Chris's 2016 Most Anticipated Games

oprainfall is proud to present our annual lists of Most Anticipated Games. Just like last year, we will be publishing one per day as we move closer to 2016. Today, we have writer Chris Melchin.

Chris's 2016 Most Anticipated Games

Well, another year has come and gone, and with it comes another wave of our lists of our most anticipated games that are set to come out in the next year. 2015 was a good year, with standout titles like Stella Glow, Super Mario Maker, the English version of CLANNAD, and Bloodborne, among others. But, there’s still plenty to look forward to in the next year. So, let’s sit back, and take a little look forward at my top 5 most anticipated games of 2016.

Honourable Mention: Final Fantasy XV

Final Fantasy XV party

You mean this game still hasn’t come out yet? Assuming it actually releases next year, it will have been 10 years since Final Fantasy XV was first revealed to the public at E3 2006 as Final Fantasy Versus XIII. A lot has changed in that time, such as no longer being a part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries, characters have been replaced, and the game has migrated from PS3 to PS4 and Xbox One. However, having played the Episode Duscae demo that came with Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, I definitely have high hopes for this one, whenever Square Enix decides they’re ready to release it. It may be a departure from what originally made Final Fantasy popular, but I see no problem with change if it’s not in a bad direction.

At least it looks like it’ll be better than Final Fantasy XIII. I don’t even hate XIII, but at least I can’t check my phone while playing the combat in the new one.

5. Harmonia

Harmonia site background

This one just got delayed to 2016 a few days ago. I’m a big fan of games from Key and VisualArt’s, with Little Busters! standing as one of my favourite visual novels, and favourite games in general. Harmonia is something a little different, a short kinetic novel without branching routes and multiple endings, similar to planetarian ~the reverie of a little planet~. This marks the first time VisualArt’s will release a new visual novel in North America without going through another publisher, not to mention releasing one in English territories before Japan. I think it bodes well for western releases of other Key visual novels, along with Little Busters! Perfect Edition and Tomoyo After ~It’s a Wonderful Life~ coming to Steam. I’m still holding out hope that the Angel Beats! visual novel will release on Steam if these others do well.

4. No Man’s Sky

No Man's Sky Becron 5

This is one that I’ve been eagerly awaiting ever since it was shown at Sony’s E3 2014 press conference. It seems like it will be one of the most open games ever, with literally quintillions of planets to explore (in case math isn’t your forte, one quintillion is 1,000,000,000,000,000,000, or one billion billion). I remember watching the presentation at E3 this year, with the developer zooming out from the planet he was visiting to show off the clouds of stars that the player can travel to, each one apparently sporting a full system of massive planets to explore. I love this style of game when it’s just on a single planet, and when combined with my love of science fiction and space exploration, it looks to be one of the most perfect games ever, at least for me.

If I get this game with VR when it comes out, I may need to be written off from accomplishing anything worthwhile for several weeks afterwards.

3. Genei Ibun Roku #FE

Genei Ibun Roku #FE menu background

What a strange history on this one. What was originally revealed with a vague teaser back in 2013 as Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem has evolved over the years into something that’s very much its own beast, and takes a totally unique direction even when compared to its two parent series, not to mention completely deviating from what everybody expected it to be, for better or for worse. I like its new direction, personally; it reminds me of the Persona series, but with a different kind of style that goes well with the apparent tone of the story. The way the Mirages work seems like a hybrid of Persona with traditional Shin Megami Tensei, and I think it looks very interesting if nothing else. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how it all turns out if and when it releases next year.

2. Mass Effect: Andromeda

Mass Effect: Andromeda trailer image

Taking things in a bit of a different direction for this one, with something you probably won’t see covered on this site very much, but I’m definitely looking forward to Mass Effect: Andromeda, which is set to release at the end of next year. Mass Effect is a series that perfectly combines my deep engrained love for modern western-style science fiction and space opera with my recently-realized love of the Cthulhu mythos. The two have been combined before, for sure, with series like Demonbane, but I think no series does it better than Mass Effect. A fully realized universe, with everything from a diverse assortment of alien races and cultures, to a rich history going back thousands of years, to elements of popular culture such as games, movies, and books, all in-universe. Mass Effect 2 is one of my favourite games of all time, coming from one of my favourite developers not just due to my pride as a Canadian (BioWare is based in Edmonton, Alberta) but for creating Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, another one of my favourite games ever. Not to mention, Mass Effect: Andromeda looks to take the story in a new direction with a new setting (the Andromeda galaxy), and looks absolutely gorgeous with the Frostbite 3 engine.

I mean, what I really want is Knights of the Old Republic 3, or if EA is really feeling adventurous, a Mass Effect – Star Wars crossover. A man can dream, right?

1. Persona 5

Persona TGS 2015

Speaking of my favourite games of all time, here’s one that should come as no surprise to anyone. I adore the Persona series — most of all Persona 4 — and Persona 5 looks like it’ll be everything that game was and more. I don’t know what I can say about it that hasn’t been said already in last year’s lists. It’s one of the main reasons why I got a PS4, and I am definitely willing to wait until summer 2016 to get my hands on it if it means Atlus has the time they need to finish it properly. It looks amazing with its cel-shaded graphics, and sounds amazing with Shoji Meguro returning as the main composer. It has big shoes to fill if it wants to surpass Persona 4, but based on what we’ve seen so far I don’t think we have anything to worry about, and it looks to be most deserving of the top spot in my most anticipated games of 2016.

Chris Melchin
Chris is a computer science student who has been gaming ever since he knew what to do with a Super Nintendo controller. He's a fighting game player, with a focus on BlazBlue and Under Night In-Birth games. His favourite games include Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Persona 5, and Little Busters. He started watching anime in high school, and his favourite series is Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood. He also writes Vocaloid music for his personal YouTube channel, and has a (slight) obsession with Megurine Luka.