Just like movies, video game releases follow a set schedule — the biggest games of the year are released either in the summer or just before the holidays. While a few popular titles have already been released this year, some of the most anticipated are yet to come. November promises to be an important month for gamers of all genres.
Call of Duty: Black Ops III (Nov. 6)
Sequel to the popular “Black Ops II” released in 2012, “Call of Duty: Black Ops III” is set 40 years after its predecessor and continues the behind-the-scenes covert warfare style of gameplay set out in the previous title. The game will have both single-player and cooperative campaigns, as well as a pair of Zombies storylines. In the four-player campaign, all of the characters are fully customizable, though the single-player follows a set group of supersoldiers through their worldwide missions. This entry in the franchise will introduce new features like “Gunsmith,” which allows for fuller weapon modification than previous iterations of Call of Duty. “Black Ops III” is planned for all current systems, although the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions will be limited to multiplayer only.
Rise of the Tomb Raider (Nov. 10)
A mix of psychological drama and action-adventure, “Rise of the Tomb Raider” is the sequel to the 2013 game “Tomb Raider” and follows Lara Croft as she attempts to find the truth behind secrets across the world. With more of a focus on stealth than its predecessor, this game features a re-done combat system that allows for sniping attacks and even rooftop escapes a la “Assassin’s Creed.” “Rise of the Tomb Raider” will also have a crafting element that utilizes the game’s different environments and newly-implemented weather cycles. This release is staggered across the available platforms: Xbox players will get first crack at it on Nov. 10, while PC gamers will have to wait until the first quarter of 2016 and PlayStation users even longer.
Fallout 4 (Nov. 10)
Set in Boston 200 years after a nuclear apocalypse, “Fallout 4” is one of the most highly anticipated releases of the season. The game was rumored for years before finally being announced this past June for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Gameplay will follow the same style set by “Fallout 3” by allowing for nonlinear storytelling in an open-world setting. In addition to features introduced in past games, like the ability to switch from first-person to third-person at will and NPC companions, “Fallout 4” will allow players to build and fully populate their own bases for the first time. This game will be the first in the series to be fully voiced, featuring over 100,000 unique lines of dialog.
Star Wars: Battlefront (Nov. 17)
“Star Wars: Battlefront” walks the fine line between sequel and reboot. Set for release about a month before the new Star Wars movie comes out, “Battlefront” follows either the Rebel Alliance or the Empire (player’s choice) across the familiar worlds of Hoth, Tatooine and Endor while also introducing the planet Sullust. The player will also encounter characters from the films, both playable and as NPCs. With both single-player and multiplayer modes, as well as already-announced downloadable content called “Battle of Jakku” available in December, “Star Wars: Battlefront” aims to please all fans of the franchise and tide over those who can’t bear to wait another six weeks for a Star Wars fix. The events of the DLC are rumored to tie directly into the plot of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”
Other titles to watch for this month include the “Need for Speed” reboot on Nov. 3, DLC for “Starcraft II” Nov 10., “Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash” on Nov. 20 and “Bloodborne: The Old Hunters” DLC Nov. 24.