The state of PC Gaming in 2018

PC gaming is more prominent than ever in 2018 with game publishers working intensely to have a great variety of games ready for their promised launch date in late 2018. Besides upcoming releases, there are some great game titles worth checking out that were published in 2018 as well as some older titles that got re-invented and are definitely worth playing in 2018. Anyway, with no further ado let us get right into the top PC games in 2018 starting with some very promising upcoming releases.

 

Upcoming PC games

The annual E3 event in Los Angeles showed some very promising PC releases at the end of 2018. Besides known franchises like Battlefield V, very interesting titles like Cyberpunk 2077 from the CD Projekt studio mostly known for putting out the Witcher 3 masterpiece as well as Fallout 76 the successor to Bethesda’s major success in the Fallout franchise, Fallout 4 are coming to fruition. Assassins Creed also gets a new game despite Ubisoft claiming that they would stop producing games year after year something they utilized with Assassins Creed Origins, which they took two years to develop designing the game engine from the ground up. In the following paragraphs, I will scratch the surface and deliver some basic information on those pre-mentioned games and give you my opinion on why I consider them to be a great investment for your money. Let us start with the most promising title, in my opinion, Battlefield V.


 

1. Battlefield V

Anyone playing first-person shooter games should be acquainted with the Battlefield franchise. One of the best franchises in the gaming industry and arguably the best first-person shooter experience you can get, Battlefield 1 set the bar high for both the franchise itself as well as its competitors. While many considered Battlefield 1 to be way too mainstream and deviate from the “hardcore” aspect of previous titles like Battlefield 3 or Bad Company 2, it is nonetheless a great shooter with realistic and beautiful graphics and immersive gameplay and a game I constantly found myself going back to again and again. Check out a full game review of Battlefield 1 at this link

Battlefield V is set to be released on 19th October 2018 and uses the same game engine as its predecessor and therefore looks pretty similar from a graphical standpoint although it comes with many changes under its hood that might take the franchise a few steps further and give it a breath of fresh air. As always, reinventing and taking risks will trigger your fanbase either positively or negatively and that is to be expected. Some supporters of the franchise like the direction DICE is going with the Battlefield franchise while others despise it. Let us take a look at 10 major changes which will be implemented in Battlefield V:

  • Squad Spawn

Instead of spawning to the map view screen when dying in battle, you are given the option to watch what your squadmates are doing and spawning on them, a feature that enhances squad play and cooperation. Of course, you are given the option to spawn back to the map screen if you desire to do so something you are used to from previous battlefield games.

  • Squad Revive

Squad revive is a new feature introduced in Battlefield V allowing any squad member regardless of whether they are playing as a ‘Medic” to revive any squad member. Squad revives take way longer than your typical Medic revives and do not restore your health completely in order not to devalue the Medics’ role in the game. The revival process also comes with an animation lasting the whole healing period. Medics revival has not changed much with the Medic sticking a needle into your body in order to revive you. The only difference is that the “needle sticking” is followed by an animation in order to add to the realistic feel of the game. Furthermore, if you die you can ask for revival either from a squadmate or a Medic in your team which is being displayed with a specific animation with you lying on the ground and stretching out your hand “begging” for someone to take care of your wounds.

  • Fortifications

Fortifications are added to the game and can be built by squad members to boost the defense ability of an area. Fortifications will definitely undergo many changes until release date as the game is still in development. For now, fortifications look like the ones in Fortnite where transparent “to build” areas are displayed on the map highlighted with a “building tool” on top. Build a wall or a fence or even an LMG nest to protect you from enemy fire and use it to your advantage.

  • Limited ammo

A huge change in Battlefield V is the ammo capacity of each player. Besides Support players who carry an unlimited amount of ammo and supply their teammates, all other players spawn with a limited amount of ammo forcing them to look around the map for ammo crates, pick up ammo from dead enemies and teammates or ask for some additional ammunition from a team Support player. A great advantage from the limited ammo spawn mechanic is the fact that Scout players need to look around the map for ammo and cannot just “camp” in one place. A major drawback in Battlefield 1 were those camping snipers a problem which I believe will be dealt with now in Battlefield V since Scouts have to actively look for ammunition and are forced to move around the map.

  • No “Sweet spot hit” mechanic

In Battlefield V, if you want a one-hit kill you need to aim directly for the head. No more sweet spot kill feature and now players have to rely on pure skill to take out their enemies. The removal of this feature also changes the way the scout class plays a lot in addition to the limited ammo feature.

  • Unique recoil pattern for each gun

Each gun will have its own recoil mechanism which can be learned individually. If you like to play as an Assault or Support, for example, you can get even better at this class by learning your favorite guns’ recoil pattern and the way they behave and shoot.

  • Class archetypes and customization

DICE introduces class archetypes in Battlefield V. The release version of the class archetype system is still in the works but what DICE wants to do is give the player the ability to build multiple characters of each class and give each character in the class, specific abilities. The way I imagine it is that each character in a class will have specific abilities and gun choices. For example, support player “1” will deploy ammo crates and use a more aggressive play style while support player “2” will use LMGs for defensive purposes. I am not sure if this will work out well but we will have to see. Additionally, each character can be customized a feature many players including me wanted in Battlefield 1. Finally, the feature arrived in Battlefield V.

  • Grenade throwback ability

In Battlefield V you have the ability to throw back grenades at your enemies. Moreover, you can throw your own grenade up into the air and shoot it in order to explode.

  • Explosions and destructions of buildings are more realistic

Explosions and destructions in Battlefield V look more realistic than ever. If you use an Anti-Tank gun against a building it will collapse according to the spot that you hit. If it is in the middle of the building it will collapse totally while if you hit the edges of the building it is not likely to get destroyed completely. If you drive with a tank through a building the parts of the buildings you drive over will collapse accordingly. The heavier the tank is the easier the building will collapse. This adds to the realism of the game something DICE stated that have put a big emphasis on.

  • Grand Operations and Battle Royale mode

A new game mode added to Battlefield V is Grand Operations. Two opposing teams will fight for a specific area for a total of 4 days and the losses of each day will be transferred to the next day. Each day will have a few surprises and specific objectives to capture and things to do. Operations will still be available as we are used to from BF1 but under a different name so that we do not confuse it with Grand Operations. Battle Royale mode was also announced although the details of it have not been specified yet. One option is that Battle Royale will be implemented at the fourth day of Grand Operation with the remaining players fighting for their lives with limited resources while another option suggests that Battle Royale will be a standalone mode which can be chosen from the Game’s menu and can be played separately from the rest of the game.

 

Battlefield V Impressions so far

Battlefield V is still being developed as we speak and many features are going to be altered or removed until the final version of the game releases in October 2018. These 10 major changes, however, are features that DICE stated will stay in the game and will make Battlefield V distinguishable among other Battlefield releases. Whether you like the changes or not is up to you but before you judge the game wait until you can play it or at least see some game footage on Youtube of the released version of the game. Make sure to take a look at this video by Jackfrags analyzing the details I mentioned above along with some great Battlefield V gameplay. Also, make sure to subscribe to his channel since he puts out amazing content day after day. Check out the video below to see the upcoming changes in Battlefield V:

 

 

Here is a 2-hour video of Jackfrags playing Battlefield V in a closed Alpha event:

 

You can pre-order Battlefield V, at this link.


 

2. Assassins Creed Odyssey 

Assassins Creed Odyssey is the next installment in the Assassins Creed franchise. Pretty similar to Assassins Creed Origins, Odyssey is bound to be released on October 5th, 2018 and Ubisoft decided to take us back even further in time to 431 B.C to ancient Greece in the time of the Peloponnesian war between Athens and Sparta. You will be able to choose between two protagonists Alexios and Kassandra and unlike Assassins Creed Syndicate where you can actively change between the two twins, your choice of character in Odyssey will be irreversible. Coincidently, the game developers who developed Syndicate are also the ones who are behind Odyssey.  The protagonists are from Sparta and were thrown off a cliff when they were young because their family was prophesized to bring doom and destruction to Sparta. Following the adventure of  Assassins Creed Odyssey, our protagonist emerges 17 years later and has to uncover the truth behind his family and fight his fate as an outcast.

In Assassins Creed Odyssey you can enjoy the beauty and glory of ancient Greece with the landscape ranging from mountains and beaches to forests and witness the great architecture found in Perikles “golden age” Athens in the 5th century BC. The combat system has been refurbished and although reminiscent of Origins it has its own mechanisms to get used to and playstyle. The RPG aspect is more prominent than ever in Assassins Creed Odyssey with the player being able to choose from different dialogues just like The Witcher 3. Since Assassins Creed Origins, Ubisoft has decided to completely reinvent the franchise by adding RPG elements. The dialogue system only enhances the suspicion that Ubisoft will not back down from their chosen road. Assassins Creed feels like a totally different franchise since 2017.

With  Origins, the “Assassins Creed” title can be justified as we are taken back to the beginning of the Assassins in 48 BC. With Odyssey, however, we are taken back even further to a time period where the Assassins did not even exist. In my opinion, which is shared by many players, Ubisoft should give their newer titles a new name since they have nothing to do with older AC titles like AC2, AC3 or Revelations also known as the “Ezio trilogy”. I really like the direction Ubisoft is going by completely re-inventing the wheel and taking risks to give new life to the franchise but their choices have resulted in a totally different game since Origins and the “Assassins Creed” trademark does not reflect the content of the game anymore.

In the video below you can check up a 45-minute gameplay of Assassins Creed Odyssey from the E3 event:


 

3. Cyberpunk 2077

Cyberpunk 2077 is a game developed by CD Projekt, the creators of arguably the most successful open-world game ever created, The Witcher 3. Cyberpunk 2077 exact release date is yet unknown but we know that it will be released sometime in 2019. CD Projekt has been working on the game since 2012 something telling us that a lot of work has been put into the game for the past 6 years. Cyberpunk 2077 is a first-person shooter with RGB elements set in a futuristic world in a night-city in northern California in 2077, 57 years after the tabletop game Cyberpunk 2020 which it got its inspiration from. The game is sci-fi based as you play as Mercenary V, a customizable mercenary who moves through the corrupt Night City engaging in conversations, saving people, destroying buildings and even buying things etc. The city is bathed in corruption and in this open-world experience, you can do whatever you please with each choice leading you to a different ending.

A unique combat mechanic has been developed for Cyberpunk 2077. Mercenary V can climb, melee attack and take out his targets from a distance with a variety of ranged weapons. By traveling around the city you can even buy stuff with eurodollars. Your character is fully customizable including hairstyle, face, body type and customizations and clothing. The six districts that can be found in northern California of 2077 are:

  • the city center of the open-world night city
  • immigrant-inhabited Watson
  • luxurious Westbrook
  • suburban Heywood
  • Pacifica full of gang members
  • industrial Santo Domingo

Travel through those regions either by foot or vehicles including motorbikes, trucks, cars and even autonomous vehicles that let you focus on combat instead of driving so that you can focus on your enemies. The sci-fi element of the game is apparent everywhere with robots being used for daily activities for waste collection, public transportation, and maintenance. Robotic transplants have been added to humans too and the world of Cyberpunk 2077 looks vastly different than our today’s world, with corruption and greed being the main forces that rule the city. Cyberpunk 2077 sounds like a very promising game and I can not wait to get my hands on it when it comes out.

The major obstacle Cyberpunk 2077 has to face is the success of The Witcher 3 setting extremely high standards for future CD Projekt releases, with Cyberpunk 2077 being no exception. Without a doubt, Witcher 3 is a masterpiece by anyone who has played it. The only drawback of The Witcher 3 is its sheer size and length, a factor CD Projekt promised to surpass with Cyberpunk 2077. If you have not tried out the Witcher 3 and are a PC gamer, I recommend that you give the game a try, especially in 2018 where all its expansions are included in the Game Of The Year edition of the game.

Grab a cheap copy of The Witcher 3 GOTY Edition.

Check out the official trailer for Cyberpunk 2077:


 

4. Fallout 76

Fallout 76 is a new first-person online multiplayer game set to be released on November 14th, 2018. Fallout 76 is a game developed by Bethesda a game publisher ironically known for publishing great single-player games. Bethesda has developed games like Wolfenstein, Prey, Doom and Fallout 76 predecessor, Fallout 4. Fallout 76 is the multiplayer version of Fallout 4 which Bethesda decided to develop back in 2013 when Fallout 4 was released but decided to not include it in the game. Instead, Fallout 76 has been inspired by Fallout 4 and will have 4x times the size of it, enormous when we consider how big Fallout 4 was.

Although being a survival multiplayer game, Fallout 76 will not feel like a Battle Royale game and the game can also be played solo as Bethesda stated. Servers will not be packed with too many players and you can explore the vast world, do quests and discover new places and get into combat with dangerous enemies in an attempt to survive the dangers that lurk around you. Any human interaction in the game is an actual player with whom you can cooperate to help you survive in the dangerous world of Western Virginia, where the game takes place. The basic story behind Fallout 76 looks like this:  You had been imprisoned in Vault 76, one of the 17 control vaults which opened twenty years after the war. Now you are a subject of study left alone in the vast world to survive in order for your supervisors to study your behavior in comparison to the people who are still imprisoned in the other 16 vaults.

Fallout 76 looks very promising. The only thing that bothers me is that Bethesda uses the same game engine as Fallout 4 which had a lot of glitches and bugs, especially at release. It was almost unplayable and although Bethesda uses great engines on their other games like Doom or Wolfenstein, I do not know how Fallout 76 will play once it comes out in a few months. Besides this problem, anyone who enjoyed Fallout 4, will most likely enjoy Fallout 76, too. The map is 4x times bigger, the combat system looks better than ever and the game looks visually stunning despite the fact that it is based on the same engine.

Check out 7 minutes of Fallout 76 gameplay:

 

You can pre-order Fallout 76, at this link.


 

 Top 5 Games worth re-visiting in 2018

 

1. Rainbow Six Siege

Rainbow Six Siege is a game released back in 2015 by Ubisoft. A tactical online multiplayer first-person shooter with no single player campaign seemed a little bit stale back in the day especially considering the shortage of available maps at that point. But the thing that most people did not realize three years ago, including me, is how much detail Rainbow Six Siege has. The sound in the game is amazing, the gameplay mechanics are stellar and the fact that you had so many options and ways to take out your enemies made Rainbow Six Siege a “niche” game. You need to devote many hours to learn the game mechanics, learn when to shoot, learn the recoil pattern of each gun, when to lean on the wall, in which corner to wait and when to go full force or stealth etc. Rainbow Six Siege is not a game for the masses like CounterStrike. It demands patience and tactical thinking.

Ubisoft has by now worked on 99% of the game’s problems and continuously focuses on providing new and exciting content. New operators with different abilities are being added every few months and right now Siege is in its third year and the game is far from dead. All additional content is free for all players, so all maps are available to all players. The yearly season pass simply unlocks the new operators directly while non-premium pass owners need to unlock the operators through gameplay. Sincerely, the season pass is worth it. For the third year, I have bought the season pass since I still play Rainbow Six Siege but not as regularly as in 2015 so I want the extra content right away. If you are into first person shooters and for some reason you have not heard about or played Rainbow Six Siege, I can confirm that the game is worth both your time and money.

Rainbow Six Siege right now can be found for a very cheap price, HERE.

If you want to get your hands on the Rainbow Six Siege Season Pass, you can do so by clicking HERE.

 

Check out some Rainbow Six Siege gameplay at the following video:


 

2. The Witcher 3

Very few games can come close to the masterpiece that is considered (for good reasons) to be The Witcher 3. The game was released in 2015 by CD Projekt and is the third open-world installment of the Witcher series. I do not know if CD Projekt realized three years ago what they created but every open-world game nowadays gets compared to the golden standard that is The Witcher 3. The gameplay is amazing, the graphics are jaw-dropping for a 2015 game and the options and choices you have in the fantasy open-world game are endless. You choose the outcome of the game with your actions and the dialogues you choose throughout the game. The combat system is amazing with a combination of classic combat and magic and the crafting system is huge and, at times, difficult to understand if you do not invest time in the game.

The Witcher 3 is like a 5-star meal recipe at an expensive restaurant. The right amount of ingredients come together to create an amazing experience. A stunning fact is that The Witcher 3 is CD Projekt first attempt to create an open-world game and they managed to create possibly the best open-world game ever. Besides the base game, which is huge on its own, the game developers also added 2 major expansions which are worth another 50 hours of gameplay.

3 years later with all glitches fixed and all extra content released, it is the perfect time period to get back or even start playing the game for newcomers by getting the Witcher 3 Game-of-the-year edition for a very lucrative price. The GOTY edition includes all expansions along with the base game and is the most polished and well-executed version of the game.

 

Take a look at The Witcher 3 GOTY edition, at this link.

 

The trailer for The Witcher 3 GOTY edition can be seen below:


 

3. Prey

Prey is a game originally released on May 5th, 2017 and is a first-person sci-fi game developed by Arkane Studios and published by Bethesda. The game takes place on a space station, Talos I orbiting the moon where an alien outbreak has killed most of the crew. The aliens have taken over the space station and need to be eliminated before they reach earth. You play as Morgan Yu and are the brother of the supervisor of Talos I, Alex Yu who refuses to eliminate the aliens and wishes to use their powers for the sake of humanity. You, however, realize at the beginning of the game that they need to be eliminated for good along with any other life form on Talos I in order to protect the rest of humankind back on earth.

Starting off the game in your room, you realize something is wrong and it is way too silent around you. After you undergo going a series of tests designed by the scientists of the space station, the crew gets attacked by aliens and you need to meet your brother and set an end to all of this. Instead of making you feel like a superhuman like in Doom, Arkane Studios makes you the victim in the game as you hide and crawl your way through the game hoping to not get spotted by the aliens. The combat system has been designed specifically for that purpose by giving you low ammo and weak guns in the beginning. Even after upgrading your abilities and advancing in the game, at times you still feel that going by undetected is the best option. It is surely not a game for the faint-hearted and definitely not for those of you who want to go through it blasting, it does not work that way. But if you are patient enough to discover the areas around you and puzzle the pieces together you are in for a breathtaking experience.

A few weeks ago, Arkane Studios added a survival mode for the game for the hard-core fans of the series as well as a new DLC, called “Mooncrash” which has you after the main story has ended attempt to survive at the Moon against hordes of hostile aliens. Each time you die the memory starts again until you make it through.  The Mooncrash DLC has a big replay value as each time you enter the game, the environment, the loot you find and the enemies you encounter are different. If you enjoyed the main game, you should be excited about this DLC and definitely pick it up.

 

Grab a cheap copy of Prey at an 80% discount at this link.

Interested in the Mooncrash DLC as well? Then check it out, HERE.

Here is the trailer of Prey:

Check out gameplay for the Mooncrash DLC at the video below:


 

4. Titanfall 2 

Ever wondered how a futuristic Call of Duty game would look like if it was actually good? Developed by Respawn and published by EA, Titanfall 2 is the successor of the original Titanfall game released in 2013. Titanfall 2 was released in 2016 and is an excellent first-person futuristic shooter. Titanfall 2 is well-known for its fast-paced gameplay and wall running mechanic. If you wonder since when futuristic COD games have a wall-running mechanism and what it would be like if it was actually good, again, Titanfall 2 is the answer to your question. Titanfall 2 has both great multiplayer and an amazing single-player campaign which I have finished twice. Both singleplayer and multiplayer have great replay value. You play as a Pilot, a human in a special combat suit giving you great combat abilities, strength, and speed. You are accompanied by your Titan, a huge robot fighting the battle along with you. Titanfall 2 is the game for you if you like a fast-paced gameplay but are tired of the repetitiveness of recent COD games. The singleplayer campaign is nothing short of amazing and features a story where you the pilot fight your way through waves of enemy pilots and Titans along with your Titan.

Find out more details about the game by going over to my review of Titanfall 2.

Titanfall 2 is a shooter which lost its spotlight despite its great potential due to bad marketing. The game was released right after Battlefield 1 in November 2016 and got overshadowed by it. The developers believed that gamers would decide to buy both games but most ended up just buying Battlefield 1. Titanfall 2 has free content, no DLC and, yes, no loot boxes (Star Wars Battlefront II anyone?) and its additional content provides free maps, new game modes, new Pilot and Titan classes.

Titanfall 2 combines the quality of early COD games with a great futuristic setting and succeeds where newer COD games failed to deliver what they promised which is a great futuristic and fast-paced shooter.

You can try out the game for a very cheap price, at this link.

 

Here is the trailer and actual gameplay of Titanfall 2:


 

5. OverwatchOverwatch

Talking about replay value, there are few games that can compete with Overwatch. A game developed by Blizzard in 2016, Overwatch is a fantasy, cartoon first-person shooter. Overwatch has only a multiplayer and is very simple at its core. Two teams of six compete against each other and have to capture certain objectives. Right now there are 27 heroes to choose from each of them with certain abilities which are easy to learn but hard to master. The heroes are split into 3 categories according to their purpose in the game:

  • Tank
  • Damage
  • Support

Check out my full review of Overwatch, at this link.

Overwatch is a team-based shooter and going off alone against the enemy team is not effective. As said before, the heroes are easy to get into but hard to master. Overwatch is a classic PvP game and no PvE is included. It is the kind of game where you log in, get straight to play, have fun for a couple of hours and log out. This is why Overwatch continues being successful 2 years after its release. What Blizzard did completely right with Overwatch besides the game itself is the implementation of loot boxes. Since all content is free, game developers had to find a way to make money and decided to implement cosmetic-only loot boxes. Buying a new outfit or weapon skin for your hero is optional and does not affect gameplay. This money-making model was first introduced by CounterStrike with its weapon skins. Since its implementation, Valve has made a ton of money by selling cosmetic customization items for the guns in CounterStrike.

Blizzard followed the same path with Overwatch successfully, something EA should have done too with Star Wars Battlefront II.

 

Overwatch is a great, easy to get into shooter everyone fond of first-person shooter games should be able to enjoy. The price of Overwatch is really low at the moment so if you want to jump right into the game, check out the Overwatch GOTY Edition.

 

Watch some Overwatch gameplay in the video below:

 

Conclusion

2018 is a very promising year for the PC gaming community. Upcoming releases like Battlefield V, Assassins Creed Odyssey, Cyberpunk 2077 and Fallout 76 are very interesting, to say the least. Older games are equally worth looking into with game producers either polishing a fully released game like The Witcher 3 or Overwatch by releasing GOTY editions while other games like Rainbow Six Siege and Prey are still getting new, exciting and worthwhile content 2 or 3 years after their initial release. Those games are as polished as they could be and come at an extremely low price. They are the perfect opportunity to get you occupied until the release of the newer titles later this year.


These are my top PC games in 2018. What do you think? have you played any of the older releases yet or are you planning to pick up the newer releases once they launch in late 2018? Let me know in the comment section and thank you for taking the time to read through this.