Welcome to 2016, Xbox One owners! This year is already shaping up to be a pretty good one for you. People can argue all day and all night about which console has the best exclusives, but the Xbox One undoubtedly has some great titles coming.
2015 had some awesome games as well, but that’s the past. Let’s look forward as we dive into all the amazing games you need to play this year!
Gears of War 4
It’s been five years since Gears of War 3 came out, and people are anxious to get their hands on this game. As the first in the Gears of War series not developed by Epic Games, it’ll be interesting to see where the new developers, a Microsoft-owned team called The Coalition, take the series.
As an Xbox One exclusive, this is one you’ll have to take advantage of. Gears of War‘s interesting third-person perspective and emphasis on strategy make it stand out among a crowded field of shooter games.
Quantum Break takes place in a world where time stutters — for everyone except the main character. As a third-person shooter, the mechanics involving the freezing of time look unique and fun. But the real treat here is the story-driven aspect that the developer, Remedy, is known for.
They’ve said that this game was at least partially inspired by Alan Wake, an Xbox 360 game from 2010. It’s not a sequel by any means, but it has similar concepts about time travel. Plus, it’s an Xbox One exclusive — not even coming to PC.
For a gripping story as well as unique time-freezing-based fighting, you’ll want to play Quantum Break when it hits shelves (virtual and physical) on April 5th.
Halo Wars 2
If Halo 5‘s release in 2015 wasn’t enough to quench your Halo thirst, then Halo Wars 2 should be right up your alley. It’s everything you love about Halo, but in a completely different format. Rather than a first-person shooter, you’re commanding armies in a strategy type game.
The first Halo Wars was released way back in 2009, and fans are hoping that Microsoft has been listening to their feedback and will be making a much improved game this time around. Halo Wars was great, but a sequel that can take user feedback and run with it would be even better.
Not much is known about it given the limited trailer, but you’ll be able to find out a lot more once it launches sometime this fall.
We all know you’ve always wanted to play soccer with cars. Well, okay, maybe not, but you will after playing Rocket League. It sounds like a weird concept, but it managed to win the Best Indie Game and Best Sports/Racing Game awards at the Game Awards 2015.
Rocket League has already been out for the PS4 and PC for a while now, but it’s coming to the Xbox One in 2016 with console exclusives like a Gears of War car and a Halo car.
Six years later, and we’re finally getting a sequel to Crackdown 2. Seeing a trend here? We’ve got a lot of overdue sequels this year.
But Crackdown 3 legitimately looks awesome. Crackdown was always a unique type of third-person shooter where you can roam a massive world while following missions and gradually powering up.
This is also a game that fully intends to take advantage of the Xbox One’s cloud computing power. By offloading some of the graphics work to the cloud, Crackdown 3 allows for a 100% destructible environment in multiplayer mode. That’s right. You can destroy anything.
And sometime in 2016, you’ll be able to experience this game only on the Xbox One.
Far Cry Primal
The Far Cry series is a good deal more consistent than the other games we’ve talked about so far, with Primal being the 5th installment in the series. That being said, a lot is changing this time around, as guns are being dropped in favor of bows, spears, and axes.
This looks like a really fun take on the Far Cry series. Players get to experience the world as it might’ve been 12,000 years ago, all while playing through Takkar’s story of going from a lowly hunter to the leader of a tribe. You’ll also be able to tame animals to use as companions along the way.
Look for Far Cry Primal on Xbox One and PS4 in February, and on PC in March.
Overwatch, as a T-rated game, looks like a more kid-friendly shooter — but don’t let that deter you. This really does look like a fun and unique game where team-based mechanics help you battle your way to victory. Each character has very different abilities, and there are a bunch to choose from! Check them out on Overwatch’s official website.
The game started a Closed Beta back in October but closed it in December to work on bugs. As changes are made and bugs are worked out, we should expect a final product at some point in the first half of 2016 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.
Mass Effect: Andromeda
Mass Effect is a series that’s known for being fantastic in a lot of different ways. From an enticing storyline to beautiful artwork to solid gameplay, the original Mass Effect trilogy was really a masterpiece.
And now, it’s coming back with a completely new story in a new universe, and it looks epic. Not much is known about Mass Effect: Andromeda at this point, but the few hints that we’ve seen from the reveal trailer (above) make it look super cool.
This one should be coming out for the Xbox One, PS4, and PC somewhere towards the end of the year.
Final Fantasy XV
This is a game that has been in development for ten years. Final Fantasy XV is a major undertaking and has a lot of hype to live up to — but we think it’s going to deliver.
Set in a modern-looking world similar to Earth, everything looks much darker and more realistic than previous Final Fantasy games. The gameplay will also be changed quite a bit, as you’ll be travelling through a massive open world but have a fighting system more like that from Kingdom Hearts called the Active Cross Battle system.
Final Fantasy XV is expect to land on the Xbox One, PS4, and PC sometime in 2016.
We’ve circled back to an Xbox One (and PC) exclusive here, and ReCore looks seriously unique. Very little is known about this game so far, aside from what you can see in the announcement trailer, but the trailer makes it look largely like an action-adventure game where you fight robots.
The art looks beautiful and you can expect equally stunning music too, thanks to the inclusion of folks who worked on the Legend of Zelda symphony and on Metroid Prime.
Originally planned for the spring, this game has now been pushed back into the latter half of 2016, and will be available on Xbox One and PC — so stay tuned.
Which Is Your Favorite?
We’ve run through quite a few games here, so which are you most looking forward to in 2016? Are you disappointed or excited about the lineup? Let us know in the comments below!
And, if you’re interested in getting your gamerscore up, don’t forget to check out these six games that can help you do that real quick. We also have some advice on how to add an external hard drive to your Xbox One, and some tips on how to not brick your console.