The year has already been massive for gaming, with releases like Hogwarts Legacy, Dead Space Remake, and more making their mark. However, May is looking to be the biggest yet, thanks to first-party console exclusives, long-awaited sequels and yes, another remake. It even has what may be the most anticipated game of the last few years.
There’s much more to indulge in, so don’t worry. Let’s look at the big games launching next month.
After Dishonored’s fantasy steampunk and Deathloop’s retro time-looping, Arkane Studios is exploring uncharted territory with Redfall. It’s a four-player co-op first-person looter shooter with a large – though not massive – open world to explore. Also, vampires, as a botched experiment by Aveum Laboratories turns its billionaire elites into undead blood-suckers.
As one of four survivors, you’re fighting against the rich and powerful, who have encased the titular town in darkness, preventing anyone from leaving. There are cults of humans to deal with, a massive tanky vampire called The Rook that can randomly appear, and optional dungeons called Psychic Nests to tackle. Each character is unique from Devinder’s vampire-killing inventions to Layla’s telekinesis and can acquire items like Grave Locks to augment their abilities.
There’s also lore to discover in houses, random guns to outfit characters with, and no 60 FPS mode at launch on consoles. Nevertheless, Redfall launched on May 2nd for Xbox Series X/S and PC, not to mention Game Pass.
Hogwarts Legacy (Xbox One, PS4)
Even after all the controversy, Hogwarts Legacy was a massive success for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. Set 100 years before the first Harry Potter book, the action RPG focuses on the player traveling to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry as a fifth-year student. They also have a connection to some ancient magic, because, of course, they do and run afoul of Viktor Rookwood and his dark wizards and the Goblin rebellion led by Ranrok.
Hogwarts Legacy has a massive world to explore, from the Hogwarts campus and Hogsmeade to the surrounding highlands. There are dozens of side quests, several memorable NPCs to interact with, some great magical combat, and even your own Room of Requirement with a Vivarium to raise fantastic beasts.
The problem is how it will perform on Xbox One and PS4. Portkey Games and Avalanche Software have yet to reveal the resolution and frame rate, and even then, the actual day-one performance is another matter entirely. Still, it’s out on May 5th – if you don’t have a current-gen console, it may be worth picking up on the previous-gen.
The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launched in 2017 alongside the Nintendo Switch and remains one of the greatest, if not the greatest, games ever. To say that the wait for Tears of the Kingdom, announced under the moniker “Breath of the Wild sequel” at E3 2019, has been agonizing would be an understatement. Nevertheless, it’s almost here. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is out on May 12th.
So what can you expect? Despite being set in the same Hyrule as Breath of the Wild, the world has changed dramatically, with familiar locations transformed, new Sky Islands to explore in unique ways, and fresh characters to interact with. New abilities like Fuse, which combines multiple items to create novel weapons, shields and arrows; Ultrahand to combine larger objects to create vehicles; and Ascend, to pass through ceilings, have looked simply stunning. That’s not counting other things like a new Hookshot-like ability or Rewind, which sends objects back along their previous path.
Nintendo has been somewhat coy on the story, aside from Ganondorf returning and Zelda being in trouble, but the sheer amount of stuff teased in trailers has been incredible. Skydiving through laser webs, minecart fights, new enemies, ghost ships sailing through the sky, defending villagers from monster attacks – there’s just so much. Needless to say, Zelda fans will be busy for a good long while after its release.
Amnesia: The Bunker
For how fresh and downright terrifying Amnesia: The Dark Descent was, its follow-ups – A Machine for Pigs and Rebirth – haven’t exactly recreated that same magic. Frictional Games’ Amnesia: The Bunker may finally break that curse, embracing random chance and claustrophobic surroundings to amplify the terror.
Set during World War 1, players control Henri Clement, a soldier trapped in an abandoned bunker. Even worse, there’s a ravenous monster hunting him. Having nothing but a wind-up flashlight, a gun with one bullet and their wits, the player must navigate the bunker and somehow escape without dying to the monster, various hazards, and so on.
Unlike previous games, Amnesia: The Bunker is an open-world sandbox. You can freely pursue objectives, scavenge for resources and solve puzzles. The world is completely randomized, so every playthrough feels different, and the monster will react to your tactics. If that weren’t enough, you have limited time to escape. If all that sounds like sunshine and a good time, Amnesia: The Bunker may be for you when it launches on Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PS4 and PC on May 23rd.
The Lord of the Rings: Gollum
The Lord of the Rings franchise has been explored from many angles, the most well-known being Monolith Productions’ Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War. However, Daedalic Entertainment’s upcoming stealth action-adventure sees players embodying a unique perspective when it launches on May 25th – that of the deceitful yet sympathetic Gollum.
Venturing through various Middle-earth locations, Gollum will encounter familiar figures and seek the One Ring. Set between The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, the emphasis is on sneaking, platforming and exploring the world. You’re not running through armies of Orcs and Uruk Hai, but you will have to make decisions that either cater to the more sadistic nature of Gollum or the merciful Smeagol, with long-reaching consequences.
The Lord of the Rings: Gollum is launching for Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 and PC. Despite numerous delays, it’s looking like an intriguing experience for Tolkien fans.
System Shock Remake
From a Kickstarter campaign and engine shits to delays and restarting development, it’s been a long journey for Nightdive Studios’ remake of the classic System Shock. Nevertheless, it seems like it will finally be released on May 30th. If you’ve never played the original, the experience mixes first-person shooting, role-playing game mechanics and non-linear story-telling that influenced many future titles.
You venture through Citadel Station in a cyberpunk future and must deal with the various terrifying creations its malevolent AI, SHODAN, throws at you. In terms of changes, the remake offers fully HD visuals, new music and sound effects, a brand-new UI and revamped controls. Various aspects like Cyberspace are also redone, but don’t worry – SHODAN’s voice actor returns to ensure the same level of terror as before.
System Shock Remake launches in May for PC first, with console versions releasing later.
Darkest Dungeon 2
Going beyond the dark, dank dungeons that defined the first game, Darkest Dungeon 2 is a rogue-like adventure where four heroes traverse the ruined world via stagecoach. Embark on an expedition through five regions, with different encounters, enemies and rewards, as your heroes bond and become stronger.
As you complete an expedition, new classes become available, some from the first game and others brand-new (like The Runaway). Artifacts help bolster your skills, while the new combat system relies on Tokens for more direct control in combat. If that weren’t enough, each hero has their own origin story, delving deeper into their pasts, and the aesthetic has been overhauled for gorgeous 3D models and environments.
Darkest Dungeon 2 may seem like a scary new endeavor for fans, but it offers the same nightmarish combat, heavy cosmic horror and sanity-testing quandaries as the first game. It leaves early access for PC on May 8th.
The Outlast Trials
Remember the sheer terror and insanity that was Outlast? Red Barrel Games has been slowly plugging away at the next entry in the series and invites you to experience the horror with friends. The Outlast Trials is out on May 19th for PC via Steam Early Access and sees players partaking in human trials for the Murkoff Corporation during the Cold War.
Playing either solo or co-op with up to three others, you’ll customize a character and lead it through various gut-wrenching experiments. But don’t be fooled – you’ll still need to sneak around and flee from enemies, using tools to improve your abilities. Throughout these experiences, you can find various documents to use against Murkoff.
The early access build will have all the main features, though more trials, perks, enemies and so on are coming in the future. The Outlast Trials may not make for the sanest experience, but for those seeking a compelling horror game, it could be worth a look.
LEGO 2K Drive
If you ever enjoyed the LEGO Speed Champions DLC in Forza Horizon 4 and wanted an entire game for the same, LEGO 2K Drive may just be the ticket. Developed by Visual Concepts and set in BrickLandia, players can freely explore and partake in races, creating vehicles with 1,000 different pieces. In addition to everything being destructible, your vehicle can also transform based on the terrain in a race.
Along with quick races, Cup Series tournaments and mini-games, there is a story to pursue, albeit a classic LEGO tale full of humor as players compete to earn the Sky Trophy while dealing with various rivals (like the dastardly Shadow-X). Online co-op and local split-screen are supported, and the actual racing leans into boosting and power-ups for a more fun, arcade-like experience.
Releasing on May 19th, LEGO 2K Drive will be available for Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5, PC and Nintendo Switch.
While the WWE 2K series has delivered some fun realistic experiences over the past two instalments (we don’t talk about before that), what about those who want epic RPG storylines? A fantastical adventure that combines over-the-top mayhem with professional wrestling? Skybound Games’ WrestleQuest aims to cater to the same.
Releasing in May for Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5, PC and Nintendo Switch, the pixel-based title sees you starting as a newcomer to the art of wrestling. Train yourself up, learn new moves and different styles, explore locations based on legends like Andre the Giant and Jake the Snake Roberts, and eventually become champion. You’ll also lay the smackdown on enemies in turn-based combat.
Though its release date is still unsure, WrestleQuest is one of the more bombastic titles to look forward to next month.
So the world has ended (yes, again) in Piccolo’s After Us. However, this isn’t a tale of despair and doom but of new beginnings. As Gaia, you explore the ruined world, collecting the souls of different animals. You’ll learn how each one met their end, which should provide some relatable morals about environmental preservation as Gaia goes about rejuvenating everything she touches.
Even the enemies, known as Devourers, are covered in oil, which Gaia can clear with her abilities. After Us provides some beautiful environments and a gorgeous atmosphere befitting its aesthetic. Whether there are enough challenges to keep the journey fresh is a different thing altogether, but it’s got our attention. It releases on May 23rd for Xbox Series X/S, PS5 and PC.
If a post-apocalyptic wasteland epic with an environmentally conscious message isn’t for you, then something a bit more tactical may suffice. Miasma Chronicles is, a squad-based tactical strategy game with some fun gameplay. It’s set in the future, where the Miasma has laid waste to the United States.
Players control Elvis, an orphan who can somehow manipulate the Miasma using a mysterious glove. What could this mean for the future of humanity? Maybe some hope in the long term. In the short term, it’s road trip time, as Elvis and his brothers travel the world, learning more about the Miasma while gaining new weapons and abilities and encountering strange characters.
It launches on May 23rd for PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.
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