Few games tickle that voyage of discovery itch quite like sci-fi titles. It feels like we're in the midst of a resurgence in the genre, what with the recently released Elite: Dangerous and surging popularity of Star Citizen.
If you want to boldly go where no man has gone before in 2015 though, then there's far more out there than just those two behemoths. One of the most adventurous games we've ever seen is set to hopefully debut on PlayStation 4 and PC next year, while Spec Ops: The Line developer Yager is also hard at work on its own stab at F2P sci-fi. It's sure to be an exciting time for space fans during the next 12 months, and this little lot is just the tip of the iceberg.
There’s a heck of a lot of confusion surrounding No Man’s Sky. I mean, no one even seems to know what you even do in the game, and I wouldn’t be surprised if developer Hello Games was still figuring out exactly what No Man’s Sky entails. That’s to take nothing away from what it is though, which is one most ambitious games of our time. Whether it succeeds or fails or still a relative unknown but, on premise alone, No Man’s Sky appeals to that little bit inside all of us that wants to explore the complete unknown.
Games Workshop brands are undergoing something of a revival at the moment, and the Warhammer 40K shooter Space Hulk: Deathwing looks to be leading the way. Why no one’s made an FPS Space Hulk yet is a mystery, but developer Cyanide has stolen a march with this one. In the Chaos they’ve got a ready-built classic enemy in the making, with Deathwing trapping you and your armoured squad in the claustrophobic tunnels of a gigantic Space Hulk ship, drifting through space.
It might have the dreaded words ‘free-to-play’ associated with it but don’t let that put you off. Dreadnought is being brought to by Yager, that fine lot who made Spec Ops: The Line and is also working on Dead Island 2. The team has pedigree in space flight sims, working on, erm, Yager, appropriately enough, back in the day, and Dreadnought is looking to build on this. Rather than waste time faffing with piddly little fighters, you’ll be taking control of some absolutely mammoth battleships, extinguishing entire star systems in the blink of an eye.
Available via Steam Early Access already, Space Engineers give you a bit of a respite from star destroyers and phasers, instead letting players pootle about space ships and stations, building them and maintaining them in the face of adversity. Namely, asteroids and that pesky force we call velocity. It’s a recipe for disaster, but what we’ve seen of Space Engineers so far looks to be incredible sandbox fun.
The big daddy. Star Citizen is ambition personified, and one of the great crowdfunding success of all time. With every successive stretch goal Star Citizen seems intent on getting more and more ridiculous. Currently hovering around $67 million in total, it’s become such a huge success that the team at Cloud Imperium Games has currently ran out of funding goals. Designed to be the first AAA game to be developed with money from fans instead of a publisher, the sky isn’t even the limit here. A massive universe is at the player’s fingertips, as well as intense dog fighting, space races, and even ship-boarding and first-person-shooter modules, all in a massive persistent universe.
That's some of our most anticipated sci-fi games coming in 2015, what's yours?