Core trailer had an interesting vibe. and i loved Hollow Knight so Silksong should be dope.

Diablo 4 and Zelda i'm sure will be solid, but i don't revere those as much as others so i'm not exactly counting the days (though i very likely will check them out).

Baldur's Gate 3 will also be a purchase for me as long as there's a solid PS5 port.

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GTxForza

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Okay, here I go for my most anticipated games for the year 2023:

  1. RENNSPORT
  2. FIA World Endurance Championship 2023 Game
  3. WRC 23
  4. F1 23
  5. NASCAR 23
  6. Forza Motorsport Reboot
  7. Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown

Sidenote:
I've heard Motorsport Games (The developer behind NASCAR 21: Ignition & rFactor 2) is currently in the dark ages so I'm worried about their future.

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Junkerman

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Starfield - hoping for some cool, AAA detailed crafting and improvements from Fo4's already pretty robust and fun crafting system. Just hoping I can build something clean this time and not made of literal trash!

Spider-Man 2 - They have some writing chops and a some well-established characters. Looking forward to what they'll do with this darker chapter on their Spidey take.

Baldurs Gate 3 - I dabbled with the beta recently and... it seems incredibly unpolished and a long way from being released anytime soon but the bones, art, story and everything else going on seems remarkable.

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Justin258

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Baldur's Gate 3 is supposed to come out in August, at some unspecified date. I have a sneaking suspicion this is going to get delayed, but hey! You never know! It might actually release!

I'd also like to play

  • Everspace 2 - Played some of the early access, it seems really cool and looks beautiful. Essentially "what if someone took that space segment in Halo Reach and made it an open world space RPG"? If that doesn't get you excited to try it I don't know what to tell you.
  • Starfield - Super excited for this one, too, though I don't expect it to be a solid game on launch. As in, I expect it to be a buggy mess, but so does seemingly everyone else. I hope Bethesda can buck that trend with this game, but I doubt they will.
  • Songs of Conquest has some of the most gorgeous pixel art I've ever seen in a game. One of these days I'll actually learn how to play it.
  • And, finally, I'm interested in Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, but also I'm not as interested if they've made no changes to weapon durability. I don't need the mechanic to disappear entirely, but I would very much like some way to repair my awesome giant glowing fire sword so I don't have to fast travel to a specific challenge room just to pick up another one whenever it breaks after like half a combat encounter. If it's exactly the same as it was in BOTW, I'll skip this one. Already had the once in a lifetime mind blowing experience of BOTW and I've been unable to maintain any interest in playing that game again thanks to all its weapons being made of paper.
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glots

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Dead Space Remake is the most immediate one. Ishimura being more open for you to explore sounds potentially neat.

Scars Above. This sure looks like Returnal. if it’s as good, I’m down.

Star Wars Jedi: Survivor. I bounced off the first one, but I’m curious. I think I’ll also give FO a new try now that it’s a PS+ game.

Resident Evil 4 Remake. I don’t love the original game, so I don’t have any impossible expectations towards this. If it’s as good as RE2 Remake and 7&8, I’m in.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of The Kingdom. It took me a long time to warm up to BOTW, but I did eventually. Interested to see what they do with this (and how the hardware handles it).

Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League. That Gunn movie was alright, but other than that, I don’t really have any fondness for SQ. Rocksteady made some very good Batman games, but it’s been over 7 years since AK, so we’ll see if they still got it.

Alan Wake II. First AW had a handful of things that I enjoyed. Sadly playing it never felt very good, which is kinda vital to me. Hopefully they’ve taken some lessons from Control for this.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2. Really enjoyed the first game and Insomniac’s output in general is right up my alley, so obviously I’m excited for this.

WH40K: Space Marine 2. First game was an excellent b-game romp and I’d probably be happy if this was just that, but bigger and louder.

The Wolf Among Us 2. Even though it’s a different developer, the awful sequel to Tales From The Borderlands (My other fav Telltale game besides TWAU) might’ve tempered my expectations for this a bit. Still, I do want to see more of that cool world come to life.

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cikame

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That is a great question...

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AV_Gamer

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#13  Edited By AV_Gamer

The main games I'm looking forward to are Street Fighter 6, Diablo IV, and Spiderman 2. Other games are Wolf Among Us 2, Resident Evil 4 Remake. Dead Space Remake, Jedi Survivor, and Forspoken.

And to those saying, "but I have a lot of 2022 games I'm still playing." Don't worry, many of these games will get delayed either till later in the year, or 2024. So finish those 2022 games at your leisure.

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spacegg

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Star Citizen (new versions to test)

Dwarf Fortress (Steam - Linux)

Starbase (new versions to test)

I'm sure there will be any interesting games being released this year.

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wollywoo

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Zelda, Silksong, Starfield, Suikoden 1+2 remake, roughly in that order.

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Junkerman

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@glots said:

The Wolf Among Us 2. Even though it’s a different developer, the awful sequel to Tales From The Borderlands (My other fav Telltale game besides TWAU) might’ve tempered my expectations for this a bit. Still, I do want to see more of that cool world come to life.

I thought the new Borderlands Game was from Gearbox and had nothing to do with Tell Tale/OG Tales from the Borderlands.

So maybe there is hope!

Tales from the Borderlands and Enemy Within are two of my favorite games in the last number of years so here's hoping this re-animated zombie of Tell Tale still has its old soul within.

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glots

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@junkerman: Yeah, I meant the team developing TWAU 2 being different from Gearbox, but New Tales being so bad still felt like a warning sign of sort. It also had some original writers from Telltale working on it, iirc, and I hope they were either Telltale's worst writers or just had minimal input on the final project.

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daavpuke

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SCOOTMAN

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Spider-Man 2, Resident Evil 4, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, and Starfield

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wardcleaver

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Starfield

Jedi Survivor

Forza Motorsport

House Flipper 2

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cubidog

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Hollow Knight: Silksong and The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom are sequels to two of my favorite games ever and the two best games of 2017. So those are the obvious picks for me. I feel like there's no way that Silksong is going to be bad, whereas Zelda is a much bigger question mark for me. I guess we'll see how much is changed and if it's as impressive as Breath of the Wild in a couple months.

Hades 2 was a completely unexpected announcement and I can't wait to play it. I feel like it'll just supplant Hades 1 for me considering I've done most of the major stories in Hades, and the rest would take me years to see so I'll probably just look up the endings when the sequel comes out and only play that. But who knows, maybe it'll be different that I still want to play Hades 1 occasionally.

Resident Evil 4 Remake should be pretty good if the last few RE games are an indication, but I doubt I will enjoy it as much as the original. That game's pacing, set pieces and cheesy dialouge are just impossible to replicate.

The Wolf Among Us 2 is an interesting one. I thoroughly enjoyed the first one. The setting and characters were really well done, and I really like murder mysteries and conspiracies, so I loved it. I almost ended up reading the comics because I enjoyed it so much, which is something only the Witcher games have also made me consider doing. Cautiously optimistic about this one.

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Gyratyne

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Street Fighter 6 for sure. I like SFV more than most, but SF6 looks so much better. Capcom really invested a lot to bring the beat back stronger than ever.

I hope Hades II starts early access on Steam this time. I don't use EGS and would prefer not to need it now.

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CharlesFrankli

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#23  Edited By CharlesFrankli

I would love to have a really cool and exciting racing game for everyone to play: Moto X3M, the best stunt racing game I know, is available at: https://izigames.net/

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sparky_buzzsaw

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How the holy FUCK did I not know Suikoden 1 and 2 are getting packaged and sent out in 2023? That's number one. With a bullet.

But also Dead Island 2, Diablo 4, Redfall, Starfield, Street Fighter, Wolf Among Us 2, Forza, Disgaea 7 (if it comes stateside this year), and Rosewater, assuming that comes out this year.

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glots

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Somehow I forgot to mention Hades 2. I think I’m also jumping in at the Early Access stage this time around.

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pudking

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When’s KCD 2 going to be announced?

It’s been almost 5 years since KCD was released.

Come on Warhorse Studios, give me something to look forward to in 2023!

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Bkain

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I really need Black Myth: Wukong, and hope it will be available soon.

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theonewhoplays

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Everything with Final Fantasy in the name. RE4. Hades 2.

Elden Ring was my GOTY but I'm not sure if I have it in me to play any DLC they might release.

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isomeri

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Stalker 2, Forza Motorsport and Atomic Heart. I'd like to say Alan Wake 2, but I doubt we'll see that game this year.

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tlchwi02

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I'm looking forward to starfield. bethesda's 'make a simulation and then see what happens' thing is not for everyone (even if skyrim sort of stumbled ass first into that status) but its 100% my jam.

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Edens_Heel

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Gonna be super basic. Dead Space remake for sure, Forespoken maybe, Hollowknight Silksong hell yes. But my old Nintendo-loving ass is most excited for Tears of the Kingdom. And I guess FFXVI (in hopes that it is a damn sight better than XIII and XV, both of which had terrible stories) and the FF Pixel Remasters so that I can finally play through 1 through 3.

Oh, and whatever story-based DLC happens to come our way for Elden Ring. Pretty please.

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Zelnox

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I'm excited for Gravity Circuit. It's planned to finally release this year. It seems like a mashup of many loved NES-era mechanics.

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  • Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden
  • Forspoken
  • Assassin's Creed Mirage
  • The Day Before
  • ...maybe, Baldur's Gate 3
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#36  Edited By AtheistPreacher

Thought I'd follow up on this thread to check where some of these games have landed versus my expectations from the beginning of the year, and also to look at some of the news for the games I'm still looking forward to.

Now released

Persona 3 Portable (January 19)

I didn't buy this thing, though enjoyed reading @zombiepie's blog about it. I had planned on eventually buying it on sale and playing through it again, but now that there's a rumored remake of the game happening, I'll probably just wait for that, or until a remake is definitively disproved.

Hitman 3 - Freelancer mode (January 26)

Freelancer mode definitely revitalized the game, just as I'd hoped it would. The Nextlander guys also got a number_of_good_streams_out_of_it, so watch those if you haven't. Hitman streams are always a gas.

The first patch for Freelancer arrived a few days ago. Now you can "prestige" up to five times, which resets all your equipment but gives you more XP and money per mission after doing it. However, my brother alerted me to someone saying that the extra XP gain you're supposed to get may be busted right now and only work for the first mission after you do it. I still love that mode, but I think I'll wait until all the kinks in this patch are worked out before I jump back in.

PSVR 2 (February 22)

My brother pre-ordered this thing, but his response to it has been pretty muted, and I haven't been moved to actually try it for myself.

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty (March 3)

Wo Long isn't as good as the Nioh games, but its core gameplay is still pretty compelling. A fair number of other people on this board seemed to like it, too, as it spawned a pretty active thread. There are still three paid DLC expansions to come--as there had been for the Niohs and Stranger of Paradise--but I'm not sure how much those will actually rekindle my interest. It remains a problem that Wo Long is a loot game with a decidedly uncompelling loot system. Still, this is a game that will probably fall somewhere in the middle of my GOTY list when all is said and done.

Resident Evil 4 (March 24)

I enjoyed this remake a lot, though for me it can never replace the original. Did a big ol' blog comparing it the original that people seemed to like.

Dead Island 2 (April 28)

I remember thinking that this would probably end up being exactly the kind of game that was just good enough to pick up for half-price sometime down the road. And looking at coverage of it, yep, that's exactly where it seems to land for me. Looking forward to giving it a shot whenever it's on a deep enough sale.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (May 12)

I'm not really sure why I even included this one on my list since I fell off the last one hard. Realistically I don't think there's any way I'll play this until/unless it gets released on a platform that isn't showing its age so badly. Even then, I found the weapon durability thing so damned annoying that I'm not sure I'd ever be able to get past it.

Yet to come...

Diablo 4 (June 6)

The "Server Slam" for Diablo 4 is going on this weekend to stress their servers one more time before release. I'm still looking forward to a return to mindlessly clicking on loot piñatas while listening to a podcast or watching a show. Diablo has always been a perfect podcast/second screen game. And it's less than a month away now.

Hollow Knight: Silksong (Q1/Q2 2023)

Was supposed to come out in the first half of this year, but unsurprisingly, it's slipped yet again. It helps to remember that Team Cherry is only three people, I suppose.

Armored Core 6: Fire of Rubicon (2023)

This thing recently got a trailer and an official release date (August 25). Looking forward to playing an AC game for the first time in a long time.

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree

It seemed inevitable that ER would eventually have some sort of paid expansion, given how well it sold and that most of the other Souls games got DLC. It did get announced, although the latest rumors are saying that it will come after AC6, and likely not until 2024.

Remnant 2 (2023)

This one isn't as high-visibility as a lot of these other games, but there's been a steady drip of info and videos since the reveal trailer at TGA. I've seen varying release estimates from Q2/Q3 to "Summer" to September. I played the hell out of the last one, so I'll be interested to get my hands on this. Hopefully it'll be less buggy and better-balanced, particularly the multiplayer.

Lords of the Fallen (2023)
Payday 3 (2023)
Hades 2 (2023?)

As far as I can tell there hasn't been any appreciable news for any of these. Stay tuned, I guess.

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Ginormous76

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@atheistpreacher: Summer Game Fest might clear up some details on the remaining.

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#38  Edited By wakka

Looking forward to Telltale's The Expanse. Played New Tales from the Borderlands last year, but it scratched an itch more because it ended a wide delta between releases of these kinds of point-and-click adventures games than because it was a genuinely good "Telltale" game.

Also looking forward to the DLC for Cyberpunk 2077. I've played through it twice now (actually started a third run). A lot of the story is in the periphery, kind of like Morrowind. There's probably reams of literature gamers skip through, but shards in Cyberpunk, like the endless dialog boxes of TES3, flesh out each's respective world in a satisfying way. Reeves' Wick only says 380 words in John Wick 4; I'm curious to see what the studio will squeeze out of the similarly tight-lipped Silverhand ...

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AtheistPreacher

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#40  Edited By AtheistPreacher

Welp, I thought I'd update this thread one more time now that all the 2023 games I was hotly anticipating are either out or have been bumped to next year (as far as I can tell). I'm planning on doing more complete takes for a GOTY list in a few months, so this is just a quick hit to see where these games have landed versus my expectations from the beginning of the year

Diablo 4 (June 6)

I was pretty sure I'd really enjoy Diablo 4, partly because my bar for these sorts of things is actually fairly low; I just want a "podcast game" that I can play fairly mindlessly while I do something else. I mostly did enjoy it, but there are definitely some kinks to iron out. For one, the game is just too grindy on the XP front; that feels like a weird criticism for a game that's all about the grind, but it's true. Thankfully, the patch that's hitting with season 2 seems to be making a lot of great QoL adjustments, including making that XP grind to level 100 about 40% faster. It'll be interesting to see where the game is at in a year or two.

Remnant 2 (July 25)

This was one of my most anticipated games of the year, and it did not disappoint. I platinumed the first game and put an ungodly number of hours into it, both solo and with friends. This sequel is at least as good, if not better. The main new feature is a robust new class system, while the rest of the game hasn't changed much, but then, no need to fix what ain't broken. They've also announced three major DLCs will be released within a year of the game's launch, so I'm looking forward to seeing what we get... hopefully some new worlds/tilesets and maybe some sort of endless mode (though their implementation of a survival mode in the last game left something to be desired).

Armored Core 6: Fire of Rubicon (August 24)

I was a fan of the AC games back when the series was first coming out, but it's fair to say I generally became less and less interested in it as time went on. Still, I was keen to see what FS would do with the franchise after a decade of it laying fallow. In some ways, I was surprised how little had changed and how much it felt like the old AC games. I did enjoy myself overall, but after completing all missions and acquiring all parts in the space of about five days, I'm not sure it's a game a see myself ever going back to.

Payday 3 (September 21)

Payday 2 became a somewhat unlikely ongoing hit (originally released 2013!) considering how janky it's always been. I played a fair bit of it with friends over the years, so I wanted to see what they'd do with a sequel. It was never something I was going to get at launch day, but my brother, who's always been a bigger fan of Payday than I, did pre-order it. His take, outside of the messy launch that included severe server woes, is that the gameplay is unambiguously better, but everything else about it is a step down: progression, UI, amount of content, etc. It really does seem like one of those games that's going to be a lot better in a year or two, and I'm more than happy to wait until they've added more content and sanded down some of the rougher edges.

Lords of the Fallen (October 13)

This just came out yesterday. I was anticipating it in part because I thought it was being developed by the same dev as the first game: Deck13. That first game was honestly pretty bad, but the studio's follow-up Souls-likes, The Surge and The Surge 2, were some of the better examples of the genre. I discovered fairly late that this new game was actually being developed (or at least finished) by a newly formed studio: Hexworks (the OG game's publisher, CI Games, apparently owned the IP... kind of a Sony Japan Studio-Demon's Souls situation). Still, gameplay footage seemed promising, so I went ahead and kept my pre-order.

And after playing it most of yesterday, I have to say it's pretty good! In some ways it feels like about the closest a dev has come to creating an FS-like game that isn't actually developed by FS, despite introducing some major new mechanics--mostly notably the "umbral realm," a whole other world layered on top of the world of the living. Still, there are definitely flaws and frustrations and room for improvement. I'll probably have some fuller thoughts on this one a little later once I've had a chance to play it a bit more.

Yet to come...

The remaining games I had on my list at the beginning of the year have either been officially pushed into 2024 or just seem very unlikely to be released in the next few months.

Hades 2

I wasn't even clear at the start of this year if 2023 was ever a possibility, but now early access has been announced for Q2 2024. I'm not sure whether I'll participate in the early access or wait until it's fully baked, but given how good that first game was, safe to say that this is one I'll be purchasing at retail launch at the latest.

Hollow Knight: Silksong

This game got announced for Q2 2023, but then it got delayed yet again, and the devs have since gone radio silent. I'm as thirsty for this game as anyone, as that first game was probably the best 2D Souls-like yet developed (with apologies to James Silva). It'll be another launch day buy for me whenever it actually gets released, but who knows when that will be?

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree

Announced in February 2023, it was never quite clear when this DLC would release. It could still happen by the end of the year, but at this point that seems somewhat unlikely. When it does come out, I'm looking forward to doing a whole NG+ cycle; I specifically didn't enter NG+ while I waited for a DLC to release, and after about two years, I'm ready to play more of this crazy thing.