Games Watch: the 5 best new games coming out in April 2018

Here are the console and PC games that have us talking this month

Even during the slowest months of the year, you'll find the release list stocked with literally hundreds of games across consoles, PC, and mobile. It's madness.

Given that, it can be easy to overlook some magnificent game releases amidst the stack, but worry not: we're here to help. Our Games Watch column points out the five biggest and brightest games on the immediate horizon, and outlines why each seems like it'll be well worth your time and money.

With that in mind, here's your monthly compendium of the five most scintillating new releases coming before May rolls around. You can thank us later.

Crisis on the Planet of the Apes – 3 April

The recent Planet of the Apes films (including last year's War for the Planet of the Apes) have been a welcome surprise, and soon you'll be able to experience that world in virtual reality thanks to Crisis on the Planet of the Apes.

See, the apes aren't very happy about being subjugated and hurt by the horrible humans, and you'll take the role of one of the super-smart creatures as you climb around, man a firearm, and repay mankind for their behaviour.

Platform: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PSVR

Price: US$15

Yakuza 6: The Song of Life – 17 April

Sega's Yakuza series has been a smash from the start in Japan, and it's starting to gain more traction internationally as well. And now, Yakuza 6: The Song of Life introduces the one thing that's sure to make any video game more appealing: a digital baby.

It's true: hero/gangster Kazuma Kiryu, who has run an orphanage in past games, now finds himself taking care of an infant as he tries to discover what happened to its mother. That said, it's still a huge open-world action game with brawling action, loads of character, and a wonderfully diverse array of mini-games and distractions all the while.

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One

Price: 2999

God of War – 20 April

Easily one of the biggest releases of this spring, God of War sees one of Sony's premier franchises given a fresh shot in the arm. It's still about Kratos, his rage, and how he funnels that anger into blistering attacks on foes, but some things have changed significantly.

For example, Kratos has a son – and that son is ever near, even as you battle. The game also has more of an over-the-shoulder aesthetic, plus a shift to Norse mythology gives the new God of War a very different tone on top of the dad stuff. It looks superb and exciting, and we hope it's every bit the PS4-exclusive gem that Horizon Zero Dawn was last spring.

Platforms: PlayStation 4

Price: 3999

The Swords of Ditto – 24 April

The Swords of Ditto can't help but look like the old-school Legend of Zelda games, but of course, it comes with many twists. Here, you have three days to save the world from the evil Mormo – and if you fail, a new hero will rise to try again… in 100 years.

Each quest is pretty compact, and the titular sword carries your experience and upgrade across the ages. But each new hero is different, and the world changes over time, making every quest unique. The bright, hand-drawn look is seriously stunning, and the addition of a LocoRoco cameo is just the cherry on top.

Platforms: PS4, PC

Price: 565

Nintendo Labo – 27 April

Nobody does wild, innovative creativity quite like Nintendo, and Nintendo Labo is a prime example of that. It's literally a box full of cardboard sheets, which you can then fold into more recognisable shapes. But of course, it's not really just a bunch of cardboard.

Nintendo Labo is a working piano, a remote-control car, a fishing game, and a wearable robot simulator. It's creative, it's customisable, and it even imparts coding skills. Roll your eyes all you want, but Labo looks plenty magical to us, and it seems like a must-have for Switch-owning families.

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Price: $69.99/ $79.99