The 30 most anticipated games of 2017

Start saving up: there are loads of exciting games on the horizon

If you thought 2016 was a great year for gaming – and it was, truly – just wait 'til you see what 2017 has in store.

With the Nintendo Switch out in the coming months and Microsoft's Project Scorpio expected later in the year, we'll surely see some enticing games surrounding that fresh hardware. But even if you have a PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or gaming-capable PC, you'll find plenty to crave over the next 12 months.

Wonder what all the fuss is about? Have a look below: we've collected the 30 games that we're most excited about in 2017, and since many other huge games will surely be announced during the year, we'll be updating this article frequently with the latest and greatest picks still on the horizon.

1) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Wii U

Serving as both the last major Wii U game on this list and Nintendo's first confirmed Switch release, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild could well be the most feverishly awaited title expected in the first half of the year, especially following ample delays.

Breath of the Wild shakes up the old Zelda framework in favour of an open-world approach that seems very loose and almost Minecraft-esque in its survival-like design. It also looks absolutely delightful, so whether it's your final Wii U purchase or your very first Switch game, Nintendo's next Zelda ought to be well worth your attention.

Due: TBD 2017

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2) Red Dead Redemption 2

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One

Anything that Rockstar makes these days is cause for celebration, but especially a sequel to the utterly beloved Red Dead Redemption, which let us live out our Wild West dreams in a stunning open world filled with outlaws and opportunities alike.

We don't have a lot of hard details on Red Dead Redemption 2 right now, but John Marston is back and he appears to be packing a posse – plus the game looks gorgeous already. Rumours suggest it might be a prequel of some sorts, but whatever the case, we don't need convincing. Rockstar says it'll have an expanded multiplayer experience, as well.

Due: Autumn 2017

Pre-order Red Dead Redemption 2

3) Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Thankfully, the wait between games is much shorter than last time, as Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is coming out in 2017 across multiple platforms. It's the same crossover fighter that we all know and love, albeit with some notable changes to the gameplay.

Gone are the three-fighter teams from the past couple of entries, dropped down to two-on-two battles, plus assist attacks are gone. Also, the new Infinity Stones mechanic lets you choose a special type of boost to augment your skills. We don't know much of the roster as of this writing, but newcomers Captain Marvel and Mega Man X are confirmed so far.

Due: TBD 2017

4) Mass Effect: Andromeda

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Set 600 years after Commander Shepard's trilogy, Mass Effect: Andromeda promises an entirely new sci-fi experience for fans: new characters, new galaxy (Andromeda), and new threats and opportunities as you shape your own story amidst the stars.

Andromeda has more of an open-world feel than the last couple of Mass Effect games and runs on EA's now-standard Frostbite engine, which means it looks pretty spectacular from what we've seen (and is enhanced on the PS4 Pro). It was already delayed out of 2016, so hopefully we don't have much longer to wait to begin this fresh adventure.

Due: Q1 2017

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5) Horizon: Zero Dawn

Platform: PlayStation 4

On a list that's absolutely jam-packed with sequels and franchise extensions (at least this early on in the year), Horizon: Zero Dawn stands out as maybe the most exciting original game of the bunch. It's a brand new IP from Killzone maker Guerrilla Games, and this PS4 exclusive has absolutely floored us so far.

Horizon puts you in the role of Aloy, a mysterious Machine Hunter from a human tribe who must defeat the robotic beasts that wander the lands. Intense action helps define this vast role-player, and the creature and world design are both show-stoppers. Please, please live up to your immense potential, Horizon!

Due: 1 March

Pre-order Horizon: Zero Dawn

6) Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Resident Evil 6 was a bit of a bloated mess, but thankfully Capcom got the message: Resident Evil 7: Biohazard refocuses on the series' survival horror roots and emphasises claustrophobic scares and surprise rather than guns-blazing action and constant shootouts.

What might surprise you is how the game accomplishes those objectives: now in a first-person view and even (optionally) fully playable with the PlayStation VR on PS4. It doesn't really seem like classic Resident Evil at all, hewing closer to low-budget, shaky-cam horror flicks, but it could pack powerful spooks indeed.

Due: 24 January

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7) God of War

Platform: PlayStation 4

Sony's sensational hack-and-slash franchise is getting a fresh start with the plainly-titled God of War, which swaps out Greek mythology for Norse and gives Kratos some interesting new things: a beard, a giant axe instead of dual blades… oh, and a son, too.

It's not a reboot since it still falls into chronology after God of War III, but this new game makes some big changes to the combat, adds RPG-like elements, and has more of a behind-the-back perspective rather than a zoomed-out third-person view. Can Kratos still be the ultimate badass while mentoring and protecting his son? We'll find out – hopefully before year's end.

Due: TBD 2017

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8) Star Wars Battlefront 2

Platforms: TBD

We waited 10 years between the old LucasArts-published Star Wars Battlefront II and EA's rebooted Battlefront (shown) in 2015, but the delay won't be nearly as long this time around: EA has already confirmed that we'll see a brand new Battlefront in 2017.

That's all we know for sure at this point, although given the likely release around that of Episode VIII in cinemas, we wouldn't be surprised to see the next big multiplayer experience start pushing past the original trilogy's events and locales. This time we should be getting an epic, single-player story mode to go with the big online battles.

Due: TBD 2017

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9) Halo Wars 2

Platforms: Xbox One, PC

The original Halo Wars was the rare example of a real-time strategy game done right on console, and now Halo Wars 2 will arrive eight years later to try it all over again – this time actually packing a Windows 10 version in tow.

Developed by Creative Assembly and 343 Industries, Halo Wars 2 looks to bring a bit more variety and complexity into the experience, including adding an intriguing new Blitz mode that has some collectible card game mechanics. And since it takes place after Halo 5: Guardians, it's a key part of the ongoing Halo lore too.

Due: 21 February

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10) Days Gone

Platform: PlayStation 4

The Last of Us meets Sons of Anarchy meets World War Z? It's an imperfect comparison, but it'll do for Sony's Days Gone for now. Developed by Sony's Bend Studio (Syphon Filter), this PS4 exclusive finds its biker hero faced with roving packs of zombie attackers.

These zombies (or rather, "infected") are fast and they are surely plentiful: in demos and trailers, we've seen giant packs of them burst through doors as they scramble to attack hero Deacon St. John. Survival is the goal, of course, and you'll have lots of options as you tackle each frantic new scenario that emerges.

Due: TBD 2017

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11) Star Trek: Bridge Crew

Platforms: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR

VR headsets are opening up new kinds of play experiences, and here's a perfect example: Star Trek: Bridge Crew puts you in a first-person view as a Federation officer, dealing with threats that emerge.

It's so unlike the usual licensed action games we usually see, yet it's a totally perfect fit for the immersive nature of VR. Working as part of a four-player team with other headset wearers is such a spot-on premise – we can't wait to suit up.

Due: 14 March

Pre-order Star Trek: Bridge Crew

12) Crackdown 3

Platforms: Xbox One, PC

The original Crackdown was once known as the "free game that came with the Halo 3 demo," but that inglorious branding didn't last: the Xbox 360 game ended up being one of the most entertaining open-world titles of its generation, with superhero-like agents smashing up the city while snagging loads of collectibles.

Crackdown 2 wasn't great, but a decade after the original, Crackdown 3 has a chance to make this series meaningful again. Expect an incredible level of destruction, including the ability to take down skyscrapers, thanks to a cloud-powered computing assist.

Due: TBD 2017

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13) WipeOut: Omega Collection

Platform: PlayStation 4

While undoubtedly brilliant, Sony's WipeOut anti-gravity racing series has always been a bit niche, so we worried about whether we'd get a proper PS4 entry. Well, this is a start: the Omega Collection will bring together Wipeout HD and Fury from PS3, as well as Wipeout 2048 from PlayStation Vita.

All three games (especially HD/Fury) looked pretty slick the first time around, but now they'll be playable in 4K (on the PS4 Pro) with HDR support, which ought to be damn near mind-blowing. We'd love to see a brand new WipeOut for PS4, as well, but we'll happily pour both our dollars and hours into this for now.

Due: Summer 2017

14) Spider-Man

Platform: PlayStation 4

Spidey's had a rough run of standalone games under Activision's watch, but Insomniac Games could be just the studio to deliver the wall-crawler's magnum opus: the team behind Ratchet & Clank and Sunset Overdrive is making it as a PS4 exclusive.

The new Spider-Man game will be a standalone tale featuring an older version of the hero than we'll see in the summer's Spider-Man: Homecoming flick, and should deliver open-world antics with plenty of fun and personality in tow. Plus it'll be enhanced for PS4 Pro owners, as well. Here's hoping Spider-Man finally gets his Batman: Arkham-quality game in 2017.

Due: TBD 2017

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15) South Park: The Fractured But Whole

Platforms: Xbox One, PS4, PC

Read the title super fast. Got it? Yeah, this is South Park alright. The enduring cartoon series will follow up its best-ever game – 2014's The Stick of Truth – with The Fractured But Whole, another hilarious role-player with a brand new premise.

This time, Cartman is trying to earn a heap of cash by making his own superhero film franchise, and naturally that leads to all sorts of vulgar, violent shenanigans. Whatever you do, don't play this one with the kids around. And if you missed The Stick of Truth, it comes free with preorders to current consoles.

Due: Q1 2017

Pre-order South Park: The Fractured But Whole

16) Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

Platform: PlayStation 4

Another Uncharted game already? Didn't Uncharted 4 put Drake's story to bed? It did, true, but The Lost Legacy doesn't star that well-known explorer, nor does it star any dude at all. Instead, series favourite Chloe Frazer from Uncharted 2 takes the lead, and is flanked by Nadine Ross from Uncharted 4.

It's sure to strike a different tone, given the lack of Drake, but don't expect anything too different: The Lost Legacy was planned as an Uncharted 4 expansion before it was bulked up and turned into a standalone release. Still, we'll happily take another shot of Naughty Dog's vaunted cinematic storytelling before the further-off The Last of Us Part II comes around.

Due: TBD 2017

17) Sea of Thieves

Platforms: Xbox One, PC

It has been a very, very long time since Rare has made something richly original and essential, but Sea of Thieves could be its long overdue return to form. The studio that gave us Perfect Dark and Banjo-Kazooie is about to make us all online pirates.

Rather, fantasy pirates playing together online – and against each other. This open-ended, delightfully cartoonish pirate sim lets you band together with other merry men and women, drink some grog, and battle it out on the open seas. Loosely-structured design and creation tools mean no two games are ever the same, and we loved it at E3 2016.

Due: TBD 2017

Pre-order Sea of Thieves

18) Gran Turismo Sport

Platform: PlayStation 4

We assumed that Gran Turismo Sport would be massively delayed, like most of the series' semi-recent entries… and yeah, that definitely happened again. But while 2016 wasn't in the cards, hopefully this full-fledged, content-packed release will be worth the wait in 2017.

As before, it's targeted at racing die-hards, but the multiplayer aspect is enhanced with new online championships governed by the real-life FIA racing body. Also, it will have PlayStation VR support via a special VR Tour Mode, but sadly not throughout the entire game.

Due: TBD 2017

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19) Absolver

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Likened to a mix of Dark Souls and Street Fighter, upcoming indie darling Absolver is a martial arts game with a heap of finesse, with smooth, balletic moves thrown as you engage in duels against A.I. foes and other online players while exploring an action role-playing world.

The actual fighting takes centre stage here, as you can swap between four distinct stances at any time, find new moves in combat (including when they're used against you), and tap into a lot of depth with feints and varying blocks. Fantastic animation work and distinctive styles make this one an exciting pick for fighting aficionados.

Due: TBD 2017

20) Persona 5

Platforms: PlayStation 4, PS3

Starting with the fifth main entry of a story-centric role-playing series might seem like a recipe for confusion, but like Final Fantasy, the Persona games are standalone releases – and if you haven't experienced this cult-favourite series, then Persona 5 might be the ideal jumping-on point.

You'll play as a teenage student in Tokyo, but aside from attending class and chatting up friends, you can enter a supernatural realm and battle creatures based other people's psyches. Weird? Totally, but in a charming and really gripping way, and the contrast between the two worlds and lives is super intriguing. Furthermore, Persona 5's cel-shaded look is dazzling, and it has some of the most amazing UI/menu work we've seen in a game. Really!

Due: 4 April

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21) Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Stepping back from the more futuristic entries of the last generation, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands will deliver a near-modern-day tactical team-based shooter experience as you work to dismantle a vicious Bolivian drug cartel by any means necessary.

Or rather, by any means you prefer. Each mission comes with a surprising amount of flexibility in tactics, and it's a lot subtler than just choosing stealth or guns-blazing action. The map is Ubisoft's largest open world environment to date, and it seems filled with possibilities for anyone seeking a more methodical shooter.

Due: 7 March

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22) Gravity Rush 2

Platform: PlayStation 4

You'll be forgiven for missing the original Gravity Rush: it was a niche standout on the Vita, and the recent PS4 remaster landed pretty quietly. Now's the time to catch up, however, as sequel Gravity Rush 2 looks bigger, prettier, and possibly even wilder than before.

And that last part would be a mean feat, if so. Gravity Rush puts you in the boots of Kat, who can manipulate gravity on whim to soar through the sky and assault frantic, gargantuan bosses. The cel-shaded anime style is a real treat, while the eccentric personality and over-the-top design should be a nice respite from all of the intense shooters we've played of late.

Due: 18 January

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23) Cuphead

Platforms: Xbox One, PC

You've never seen a game quite like Cuphead, but you probably have seen cartoons like it: this side-scrolling indie perfectly encapsulates the visual style of 1930s animated shorts, and it's put to perfect use in a run-and-gun shooter about a man with a coffee cup for a head.

Cuphead is easily one of the prettiest 2D games we've ever laid eyes on, but it's not just a nice-looking game - it's also one that builds interesting play mechanics and boss showdowns based on its inspirations. We can't wait to pummel foes as Cuphead and his co-op mate, Mugman.

Due: TBD 2017

24) Prey

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

It took more than a decade for the original Prey to finally come out in 2006, and it'll have been more than a decade by the time the new Prey releases – but this isn't a sequel. Bethesda's new Prey is a full-fledged reimagining of the series' core tenets… and if you never played the original, then it's just a really cool-looking new sci-fi game.

It's set in 2034 on a space station built to house aliens that attacked Earth, but as you might expect, things go awry. This Prey is developed by Dishonored studio Arkane and looks to pack a psychological horror punch, so consider us plenty intrigued.

Due: TBD 2017

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25) Injustice 2

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One

The Mortal Kombat makers' DC Comics fighter delivered killer comic combat, so we're all for a return trip with Injustice 2 this year. NetherRealm's sequel keeps the premise of the original, pitting familiar heroes and villains against each other in hard-hitting duels complete with destructible environments and crazy super moves.

Injustice 2 will once again have a highly cinematic story mode to anchor the action, and it'll introduce a new gear system that lets players accumulate and equip ability-changing loot. It also promises a huge roster, with fresh faces such as Supergirl and Gorilla Grodd already confirmed.

Due: TBD 2017

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26) Destiny 2

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One

After a couple of years of larger expansions, we'll see a proper sequel to Destiny (shown) sometime in 2017 – Activision confirmed as much a while back without getting into firm details.

Activision publishing head Eric Hirshberg suggests that Bungie's sequel will have a steadier stream of fresh content available for players, which sounds like a big plus. However, there have also been rumours that Guardians from the first game won't actually transfer over, which might irk some die-hards. We ought to have a full idea of what to expect by E3 in June.

Due: Late 2017

27) Detroit: Become Human

Platform: PlayStation 4

Heavy Rain showcased the power and potential of Quantic Dream's cinematic, choose-your-own-path adventures, and Detroit: Become Human may take it all to the next level. This futuristic quest lets you take control of human-like androids in the titular city and live out their stories, for better or worse.

We've seen the tale of Connor, a police android who attempts to stop a deviant bot from killing a young human girl – and depending on how you analyze the scene and make decisions along the way, the outcome can go many different ways. Expand that out to numerous characters and a web of interlinked narratives and we can't wait to see how it all unfolds.

Due: TBD 2017

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28) Yooka-Laylee

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Switch

Got a soft spot for the golden age of 3D platform games on the Nintendo 64? If so, you'll definitely want Yooka-Laylee on your radar. As you might've guessed from the title, this throwback release hails from key staff who helped make Rare's Banjo-Kazooie way back when, and sticks to the same platform-action fundamentals.

It's heavy on hopping and bopping foes, as well as collecting items – and while we might worry that it'll be too simplistic and feel dated, we're hoping that a laser focus on this old-school design will turn out a fresh-faced winner. And it's coming to the Nintendo Switch, too, which ought to be a rather perfect fit.

Due: 11 April

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29) Tacoma

Platforms: Xbox One, PC

Gone Home… in space? Yeah, kind of! Tacoma is the next game from The Fullbright Company, and it's another first-person narrative adventure in which you piece together the storyline by exploring a 3D environment.

Here, it happens to be an abandoned space station, but you'll bring it somewhat to life by interacting with augmented reality systems that recorded exactly what happened to Lunar Transfer Station Tacoma. And you're also there to recover a brilliant artificial intelligence onboard, which we hope ends up messing with you in a very Portal-like manner.

Due: Spring 2017

30) For Honor

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Ubisoft is best known for its mega-franchises like Assassin's Creed and the Tom Clancy's line, but For Honor is a new kind of action experience for the publisher: a medieval hand-to-hand fighter that pits three warring factions against each other for brutal supremacy.

You'll pick one of three factions to hack and/or slash with: The Legion (knights), The Chosen (samurai), or The Warborn (Vikings), each with four different character classes available. For Honor's "Art of Battle" system gives you full control over attacks and blocking, allowing for precise maneuvers while dueling. Expect a closed beta in January!

Due: 14 February

Pre-order For Honor