February 2022 looks set to be a huge month for gaming with the hot titles coming thick and fast, but even while you’re still chewing on the 500 hours of Dying Light, or plugging away at your impossible Elden Ring run 2022 isn’t going to quite let up for a while as we also have Starfield, Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League and so much more to look forward to later in the year!
It’s a mammoth year for gaming coming, so let us here at Gaming Digest help you get your gaming calendars in order with all the hot games to look forward to in 2022!
Dying Light 2: Stay Human (February)
The dark terrors of night are finally coming for us again with the long-anticipated sequel to the zombie free-running RPG—it’s Dying Light 2 Stay Human! Announced 4 years ago now at E3 2018, Dying Light 2 was starting to feel like a game that would never come, pushed initially out of its 2020 release with no subsequent date given.
But in that time away Techland have evidently been working hard on their promise to make Dying Light 2 a mammoth RPG game, boasting around 500 hours of total content (we’ll see just how human anyone still is after that total playtime…), over 3000 different parkour animations, 40,000 lines of dialogue and a tonne of post release content still to come. This time around the city is carved up into various factions, and your work with any one faction can have an impact on both the world and the other factions, as well as how other character’s view and treat. With a map four times the size of its predecessor, the intention for Stay Human is to give players the ultimate playground to explore and carve to their own image.
Big things are promised for Dying Light 2, with Techland signalling of late that they have a roadmap for 5 years’ worth of post-game content to still come. Grab your UV torches and grapple hooks on February 4!
Horizon Forbidden West (February)
Sony’s new poster child returns again as Aloy is back to crack more mechanised dino skulls in Horizon Forbidden West. The first Horizon title was an immense success for PlayStation, developing a vast world that was a tonne of fun to explore and a unique combat and enemy system that was hugely satisfying to play. With Horizon Forbidden West Guerrilla Games have promised more of what we already love with a load of fine tuning and refinement to make this open world adventure even greater than before. The free climbing mechanic has apparently been refined to move much smoother and easier than the previous slightly agitating system, so no more plunging to your death jumping at unclimbable surfaces (*you can still plunge to your death by regular means, however).
Just as Zero Dawn was a spectacle of acting talent, Horizon Forbidden West continues the same trend by expanding out its star-studded voice cast. Ashly Burch and Lance Reddick of course return to their main roles as Aloy and Sylens, but now joining them comes The Matrix’s Carrie-Anne Moss, Hollywood royalty Angela Basset, John Hopkins, Noshir Dalal, and John MacMillan.
Uncover the buried secrets of the Forbidden West on February 18.
Elden Ring (February)
Yes. It is in fact real. And it is nearly finally here! (*touch wood*).
The brainchild of gaming royalty Hidetaka Miyazaki and Game of Thrones author George R.R Martin, Elden Ring is the “Soulsborne” game from FromSoftware. The Dark Souls games are beloved for their difficulty and punishing challenges, as well as their dark fantastical world complete with all manner of weird and wonderful environments and monsters. From what we’ve seen of Elden Ring already, Miyazaki is gracing us with even more bizarro realms and monstrous genius. The game will follow many of the mechanics from its predecessors with a couple of new exciting additions such as fast travel, mounted combat, and a stealth system akin to Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. The dev team has also stated that Elden Ring is supposed to be a little more approachable and forgiving for newer players less equipped with Souls-strategy.
The long-anticipated collaboration between Miyazaki and George had long felt like a pipe dream, particularly so with the GoT famous penchant for slow writing and unfinished projects. However, after 3 long years since its first announcement, and one slightly painful month delay, Elden Ring is nearly upon us on February 25th!
Ghostwire: Tokyo (Expected Q1)
So much of Ghostwire: Tokyo still remains a mystery, including its release date (rumours suggest a potential late March release). However with what we have seen from gameplay videos and the announcement Ghostwire: Tokyo looks set to deliver some typical, freaky and horrific Shinji Mikami goodness. Having directed such horror gaming hall of famers as Resident Evil 1 and 4, as well as The Evil Within 1 and 2 Mikami is well adept at weaving horrifying worlds filled with ingeniously designed monstrosities that get right to the heart of bodily and psychological anxieties. Mikami also brings in his artistic collaborator for The Evil Within, Ikumi Nakamura to oversee Toko: Ghostwire as creative director.
From Bethesda Softworks and Tango Gameworks, Tokyo: Ghostwire is expected to be more of an action-adventure game than a survival horror like its Evil Within cousins, but nevertheless the game will still be imbued with plenty of horror elements and unsettling designs.
Despite Microsoft’s acquisition of Bethesda, Ghostwire is still expected to follow its PlayStation 5 exclusive launch, with an Xbox and Windows release coming at least a year later.
Tiny Tina’s Wonderland (March)
Borderlands’ loudest character returns to our consoles for her very own fantastical spin-off with Tiny Tina’s Wonderland. Borderlands has always enjoyed being the cheeky, metatextual, irreverent character of the gaming world, and Tiny Tina looks no different with the game itself set as a Dungeons and Dragons game dungeon mastered by Tina herself, allowing her to change the world on the fly and imbue it within any nonsense of her maniacal choosing. Expect guns, dragons, unicorns, rainbows, magic, and more guns.
Another that boasts a celebrity cast: Ashly Burch reprises her role as Tiny Tina, along with Andy Samberg, Wanda Sykes, and Will Arnett also voicing main characters in the game. “Lute” and shoot on March 25.
Kirby and the Forgotten Land (March)
It’s a cutesy kind of day on March 25 as everyone’s favourite little pink ball returns to our consoles with Kirby and the Forgotten Land. For the first time in its mainline series, Kirby comes into the 3D platforming world in a bold looking adventure platformer.
Kirby finds himself awash on the shores of a post-apocalyptic world (though one that looks fittingly colourful and bright as opposed to dark and dreary). It is up to Kirby to explore and uncover the past secrets of this world all while (presumably) consuming everything in his path and riding stars through desolate lands.
After a smattering of disappointing titles Kirby fans will be looking to Forgotten Lands with excitement and hope, with HAL Laboratory making quite the go of switching things up and taking the series in a bold new look and direction. It looks wonderfully delightful and a tonne of fun, with an artistic design that pops in the way Kirby really should.
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga (April)
I know what you’re thinking: “why is a Lego game included here? Don’t they just pump those games out?”. And that might be fair, except for Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga the building blocks have just got a huge overhaul. The Skywalker Saga is the first Lego Star Wars game since The Force Awakens in 2016, and in that interim the TT Games team have gone to lengths to create the most ambitious version of a Lego game yet.
Debuting its extensive gameplay trailer just recently, Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker takes an all-new approach to the Lego series, going for a more intricate, designed combat system as well deepening its gameplay mechanics to give a fuller, more rich gaming experience compared to the more simplistic platforming style of Lego games past. Combat now includes a proper shooting mechanic not unlike Gears of War or other cover-based shooters, as well as lightsaber combat with actual melee fighting mechanics like combos and blocking. Space fights and vehicular combat also makes its way to the new saga.
The Skywalker Saga will span across all of the mainline films, allowing players to enjoy the biggest and best moments of the world’s best sci-fi franchise with a cast of over 300 of your favourite Star Wars characters. Characters all possess unique abilities and skill tree progression so that you can really play your way. For Lego game purists too TT Games teased their “mumble mode” to allow you to enjoy cutscenes in the classic warble of old Lego games.
Build your saga on April 5 on all consoles and PC!
Saints Row (August)
Ever since the Third Street Saints of Stilwater found themselves as residents of the White House and fighting off an alien invasion on Earth it was difficult to see where the Saints Row franchise could really go next.
Turns out, after a 9-year hiatus the best place to go is to just strip it all back to basics again as Saints Row (2022) ditches the subheadings and goofiness to bring things back to good old gang versus gang warfare. That’s not to say there won’t still be that staple Saints irreverence present, but this reboot is sorely intended to rein in the series back to its more grounded, serious roots.
The desert city of Santa Ileso is carved up into gang districts, each packed to the nines with armaments and ready to do warfare for control of the land. The Saints being the Saints of course want it all for themselves, so you’ll be taking each gang to task yourself with all manner of weapons and vehicles, including mini guns, VTOLS, plasma shields, and a golf buggy.
The Saints are back this summer, August 23.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora (TBA)
2022 is the year of Avatar as James Cameron’s sequel finally reaches the big screen, and joining it in the gaming world is Ubisoft’s Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora.
It’s not the first time that the Na’vi have had their own game having been across consoles for the film tie in game, but with Frontiers of Pandora we’re finally freed up a little more to explore the illustrious heights and depths of Pandora in a standalone title.
Frontiers of Pandora remains largely a mystery, however we do know that it will be an open world adventure title running in Ubisoft’s all new Snowdrop engine, meaning it might look extremely impressive. The E3 reveal gave only a date of 2022, so it remains to be seen whether Ubisoft will hold to that, but with the upcoming movie coming in December the end of the year is as good a time as any to get plug your hair braid into your console and enjoy Pandora fever again.
God of War: Ragnarök (TBA)
The long-awaited sequel to God of War (2018) is meant to land angrily at our feet at some point in 2022 with God of War: Ragnarök. Continuing his fatherly duties, Kratos is back to shepherd his now teenage son Atreus toward the truth of his identity and destiny as the trickster god Loki. The 2018 reboot to the God of War was hugely popular and an incredible title to boot, changing up the button mashing system to something more refined and altogether more “meaty” and satisfying. Following the shock revelations at the end of God of WarKratos and Atreus must once again venture forth to the realms of the Norse gods to find the answers they seek.
But as the subtitle for this sequel suggests, God of War: Ragnarök is going to see the Norse end of days coming to fruition, meaning this journey will likely be anything but easy.
As ever too, Kratos’ god killing days are going to have to catch up to him, and Ragnarök looks to be no different as early trailers show Kratos’ former ally and friend Freya charging after him on a quest for vengeance along with the God of Thunder, Thor. Kratos is no stranger to enraged gods but having killed the sons of both Freya and Thor respectively he’s going to have his work cut out for him here.
All nine realms of Norse mythology will apparently be explorable this time around, and gameplay trailers have shown Kratos and Atreus using an all-new mode of transport with ski-wolves.
Ragnarök is also reportedly the finale to Kratos’ Norse story. Whether that means different mythologies are lined up for the future remains to be seen.
Redfall (Expected Summer)
Teased at the very end of Microsoft’s E3 showcase in 2021, Redfall comes as a surprise and mysterious title from the team at Arkane Studios. The stylishly presented trailer showed 4 hunter characters battling it out against hordes of vampires in the town of Redfall, meaning we might have a Left 4 Dead style game to expect here.
Arkane have declared that their open world single player/co-op multiplayer shooter is going to continue on their record of story first experiences, and will be a refinement of all that they have spent the last 20 years mastering with their other games. Though we still don’t quite know much about what Redfall is, Arkane has a more than proven track record with the likes of Prey, Dishonored and last year’s brilliant PS5 exclusive, Deathloop. That alone is enough to get us excited for what is to come with Redfall, but Xbox also leaving it as their show closer for E3 also suggests that they have a lot of confidence behind their new exclusive.
Due to Microsoft’s purchase of Zenimax/Bethesda we can expect Redfall to come to Game Pass on day one, continuing on their new tradition of bolstering the live service. Official release dates are as yet unknown, but it sounds as though we can expect the summer of 2022 to get a bit bitey.
Mario + Rabbids Spark of Hope (TBA)
Ubisoft and Nintendo are combining once again for Mario + Rabbids Spark of Hope—a follow up to Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle. Kingdom Battle brought together the titular Rabbids of Ubisoft’s franchise together in battle alongside Mario and friends. A bizarre blend, but one that oddly worked superbly.
Like Kingdom Battle, Sparks of Hope will once again be a turn-based strategy game akin to the likes of XCOM. Movement in combat will work slightly differently this time around however, offering up a freer moving system not unlike Divinity to allow players more control of their map placement. The change will also allow actions to happen in real-time, meaning you may have to think a little quicker and react on your feet.
A date for release stands only as 2022 without any further indication so far for when exactly in the year we can expect this team up to arrive on Switch.
Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League (TBA)
Rocksteady, the developer behind the Arkham series of games, are taking a break from heroic tales and turning to the villains for some bad boy fun in Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League.
“Don’t Be A Hero” runs the upcoming action-adventure titles tagline, and that certainly looks to be the case as Captain Boomerang, Harley Quinn, Deadshot, and King Shark run havoc across Metropolis. Their mission, however, may not quite be the unbridled rampage of villainy that it first seems. As it turns out, killing the Justice League might well be a heroic act as the team of valiant heroes find themselves under the control of Brainiac, laying waste to all that he commands. The only team to stop them in this quest of sheer insanity are the ones with nothing left to lose—the Suicide Squad.
The game looks perfect for you and 4 friends to jump into cooperatively, each taking control of your favourite member of the Suicide Squad in an all-out blitz on Metropolis. Gameplay looks somewhere between Xbox’s Sunset Overdrive and Rocksteady’s Arkham Knight, with the gameplay possessing an apt franticness and overabundance of colour and chaos to it. When playing solo you’ll be able to switch between the characters, harnessing each of their special abilities when needed in your quest to Kill the Justice League.
As of December Rocksteady have still only set a 2022 release window with no further specifics.
Dead Space (End of 2022)
It’s time to return to the Ishimura to “cut off their limbs” again as Dead Space steps into the next generation with a full remake of the original title exclusively for Xbox Series X/S, PS5, and PC.
Details are currently sparse, though EA have shown off some early test builds and the Ishimura looks to have taken a massive step up in graphical quality, meaning those jump scares and fleshy tears are about to get a whole lot more terrifying. Since so little has been shown it may be a little hopeful to be expecting this by the end of 2022, with 2023 probably more likely. Rather than a quick remaster polish that other titles are usually given, EA seem committed to rebuilding Dead Space from the ground up with an updated engine. We’ll more or less be looking at a whole new game whenever it does release which will take some time.
Dead Space was a pioneer for gaming in 2008, delivering a unique experience that had it all. The no HUD system was revolutionary at the time and helped to keep players immersed in the spine-chilling atmosphere of the Ishimura the entire time. We can only hope that a remake will do the original classic justice—which so far it looks like it will!
Self-described as “Skyrim in space”, Starfield is the next massive project from Bethesda Game Studios. The game’s director, Todd Howard and Bethesda have apparently had a sci-fi game in mind for some time, and development on Starfield has officially been ongoing since Fallout 4’s launch in 2015. The game represents Bethesda’s first new IP in 25 years meaning there is plenty to be excited about here.
Despite the gaming world first getting a glimpse at the world of Starfield at E3 2018, we still know frighteningly little about the game. Bethesda have been cagey with gameplay footage, though they have started a series of videos sharing pieces of concept art and design pieces that have influenced all that we will eventually see in the game. From that alone Starfield is looking like an ambitious venture, which of course Bethesda are no strangers to tackling. The teaser trailer released at E3 last year again reiterated much of the same ground from 2018: we’re space explorers setting out to the great galaxy beyond. Has No Man’s Sky beat Bethesda to the punch here? Or has the hall of fame game studio got something else up their sleeve to wow us all?
Starfield will also be running on Creation Engine 2—a whole new engine update to their original Creation Engine used for years by the likes of Skyrim and Fallout. We can only hope that this engine will possess the high mod-ability that its predecessor is known for. A huge part of the community strength of Bethesda games lay in its mods, so it would be a huge part to omit. If it doesn’t have the same goofy glitches we’ve come to hate and love of the Creation Engine too then we’ll riot!
As usual Bethesda love their palindrome dates so we can expect Starfield to be taking lift off exclusively on Xbox Series X/S and PC on 11/11/11.
Untitled The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Sequel (TBA)
Nintendo and Zelda fans have been crying out for it ever since the original in 2017, and at 2021’s E3 showcase Nintendo finally gave us our first glimpse of a sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and a hopeful date of 2022.
Nintendo have been ever cagey on details, but from the E3 teaser and the subsequent info given it looks like we’ll be taking to the skies of Hyrule this time around along with the mountain ranges and grassy environs of before.
Hidemaro Fujibayashi returns again as the games director and is looking to expand upon leftover ideas that the dev team still had after Breath of the Wild. The game’s creative team have purposefully neglected to announce the game’s subtitle just yet, stating that even the subtitle may give too much away about the game’s plot.
Will the long-awaited sequel to the Switch’s bestselling title actually come out in 2022? For my money, probably not, but recent leaks do suggest that Nintendo are pretty resolute on their 2022 release. If that is the case I would expect an end of year launch with announcements made around E3/summertime.