2017 is already shaping up to be a great year for all things Xbox. The upgraded, 4K-spouting Xbox One X is coming! All flavours of existing Xbox One are selling fast. Long dormant series like Phantom Dust are finally re-emerging. Xbox Game Pass is a Netflix style subscription service that lets you download numerous Xbox One games without having to purchase them outright, and it's coming soon. Most importantly, though, we've got some amazing games coming up: Destiny 2, Call of Duty: World War 2, and Star Wars Battlefront 2 to name a few. Our list of the best upcoming Xbox One games is in chronological order, moving deeper into the year (and years) as we go. We'll be updating this article regularly, but the current selection is thus...
Read more: The 25 best Xbox One games to play right now
Release date: July 14, 2017
Genre: Stealth, puzzle
What is it? You're cleaning up after bad, bad men.
What to look out for: What if Hotline Miami weren't an unhinged gore fest nestled snug in the garish neon and synth of the 1980s? What if it was a more patient but equally grisly '70s puzzle game about a dude in aviators cleaning up murder scenes? That's Serial Cleaner in a nutshell. On entering nasty scenes of foul play at camp grounds of newspaper bullpens, you have to assess how many bodies need to be disposed of, what murder weapons need to disappear and how much blood needs to be vacuumed up. Then you've got to take care of it without being caught by patrolling cops. The tricky part comes when you fail and the bodies are randomly placed in new spots on the map.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm
Release date: August 31, 2017
Genre: Narrative adventure
What is it? The prequel to the much-loved Life is Strange from DontNod, this time telling the story of Chloe Price and her best buddy Rachel Amber.
What to look out for: The first game was a sensitive portrayal of the growing bond between Chloe and Max as they tried to find out what happened to the missing Rachel Amber. We'll be seeing more of that nuanced character development in Before the Storm, with plenty of heartstrings being tugged as we get to see what happened to Chloe after she fell out with Max all those years ago. Some of the people Chloe ends up gravitating towards don't look like an especially good influence, so it looks like there might be plenty of dubious choices thrown your way as you step into the teen's shoes. You won't be left with purely ordinary dialogue choices, though, as you'll be able to use a feature special to Chloe called 'Backtalk', where her sharp tongue can be used to either provoke someone or to make them give her what she wants. Rachel herself popped up in the trailer too, implying some light will be shed on her past too - I'm sure that won't bring a tear to our eye. No, not at all.
Agents of Mayhem
Release date: August, 2017
Genre: Open world action-adventure
What is it? From the team behind Saints Row, this incredibly over the top team shooter is set in the same universe as the manic open-world series.
What to look out for: Saints Row is absolutely, thigh-slappingly ridiculous. It’s also a brilliant, chaotic mess, and by the looks of it Agents of Mayhem is diligently following in its footsteps. As evil robots zoom towards you, you can let your reckless side run wild and switch seamlessly between the three members in your team, with a 12-character line-up to choose from. Each have their own weapons and skills, and with such choice you’re sure to feel dizzy with possibility. Planning ahead is thrown out of the window as you can plummet head first into a group of enemies as one character before jumping quickly out as another. It looks like… well, mayhem.
Release date: September 8, 2017
Genre: Massively multiplayer shooter RPG.
What is it? The sequel to Bungie's time-devouring science fiction, MMO / shooter hybrid.
What to look out for: Forget your gear, Guardian. Destiny 2 is coming and it's a whole new world. As of this writing, we only know a little bit about the follow up to Bungie's massive online shooter RPG, but what we do know is enormously exciting. This isn't the type of expansion typically seen with MMOs like World of Warcraft or even action RPGs like Diablo, both of which inspired more than a little bit of Destiny's loot and lore structure. Bungie is scrapping the entire world of Destiny, including all the loot you've gathered since 2014, and starting over fresh. (You can keep your character design but that's it.) Based on early trailers, we also know that Destiny 2 will keep telling a grand, sweeping story but arguably with more of an obvious sense of humor.
Dishonored: Death of the Outsider
Release date: September 15, 2017
Genre: Stealth / Action-RPG / Immersive sim
What is it? A return to the gritty yet somehow effortlessly stylish world of Dishonored, this time with Billie Lurk as the main character.
What to look out for: Billie and her mentor Daud have buried the hatchet, by the looks of it. And it's only taken the promise of killing the godlike Outsider to do it. Yes, you read that right: the duo are set on annihilating the being that gave Emily and Corvo their powers, supposedly to end the 'chaos' that's ruling their world. No say on whether you'll be able to play as Daud, but Billie has a killer (literally) mechanical arm which she used in the trailer to slash any poor blokes who got in her way. It's unknown at the moment whether Corvo or Emily will make a cameo, but judging by his track record we're betting that The Outsider is going to be watching Lurk's exploits with relish.
Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite
Release date: September 19, 2017
What is it? The latest incarnation of the fighting game, Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite gives you the chance to pit characters from each franchise against each other and see which one comes out top.
What to look out for: At last, at long last, we’re getting Mega Man X in a Marvel vs Capcom game. As well as stalwarts like Ryu, the trailer revealed that we’ll also be seeing Captain Marvel and Iron Man showing off their moves, and hopefully there’ll be some new additions too. The Infinity Gems are going to spice up the combat, with the trailer showing that the stones add some nifty abilities. Captain Marvel’s use of the Time stone means she can dodge attacks, and the Power stone makes Ryu’s fists a flurry of destruction, but we’ll just have to wait and see what the remaining gems do.
Release date: September 29, 2017
What is it? A combat/platformer hybrid with seriously charming animation that comes across as part Steamboat Willie, part Contra.
What to look out for: It's not fair to judge a book by its cover - but books kind of want you to. Same goes for Cuphead. Studio MDHR wants you to notice its homage to 1930s animations the second you look at its retro combat-platformer. You will. Nothing else has ever looked like Cuphead, meaning we want to see all of it.
Forza Motorsport 7
Release date: October 3, 2017
What is it? The flagship for the Xbox One X, this game is showing just how stunning cars can look when they're racing around Forza's dynamic environments.
What to look out for: Taking full advantage of the Xbox One X's 4K capability, it's taking racing to the most realistic level so far. Putting you on dynamically-changing tracks that will sometimes throw rain at your tires, it's an extravaganza for the eyes. As if "living weather" and a solid 60fps wasn't enough, there's about 700 cars for you to choose from. Try fitting all of them into your garage! Turn 10, the team behind this super-powered racing game, reckons it's the most "technical and comprehensive racing game ever made", complete with "rattling and vibrating car parts". Which pretty much means any racing enthusiast needs to check it out.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War
Release date: October 10, 2017
Genre: Open world action-RPG.
What is it? The sequel to Monolith Productions' remarkable 2014 Lord of the Rings spin-off.
What to look out for: Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor ended on a cliffhanger of grand fan-fiction proportions. Talion (the much abused ranger) and his spirit friend/tormenter/guide Celembrimbor (crafter of the Rings of Power) had ravaged the Dark Lord Sauron's army and taken control of a chunk of the land one shan't simply walk into. They'd gotten revenge on the killer of Talion's family but ran into a problem: since Sauron's a magic ghost overlord, they can't exactly kill him. So they set out to build their own new ring of power to take him out. That's where Shadow of Mordor picks up, with Talion and Celebrimbor wielding their own ring to rule them all, commanding their army of orcs and uruks to try and take down Sauron once and for all. They won't - we've seen the movies after all - but they will engage in massive army-on-army battles in greatly expanded Nemesis system.
The Evil Within 2
Release date: October 13, 2017
What is it? Sequel to the mind-bending, disturbed The Evil Within, this time its looking to centre around Sebastian's five-year-old daughter Lily.
What to look out for: Our hardened detective from the first game has taken another trip into the white goo of the STEM system and is being haunted by similarly ghastly memories. Featuring a serial killer who freezes his victims by snapping them with an old-timey camera and some ominously-circling white crows, fire is also a strong theme that's sure to give us plenty of horrifying burned zombies stumbling our way. A grim priest looks to be the arch-villain of the piece, as suggested by the fact that he caused a wave of fiery devastation to head towards Lily. Lovely.