Nowadays, the last three or four months of the year are usually packed with quality game releases, and this year looks like it's going to be no different. The problem is that it can be difficult to know where to spend your hard-earned cash. Let's take a look at 10 of the best games set to arrive before the year is done.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
UPGRADE TO NEW ATLAS PLUS
More than 1,500 New Atlas Plus subscribers directly support our journalism, and get access to our premium ad-free site and email newsletter. Join them for just US$19 a year.UPGRADE
If you've had a chance to play through last year's brief but thrilling Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, then you'll have some sense of what the full game will offer. Over-the-top tactical espionage is the name of the game here, with third person stealth, gadgets, guns and a large world to sink your teeth into.
The series' trademark dark themes and peppering of humor look to be present here, and there's also a base-building mechanic included that looks a lot of fun.
Release: September 1 (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
Super Mario Maker
The only Nintendo title to make this list, Super Mario Maker is set to offer players something a little different. The idea is to allow players to create their own side scrolling Mario courses, with more and more items and tools unlocking the more you play the game. Create a course you think is great and you can share it for other players to download, play and rate. This is a game that could keep giving and giving, with a seemingly unending supply of community driven content.
If you're not in the mood to search through and find a highly rated course, you can get the game to pick a set of levels for you, tasking you to make it through with a set number of lives. There's also amiibo support included, allowing the player to switch out Mario for other Nintendo characters.
Release: September 11 (Wii U)
Back in 2013, Forza 5 was a launch title for the Xbox One, and it provided a visually stunning track racing experience with on-point controls and an innovative Drivatar system that mimicked other players' driving style for computer controlled opponents, making it feel more like you were racing real people.
There were, however, a few limitations to that game. Namely, far too few tracks and no weather effects. The subsequent Forza Horizon 2 went some way to remedying this, but the Horizon series offers open world racing rather than track events, so it failed to provide purists with their fix.
Forza 6 has more cars, more tracks, weather effects and night racing. What more could you ask for?
Release: September 15 (Xbox One)
Destiny: The Taken King
The original Destiny release may not have been the revolutionary game that many thought it would be, but the co-op-centric online shooter has proved itself over the last year, keeping players entertained with two expansions that added chunks of narrative and new team-based missions.
If you pick up The Taken King (it's currently being sold as the "Legendary Edition") then you'll also get access to the original game, and both DLC packs, making it a great place to jump in if you've been waiting to play the game.
For existing players, there's an all-new campaign to dig into, as well as additional player abilities, an increased level cap, more Strikes and Raids, and new armor and weapons.
Release: September 15 (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3)
Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
From GTA V to the soon to be released Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, we've seen some key older games remastered for the Xbox One and PS4, but Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection could be the biggest of the bunch.
Following in the footsteps of Halo: The Master Chief Collection on Xbox One, developer Naughty Dog's upcoming anthology is set to bring all three of the PS3-based Uncharted games to the PS4 (the PS Vita offshoot Uncharted: Golden Abyss isn't included).
We've only seen a glimpse of gameplay here, but based on the 2013 remaster of The Last of Us – and given how well these titles have held up in their PS3 form – this is sure to be the best way to pass the time while we wait for Uncharted 4: A Thief's End.
Release: October 9 (PS4)
Halo 5: Guardians
While last year's Halo: The Master Chief Collection was a blast, it's been almost three years since the release of a truly new Halo title. This year's game looks set to stay true to the roots of the series, while throwing in a few curve balls, such as scopes for all weapons (Halo games are traditionally a fire-from-the-hip experience) and four player co-op.
In order to hit that magic 1080p 60fps benchmark, there won't be any split-screen in Guardians, but that might well be a small price to pay for the smoothest, best looking, and (hopefully) best playing Halo game yet. We'll only have to wait a couple more months to find out if the game continues the quality and momentum of the franchise.
Release: October 27 (Xbox One)
Pretty much unanimously applauded during its lengthy E3 reveal, Fallout 4 is set to take us back to Bethesda's retro post-apocalyptic world in style. Set in Boston, the game holds onto the bleak aesthetic of the last entry, but brings deep weapon and armor customization, the ability to build and link together bases, and much more.
There's also a canine companion in the game, but rest assured – the developer put fans' fears to bed, confirming that your furry companion can't die. I mean, who doesn't like immortal dogs?
Release: November 10 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Rise of the Tomb Raider
We were a little surprised at just how great 2013's Tomb Raider reboot was, and it looks like the sequel will continue the momentum of the series.
The gameplay of the first game had a lot in common with the PS4 exclusive Uncharted franchise, and that might be why Microsoft negotiated with the studio to make the game a timed exclusive for Xbox. It'll hit PS4 and PC in late 2016, but you'll need an Xbox One or Xbox 360 to play it this year.
Release: November 10 (Xbox One, Xbox 360)
Star Wars: Battlefront
Built by DICE, you'd be forgiven for thinking that the Battlefront reboot will be simply "Battlefield in space." While that's perhaps not entirely inaccurate, the developer has gone to great lengths to make the game feel authentic, with careful digital replicas of movie props, and huge battles on iconic planets like Tatooine, Endor and Hoth.
You can also swap between third person and first person views, and conflicts support up to 40 players, complete with classic vehicles like AT-AT Walkers and speeder bikes.
It's also timed to roughly coincide with the launch of Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens, so it'll be riding a big wave of hype. All indications suggest that it'll live up to the pretty lofty expectations of fans.
Release: November 17 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Seige
Originally scheduled to launch in October, Rainbow Six: Siege has now been pushed back to a December release, but that hasn't stopped us being excited for the game.
The gameplay focuses on small scale team-based conflicts where communication and tactics are key. One team fortifies a location, and the other swoops in to try and take them out. It's high stakes first person shooting, with destructible environments and great visuals.
Release: December 1 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)View gallery - 11 images