2016 has been like any other year in the video game world. There have been cancellations. There have been delays. There have been disappointments and triumphs. There have been bad games that should have been great and great games that should have been bad. There have been surprises, shocks, twists and turns. And there was one hell of an E3 press conference.

So, with all that said, what’s left to look forward to for the rest of 2016. We’ve still got Gamescom, Tokyo Game Show, Paris Games Week, Eurogamer Expo, The Game Awards and The Playstation Experience. That’s a lot of shows that have typically held their fair share of announcements.

Of course as far as Eurogamer Expo goes, we’ll be all over it. Playing games, interviewing devs and digging up what’s worth paying attention to. It’s what we do after all.

But for all the interviews, intrigue, news, scandals and more that will follow this post for the remaining five months of 2016, what it’s all really about is the games. It’s been a long seven months since Tom and I sat down to list our most anticipated games for the year. Some have come out. Some have been delayed. At least one has been cancelled. So it’s time we updated the list, just before the end of year rush begins.

This is not an exhaustive list, but rather a list of the games we’re most looking forward to for the rest of this year. We think you’ll like them:

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No Man’s Sky

Platforms PC, PS4
Developer Hello Games
Publisher Hello Games
Release Date August 9 (PS4), August 12 (PC), 2016

Tomorrow. After all the hype and the delays, No Man’s Sky drops for Playstation 4 tomorrow (with the PC release following this Friday). It’s been a long time coming since Sean Murray rocked up onto the woeful VGX Awards late in 2013 and gave us all something that made actually watching worth it.

Of course the game has gotten out early. There have been streams and there have been leaks. I’ve even watched some of them. If you’ve stayed strong and avoided all of it, the best policy is to keep being strong. Wait for the game to drop through your letterbox or unlock on your platform of choice. After almost three years of waiting, it’s time to find out if the hype is real.

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Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Eidos Montreal
Publisher Square Enix
Release Date August 23, 2016

I can, and have on more than one occasion, write essays talking about how excited I am for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. The previous game in the series promised players the ability to adopt any play style they saw fit. Whether you wanted to be a diplomat, an assassin, a ghost, a hacker or a tank, the game would accommodate you. And while the conventional boss fights squashed that idea, this time around Eidos Montreal are promising to fix those.

From everything we’ve been shown pre-release, the promise of being able to approach Mankind Divided in any way we see fit may be about to come to fruition. Playing the game any way you want should be possible – whether you want to go on a murdering spree or not, whether you even want to entertain violence as an option at all. Or not. It’s what I’ve always dreamed of being possible in an RPG, and hopefully Eidos and Deus Ex is about to deliver it.

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ReCore

Platforms PC, XBO
Developer Armature Studios
Publisher Microsoft Studios
Release Date September 13, 2016

While Nintendo fumbles around not releasing a new Metroid game, it seems that former members of the Metroid Prime development team may have beaten them to it. While ReCore isn’t a traditional Metroid-style game by any stretch of the imagination, there are hallmarks of the series’ DNA all over what we’ve seen of the Xbox exclusive thus far.

As I noted after seeing the game at E3 for the first time, the game takes a lot of inspiration from both Mega Man and Metroid. While ReCore is neither of those games, it may be the spiritual successor that fans of both franchises have been desperate for.

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Forza Horizon 3

Platforms PC, XBO
Developer Playground Games
Publisher Microsoft Studios
Release Date September 27, 2016

Forza Horizon 3 takes the open-world driving experience to Australia, which is a far cry from the Colorado and Southern European settings of the previous games in the series. Horizon 3 looks to take full advantage of this new setting with players able to blast their cars through jungles and across beaches, as well as on the roads and through the cities of Australia.

This third installment also aims to bring back a lot of what makes the Horizon arm of the Forza series so popular – Driveatars are coming back. Races can be against other players, other AI and also against trains, planes and all manner of different vehicles. Basically, Forza Horizon 3 looks to be just as much fun as its predecessors.

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Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice

Platforms Wii U, 3DS
Developer Sanzaru Games
Publisher Sega
Release Date September 27, 2016

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Final Fantasy XV

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Square Enix
Publisher Square Enix
Release Date September 30, 2016

I don’t think anything really needs to be said about why we’re all anticipating Final Fantasy XV at this point. We’re all hoping it’ll be a good game, after ten years of development it has to be, right? But we all remember Final Fantasy XIII. We know that a good entry in the Final Fantasy series isn’t necessarily a given. One way or another we’re going to find out this September – what kind of future does Final Fantasy have?

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Mafia 3

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Hangar 13
Publisher 2K Games
Release Date October 7, 2016

The initial reveal trailer for Mafia 3 turned a lot of heads at Gamescom last year, including ours. What we’ve seen of the game since then has ticked all the boxes that marks Mafia 3 as having Game of the Year potential. It’s setting is dripping with atmosphere, its characters look compelling and its gameplay looks fantastic. Mafia 3 is a game that looks deserving of all the pre-release praise and hype that it’s getting, and we can’t wait to see what it has in store for us this October.

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Civilization VI

Platforms PC
Developer Firaxis
Publisher 2K Games
Release Date October 21, 2016

Although we were probably about due a new entry into the Civilization series, the announcement of Civilization VI earlier this year still caught us off guard. That being said, we’re more than happy to watch entire chunks of our lives disappear as we chase down the illusion of “just one more turn”.

Civ 6 aims to bring some substantial changes to the way the game is played. Nothing signifies that more than the way cities are changing. Rather than simply being a static city on a single map tile, cities will now expand into the surrounding tiles, growing bigger the more you build in them. This change, and the other major changes, mark the sixth Civilization game as being a one to definitely watch out for later this year.

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The First-Person Shooter Trifecta

Within three weeks the three biggest first-person shooters will all be launched on PC, Playstation 4 and Xbox One. Beginning on October 21 with Battlefield 1, followed by Titanfall 2 on October 28 and finishing on November 4 with Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. It’s a fascinating situation – each series has its detractors and its hardcore fans.

It’ll be the people in the middle – fans of the genre without being fans of any particular franchise (above the others) that will decide how this head-to-head will all shake out. There can’t be room for these three behemoths to prosper being released practically on top of each other. Can there?

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The Last Guardian

Platforms PS4
Developer Team ICO, SIE Japan
Publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release Date October 25, 2016

The Last Guardian will be a moment of great triumph for the games industry when it launches later in October for Playstation 4 (it’ll also be a moment of great personal triumph when I win my long standing bet with Tom over its release date). The Last Guardian is more than just a game at this point.

It’s a symbol that just about anything is possible at this moment in the history of our industry. A game that vanishes from sight for years can still reemerge and ignite the public excitement all over again. Plus it’s by the guys who made Shadow of the Colossus and it looks pretty damn great.

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Watch Dogs 2

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Ubisoft Montreal
Publisher Ubisoft
Release Date November 15, 2016

The original Watch Dogs was a game that had a lot of untapped potential. Decent without ever really threatening to be good. There were moments it flirted with greatness, mechanics that it brought to the table that could be implemented. All it needed to do was focus on what it was good at, ditch the things that weren’t working and bring in a more interesting protagonist in a more interesting setting.

If that sounds familiar, it’s because that’s generally a good way of describing another Ubisoft game – the original Assassin’s Creed. Right before it did all of those things and jumped up several notches in quality in Assassin’s Creed II. And given what we’ve seen of the second Watch Dogs game, it seems like Ubisoft may be giving its open-world hacking series the same treatment.

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South Park: The Fractured But Whole

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Ubisoft San Francisco
Publisher Ubisoft
Release Date December 6, 2016

South Park: The Stick of Truth was one of the biggest shocks of 2014 – it was somehow an amazing RPG set in the South Park universe. It played like a season of the TV show, casting you as a character brand new to the titular town as the kids played a fantasy game. The Fractured But Whole aims to put that same South Park spin on a game about the latest movie trend – superheroes. This time the kids of South Park have ditched the robes and fantasy setting for a full on superhero war, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.

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Steep

Platforms PC, PS4, XBO
Developer Ubisoft Annecy
Publisher Ubisoft
Release Date December 2016 (TBC)

Steep is the only game on this list that doesn’t have a firm release date. But I’ve allowed its placement on the list because of how well it won me over during Ubisoft’s E3 presentation. Anyone watching our livestreaming the conference will have seen me run the gauntlet of emotions – from disappointment to intrigue to fully embracing this quirky game and its ideas.

An open-world, extreme winter sports game set on the Alps doesn’t, at first glance, seem like the greatest idea for a game. However throughout the lengthy showcase of how it all works during E3, I was convinced that Steep could be something special indeed. While I’m not 100% convinced we’ll see it hits its 2016 release window (though I hope we do), I’m looking forward to hopefully getting to try it out at EGX next month.

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