We’re in the thick of it now. Over the past week, we’ve been rattling off our most wanted video games of 2022.
Coming up next we see the return of a beloved adventure game developer, new IP, and a couple of reboots alongside an experimental twist on one of the world’s best-selling video game franchises.
25. The Expanse
It’s been a rough few years for Telltale Games, mismanaged to the point of bankruptcy, the company shut down and laid off all its staff, only to have its legacy preserved at the eleventh hour by Skybound. Since then the only games out of the door have been enhanced versions of old titles and continued development of the long-awaited The Wolf Among Us 2. That all changed at The Game Awards 2021 when a trailer for The Expanse was revealed, a brand new title based on the hit sci-fi series and novels.
The game will be a prequel and will explore the back story of one the most popular characters from the series, Camina Drummer, voiced by Cara Gee who also plays the character in the show. In series 2 of The Expanse we learn that Camina used to work in the docks and gradually moved up the chain of command in the OPA and it seems the game will be exploring part of this story. The show has just concluded its run on Amazon (although the writers say this is a ‘pause’ rather than an end and there’s further books that they can draw upon) so the Telltale series is going to be the only place where fans can get some more Belter action.
As for the game itself, the Telltale engine was showing it’s age in recent titles, but with new and returning staff, as well as assistance from Deck Nine games, the team behind Life Is Strange: True Colours, we could see some changes to old Telltale formula. The Expanse: A Telltale Series does not have a release date, but we’re hoping to see more in 2022.
24. Advance Wars 1+2: ReBoot Camp
Gosh darn it, Advance Wars has to be the brightest slice of warfare ever imagined, but then what else could we expect from Nintendo? Created and developed by tactical experts Intelligent Systems, there was a point where Advance Wars and Fire Emblem nestled happily together, providing Game Boy Advance owners with enough strategy to basically ignore everything else that appeared on the system.
Fire Emblem has since utterly eclipsed its tactical twin, and it’s taken until now for some light to shine back on the Wars series, albeit in a remastered form rather than a new entry. Bringing the first two games in the series together, Advance Wars 1+2 will allow Switch owners to see what all the fuss is about, though those updated visuals are already proving divisive amongst fans. Still, if it introduces a new generation to the series, and sparks interest in an all-new entry, then we’ll take what we can get.
Starting life as the mysterious PS5 console exclusive Project Athia, which was revealed in June 2020, Square Enix spent this year revealing quite a lot of detail about Forspoken. The action RPG follows Frey Holland, played by Ella Balinska, a woman who finds herself ripped from our world and to the fantasy world of Athia where she has to master magical abilities in order to survive. Developer Luminous Productions has stated it intends to make full use of all of the PS5’s capabilities for Forspoken, but has not delved into major details.
What we do know is that aside from the main game, Luminous Productions is already at work on story DLC called In Tanta We Trust, which will act as prequel to the main story and show how Athia has become the world that Frey stumbles upon. That DLC is due to be released in Winter 2022 while Forspoken is scheduled to release on May 24th, 2022.
22. Saints Row
The Saints Row series grew in scope from its humble beginnings as a GTA clone. From being about gangs fighting over territory, Saints Row games have embraced their sillier side by incorporating superpowers, alien invasions, and even a trip to Hell. All of this left fans wondering where Volition would go next. I imagine few were expecting a reboot to go back to the roots of Saints Row and reimagine the series.
Saints Row will be set in the city of Santo Ileso where three gangs control different territories. Those gangs are Los Panteros, the Idols, and Marshall Defense Industries. A new gang is formed by your character, The Boss, and other former members of these gangs in attempt to usurp them. Santo Ileso will be split into nine territories and within these territories players will be able to set up business fronts to hide illegal endeavours. The game will still contain the absurd humour the series is known for while bringing the franchise back down to Earth. Saints Row is scheduled to release August 23rd, 2022.
21. Pokémon Legends: Arceus
The next major game in the Pokémon series will see developer Game Freak take an unusual change in direction. Instead of introducing us to yet another generation of pocket monsters, we’re going back in time as we return to a much earlier version of Sinnoh. Adventuring across the region of Hisui, it’s your duty to create the world’s first Pokédex.
Pokémon Legends: Arceus is looking to shake up the timeworn turn-based formula this Nintendo franchise is well-known for. There will be more of action twist as you engage Pokémon directly instead of hopping into a random encounter. For the first time, trainers can take damage from creatures they battle, each Pokémon able to choose between strong or agile attacks to add a strategic dimension to combat. Given how well Shining Pearl and Brilliant Diamond have performed there’s clearly a love for classic Pokémon, though for many years we’ve been dying to see Game Freak take more risks.
Another five in the bag. Come back tomorrow for the next batch as we race toward our top 10 most wanted games in 2022.