Game developers today are working with technology that’s constantly improving and as a result, are capable of building massive, beautifully rendered worlds for players to explore. This has spawned a number of highly ambitious and immersive open-world games like The Witcher 3 and the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077.
While open-world games are frequently at the center of gaming discussions, there are still some titles that manage to slip under the radar. So we thought we’d compile a list to highlight the best upcoming open-world games that have us excited. Make sure to check back as we’ll be updating this list in the future.
Greedfall (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Sep 10, 2019
Greedfall is an upcoming action RPG developed by Spiders and published by Focus Home Interactive. The game is set during an alternate, magical version of the 17th century, and has players controlling either a male or female protagonist as they explore a remote island rumored to be filled with riches and secrets.
During their journey, players will find themselves in the middle of ever-increasing tensions between rival factions and uncover the island’s many mysteries. The game emphasizes player freedom, allowing you to devise unique strategies for challenges which result in one of many possible outcomes.
The Surge 2 (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Sep 24, 2019
The Surge 2 is a third-person action RPG developed by Deck13 Interactive and published by Focus Home Interactive. The sequel ditches the preset protagonist from the first game, allowing players to create a customizable character before being thrown into Jericho City, an urban wasteland brimming with dangerous mechanical foes.
It carries over the challenging, Dark Souls-inspired combat of the original while introducing new gameplay mechanics. Among these is a limb-targeting system which has been expanded, as well as new abilities, weapons, implants, and drones for players to take advantage of.
Code Vein (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Sep 27, 2019
Another title inspired by challenging action RPGs like Dark Souls is Code Vein, an upcoming game developed and published by Bandai Namco. The game is set in a post-apocalyptic dystopia where the few remaining humans have become caught in a struggle against massive and deadly creatures.
You play as a customizable character that chooses to give up their past life and become a member of Vein, a hidden society of vampires whose power comes from consuming blood. Code Vein features fast-paced combat that focuses on precise dodges and counter-attacks.
Ghost Recon Breakpoint (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Oct 4, 2019
Ghost Recon Breakpoint is a sequel to 2017’s Wildlands and has players traveling to a fictional archipelago named Auroa for what appears to be a standard recon mission. Soon after, they’ll find themselves face to face with the Wolves, a deadly former US military unit gone rogue led by a former ally, Colonel Cole D. Walker.
The biggest changes to gameplay stem from the addition of new survival and injury systems. Auroa’s map is about the same size as Wildlands’ but features more dynamic terrain such as dense forests with steep hills and thick, muddy swamps that can be dangerous but also useful in battle.
The Outer Worlds (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Oct 25, 2019
The Outer Worlds is an action RPG coming from Obsidian Entertainment, whose notable credits include Fallout: New Vegas. Set in a future where mega-corporations have begun colonizing and terraforming alien planets, the game sees the player traveling through space when something goes awry, leaving them stranded at the edge of a space colony.
Aside from first-person combat, the game includes the option to recruit NPC companions who can lend their strength in battle and sometimes offer unconventional solutions to problems encountered in the world. The Outer Worlds places an emphasis on player-choice and features multiple dialogue options as well as a variety of possible outcomes for completing quests.
Death Stranding (PS4) – Nov 8, 2019
Death Stranding is an upcoming action game currently being developed by Kojima Productions, a studio founded by former Metal Gear designer Hideo Kojima after a falling out with Konami. The game takes place in an open-world environment that has been taken over by massive, invisible creatures.
You control Sam Bridges, a delivery man who carries the “stranded remnants of the future,” on a journey to “reunite a shattered world.: Kojima has gone on record saying that he believes Death Stranding will be a genre-defining game, much like Metal Gear was for stealth games.
Pokémon Sword and Shield (Switch) – Nov 15, 2019)
While it may not technically be an open-world, Pokémon Sword & Shield takes place in the UK-inspired Galar region, which is comprised of multiple environments ranging from small rural villages, bustling urban cities, icy mountains, mineral-rich caves, and massive stadiums. Along with the new region comes a new cel-shaded visual style that maintains the 3D-perspective of recent titles, including the ability to rotate the player camera freely.
It seems like developer Game Freak is aiming to bring some key new features to the series without disrupting too much of the core Pokémon experience. For one, the games will feature a new “Wild Area” that stretches between cities and spawns different wild Pokémon depending on the weather and the player’s current location. Additionally, a new kind of Pokémon transformation called “Dynamaxing” will cause Pokémon to become massive in size and boost their attacks for three turns.
Biomutant (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – TBA, 2019
Biomutant is an action RPG set in a post-apocalyptic world where you play as a customizable raccoon-like creature capable of wielding a variety of weapons. Your goal is to save the Tree of Life, the source for all living creations, which has become polluted and is under constant attack from enemy creatures.
Along the way, you’ll encounter an array of mutations and bio-mechanical body parts such as robotic legs, wings, and claws which can provide an edge in battle and help you reach new areas. How you choose to design your character factors into gameplay, with gender, body shape, fur thickness, and fangs all affecting stats.
Atomic Heart (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – TBA, 2019
Atomic Heart is a first-person shooter produced and self-published by Russian developer Mundfish. The game takes place in an alternate reality where the Soviet Union’s research has led to a technical revolution. You assume control of a Soviet KGB officer who’s been tasked with infiltrating a secret facility that’s gone radio silent.
The game features an expansive open-world that consists of several regions with different biomes and multi-layered structures to explore. Combat is primarily focused on melee weapons, with firearms and ammo encounters being very limited.
Cyberpunk 2077 (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Apr 16, 2020
Cyberpunk 2077 is a first-person action RPG developed and published by CD Projekt, popularized by The Witcher series. The game is an adaptation of the 1988 tabletop game Cyberpunk 2020, set fifty-seven years later in a dystopian future where players will create a customizable character named V before exploring the six distinct regions that combine to make Night City.
As V, you’ll be able to develop a playstyle centered around one of the game’s three classes: NetRunner, Techie, and Solo. Additionally, V has an arsenal of ranged and close combat weapons at their disposal which can be modified and upgraded.
Dying Light 2 (PS4, Xbox One, PC) – Spring, 2020
Dying Light 2 is a first-person action RPG developed and self-published by Techland, best known for their work on Dead Island, which also featured zombies. The sequel takes place after the events of the first game and has you playing as a new protagonist, Aiden Caldwell, an infected survivor whose extraordinary dexterity and combat abilities prove useful for gaining allies and influencing the world around him.
Gameplay will be fairly similar to the original and has players scavenging for weapons and supplies while traversing the world through fluid, parkour-based movement. For the sequel, Techland is emphasizing a player-driven experience where decisions impact both the story and the physical in-game world.
Maneater (PC) – TBA
Maneater is an action-RPG from Killing Floor developer Tripwire Interactive in which players become one of the most powerful apex predators, the shark. Equipped with deadly instincts and an even deadlier bite, you’ll begin to explore an underwater open-world filled with an endless number of threats and rewards.
You start off small as a young shark pup, eventually growing in size and evolving to adapt to multiple environments, making you a worthy adversary for other predators. The game has been toted as “GTA with sharks,” which is a phrase we’d like to hear more often.
Ghost of Tsushima (PS4) – TBA
Ghost of Tsushima is a new action-stealth game currently being developed by Sucker Punch Studios, best known for the Infamous series. In it, you play as Jin Sakai, the last samurai alive on Tsushima Island during the first Mongol invasion of Japan.
The game will reportedly feature an extremely large open-world that can be explored freely without any waypoints or form of guidance. The player will use a katana as their primary weapon, with access to other useful tools like a grappling hook that can be used to climb ledges and a horse for traveling long-distances.
Whether its PC or console, AAA or Indie, New-York born and raised Justin has a natural curiosity to seek out hidden gems and share them with other gamers. He also maintains his own YouTube channel in addition to writing and managing the social media profiles for GamingScan.