‘Halo 5′ and More Big Video Games Launching Next Week

This season is always busy for gamers, because the year is back-loaded with major video game releases. In recent weeks we’ve seen a slew of big-name titles launch, including Guitar Hero Live, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, Yoshi’s Woolly World, and Minecraft: Story Mode. This week continues the trend, with new installments of Halo, WWE 2K, and more.

If you want to plan out your video game purchases, read on for details about the biggest games launching the week of October 26, 2015.

1. Halo 5: Guardians

Platform: Xbox One
Release date: October 27

It’s been three years since the last major installment of the Halo series, and shooter fans are primed for another go. The story this time around catches up with Master Chief after he’s gone AWOL. Missions switch between his adventures and those of Spartan Locke, who’s hot on the hero’s trail.

On the online multiplayer front, you get two main types: arena and warzone. Arena is your basic player-vs.-player setup. In it, two teams of four go head to head in a smattering of standard modes, including Capture the Flag, Slayer, Breakout, and more. Warzone is a more ambitious sort of online experience. Here, two teams of 12 players start on opposite sides of the map. Each tries to conquer a central base while also fighting off Covenant forces. If you like shooters and you have an Xbox One, this is probably the top pick this week.

2. WWE 2K16

Platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3
Release date: October 27

All you wrestling fans will want to take a look at WWE 2K16, the latest in the yearly franchise famous for body slams, pile drivers, and flying elbows. This year’s model limits the number of reversals you’ll be able to pull off each match, so you can’t annoy other players by reversing all of their moves. It also lets you attack other players during their entrances, which might lose you a friend or two, but it should be hilarious.

Also, if you preorder the game, you’ll get a special character: Schwarzenegger himself as the Terminator.

3. Darksiders II: Deathinitive Edition

Platforms: Xbox One and PlayStation 4
Release date: October 27

Darksiders II is an action adventure game about the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. You play as Death this time around (as opposed to War in the original), and you do a lot of the same kinds of things you’d do in a Legend of Zelda game. That means you’ll hack and slash at enemies, solve clever environmental puzzles, and fight enormous bosses.

The game originally launched on last-gen systems in 2012 to mostly positive reviews. This version, with its groan-inducing title, has been polished up and comes packing all of the expansions.

4. Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition

Platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC
Release date: October 27

This role-playing game was funded by a Kickstarter campaign, thanks in large part to fans of old-school RPGs like Ultima VII. What differentiates Divinity: Original Sin from similar modern games like Diablo III is the number of options the game gives you.

You can create any type of character you want, and upgrade him or her in a “classless” way to suit your particular play style. The game’s fantasy world is huge, and exploration is almost always rewarded. Not only that, but the combat system is turn-based and tactical, just like a pen-and-paper RPG. If that sounds like your kind of playground, Divinity is likely to please.

5. Lords of the Fallen: Complete Edition

Platforms: Xbox One and PlayStation 4
Release date: October 27

Lords of the Fallen takes the same basic ideas as Dark Souls (tough monsters and real-time combat), but makes the experience much more approachable. Checkpoints are thoughtfully placed before major battles, and the experience system is more clearly laid out. The game is still no cakewalk, but the idea is that players won’t feel punished for failing. And thanks to multipliers that vanish when you bank your experience points, you’re still rewarded for living dangerously.

The game originally launched last year to average reviews, but this edition contains all of the expansions that came out for it, and only costs $30. Try this game if you’re intrigued by Dark Souls, but put off by its vicious difficulty.

6. Galak-Z: The Dimensional

Platforms: PC
Release date: October 29

Fans of old-school arcade games will want to check out Galak-Z, a game that uses classics like Galaga and Asteroids as a launching-off point to do its own thing. The game has you fly through procedurally-generated caverns, fighting off aliens and beasties of all kinds. Like the games of its inspiration, it’s also tough as nails.

So whether you played these kinds of games growing up or you’re on the lookout for a challenging game to test your skills, Galak-Z: The Dimensional is worth a look.

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