The Upcoming RPGs in 2018

by on February 13, 2018

It might seem like I saved my favorite genre for the last. But in reality I had to postpone this article to the month of February just because I needed more time to research about all the RPGs coming out in 2018. The sheer amount of RPGs of all kinds is amazing and after days of research I’m still afraid I might have missed some:

 

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Release Date: February 13

The RPG genre is starting the year 2018 in force with the release of Kingdom Come: Deliverance, a game that has been on every upcoming list posted by me since 2015.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance is the first part of a three acts series set on depicting a historically accurate Bohemia. Play as Henry, a young man who watches helplessly how an invading army destroys his village and kills his parents. Survive the barbaric encounter to pick up the weapon and seek vengeance.

The gameplay is bordering a medieval simulator with realistic activities adapted into game mechanics that fit the genre. The combat is unique, using a system of directional hits and parries imitating the techniques of medieval knights. The gameplay is designed to be as immersive as possible blending into a living and breathing world that has been built by using old maps and historical data of the region.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance is pretty much an indie RPG that has escalated to the level of a AAA. The four years wait since the Kickstarter campaign is almost over and we can finally experience the medieval life like no other game has done it before.

 

Final Fantasy XV

Release Date: March 6

Final Fantasy XV is the latest game in the anthology RPG series that is coming to PC including all its content DLCs released for the console version.

Embark on a road trip with your friends through a gorgeous open world that will lead to a fight to reclaim your homeland. Battle creatures from the smallest to mountain sized using a real time action combat full of spectacular moves. And enjoy the quirkiness that made Final Fantasy such a beloved series.

The Windows edition for Final Fantasy XV features HDR10 and support for higher resolution as well as the inclusion of the controversial Game Works from Nvidia. A PC benchmarking tool has been released for the game which showcases some performance problems, but Square Enix has more than enough time to optimize the game prior to its launch.

 

Deep Sky Derelicts

Release Date: March, currently in Early Access

Deeps Sky Derelicts is what happens when a developer takes the concept of Darkest Dungeon into a sci-fi setting and adds cards to it.

Deep Sky Derelicts is a mix of turn-based RPG, dungeon crawling, card games and rogue-like. These mechanics come together quite nicely using the gameplay framework of Darkest Dungeon. The comic book-like visual presentation gives Deep Sky Derelicts its own unique vibe, separating it from the inspirational material.

The game is currently in Early Access, featuring two playable modes: story and arena. Deep Sky Derelicts has received updates on a regularly basis according to a roadmap which points at a full release in March.

 

Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire

Release Date: April 3

As a backer and a long-time supporter of Obsidian Entertainment it’s hard for me not to try and sell Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire.

Pillars of Eternity did set up a solid foundation for a new universe worthy of a whole RPG series. But I have to say, the game had plenty of problems. It seems that Obsidian did listen to some of the player’s complaints and the sequel is coming with plenty of improvements.

Deadfire’s adventure is taking the players over land and sea in the pursuit of a rogue god. As the captain of your own vessel, you navigate over the world’s map fighting sea battles and exploring new lands. Returning and new companions will join you in this adventure and this time they are capable of holding their own in battle courtesy of a customizable AI system. The character’s progression has been dramatically improved with a system of multi-classes and sub-classes which allows for hundreds of possible builds. The progression plays into a revamped combat system that’s less messy and more tactical. The technical part has been upped a few notches as well, featuring impressive particle effects, dynamic weather and NPCs behavior governed by a day-night cycle.

I’ve been following Pillars of Eternity II closely and I’m impressed with the list of new features and improvements that have went into this game. In April we’ll see if the sayings were true and Deadfire is to Pillars of Eternity what Baldur’s Gate II was to the original.

 

Sunless Skies

Release Date: May

Victorian Gothic, Lovecraftian and deliciously written, Sunless Sea was one of the most enjoyable games of 2015. Failbetter Games is taking this universe rich in narrative to the stars with Sunless Skies. Embark on an upgradeable spacefaring locomotive, recruit a crew and explore the heavens as the stars are dying one by one. Battle cosmic horrors and try to survive while traveling from one weird place to another, having to deal with situations that could have drastic consequences.

 

Griftlands

Release Date: Early 2018

Klei Entertaiment is taking a few steps in a new direction, leaving behind survival games with amusing artistic design for something that looks a bit more serious.

Griftlands is sci-fi RPG in which you try to become rich. The players are put into a dynamic world with procedurally generated NPCs and a simulated economy and have to move from town to town trying to make a fortune. A cast of companions can join your party opening up questlines and giving you a hand with the game’s short and impactful jRPG inspired combat system.

In Griftlands everything will be negotiable, money, loyalty and even morality. So prepare for a rather unique adventure into a lovely hand-drawn sci-fi world that’s going to be somewhat different with every new playthrough.

 

Vampyr

Release date: June 5

I’m sure I said this before, but I’ll say it again because nothing has changed since then. I’ve been waiting for a game to wash the shame brought to vampires by Twilight and I’m hoping DONTNOD Entertainment will manage that with Vampyr.

Vampyr takes place in 1918 London during a Spanish flu pandemic. The players will take the role of Dr. Jonathan Reid, a newly-turned vampyr, as he tries to find a cure for the deadly disease. With the newly gained powers, Jonathan will descent into a darker world facing not only his new kin, but other supernatural creatures and of course, vampire hunters.

The gameplay is heavily focusing on choices and consequences, starting with the need for blood which is putting the doctor’s morals to the test. But it goes as far as having the freedom to kill every living being in London and it’s up to the players to try to save or doom the city. The combat is action based, with guns and melee weapons working in tandem with gradually unlocked vampyr abilities providing the means to fight human and non-human enemies.

It’s been 14 years since vampires have been waiting for justice and it’s time for that to happen. Based on DONTNOD Entertainment’s previous work, Vampyr is in good hands as the studio knows how to properly implement a narrative driven system of choices and consequences. After multiple postpones, we’ll finally be able to play Vampyr at the start of this summer.

 

Banner Saga 3

Release Date: Summer

The last installment in this narrative driven RPG about Vikings is due this summer thanks to another successful crowdfunding campaign.

As the developers put it on Kickstarter: “Banner Saga 3 is aimed at people who appreciate art, story and strategy.” This final sequel will still feature the saga’s greatest qualities: beautifully hand-drawn animations, a tactical turn-based combat system with over 40 unique characters to choose from and a narrative that will mark the end of a beloved series.

 

Monster Hunter: World

Release Date: Autumn

Monster Hunter: World needs no introduction, being Capcom’s fastest selling game in history, shipping 5 million copies in the three days after launch. However, this singleplayer or coop action-RPG with an emphasis on battling giant monsters, grinding and upgrading gear has not yet hit the PC market. The studio will take some extra time to make the PC version as good as possible, but we can expect Monster Hunter World to come out on our platform in Q3-Q4 this year.

 

Ashen

Release Date: TBA

Ashen is a Souls-like action-RPG set in a world where the natural light has died out. The players set on an adventure to find a new place to call home. In their path they’ll meet both dangerous creatures and other players as well. Using a passive multiplayer, Ashen enlists players to play the part of NPCs, creating a gameplay about forging short and ephemeral relationships. Work together, share loot and fight your way through challenging dungeons using a Souls-inspired combat system or die and maybe never meet again.

Despite drawing inspiration from a very popular series, Ashen is a unique game all by itself. The gameplay is emphasizing a positive interaction having systems in place to prevent players from hindering each other. And while cooperation is the key for survival, it remains anonymous, not benefiting from any advanced means of communication relying on actual role-playing. It almost feels like a social experiment where the synergy between the two players will make the difference between success and failure. I find the concepts behind Ashen intriguing and I’m curious to see how they will translate within the context of the gameplay.

 

The Bard’s Tale IV

Release Date: TBA

The Bard’s Tale IV is inXile Entertainment’s third RPG and like the previous ones, Wastelands 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera, the development was possible through a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign.

The Bard’s Tale returns to the classic fantasy RPG with a turn-based party combat and first person dungeon crawling. Customize your characters, explore labyrinthine dungeons, solve puzzles, avoid traps and engage in combat that requires a different kind of tactics. All of these come together into a magically looking world powered nostalgia and Unreal Engine 4.

 

Biomutant

Release Date: TBA

Biomutant is an action-RPG taking place in a post apocalyptic world inhabited by anthropomorphized animals. After the world has been struck by a natural disaster, a plague is spreading across the land, slowly killing the Tree of Life. As the tribes of the world turn against one another, the player character goes on a journey to unify the world and find the source of pollution.

The game is described as a kung-fu fable RPG using an in-depth character customization. The character can be equipped with various mutations, robotic attachments and a wide variety of weapons ranging from swords to assault rifles. Travel the open world by foot, using mechs, balloons, jet-skis and unique mounts. Adapt to the world hazards using protective gear to survive the Dead Zones or contaminated areas. And prepare to fight your enemies with everything you got, taking advantage of the crafting system and a vast array of combat styles.

The amount of features going into Biomutant it’s unreal and the gameplay videos are delightful. I don’t know how Experiment 101 and THQ Nordic managed to keep this game a secret, but I think they have a potential winner in their hands.

 

Book of Demons

Release Date: TBA, currently in Early Access

The developer Thing Trunk describes Book of Demons as a love letter to classic Hack & Slash games and as someone who played the Early Access version, I couldn’t agree more.

Book of Demons is a reimaging of the original Diablo within the Paperverse, a paper-cut universe. The game combines a system of rail movement, cards and a comical adaptation of Diablo’s narrative to create a different kind of H&S. Choose between three classes and build your deck to descend into a series of dungeons with a customizable length.

Book of Demons is a comical throwback to a simpler time. The game feeds on player’s nostalgia, yet retains enough originality to attract those who haven’t experienced a classic like Diablo.

Book of Demons Early Access Impressions!

 

Children of Morta

Release Date: TBA

At the first glance Children of Morta seems like your run of the mill rogue-like RPG, but in reality it’s much more than that.

Children of Morta is a narrative driven game following the life of the Bergson family, the guardians of Mount Morta. Slashing hordes of corrupted monsters through a procedurally generated environment won’t be everything that the players will be doing in this game. The Bergson family is numerous; each member has a different background, narrative and fighting meant to create a meaningful experience. The gameplay videos we’ve seen so far are mesmerizing. The pixel art is stunning and the animations give life to a dynamic combat system engulfing magic, melee and ranged weapons. But on top of everything, the prospects of coop gameplay and replay value make Children of Morta all the more exciting.

An interview with Dead Mage, the creators of Children of Morta!

 

Code Vein

Release Date: TBA

Code Vein is an upcoming action-RPG from Bandai Namco Studios set in a post-apocalyptic world. The protagonist is a member of the Revenant society called Vein, the last survivors of humanity gifted with tremendous power and a thirst for blood. Team up with other Revenants to fight against the Lost, ghoulish creatures who gave into the bloodlust. Run out of blood and become one of the Lost yourself, hunted by other Revenant players.

The action follows a character driven narrative that should guide the players through the vampiric wastelands, however, the gameplay is focused on challenge. Code Vein is using a Souls-like combat system, combining melee weapons, guns and special abilities to fight against powerful monster in a tactical yet not unspectacular way.

Code Vein’s anime inspired visuals, setting and team based gameplay represent quite a deviation from the standard formula popularized by the Souls series. It will be interesting to see the synergy between this mix of elements.

 

Call of Cthulhu

Release Date: TBA

Cyanide and Focus Home Interactive are working on a survival RPG inspired by the pen and paper game based on one of H.P. Lovecraft’s best works.

Call of Cthulhu follows the story of war veteran and private investigator Edward Pierce as he travels to Darkwater Island to shed light into the death of artist Sarah Hawkins. The island holds sinister secrets and Pierce will find himself not only facing monstrosities, but question his own sanity.

The gameplay will have the players recruiting a small team of investigators to solve multiple cases. Explore a semi-open world filled with creatures that will send the protagonist into sanity and psychosis crises. And use RPG elements, dialogues and stealth to uncover the truth about this dark and deadly place.

It’s been a long time since a game has used Lovecraft’s macabre work as a thematic for a psychological horror rather than another setting for pure conflict. I’m hoping that Call of Cthulhu will manage to strike a balance between classic RPG mechanics and horror the way the pen and paper RPG does.

 

EITR

Release Date: TBA

Norsk mythology is at an all time high in video games, but EITR has the advantage of being the only upcoming Souls-like RPG using this setting. There is no certitude that EITR will come out this year, however, this game is worthy of a reminder.

EITR is a visually striking RPG following a Shield Maiden as she fights using a perfectly adapted Souls-like combat for an isometric perspective. With Loki’s interference, Yggdrasil has been covered in darkness and now the Shield Maiden has to travel through the Nine worlds to find the meaning of her fate.

While narrative driven, EITR is a game about overcoming challenges relying on systems of risk and reward to spice things up. The progression system has the players choosing between permanent upgrades or powerful perks lost upon death. The game’s randomly generated itemization shares a similar vision as powerful items could suffer damage if the heroine dies.

I’m not so keen on Norsk mythology, but I’m looking forward for EITR’s release, whenever that will be. I just desperately hope this game won’t follow the same fate as Below.

 

Exanima

Release Date: TBA, Currently in Early Access

It’s finally coming! That’s right! According to Madoc’s post on Steam community forums, Exanima might be releasing this year after a long slumber in Early Access.

Exanima is the prelude to Sui Generis and an excellent dungeon crawler with an innovative physics based combat system. The game’s thrilling atmosphere, sense of exploration and challenging encounters make up for an unmatched experienced due to the uniqueness of many of the system involved.

I’ve been waiting for Exanima for years and I’ve slowly started to lose faith. But the upcoming content update and the potential for a 2018 release restored my hopes.

 

Greedfall

Release Date: TBA

Greedfall is like if The Witcher’s universe has been moved into the colonial era and borrowed a few plot elements from Arcanum.

This action-RPG depicts the inevitable clash between technology and nature with the protagonist being in the middle of it and having to choose a path for himself. Ally with the nature loving natives or the colonizing forces and fight monsters using guns or magic

We don’t know much about Greedfall. However, Spiders, the studio behind the game, doesn’t exactly have the best track record. But the studio has been working on action-RPGs for a while now and Greedfall might be their most ambitious project to date.

 

Immortal: Unchained

Release Date: TBA

Since the release of Dark Souls provided action RPGs with a better melee combat system, we have been waiting for a developer to take that design and somehow make it work from a ranged perspective. The studio Toadman Interactive is trying to do just that with Immortal: Unchained.

Not much is known about the game at this point, but Immortal: Unchained fancies itself as the first hardcore shooter for the action-RPG subgenre. The story follows an immortal being freed from an eternal prison to fight the undead legions of the Underworld. The gameplay seems to use the Souls-like recipe, but with a focus on guns and providing a much more in-depth character customization with 6 disciples to choose from and over 100 guns and unique weapons.

It’s hard to imagine how Immortal: Unchained will play from the only gameplay sequence we have seen so far. However, I’m rooting for this game as it could mark a turning point.

 

Little Devil Inside

Release Date: TBA

I voted to greenlight this game on Steam such a long time ago that I almost forgot it existed. Little Devil Inside is an adventurous RPG like no other.

Little Devil Inside’s action is taking place in this engaging and reactive world filled with creatures and events meant to make the players lose track of the main mission. Explore this world and adapt to it trying to survive using all the means necessary. All kind of weapons, various vehicles, companions and basic survival skills will help against dangers that change with each biome type explored.

Little Devil Inside artistic direction has this insertion of comical relief, most likely balancing a gameplay that seems rather complex and engaging. I’m hoping we’ll see more about this game this year, prior to its release.

 

Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord

Release Date: TBA

If there wasn’t for the constant blog posts keeping us up to date, I would have thought that Mount & Blade II is just a myth by now. However, the game is still in heavy development and for good reasons. The features of this sequel are meant to exceed the expectations of the fans which are still actively playing a 8 years old game.

If I am to check my Steam wishlist, Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord is probably in the top 3. I’m hoping that this game together with Kingdom come will extinguish my burning desire for medieval action-RPGs.

 

No truce with the Furies (working title)

Release Date: TBA

In No truce with the Furies the players take the role of a police detective. You work on an open ended case and have the liberty to get entangled into political beliefs while exploring the vast seaside city of Revachol. The character customization will focus on psychological skills and the inventory management will allow the mixing and matching of cloths for their social effect. No Truce with the Furies seems to be an RPG about society and how one adapts to it.

Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr

Release Date: TBA, currently in Early Access

NeocoreGames, the developers behind the Van Helsing Hack & Slash series, are returning with a rather different kind of action-RPG.

Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Marty is a different breed of Hack & Slash. The game adapts the elements of this subgenre to work in a more destructible and tactical way, befitting for the Warhammer 40,000 universe. Play as one of the three classes: Crusader, Death Cult Assassin or Primaris Psyker. Use the Star Map to traverse through the Caligari Sector and purge the demonic corruption. Enhance your character with new weapons and by using the newly updated progression system.

Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr promises to be an ever expanding title whose development will continue after release with free content updates that will add new factions, settings, missions and more.

 

Werewolf: The Apocalypse

Release Date: TBA

Cyanide and Focus Home Interactive are working on adapting the World of Darkness role playing game Werewolf: The Apocalypse. The game will focus on the interaction between humans and werewolves (or Garou) as the expansion of technology is pushing away the spirit realm. As a werewolf, the players will have to find a way to deal with the humans. Three forms will provide the means of interaction with the world. The humanoid form will serve for diplomatic purposes. The wolf form grants mobility and a higher connection with the spirit world. And lastly, the werewolf form is meant for ripping things apart. The game will feature a semi-open world with a hub. This will allow players to tackle each section in the order they want, but their actions will be reverberate throughout the whole world.

As with other games on this list, there isn’t much information about Werewolf: The Apocalypse. But it seems we’ll have an RPG where we will have to choose between diplomacy and violence and our actions will not go without consequences.

 

This year’s overview of upcoming games is coming to an end with this overwhelming list of RPGs. It seems like all the genres will be properly represented with quality and innovative games worthy of our attention. However, scrolling through all the games I had to research and write about, I think the battle for 2018 will go between RPGs and strategy games. We’ll have to play and see which games and genres will come on top!

See also:

The Upcoming Action Games in 2018

The Upcoming Adventure Games in 2018

The Upcoming Survival Games in 2018

The Upcoming Shooters in 2018

The Upcoming MMOs and Online Games in 2018

The Upcoming Strategy Games in 2018

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