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50 Most Anticipated Games of 2016
By RPGFan Staff
February 26, 2016 – 2015 was an absolutely stand-out year for us here at RPGFan, so you think it would be difficult to top that. Well, you only have to look at what's already come out, and check out our list for our most anticipated releases of 2016 to see that this year might be the year to top it. A few entries from last year have made a return to this list, as well as some that may not reach our shores this year, but regardless we're hopeful and excited for them anyway! For this first half, we've got an excellent handful of indie hits, some long awaited sequels, and a certain remake...

Here's the first half of our picks for the biggest releases this year, and check back tomorrow to check out what else we're looking forward to!

While you wait for these games to be released, head over to our forums and let us know what you think of our choices and give your own lists of what you're most looking forward to!

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim
Release: 2016 • Platform: PS4, Vita • Official Site
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim Do you like Evangelion? Of course you do, and the folks over at Vanillaware do too! Aegis Rim is set in a post-catastrophe, futuristic city where it looks like the only things that matter are high school and giant robots (can you get anymore anime?). Not much is known about this newest 2D action game from George Kamitani but it looks beautiful and it is scored by Hitoshi Sakimoto, the man responsible for the soundtrack to the world of Ivalice. Us here at RPGFan are dying for more details and 13 Sentinels: Aegis rim should absolutely remain on your radar.

Ace Attorney 6
Release: 2016 • Platform: 3DS • Official Site
Ace Attorney 6 Phoenix Wright is back! And this time, he's in quite a pickle: On a trip abroad to the land of Kurain, Phoenix finds a friend detained and on trial for a crime they didn't commit. Trouble is, there are no lawyers in Kurain: Judicial verdicts are handled by mystic oracles and spirit mediums! Can Phoenix persuade the local government to allow for a fair trial? Well, that depends on what Ace Attorney's definition of "fair" is, but fans of the series special brand of Dragon Ball Z-meets-Law & Order courtroom drama won't want to miss Phoenix's latest outing.

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Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book
Release: TBD • Platform: PS3, PS4, Vita • Official Site
Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book We're big fans of Atelier here at RPGFan, and the recent Dusk Trilogy offered some of the strongest titles in this long-running apothecary RPG series. Set in the same continuity a few years down the line, Atelier Sophie looks primed to be the culmination of what Gust have slowly been perfecting over the past few years. Atelier's first PS4 outing looks like more of the alchemic-fusing fun we've grown to love, plus a day-night cycle and a weather system to mix things up. Those looking for a gentler ride in which the emphasis isn't on combat will find a lot to enjoy in Atelier Sophie.

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The Banner Saga 2
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC • Official Site
The Banner Saga 2 Fans of the first game in the Banner Saga series were certainly disappointed when the sequel was delayed until 2016 (including our Stephen Meyerink, who gave the original a 95% and an Editor's Choice award in his review), but the wait should be nearly over at this point. And besides, the reason the developers held off on its release was to add some extra polish they thought were lacking, and that's certain to result in a better experience when we do get it.

Read more in our preview...
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Bravely Second: End Layer
Release: 4/15/2016 • Platform: 3DS • Official Site
Bravely Second: End Layer Bravely Default was the only reason I bought a 3DS. I can't say I was disappointed with it, but the game did have notable flaws with backtracking and reused assets. Bravely Second aims to right many of the wrongs of its predecessor. A lot of Bravely Default, barring the excellent battle system, was walking on well-trodden ground. I look at that game as a conservative first step and I hope its success has allowed Square to make Bravely Second an even richer and more fully realized experience. Bravely Second: End Layer should be a day-one purchase for any fan of old school RPGs.

Read more in our preview...
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CHASM
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC, PS4 • Official Site
CHASM This side-scrolling, procedurally-generated dungeon crawler has suffered its share of delays, but CHASM finally looks prepped and primed to release sometime this year. Featuring diabolical traps, fierce bosses and gorgeous pixel art that brings to mind the finest vistas of Ys III, CHASM's absence has only made our hearts grow fonder. We're ready to take the plunge.

Read more in our preview...
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Cosmic Star Heroine
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC, Mac, PS4, Vita • Official Site
Cosmic Star Heroine Wow, did somebody say "Phantasy Star"? The latest offering from Zeboyd Games (Breath of Death VII, Cthulhu Saves the World) is an intergalactic spy thriller set in a cyberpunk dystopia, featuring intricately drawn environments and pixel cutscenes that look straight out of the Sega CD era. Cosmic Star Heroine doesn't just look like an homage to Sega's trademark RPG series, but also a worthy successor.

Read more in our preview...
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Cross Code
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC, Mac, Linux • Official Site
Cross Code Having been on Steam's Early Access since mid-2015, Cross Code has already wowed many with its tight controls and fun combat system. It's a clear love-letter to the SNES classics such as Secet of Mana and Zelda, with a sci-fi twist which sees Lea log into an MMO-style game of the future. Full of clever and thought-provoking puzzles and deep levelling and skill system, Cross Code could be the indie gem of 2016.

Read more in our preview...
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Cyberpunk 2077
Release: TBD • Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC • Official Site
Cyberpunk 2077 Yeah yeah, we're hopeful, sue us! CD Projekt Red have proved themselves to be the newest open-world titan on the block with 2015's The Witcher III, and we can't wait to see how they handle the very first adaptation of R. Talsorian's tabletop game Cyberpunk to the digital screen. To be fair, games with cyberpunk settings are so few and far between that we're usually happy to take what we get, but knowing CD Projekt Red is at the helm means we're in for something very special indeed.

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DanganRonpa V3
Release: 2016 • Platform: PS4, Vita • Official Site
DanganRonpa V3 Despite its unwieldy name, DanganRonpa is probably our favorite series that we're still hesitant about recommending to folks. Its extremely dark story featuring teenagers killing other teenagers is probably not suitable for everyone, but if you can handle it, we think you should check it out. The third numbered entry in the series hasn't yet been confirmed for release in the West, but the publishers have stated that "We'd love to do it if we had the opportunity to," so we're holding out hope.

Dark Souls III
Release: 4/12/2016 • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One • Official Site
Dark Souls III The final chapter of the Dark Souls trilogy is upon us with series creator Hidetaka Miyazaki back at the helm. Dark Souls III promises an expanded version of its forebears' robust character customization, a revamped magic system and the inclusion of new stances that provide players with a variety of combat effects. Of course, we're also expecting all new ways to die over and over again. Dark Souls III's gorgeous dark fantasy is one that overfloweth with lore, gore and doom, and we can't wait to succumb to it.

Read more in our preview...
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Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
Release: 8/23/2016 • Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC • Official Site
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Deus Ex seems to have got back into its stride after 2011's impressive Human Revolution, so Mankind Divided can't come quick enough for many. Set two years after the previous entry, Adam Jensen returns with all new augments and technology as the hostility towards augmentation remains. Mankind Divided looks to inherit the excellent level design and striking visuals from its predecessor, and we can't wait to test out all of Adam's new gear this summer.

Read more in our preview...
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Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 3
Release: 3/24/2016 (JP) • Platform: 3DS
Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 3 Few series have monsters as iconic and enduring as Dragon Quest, so what better franchise for a monster-raising sim? The third entry in the DQM Joker subseries celebrates its tenth anniversary by bringing the action to the 3DS, with increased graphical fidelity, larger maps and the ability to take to the sky on the back of a winged beast! A localization hasn't yet been announced and Square-Enix's track record for bringing Dragon Quest westward is a bit spotty, but seeing as English-speaking RPGFans got the last two Joker titles we're hopeful to see this one soon!

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Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past
Release: Summer 2016 • Platform: 3DS
Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past Dragon Quest VII hasn't aged particularly well, so when this hit the 3DS in Japan in 2013, fans were desperate to get their hands on it. Luckily, the wait is over soon. The game is famous for its long playtime which lends itself perfectly to the handheld console, and with added features to make tracking down the shards and restoring the world much easier. There's no better way to experience Dragon Quest VII by the sounds of it!

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Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King
Release: 2016 • Platform: 3DS
Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King Dragon Quest VIII might be one of the PS2's best, but just because we've played through it once, doesn't mean this port will be sidelined. All of your favourite characters return to this beautiful world with all the in-depth crafting and exploration that kept players charmed in the original, but with the promise of new content including a new dungeon, there's no better reason to check this out again this year.

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Dragon Quest XI
Release: Spring 2016 (JP) • Platform: PS4, 3DS
Dragon Quest XI One game, two platforms. Yeah, plenty of games get multi-platform releases, but what if those two platforms were the PS4 and the 3DS? Sounds unbelievable, but only a series as unbelievable as Dragon Quest would dare to pull it off. The eleventh main-line title in this beloved 30-year-old franchise is getting a breathtaking 3D entry on PS4, and a lower-tech (but still charming) 3DS adaptation for those who prefer their fun on the go. And that's not all, the 3DS version offers the choice of two completely different graphic styles: modern or 16-bit! Square-Enix are crazy! But it's the good kind of crazy, and many of us here at RPGFan are crazy enough to double-dip on this one.

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EITR
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC, PS4 • Official Site
EITR We've seen Norse mythology collide with RPGs before, but EITR looks to be reviving that formula with its own twist. You'll guide the Shield Maiden through the 9 Norse worlds as she uncovers the fate chosen for her by the Norns. This action RPG promises challenges, risks and rewards, and a unique levelling-up system which sees you pick between permanent upgrades or temporary, but powerful, abilities. This is definitely one to look out for in the coming months.

Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky
Release: 2016 • Platform: PS4, Vita • Official Site
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky Billed as the spiritual sequel to Valkyrie Profile, and co-developed by tri-Ace and Spike Chunsoft, Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky looks to stand out from the crowd. After the evil god Yamatoga kills the 12 main characters, Kanata Kujou and the others get caught up in a quarrel between the gods, but rather than a traditional modern-day Japanese setting, the game embraces a futuristic Tron-esque design which looks beautiful. The game hit Japan late last year, so fingers crossed for a western release this year along with tri-Ace's other major release.

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Final Fantasy VII Remake
Release: TBD • Platform: PS4 • Official Site
Final Fantasy VII Remake How many times did you pinch yourself after the announcement of the Final Fantasy VII Remake? We haven't stopped pinching yet here at RPGFan, and no-one can stop talking about it. The graphics have us frothing at the mouth, many were staring in awe and the battles, and the premise of this landmark RPG being episodic has us curious. Where is Square Enix taking their crown-materia? Wherever it ends up, we'll await its release with baited breath.

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Final Fantasy XV
Release: 2016 • Platform: PS4, Xbox One • Official Site
Final Fantasy XV It's hard to believe that nearly 10 years ago, the world was introduced to Final Fantasy Versus XIII; skip to 2016 and that has become Final Fantasy XV, and 2016 is the year where the wait will finally be over. We've had Episode Duscae to wet our appetite the the last year, so it's exctiting to see how the whole package will come together on Noctis' journey to recover the crystal from the control of the Niflheim Empire. Despite its critics and doubters, no one can resist a new entry in the main Final Fantasy series.

Read more in our preview...
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Finding Paradise
Release: TBD • Platform: PC, Mac, Linux
Finding Paradise We loved To the Moon at RPGFan, so to find out Freebird Games are releasing a sequel is fantastic news. The game looks to pack an emotional punch just like its prequel and follows a similar structure, tracing the actions of two doctors as they enter into a dying child's memories and help him fulfil his last wish. While a release date is yet to be announced, fans will have their tissues at the ready for the day they can finally play this.

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Genei Ibun Roku #FE
Release: 2016 • Platform: Wii U • Official Site
Genei Ibun Roku #FE Take Atlus' demon-centric Shin Megami Tensei series, combine it with the deliberate medieval tactics of Intelligent System's Fire Emblem, and what do you get? If you guessed "transforming pop singers flying around Shibuya fighting evil with the power of music", you were probably a member of the dev team, cheater! But no matter: Genei Ibun Roku #FE looks like a worthy companion piece to the upcoming Persona 5; a colorful urban fantasy that enchants our eyes and dazzles our imaginations.

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Heart Forth, Alicia
Release: 2016 • Platform: PC, PS4, Vita Wii U • Official Site
Heart Forth, Alicia Need something to keep your Metroidvania cravings at bay? The Heart Forth, Alicia may just answer your prayers. Inspired by Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, you'll control a young wizard attempting to break free of Heaven's grasp. If previous Metroidvania games are anything to go by, expect lots of secrets, plenty of abilities, and some fast-paced combat as you explore the maze-like world.

Read more in our preview...
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Horizon Zero Dawn
Release: 2016 • Platform: PS4
Horizon Zero Dawn This game is perhaps not as well known as some on our list, so if you're not familiar with it by name, make sure to check out Kyle's preview from last year's E3 at the link below. It's the one with the robot dinosaurs. Robot dinosaurs! When has that ever gone wrong? OK, Zoids Assault was terrible. But this game is the opposite of that one, with a focus on action and fast, fluid combat. Sounds worth watching to us.

Read more in our preview...
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Kingdom Hearts III
Release: TBD • Platform: PS4, Xbox One • Official Site
Kingdom Hearts III Oh yeah, I guess we should include Kingdom Hearts III on this list, shouldn't we? Sure, this won't be the game's first appearance on one of these lists, but hope springs eternal. The series' faithful fans live on with the dream of getting to play KHIII sooner rather than later. Is it too much to hope that we'll get to do so this year? We'd be very happy campers if we did!

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