The 2023 Fall slate for video games is looking to end of the best gaming years with a ferocious bang. 2023 may go down as one of the most prolific years in gaming history. Hogwarts Legacy, Resident Evil 4, Final Fantasy 16, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Diablo 4, and Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom all came out this year to upend what these series represented and gave way into new ideas of how to interact with its audiences.
In any given year, releasing all these games would rank them among the best years, but now with another 6 months to go, 2023 looks to end the year with more amazing games that will change what we think about what games are, and what they can do. With the first half of 2023 now out of the way, here are 10 games that will elevate 2023 in another historic year for video games.
Baldur’s Gate 3
With 17,000 endings, 174 hours of cinematics, 11 races, with 31 different sub races, a robust character creation system, and a romance mechanic that is unrivaled in any game before, Baldur’s Gate 3 is turning out to be one of grandest RPG experiences to come out in recent memory. Beginning with early access in fall 2020, Larian Studios have crafted their next game to become an RPG for the ages. Based on Dungeon and Dragons 5th edition, players will be able to live out their most lavish fantasies to complete their quests in the Forgotten Realms.
Using a turn based combat system allows Baldur’s Gate 3 to ensure the each player will be able to fully hone their style of gameplay allowing for a satisfying and powerful gameplay loop that is unique for each player. Dice rolls are also another important aspect to the mechanics of the game. Using a 20 sided die, the d20 makes each dialogue or action encounter a completely custom tailored journey for each player. Add in co-op gameplay, and it easy to see friends putting in hundreds of hours into their party to complete their way through the game.
For anyone ready to journey through the Forgotten Realms, Baldur’s Gate 3 will be there for you on August 3 for PC and September 6 on PS5.
Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon
A new FromSoftware game is always going to make any list for most anticipated games. FromSoftware has truly leveled the gameplay world with their DarkSouls games, culminating in one of the greatest game experiences in Elden Ring. Yet DarkSouls games weren’t always their forte. The Armored Core series was FromSoftware’s original big hit beginning in the 90s where players piloted their own mechs to destroy and crush any opposition in its way. It’s only fitting that after releasing the biggest game of their career so far that the esteemed studio returns to its roots in developing Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon to give players who may have missed out on their previous Armored Core titles.
As a third person action shooter, Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon will let players assemble and pilot their own Armored Cores. With intuitive controls, players will feel right at home dodging, jumping, and shooting. With missiles, energy swords, and rifles, each player will be able to customize their own mechs to approach each level with variety. Forgoing an open world, FromSoftware is going back to the basics of game design with a dedicated mission select screen. Inside the missions themselves, players will be able use the unique combat designs of customizing their own personal mechs to beat the mission as they see fit. Add a double rocket launcher to your build and you’ll be ready to take on any foe that comes your way.
With all the experience that FromSoftware has built from the DarksSouls games, Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon is shaping up to be one of the premier action games releasing on August 25 for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.
Bethesda Game Studios is no stranger to their own shaped legacy of games that they have released. Starfield is looking to add that legacy giving players their first new IP in over 25 years. Bethesda has always released big content filled RPGs, and Starfield is no exception. As a space explorer looking into humanities biggest questions, Starfield drops players into a galaxy wide adventure searching for the truth.
Using procedural generation, Starfield is offering the gaming world over 1000 planets to explore populating each planet with interactive elements essential to game, including points of interest of flora and fauna, resources, and content so that each player can have a tailored world waiting just for them. Building your own outposts on these planets will also give the player have immersive sim experiences where the outposts can help the player collect any number of resources that are available on that planet. Another important mechanic to the game are the ships and customization that goes along side them. Fully customizable ships give players the freedom and options to play with their space frontier imaginations. Spaceship combat and traversal adds another gameplay loop ensuring that your ship is up to code with the many factions that you will align with or compete against. Needless to say, Starfield has so much going for it that Bethesda has really outdone anything its attempted before.
Finding out the mysteries to Starfield can’t come soon enough. Starfield releases September 6 for PC and Xbox Series X/S.
Mortal Kombat 1
Flawless Victory! Mortal Kombat returns to bring its deathly fighting skills to the forefront of the fighting game genre. As a soft reboot under a new timeline created by the Fire God Liu Kang, Mortal Kombat 1 that is going to change everything you know about the series with all the blood you love from the series.
Mortal Kombat 1 presents a new Kameo system is a new mechanic that gives players the choice to choose another fighter to be summoned along their main fighter. Summoning these Kameos shifts the gameplay where they can assist in a variety of ways. If you feel like you’re losing the edge into your fight against an opponent, summon that Kameo to be able to effectively turn the tides to your side. Not only do these Kameos help on the offensive side of your attacks, they also can be used defensively to bolster parry attacks. While they are not fully playable characters, these Kameos also incorporate some nostalgic factors to their movesets, namely the fatalities that the series have become synonymous for. The fatalities that the Kameos use are based on their original fatalities from when they were originally introduced. Seeing Kano rip out his opponents heart never gets old, and the blending of old and new fatalities will create even more complex ways to destroy and obliterate your enemies.
Unleash your fatalities on September 19 for PC, PS5, Switch, and Xbox Series X/S.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage
After releasing sprawling RPGs exploring the worlds of Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, and Anglo-Saxon England, Ubisoft is taking a back to basics approach with its long standing series with Assassin’s Creed Mirage. Built as a smaller scale Assassins Creed, Assassin’s Creed Mirage harkens back to earlier titles where assassinations, sneaking, and parkour take center stage.
Set now in historical Baghdad, Assassin’s Creed Mirage brings back the linear format the series was once known for to modern consoles and players. Having a smaller world, however, does not limit experience waiting for players. A more intimate and smaller scale allows for a concise story and gameplay loop that will show why this series became a hit in the first place. Assaassin’s Creed Mirage looks to showcase what made those early titles so popular, highlighting its stealth skills to find and assassinate your targets.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage releases October 12 for PC, PS4, PS5, and Xbox Series X/S.
The Lords of the Fallen
The Lords of the Fallen, sequel to the 2014 game The Lords of the Fallen. Yes, a new game with the exact name. Titling aside, Lords of the Fallen looks to bring the Soulslike genre to an impressive force of gaming. Linking the worlds between the living and the dead, The Lords of the Fallen intends to have players transition between the two worlds to continue through its stories and puzzles
As a Soulslike, The Lords of the Fallen is leaning on a tried and true formula: Gigantic boss battles, fusion of melee and magic, and a difficulty setting leaning on insanity. One difference here though is true online co-op, where you and a friend or partner can conquer the worlds and become the The Lords of the Fallen.
Unravel the worlds of the living and the dead on October 13 for PC, PS5, and Xbox Series X/S.
Alan Wake 2
The nightmarish world of Alan Wake is finally getting the proper sequel it deserves. After a couple of DLCs and a connected universe expansion in Remedy’s Control, Alan Wake 2 looks to deliver an experience unlike any it has ever developed. As Remedy’s first survival horror game, Alan Wake 2 uses a dual protagonists system, placing players into the minds of Alan Wake and newcomer FBI agent Saga Anderson.
Horror, insanity, and disbelief are what awaits, as Remedy infuses these themes into an otherworldly experience for gaming. As players switch between Alan and Saga, the mysteries of Bright Falls and the Pacific Northwest begin to unfold in unexpected ways. As Alan is trying to make his way out of his nightmare, Saga is investigating a series of murders. Both characters are able to ender what Remedy is calling the “Mind Palace,” a place where players will be able to deduce the clues that have been accumulating. As this is connected to the world of Control, part of the Remedy universe, fans of both games can excitingly look for the connection points between the two games and see for themselves the shared world that Remedy is looking to build upon.
Enter the mind palace in Alan Wake 2 on October 17 for PC, PS5, and Xbox Series X/S.
Marvel’s Spider-Man 2
Marvel’s Spider-Man was a revelation for Marvel related gaming back when it was released in 2018. Shortly thereafter, a stand alone title featuring Miles Morales swung on to consoles to give players a different perspective of another Spider Man with their own motives and tribulations. Marvel’s Spider Man 2 looks to bring both Peter Parker and Miles Morales together into one arching narrative that looks to challenge everything they have known about protecting New York.
With Kraven the Hunter now as the big villain terrorizing New York, both Peter and Miles must uncover the villainous reasons of what he is doing and why. If that wasn’t enough, the symbiote of Venom unleashes its ravenous transformation latching on to Peter, giving him newfound powers and skills that were previously unheard of. Yet the symbiote also changes Peter, as his motivations for good begins to bleed into something murkier and unpredictable. With a sprawling New York that has been revamped for this sequel, players will switch between Peter and Miles, as they navigate these new troubles and come to a crossroads on how to handle their new predicament.
Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 starts swinging on October 20 for PS5.
Super Mario Bros. Wonder
2d Mario is back, Woohoo! After the rampant success of the Super Mario Bros. Movie, Nintendo isn’t resting on its laurels and releasing Super Mario Bros. Wonder. This new game with expressive animations and mind bending art style shows that Nintendo is ready to move on from the safe titles of past and bring Mario and company into a new zany adventure.
Using the new Wonder flower power-up, Mario and friends will instantly start to see their world come to life through a psychedelic lens. Warp pipes instantly come to life, a stampeding horde of fluffy rhinos giving Mario a ride, and Mario stretching his body to the limit, is only the tip of the iceberg to this fantastic adventure. One final tease that Super Mario Bros. Wonder has shown so far is another new power up that allows Mario to turn into an elephant. Yes, that’s right, you can wonder no longer about what an elephant Mario would even look like, as he puffs up and shows his new digs and tries to cause all the havoc that may come from an Elephant fused Mario.
Consume the wonder flower of Super Mario Bros. Wonder on October 20 for Switch.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora
After nearly 14 years in the cinematic subconsciousness and becoming two of the biggest movies to ever be released, a proper Avatar game is finally making its way to current gen consoles. Ubisoft’s Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora will transport players to a new part of the Pandora world exploring biomes that has not been seen in the two films.
As a first person action game, players will embark their journeys as a Na’vi, waking up from a 15 year coma after being kidnapped by the human faction of the Resources Development Administration (RDA). As a stranger to their own home world, your Na’vi character will look to take back the planet from the RDA, while trying to make connections to the world itself and the clans that populate the diversifying biomes. Using everything that Pandora has to offer, taking on the RDA will a rich experience for everyone. You can take to the skies piloting your own banshees, or ride the plains with the Direhorses, ensuring that every part of what made the films so exciting will be available for players to experiment with. Exploring the world of Pandora will also not be a solo affair, as online co-op allows players to make their own personal Na’vi clans in real life and save the planet from destruction.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora releases on December 7 for PC, PS5, and Xbox Series X/S.