This year is already shaping up to be an exciting one for new shooter games. Though shooters are based primarily on one mechanic—shooting (surprise, surprise)—there is endless creativity to be found in the genre as developers play with different twists on that mechanic. New shooter games explore the boundaries of what defines a shooter, making 2016 a great year for fans of the genre.
Superhot’s Time Manipulation Turns Shooter Mechanics into a Game of Strategy
Superhot is almost like a first-person shooter had a wild, passionate affair with a turn-based strategy game, and their child became a genius combination of both. That’s not to say it’s some kind of strange first-person Civilization game; in Superhot, time only moves forward as the player moves, meaning that you can dodge bullets and create seamless action sequences of the kind only seen in movies.
Shooter games are known for using twitch reflexes, and often following an alternating pattern of burst shooting and hiding in cover. In Superhot, you’re using strategy and creativity over twitch reflexes, stopping to analyze the situation and progressing by increments. That doesn’t mean it has a slow pace, though. While the game only progresses when you move, one bullet can kill you—to succeed, you need to keep an eye on everything happening around you.
While each level may take several minutes to complete without mistakes, Superhot shows you the real-time version of each mission once you’ve completed it. The result is a fight scene straight out of a stylized action film like Wanted or The Matrix—because you have time to dodge bullets and execute crazy actions like throwing your katana at an enemy, each movement looks seamless—the fights look like they’re choreographed by experts.
Superhot is unique among new shooter games, letting us experience a different view of combat in the genre. It’s the perfect entry point for people who may not normally play shooters, as well as an excellent twist on the genre for longtime fans.
Shoot from the Shadows in the Stealthy Alekhine’s Gun
Under the larger umbrella of shooter games is the stealth subgenre. Not all stealth games count as shooters, but Alekhine’s Gun pays close attention to balancing both its tense stealth sections and its combat, ensuring that fans of both will have something to enjoy in its gripping narrative.
In stealth games, emphasis is usually placed on creating an atmosphere of suspicion. Gameplay is typically a bit slower than in most shooter games, because you’re trying to avoid combat, and only engage when necessary. The protagonist of Alekhine’s Gun, a KGB agent working alongside the CIA, boasts a wealth of stealth skills as well as the techniques of an assassin, making him perfectly capable of engaging in combat and gunplay as well as subversion.
The exciting thing about the game is that both aspects can carry equal weight. If you like straightforward combat, you can play the game that way—Alekhine can collect an arsenal of exciting weaponry ranging from spy tools like garrotes and chloroform to machine guns and shotguns. The guns and gameplay are there for shooter fans, but because it’s wrapped up in intriguing stealth-based mechanics and narrative, you can get an entirely different experience. There’s enough of both genres to satisfy any gamer, securing Alekhine’s Gun as one of the best new shooter games of 2016.
Team-Based Fun Takes Center Stage in Overwatch
If any company knows how to make addictive, engaging online games, it’s Blizzard. Overwatch, the company’s new IP, promises exciting team-based shooter combat in a futuristic setting, with a variety of characters to choose from. With all the fun of a team shooter like Team Fortress and an even bigger cast, there’s something for every kind of shooter fan in Overwatch.
Team-based shooters have lagged behind competitive multiplayer games in popularity, but Overwatch aims to change that. The game has the resources and imagination to draw in fans new and old, appealing not just to the core demographic, but to anybody who likes a good time. What really stands out about Overwatch are the characters—these aren’t your typical grizzled, battle-hardened soldiers. You have former pro gamers piloting mechs, a DJ who fights with sound, and a super-intelligent gorilla with extreme electrical attacks, to name just a few.
The core shooter mechanics are there, but Overwatch infuses them with a sense of fun and experimentation to set itself apart from similar games. Slated for release in May 2016, Overwatch looks to be a thrilling new team shooter that mixes the excitement of shooters with a generous helping of Blizzard’s trademark addictive gameplay and array of character choices.
Excitement and Refreshing Mechanics for 2016’s Shooters
Shooters are a genre that leaves a lot of room for experimentation; as these three games show, 2016 is shaping up to be an excellent year for it. Developers are playing with conventions and mechanics, taking a core gaming genre in exciting new directions. Whether you’re a fan of hardcore shooter action, a stealth twist, or the fun of competitive and cooperative gameplay, you’ll find something to love in this year’s new shooter games.
Available now, Alekhine’s Gun mixes the fun of gunplay and shooters with the unique tension of the stealth genre. Order your copy today!