2013 isn't even over, but we're already looking forward to next year with GameSpot's Most Anticipated for 2014 series. Which games are our editors most looking forward to over the next 12 months? Over the next five days, we'll identify 10 of 2014's hottest games, starting with the shooters we think will make a huge impact on the way we play this popular genre.
There's an old saying: the only things certain in life are death, taxes, and more first-person shooters. But that doesn't mean that shooters have to be the same old experience year in, year out. Two of 2014's biggest games may be first-person shooters, but they're approaching the genre in new and interesting ways, incorporating persistent online worlds or rethinking the way you move through a shooter's environment. Little wonder, then, that Titanfall and Destiny are two of GameSpot's Most Anticipated Games for 2014. Read on to see what some of our editors think of these promising new shooters.
I'm desperate to be excited by multiplayer shooters again, and it looks like Titanfall is the game that's gonna do it.GameSpot Editor Mark Walton
It's no secret that I'm not the biggest fan of first-person shooters, or rather, the monotonous military-based affairs that have become so prevalent. Don't get me wrong, I still have a blast with the likes of Counter-Strike: Source or Team Fortress 2, and BioShock Infinite fills the gap for something story-driven. But the multiplayer shooter is due for a shake-up, and I've got a sneaking suspicion that once people get their hands on Titanfall, they're never going to want to touch Battlefield or Call of Duty again.
Why? Partly because it's from the studio founded by the people who made Call of Duty one of the most popular games on the planet. But also, jetpacks. And mechs. Those two elements dramatically change the way the game plays. You're no longer fixed to the ground, lumbering along with a rifle as you hunker behind some cover and pick off bad guys. The freedom the jetpack gives you to leap off walls and bounce off rooftops is exhilarating.
And then there are the Titans, powerful tools to be sure, but ones that leave you open to attack from above as soldiers rip off panels and try to shoot your brains out, giving you no option but to eject and hope for the best. It sounds like the sort of thing that would be heavily scripted, but I played Titanfall at Gamescom, and these events are every bit as organic as a well-placed headshot. I'm desperate to be excited by multiplayer shooters again, and it looks like Titanfall is the game that's gonna do it.
I love games that make it fun to simply move through their worlds, particularly when moving means performing parkour moves. But I'm also a fan of games that have a sense of weight. When you slide into cover as Marcus Fenix in Gears of War, for example, you feel the heft of that armor and the mass of Marcus' muscles. Titanfall brings these two seemingly disparate elements together, allowing you to pilot a giant hefty mech called a Titan, but also granting you a jetpack and setting you free to run across walls and get the drop on your opponents.
This is Respawn's chance to show once and for all that it has that imaginative spark that can lift a brand-new property off the ground.GameSpot Editor Kevin VanOrd
I also think that Respawn, a developer made up of former Infinity Ward designers, has a lot to prove now that it has left Call of Duty behind. This is Respawn's chance to show once and for all that it has that imaginative spark that can lift a brand-new property off the ground.
Granted, Titanfall is a shooter, so no one could praise Respawn for being the world's most diverse developer. Nevertheless, I like to think that the designers there want to let their creative energies loose in a way they hadn't been able to for years. And if that's what they've truly done, then Titanfall could very well be an unignorable force.
Check out all our coverage of Titanfall here.
It speaks to the spirit of adventure in all of us.GameSpot Editor Eddie Makuch
Halo is hands down one of my favorite shooter franchises of all time, and I don't see how you couldn't be excited by the idea of Bungie getting its hands dirty creating a new world and lore. From everything we've heard, Destiny is an ambitious, connected world that I can easily see myself getting lost in--and with some friends, too.
The massive scale of the game is another reason to be excited. It's going to unfold over the span of a decade, giving Bungie time to craft all-new stories and experiences that we can't even fathom right now. There's also the matter of in-house Bungie composer Marty O'Donnell teaming up with Sir Paul McCartney to score the game's soundtrack. The soundscapes in the Halo games blew me away, and surely the legendary Beatles musician will bring something unique to the table.
For all we do know about Destiny, Bungie is keeping much more behind the curtain. What is the story? Will its multiplayer be as impactful for next-gen consoles as Halo was for the Xbox? Despite these questions, fulfilling my "Destiny" in 2014 is easily one of my most anticipated gaming pursuits for the new year. And with a beta scheduled for early 2014, the wait is nearly over.
Destiny lets you explore--from the cracks and crevasses of the moon to the dead planet Mars. You can jump in a spacecraft and just fly. It speaks to the spirit of adventure in all of us.
I'm not really into Halo. And despite being one of the few living adorers of the developer's anime action game Oni, I am not a big Bungie enthusiast either. And yet everything I've seen of Destiny speaks to me.
Perhaps it's the big, beautiful world. Perhaps it's the prospect of seeing what Bungie can do outside of the Halo universe. Mostly, however, I think that it's the prospect of a dynamic online game that brings players together and pulls them apart as the situation requires--a not quite massively multiplayer online approach that combines the ease of a single-player campaign with the joys of cooperative adventuring.
Destiny has the look, the feel, and the sound of a game that could keep me hooked.GameSpot Editor Kevin VanOrd
Moreover, if Bungie adds new content as frequently as it says it will, Destiny could very well be the game I return to again and again. Too few shooters spice their games with true exploration, and those that do, such as Borderlands, don't always appeal to me. However, Destiny has the look, the feel, and the sound of a game that could keep me hooked.
Check out all our coverage of Destiny here.
Are Destiny and Titanfall on your must-play lists for 2014? Tell us in the comments below. And come back tomorrow as we unveil two more of our Most Anticipated Titles for 2014.