Keeping track of all the latest video games coming out is an increasingly complex task. How about multiple PC store fronts, Xbox One, PS4, Switch, mobile and more to keep track of, but don’t worry, I’m here to help. Every month I run down the games you need to keep an eye on, from the big triple-A headliners to the exciting indies you might otherwise overlook.
As is usually the case, 2021 begins a somewhat slow start, although there are still some valuable titles coming to test your nerves and reflexes. These include the trilogy-ending Hitman 3 and Xbox Series X console-exclusive horror game The Medium. On the indie front, you can look forward to the new ninja game from Shovel Knight publisher Yacht Club Games, Cyber Shadow, the promising hack ‘n’ slash Gods Will Fall, and more.
Note: Although I may have played demos or gained early access to some of the games recommended in this article, in most cases I only choose games that look promising and cannot guarantee the end product. Wait for reviews before you buy!
That said, here are the games you should look for in January …
Hitman 3 (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X / S, PS4, PS5 & Stadiums, Jan 20)
Look at your neck, because Agent 47 is back for another round of murder and chaos. Hitman 3 largely sticks to the drawing laid down by the last couple of games in the series, offering half a dozen new murder playgrounds, including Dubai, Chongqing, China and Dartmoor, England. The biggest change this time is in the series tone – Hitman 3 cuts back on stupidity in favor of a more serious story and strict visual style. The game will also provide a nice workout for the next generation platforms, as it offers 4K / 60fps games on both PS5 and Xbox Series X. Pre-order the game here.
Fortress: Warlords (PC, January 26)
The Stronghold franchise has had its ups and downs, but Stronghold: Warlords seems to be a solid form. As in previous games in the series, Stronghold: Warlords is a real-time strategy game where players must build their kingdoms and fortify against enemy attacks, but this time you can also recruit and build unique warlords who will help you on the battlefield. It’s been over six years since the last completely original Stronghold game, but hopefully the developer Firefly Studios has used the time well. Here is the Steam page for Stronghold: Warlords.
The Medium (PC and Xbox Series X, January 28)
Is the first really great Xbox Series X / S exclusive almost upon us? The Medium promises to be the most ambitious game to date from the horror masters of the Bloober Team (Observer, Layers of Fear), with a unique dual world mechanic where players navigate the “real world” and a dark spirit world at the same time. Add some heavy Silent Hill vibes to the mix and you have a game many survival horror fans would kill for. Pre-order the game here.
Cyber Shadow (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 26)
Published by Shovel-Knight-creators Yacht Club Games, Cyber Shadow is another promising 8-bit throwback. In the case of Cyber Shadow, the inspiration is Ninja Gaiden rather than Mega Man, with the game delivering all the jumps and slashings you can hope for. Fortunately, a few modern conveniences and advanced game design should make the game a little less frustrating than the NES classics. Here is the Steam page for Cyber Shadow.
Gods Will Fall (PC, Xbox One, PS5, Switch & Stadiums, January 29)
Jonesing for a new action RPG to play while we all wait to find out what Diablo IV will be like? Gods Will Fall may just be the game for you. Gods Will Fall is inspired by Celtic myth and gives players a team of eight random warriors on a mission to take down 10 cruel deities. The game also offers a certain degree of player choice, and since this is 2020, some roguelike elements. Yes, there are many games like this out there, but hopefully Gods Will Fall has hacked out a unique niche for itself. Here is the Steam page for Gods Will Fall.
Oil (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 28)
Olija is a new retro platform with a simple hook … literally. See, in Olija, your chosen weapon is the Harpoon of Legend, which can be used to spearhead your enemies, but also fight quickly around levels, allowing for some unique acrobatics and challenges. The game also promises an interesting story filled with unique and mysterious characters … and the ability to make different hats. Sure, why not? Here is the Steam page for Olija.
Full list of games worth seeing in January:
- Yaga (PC, Xbox One, PS4, Switch & Apple Arcade, January 12)
- Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World – Complete Edition (PC, Xbox One, PS4, Switch & Stadia, Jan 14)
- Writhe (Switch, January 15)
- Hitman 3 (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X / S, PS4, PS5 & Stadiums, Jan 20)
- Teratopia (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 20)
- Orange Cast (PC, January 21)
- Atelier Ryza 2: Lost Legends & the Secret Fairy (PC, PS4, PS5 & Switch, January 26)
- Cyber Shadow (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 26)
- Fortress: Warlords (PC, January 26)
- Encodya (PC, January 26)
- The Medium (PC and Xbox Series X, January 28)
- Oil (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 28)
- Sword of the Necromancer (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, January 28)
- Gods Will Fall (PC, Xbox One, PS5, Switch & Stadiums, January 29)
- Re: Zero – Starting Life in Another World: The Prophecy of the Throne (PC, PS4 & Switch, January 29)
And these are the games you should keep an eye on for the coming month. What games are you planning to pick up in January? Did I miss something you’re looking forward to?