After doing roundups of upcoming racing titles throughout the year and all the role-playing games we can expect to play over the next eleven months, we're now taking a look at the action genre...
Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
In the summer of 2010, GSC Game World announced the sequel to the action role-playing game Stalker. 13 years later (!), we're finally supposed to play it, and many of us here at Gamereactor are eager to crawl around radiation-damaged Chornobyl, scavenging for supplies, taking down other Stalkers and watching out for the mutated monsters roaming the dark woods. From what we've seen so far, the graphics and atmosphere at least look capable of cracking most of what's on the market at the moment, and of course we're hoping the playability will maintain a similar quality.
Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine II Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
Former Doom/Quake creator and one-time key player at Id Software Tim Willits is acting as creative director and lead producer for the upcoming sequel to 2011's Space Marine. Captain Titus is back and, like before, he's getting stuck into brutal, massive battles against space monsters, from a classic third-person perspective and rendered using Unreal Engine 5.
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Atomic Heart Release: 21 of February / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
Ever since we saw the first of the Bioshock-inspired Atomic Heart, we've been looking forward to it tremendously. Graphically, it looks to be a real treat and the dystopian Soviet Union looks to be an unbelievably musky environment to experience. But most of all, it's going to be really exciting to experience an action game that feels like Bioshock and lets you beat the crap out of your enemies with beefy superpowers. We're just hoping that the story will be as interesting as the game as a whole looks to be.
Wanted: Dead Release: 14 of February / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
Dead or Alive and Ninja Gaiden creator Tomonobu Itagaki is back this February with Wanted: Dead, a third-person action game in which we assume the role of Hong Kong-born Lt. Hannah Stone. The developers' previous work on Ninja Gaiden is evident in the fluid gameplay, which involves constantly moving around and attacking the vast array of enemies from unexpected angles. Here, however, firearms are more important than katanas in what promises to be a messy adventure, filled to the brim with mini-games and an East Asian atmosphere that can hopefully be a return ticket back into the finals for Itagaki (whose colourful PR spiel we've honestly missed here on the editorial team).
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Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League Release: 26 of May/ Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
The team behind Batman: Arkham Asylum and Arkham City are back with another licensed DC game drenched in stone-cold, jaw-dropping action. This time, it's the Suicide Squad we'll be steering around, chasing a crazed Superman whose intentions have gone from good to outright murderous. There's a fresh attitude, comic book character interpretations true to the originalwork, and collaborative third-person action with the same DNA as the Arkham series.
Dead Island 2 Release: 28 of April / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
After years of being in limbo and experiencing delay after delay, it's almost time for us to bash zombie skulls in again. It's been a little over a decade since we set off on a lovely holiday but where we ended up in anything but a relaxing environment, and though Dead Island may not have been the phenomenal game we were hoping for, the sequel looks to be far more interesting. More colourful, brutally beautiful, fun and hilarious. It definitely looks like it's been worth the time in limbo and all the delays.
Marvel's Spider-Man 2 Release: Autumn 2023 / Platform: Playstation 5
In 2018, Insomniac finally managed to deliver a strong Marvel competitor to Rocksteady's Batman series. When Marvel's Spider-Man launched, it proved to be one of the absolute best superhero games we've ever played and definitely the best Spider-Man game. Ever. Insomniac continued to deliver with Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales, and we're terribly excited to play as both Peter and Miles in the sequel and put an end to Venom's evil plans. So far we haven't seen anything of the game at all other than a trailer that only gave us a small taste. For now, let's hope that the mundane crimes aren't as repetitive as in the previous titles and that the combat is refined a bit to make it even smoother. Otherwise, all Insomniac has to do is give us more of the web-slinging excellence.
The Division: Heartland Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
No, Heartland isn't a DLC pack for The Division 2, nor is it The Division 3, instead it's a lavish title developed by Red Storm Entertainment, which founded Rainbow Six and developed the first two titles in that series. Heartland was announced three years ago but has been in development since 2018 and is now rumoured to be rolling out this autumn. The focus of Heartland will be on the Storm Operations game mode where 45 players will battle each other as well as computer-controlled enemies in the town of Columbiana, Ohio.
Aliens: Dark Descent Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
It was long ago when we were introduced to Xenomorphs in game form, but soon it will be time to face the terrifying creatures again. We still haven't seen much of Aliens: Dark Descent and therefore know very little about it, but since it's the gang behind Battlefleet Gothic: Armada 2, it's impossible not to build up high expectations. Unlike Alien: Isolation, this isn't about hiding from the terrifying first-person space monster, this is all about blasting holes in them in a top-down, strategic mode. If that doesn't sound like an excellently promising setup, we don't know what does.
Hyenas Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
Creative Assembly is the studio behind the best-selling, long-running and universally acclaimed Total War series. But now they've shifted their focus almost completely, and this year they'll be rolling out their own competitor to Valorant, Apex Legends and Overwatch. Hyenas is a colourful, temporal, design-flawed free-to-play shooter where humanity has started gladiatorial games on Mars after colonising the planet. It looks like five teams with three players in each will square off in each match, and it looks to be very fast-paced and drenched in attitude.
Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon Release: 2023 / Platform: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
Those who helmed the fourth game in the Armored Core franchise are the same guys who put together Dark Souls, Bloodborne and Elden Ring, which initially led most people to believe that Fires of Rubicon would be a "Souls-like" action game, with all that that implies. But that won't be the case, as Fromsoftware has promised to stay true to the game series, with all that entails. We don't know much more than that at the moment, but it's enough to excite us anyway.
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor 28 of April / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
As with its acclaimed predecessor, former God of War series design boss Stig Asmussen is acting as producer for the upcoming Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, which will be released in just a couple of months. We'll once again get to control Jedi warrior Cal Kestis as he travels to the planet Coruscant this time to take down a particularly evil commander within the Empire.
The Finals Release: 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, PC
When The Finals was shown last autumn, we sat in front of our screens with our mouths wide open. The sweat started pouring down our bodies and then we sat there in a small pool of sweat. Because The Finals looks insanely awesome. Both visually and gameplay-wise. Helsinki-based Embark Studios seems to have created a mind-bogglingly chaotic action game with explosions and collapsing buildings all around you while you have to take potshots at other players and dodge their bullets. We're patiently waiting to see more of the spectacle and sincerely hope it won't be too long before we get it.
Robocop: Rogue City Release: June 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, PC
If someone just mentions Robocop, we ask how much money we can pay. Because Robocop is sacred. That's just the way it is. Game studio Teyon certainly doesn't have any notable titles on their resume in the past, but judging by the trailer that was shown last summer, it looks like they've really managed to capture the aesthetic of the first film. From the design to the violent battles, it looks very promising and we can't wait to get our hands on Robocop: Rogue City. The fact that Peter Weller is also returning to lend his voice to the game certainly doesn't make it any worse.
Redfall Release: 2 May 2023 / Platforms: Xbox, PC
The team behind 2017's Prey is behind the Xbox title Redfall, which will be released on May 2 after being delayed last autumn. Here, four players, each with their own character classes will battle computer-controlled vampires that have taken over the fictional town of Redfall. Design-wise, it looks like a mix between Fortnite and Scooby-Doo, and the action bits look fast-paced and fun from what we've seen so far.