2015 has come and gone and 8th generation consoles are continually flourishing. Hardware numbers, and more importantly software sales, are up from last generation – which is great for the companies. This is driving the industry forward. As a gamer, it’s always a treat to know what’s coming for all companies and compiling that most anticipated list. Third party titles make up a large chuck of a console’s library, but for most gamers it’s always the exclusives that keep them coming back to their preferred console of choice. For me in 2016, Sony has a barrage of first and third party titles coming that interest me. From older IPs like Uncharted 4 to new and exciting IPs like Horizon: Zero Dawn, finally after 2 years first party content is stepping up and bringing some heat to the PlayStation games line up.
1. Persona 5
Atlus has been hard at work on their newest game, Persona 5, for sometime. Persona has been around since the PlayStation One days, but I was late to the party. My first game into the series was Persona 4 Golden for the PlayStation Vita. It was absolutely amazing and got me back into playing RPGs again. Persona 5 is set to drop some time this year. The graphics look amazing, they really do stand apart, and the dungeons appear to be a lot more dynamic than past Persona games. Atlus has a history with color schemes for every game; for instance Persona 4 was yellow and Persona 3 was blue. From the trailers, Persona 5 boasts a color palette change of red. Atlus is going back to a darker tone with Persona 5 with an edgier story, just like they did with Persona 3. From the info given, I can’t wait to see what wacky, but dark and sadistic story line Atlus comes up with this time around. I’m ready to see what changes Atlus is making with this being their first console Persona since the PlayStation 2.
2. Horizon: Zero Dawn
At E3 2015, Sony showed off one of the best new IPs we have seen so far this generation, from the makers of Killzone, Guerrilla Games. This will be the first new IP from Guerrilla Games, but the top notch graphics are indicative of what we expect given the styles of their past work. The gameplay is fast paced and extremely different from Killzone, and to be honest, it looks like a breath of fresh air. The main character is a woman – a plus as we don’t get too many female protagonist in games these days. She wields a bow and arrow and the gameplay introduces tried-and-true RPG elements. With this new UP, I’m hoping Guerrilla Games can come through with a well thought out and compelling story – something they failed to do with the Killzone series. I’m also ready to see if Guerrilla Games can execute a deep RPG experience ,like what we’ve seen in games like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, when it comes to content and side missions.
3. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
Naughty Dog has come a long way since Jak and Daxter with critically acclaimed series, Uncharted. Unfortunately, the series will be coming to an end with Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. I was lucky enough to play all of the Uncharted games on PlayStation 3 and I for one can not wait to see Nathan Drake’s last hurrah. During the week of Sony’s fan appreciation event, PlayStation Experience, the Uncharted 4 beta went live and I got to get my feet wet with the online beta – though I did also buy the Nathan Drake Collection which also granted access to the beta. The beta ran well but the Naughty Dog team added a few not-so-well-received changes form Uncharted 3. Though for the most part, the multiplayer looked and played amazingly. We all know Uncharted is widely known for its great story telling and amazing cinematic cut scenes and this is one aspect of the game I can’t wait to play. The Nathan Drake saga will soon come to a end and it seems Drake may not make it out alive this time. We will see when the game drops in April.
4. Ratchet & Clank
Insomniac is back with another installment of their beloved franchise, Ratchet & Clank, which will have its first theater release this year as well. This re-imagining of the first Ratchet & Clank looks amazing and almost Pixar quality. I received some hands-on time with it at PlayStation Experience in December it definitely left a great impression on me. Ratchet & Clank’s numerous releases on PlayStation 3 killed my enthusiasm for the the series, but with that being said, 10 minutes with Ratchet & Clank made me wonder why I ever stopped playing it. Insomniac definitely brought back the nostalgic air of the first games, but updated it to fit this generation’s standards for platformers.
5. Gravity Rush 2
Gravity Rush is in weird spot at the moment. This series started as a PlayStation Vita exclusive and did pretty well for the handheld. Now that the PlayStation Vita has dwindled in popularity, Sony aspires to bring the game to the mainstream audience, starting with Gravity Rush: Remastered on PlayStation 4. This will be a great move for Sony to get new fans into the series and to prepare newcomers for Gravity Rush 2. I’m intrigued to see what Sony Japan has done with the game’s story and graphics since they don’t have the hardware limitations of the PlayStation Vita to hold them back.
Honorable mentions for other PlayStation games I’m excited to see more of in 2016 include Hellblade and Ni No Kuni 2.
There are so many great games coming in 2016 for the PlayStation 4. There are a variety of games from action-adventure in Uncharted 4 to old-school platformers in Ratchet & Clank . This year, there should be something for almost every gamer on the PlayStation 4 – and that’s something that all gamers should be happy about.
So what are your top five most anticipated PlayStation games for 2016? Sound off below!