Top Ten Most Anticipated Games of Holiday 2019

With less than four months left in the year, 2019 is coming down to a wrap right quick. And it’s seemingly going out in a bang if the games yet to release are anything to go by. They’re packing themselves in like sardines in a tin can and I’m so here for it. Now I know August and September aren’t technically ‘holiday’ months, but spare me just this once! I decided to jot down what I’m most looking forward to for fun and I’m absolutely jazzed about some of these. Let’s take a look.

10. Control

Release Date: August 27

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First up is Control. It’s a third person shooter by Remedy Entertainment and all the footage I have seen so far pushes home the creep factor and conspiratorial themes we’ve come to expect from the studio. Leaning a bit into Metroidvania inspiration, it takes place in a huge building called The Oldest House run by the fictional “Federal Bureau of Control”. There’s main quests and side quests, a crazy gun that transforms into all kinds of different shapes with different attack modes and you get superpowers that allow you to practically fly and toss objects across the screen.

Yes please!

9. Luigi’s Mansion 3

Release Date: October 31

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The last time I played Luigi’s Mansion was in 2001 on the GameCube. And I adored it. I never got around to playing Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon on the 3DS, but gameplay and hands-on impressions coming out of this installment in the series look and sound refreshingly great. I miss exploring a haunted house and nabbing ghosts in a vacuum cleaner. And Mario’s green bro just doesn’t get enough screen time damn it. I don’t play my Nintendo Switch as often as I’d like so this is definitely going to have my attention this year.

8. The Outer Worlds

Release Date: October 25

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Announced back at The Game Awards 2018, The Outer Worlds immediately jumped onto my radar. Obsidian Entertainment has crafted some of my favorite RPGs in the past like KOTOR II: The Sith Lords, Fallout: New Vegas and the underrated Alpha Protocol. A brand new science-fiction IP in space across multiple planets gets me incredibly excited. You get a crew to hang out with and bring along with you on missions, a full suite of in-depth RPG mechanics and some really detailed (and hilarious) conversation options. The art design is equally beautiful. Add it to the list!

7. DOOM: Eternal

Release Date: November 22

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RIP. AND. TEAR.

I’ll be doing lots of ripping and tearing in November that’s for damn sure. DOOM (2016) was such a perfect reboot of the franchise and I’m so happy Bethesda’s continuing to support its growth. id Software knocked it out of the park three years ago and I have no doubt they’ll do it again this year. More demons, more guns, more graphix, more blood, MORE DOOM.

6. Death Stranding

Release Date: November 8

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I know what you’re thinking: “a brand new game by Hideo Kojima, how’s it only sixth on this mediocre list!?” Well, it turns out that I wasn’t quite a big fan of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. It was a fun ‘game’, but not a great ‘Metal Gear Solid’ game. I wasn’t a fan of Kojima’s move to open world for that franchise, so that weaves its way into my wariness for this one. It’s still higher up on this list though, so I’m definitely excited to at least experience a brand new IP, especially one that looks as gorgeous and interesting as Death Stranding does. We have yet to see more than several minutes of straight gameplay, so I’m very curious to see more. Either way I’ll probably be there day one.

5. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Release Date: November 15

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This is honestly one game that feels like it shouldn’t exist right? A single-player only action adventure Star Wars game from EA by Respawn Entertainment, the studio known for Titanfall and Apex Legends. Complete with a cinematic narrative, skill trees, ‘Souls’ inspired combat, Metroidvania style exploration, your own ship to command and a crew to chat with and planets you can return to freely…it exists and holy hell I am SO pumped to play it.

4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare

Release Date: October 25

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I normally wouldn’t expect to have a Call of Duty game on a list of games I’m most excited about, but this year’s a whole new ball game. It really feels like Infinity Ward went back to the drawing board with this one and revamped everything from a new engine to the feeling and movement of the game, sound design, storytelling and multiplayer. I’m actually looking forward to playing Call of Duty multiplayer again for the first time since the original Black Ops (2010). Wild. The campaigns have always hit the spot and this one looks to continue that tradition too.

And a new massive ground war mode with vehicles? Hell yes.

3. Pokemon Sword & Shield

Release Date: November 15

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The last time I played a Pokemon game was Pokemon Black & White on my DS. That was a long, long time ago. I was actually a huge fan of the franchise for a while, collecting binders worth of cards as a kid, watching the cartoons like mad and playing every single game from the original Game Boy up until the DS. For some reason, I fell off a bit with Nintendo and mostly stuck to Sony and Microsoft systems but now, as a happy owner of a Switch with an actual dedicated Pokemon game on the way, I’m stupidly excited. I can’t wait to explore the new Galar region, catch Pokemon, battle gym leaders and seek out hidden secrets. It’s been far too long.

2. Gears 5

Release Date: September 10

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It’s funny to jump from Pokemon to GEARS OF WAR but hey, I like to think my variety of tastes helps me enjoy as much as I can humanly fit in! I’ve played every Gears of War game since the original thirteen years ago. Day one on each in fact. That’s continuing this time too. Though campaign footage has been fairly light, what The Coalition shared at last year’s E3 looked stellar. I’m excited to continue the story line started in Gears of War 4, especially in Kait’s shoes. The team has stressed that they’re taking the series in new directions with a more open style of gameplay and world design. That’s in line with the direction I’ve been wanting the series to go in so that has me psyched. I just want to see more! Luckily we’re getting a good look at the campaign before launch in September.

1. Shenmue III

Release Date: November 19

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If you’ve followed my musings on social media and elsewhere, this probably won’t surprise you. For everyone else, I can understand the scratching of your head. Shenmue holds a very, very special place in my heart. I fell in love with Yu Suzuki’s vision when I dived into the world of Shenmue on my Dreamcast almost two decades ago. Taking place in 1980’s Japan, it was a game world unlike anything else up to that point with detail packed into every nook and cranny you can think of. It was filled with lovable characters, fun combat and a plot that hooked you from the beginning.

The sequel continued the narrative by taking you to Hong Kong to follow your father’s killer, Lan Di. Finally after 18 agonizing years, we’re able to continue the story. I won’t believe the game is real until it’s actually in my cold dead hands.

 

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