Here are the best games of 2017 (so far)

2016 is said and done from a gaming perspective, but don’t fret –  there are enough great titles coming out in 2017 to put your New Year’s resolution of getting outside more or spending less on games in some serious jeopardy.

That being said, we've gone through and compiled the list of the best games coming next year as well as collected the best ones that have already come out (Gravity Rush 2 anyone?). 

The reason for this list is two-fold: First and foremost we want to give you a look ahead at the new year of gorgeous games – powered in large part by powerful hardware like the PS4 Pro and Xbox One S. Then, once we start collecting more games that deserve to be called "the best of 2017" we'll group them together by month for your perusing pleasure. Combined, this list should give you a pretty complete overview of where you should spend your free-time next year.  

Oh, and in case you missed it, and are interested the best gaming moments of last year, be sure to check out our 2016 Game of the Year Awards. 

Looking for the best of all-time lists? We have ones for the best Xbox One games, the best PS4 games, the best Nintendo 3DS games, the best PC games, the best indie games, the best iPhone games and the best Android games.

OK, we've spent enough living in the past. Our first eagerly-anticipated release is less than a month away, so let's not waste any more time.

Resident Evil 7

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

The latest entry in Capcom’s survival horror series is a wild departure from its past few predecessors, but in the end that only made it better. Foregoing the guns-blazing action mentality that had come to define the series for better or worse in the past few years, Resident Evil VII came at us with a much more subdued scare tactic. A first-person horror adventure trapped in a musty, rotted house with a family of musty, rotted maniacs? If that doesn't scream nostalgia, I'm not sure what does. Resident Evil 7 was a great return to form for the series and one that's well worth your time.

Read our full Resident Evil 7 review

Gravity Rush 2

What system(s) is it on? PS4

Gravity Rush 2 was a huge sleeper hit this month. The original – while definitely unique in its premise and art style – didn't reach critical acclaim, but that's a whole different story here. New gravity powers and styles make combat feel fresh and the expanded relationships give us something more to latch onto. There are still a few control problems here, as you might obviously expect from a game that involves manipulating gravity, but overall its charm and beauty far outweigh any lingering issues we might've had. 

Yakuza 0

What system(s) is it on? PS4

Yakuza 0 is a game you didn't know you wanted from a series you might've only heard but it's downright amazing. Imagine Grand Theft Auto minus the ludicrous amount of ammunitions and adding in tons of hysterical side quests.

To that end, Yakuza 0 is a deadly serious game about some really adult material that never takes itself too seriously. You'll have just as much fun pummeling people for cash as you will playing any number of the wacky and wonderful mini games you can find throughout the massive game world. Gravity Rush 2 was this month's sleeper pick, but Yakuza 0 is this month's somehow even sleepier sleeper pick. 

When's it come out? February 21, 2017 

What system(s) is it on? Xbox One, PC

Past Halo spin-offs haven't carried the same clout titles from the main storyline have. That's because those shooters are cinematic affairs, grounded by one truly epic hero and his also excellent-when-she's-not-malfunctioning AI. The first Halo Wars was a fantastic game, but it lacked the same ground-breaking storytelling that games in the main series had. But that's a thing of the past. 

Halo Wars 2 looks like it will be the first real-time strategy video game to tell a really rich backstory in the Halo universe. But instead of being of being grounded by a hero, however, it's grounded by a villain: Atriox, a Brute who's been so ruthless and awful even the Covenant don't want anything to do with him. It's up to you to command what's left of your crew to fight off Atriox, a master strategist armed to the ape-like teeth with firepower of his own. 

When's it come out? February 28, 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4

The newest project from Killzone series developer Guerrilla Games, Horizon Zero Dawn’s concept is far more unique and engrossing than the forgettable mashup of words that make up its title. (Seriously, we challenge you to leave us a more generic-sounding title in the comments below.) Thankfully, Horizon's premise is far more original. An action adventure set in a world overrun with robotic fauna, Horizon casts you as a human hunter named Aloy who uses a mix of stealth, ranged combat, and a little improvisation to fell inorganic beasts and survive in the mecha-wilderness. Not just a unique take on an open world, Horizon is also crazy pretty. Guerrilla is really pushing what the PS4’s hardware can do from a graphical level, which only makes us all the more excited to play it when it’s expected to hit stores starting late February. 

When's it come out? March 21, 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Given how the original Mass Effect trilogy wrapped up the epic tale of Commander Shepard’s battle for all sentient life with a nice lil’ bow, the next installment in BioWare’s sci-fi series has us intrigued. With essentially a blank slate to tell a new story, Andromeda is set far in the future, after the events of Mass Effects 1 through 3. In an expansive, open-world environment, players are tasked with exploring new planets with the aid of your own ship, the Tempest, and a customizable six-wheeled space whip called the Nomad. Of course, things don't always go according to plan in the more roguish parts of the galaxy, so you'll also be bringing your allies, laser weaponry, biotic powers, and other abilities both familiar and new to Mass Effect fans along for the ride.

Given that it’s our first real dip back into the ME universe following the legacy of Commander Shepard, we’re excited to dust off our old N7 armor and see where BioWare takes its world(s) next with Mass Effect: Andromeda. 

When's it come out? May 16, 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Marvel ain’t the only superhero property throwing down this coming year. NetherRealm Studios’ 2013 brawler Injustice: Gods Among Us is getting a sequel in 2017, returning to the DC Comics universe to knock some serious heads. With classic standbys like Batman, The Flash, and Wonder Woman going toe-to-toe with new additions like Gorilla Grodd and Blue Beetle, Injustice 2 is looking to be a from-the-pages slugfest both fighting game fans and comic aficionados alike can really enjoy. To that end, Injustice 2’s tagline of “Every Battle Defines You” isn’t just a dramatic piece of marketing text. Each time you step into the ring with one of the DC’s finest, that character walks away with new loot that enhances their skills, traits, or overall ability until you have a suped-up Superman tuned exactly to your tastes. 

When's it come out? Fall 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One

One of the few sequels that can get us excited over an announcement of an announcement, Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption 2 takes us back to the untamed, open-world expanses of the Wild West. The team over at Rockstar was kind enough to give the internet a passing glimpse of what to expect from their next stint in the saddle, showing off gorgeous stretches of untamed prairie, pristine forests, not-so-pristine settlements, and of course – a posse of armed men on horseback seemingly up to no good. 

Rockstar has promised little of the next Red Dead installment, save for what the company calls “the foundation for a brand new online multiplayer experience,” leaving us desperate for details and counting down what seem like endless days before RDR2’s planned Fall 2017 release.

When's it come out? Summer 2017

What system(s) is it on? Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo Switch

Look, if you’re doing a list of anticipated games for a year that a new Legend of Zelda game is expected to come out, you're almost definitely required by law to add it to that list. The next big step for the storied Nintendo franchise, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild takes the adventuring shenanigans of Link and blows it up onto a sprawling open world where players can explore at their leisure and daring. Even the series’ trademark dungeons can be played in whatever order the player wants, making Breath of the Wild a game that is just as much about maintaining the series' status quo as it is breaking it. 

While previous entries in the Legend of Zelda series like Ocarina of Time and Wind Waker have played with the concept of a large explorable map, Breath of the Wild is taking things to ambitious new heights. 

When's it come out? 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy is the game we've waited over 20 years to play – it's the not-quite-remastered remake of the game many of us loved growing up. It wasn't something we ever thought would happen considering that the game's original development studio, Naughty Dog, is deep in development of The Last of Us Part 2 and Uncharted 4 DLC, so we're thankful another developer, Vicarious Visions, was there to pick up the slack. Call us suckers for PlayStation-era nostalgia (guilty as charged) but with a year like 2016 in the recent past, it'll be nice to have something to bring us back to the good ol' days.

When's it come out? 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, Nintendo Switch, PC

Sometimes it takes a genre coming back with a vengeance to remind you just how long it's been since you've seen one of its kind. That was the overwhelming feeling playing Yooka-Laylee, the Kickstarted spiritual successor to Banjo-Kazooie from a group of ex-Rare developers, left us with. 

The recent absence of the cartoon platformer is what initially makes Yooka-Laylee such a novel game. You play as Yooka, and Laylee sits on your shoulders, allowing you to perform special moves and providing a second character to bounce witty dialogue off. It's a formula we haven't seen in some time, but it's one we're all the more excited to come back to all these years later.

When's it come out? 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

From the ashes of the cancelled-before-its-time Prey 2, Arkane Studio’s revival of the Prey franchise is, well, some interesting branding. With little direct resemblance to the original Prey to be a reboot, nor anything really to do with its scrapped sequel, the upcoming Prey is more of a re-imagining of the series’s original concept – though we question what constitutes a series when only one entry ever saw the light of day, but we digress. What now stands in Prey 2’s place is something wild, intriguing, and plenty ambitious enough to be whatever it wants to call itself. 

Aboard a research vessel floating in space to study a mysterious alien life form, players will have to use their wits and resources to survive as a breach puts them – and possibly the entire Earth – in danger. Our impressions so far give us a “sci-fi BioShock” vibe (yes, we know what System Shock is, but you get what we mean), and given Arkane’s pedigree thus far with the Dishonored series, we’re ready to prey on Prey when it comes out in Q1-Q2 2017. 

When's it come out? 2017

What system(s) is it on? Xbox One, PC

It's hard to say anything bad about Sea of Thieves, a massively multiplayer action adventure game that's being developed by Rare and published by Microsoft. The premise here is, well … OK, there really isn't one. You're a pirate. Your friends are pirates. And everyone in the world is a pirate. It's up to you and your crew of marauders whether you want to be the nice, friendly kind of seafarers who explore just to see the world, or the digital incarnation of Black Beard. Ah the freedom of choice, a pirate's one true and only friend.

When's it come out? 2017

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Say what you will about the show's humor (though we think it's absolutely spectacular), Trey Parker and Matt Stone's first foray into South Park video games, South Park: The Stick of Truth, was actually fantastic. The game combined the hilariously childish and yet somehow poignant comedy from the show with the tropes of our favorite medium. It's with those memories in mind that we can't wait for its sequel, the outrageously named South Park: The Fractured But Whole, to come out sometime in 2017. That being said, both Parker and Stone have been known to delay games until they're ready in the past, meaning we might end up waiting another 12 months until we get our hands on The Fractured But Whole … wait, that just sounds wrong.

When's it come out? 2017 (Possibly?)

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4

We're really excited about Dad of War. Er, no, we mean God of Parenting. Sorry, sorry. God of War: The Parent Trap starring Lindsay Lohan. 

Whatever you want to call it we're excited to see Kratos return to our Sony consoles in the next adventure in what has to be the most unfortunate man of all time's life. Shown briefly at E3 2016 last year, God of War follows Kratos as he travels far from his Greek homeland to the northern most parts of Europe where he encounters monsters from Norse mythology. 

Most of the demo was a fight sequence but it opened and closed with Kratos teaching a young boy, who we assume is Kratos's son. How much of this turns out to be as it appears remains to be seen, however that doesn't make us any less excited to eviscerate our enemies in between lessons about the birds and the bees when God of War on PS4 comes out (we hope) in 2017.

When's it come out? 2017 

What system(s) is it on? PlayStation 4

OK, we're being honest here: We have no idea what to call Uncharted The Lost Legacy. It's definitely a game. Like, definitely. But is it a standalone title? Is it the first DLC pack for Uncharted 4: A Thief's End? While it's probably more likely to be the latter than the former, The Lost Legacy is an insanely interesting spin-off from the main series that will feature two of the series' leading ladies – Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross – as they do a bit of treasure pilfering in the Middle East. 

There are still a bunch of questions we want answered (why did these two team up? What are they doing over there? Where's Drake?), but we're hoping at least some of them will be answered when Naughty Dog reveals more details about the game (DLC?) later this year.

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