Right now we are in a bit of a lull in the MMO release schedule. Crowdfunding campaigns like Crowfall keep on trucking and the astronomically high level of hype around Star Citizen continues to escalate, but both of those games are pretty far off from a real release. This list isn’t going to mention any current crowdfunding games, nor will it mention stuff that will go into a closed alpha of any kind – only open betas and full releases. This list will however include expansions and ports of MMOs to different consoles.
Last year was, for the most part, pretty disappointing for gaming, even more so if you play many non-MMO games. It appears that we are entering a new era of MMOs, where developers can’t simply rely on the tried and true principles that have gotten them to where they are today. In 2015, it’s a year about diversity and reaching new audiences – and here are our most anticipated releases in the MMO world for 2015.
10) Neverwinter on Xbox One
For a lot of people, Neverwinter is a great example of how to do free-to-play right. Ever since the game launched on PC, it has continued to deliver tons of new content on a regular basis rolling out new classes, new quests, new areas, new modes, and everything in between. Now that the game is going to consoles, specifically the Xbox One, it should find even more success. The hub nature of the world, action-focused combat, and lack of competition on the platform should spell success for this D&D adventure.
9) Planetside 2 on PS4
Look at the most-played games on PC, PS4, and Xbox One any given week – chances are shooters are hovering around the most played games every time. It’s just the genre to play these days, for better or for worse. Planetside 2 takes that itch to shoot other real people and cranks it up to about 20. Not only are there hundreds of other players in the game with you at any given moment, but you also have massive battlefields and persistent warfare that keeps you coming back for more. Nothing like this exists on either console right now, so it’s a big upcoming game without a doubt.
8) Shroud of the Avatar
Ultima. Richard Garriott. Hardcore. Old-school. If any of those things sound familiar or intriguing to you, then this is a game you should already be excited about. Shroud of the Avatar was originally funded at almost twice its $1 Million target back in April of 2013, so the game is finally starting to come together. With a major focus on immersion and engaging stories, it has the makings to be one of the next big ones that people will play for years. The hype has died down recently and it’s been in an alpha state for quite some time, otherwise it would be higher on the list.
7) Elder Scrolls Online for Consoles
You know what the PS4 and Xbox One are really missing right around now? An Elder Scrolls game, that’s what. We got an incredible RPG with Dragon Age: Inquisition and have The Witcher 3 right around the corner, but nothing is really the same as roaming the lands of Tamriel. The Elder Scrolls Online has come a long way towards edging its way into the market and working out its own niche and the move towards a buy-to-play model in time for the console launch is a great idea. There’s no time like the present to get ready for TESO once again.
Skyforge may not have the best timing since the bandwagon carrying all of the action MMOs that released over the past few years has seemingly vacated, but it’s shaping up to be a fun game nevertheless. The hub-style structure has more in common with Neverwinter than it does Wildstar, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. You can read our full impressions from the closed beta here, it’s not exactly an innovative game, but it’s a fun diversion and has a lot of promise for PvP and the makings for a solid “pick up and play” experience.