Games are capable of delivering many experiences. And sometimes you just want to beat up a group of bad guys or gun down hordes of enemy aliens. Action games are the bread and butter of the games space, with many titles offering exactly the kind of escapism you crave.
With new action game releases occurring all the time, we felt it best to list the best action games to play right now. Here’s what you should be playing.
Easily standing out as one of 2021’s best games, Deathloop’s clockwork systems and focus on non-linear narrative easily made it a GameByte favourite, becoming our first ever 10 review score on the site. You play as Colt, a mercenary stuck in a time loop who must kill eight targets in order to break the loop and escape. How you approach this puzzle and put all the pieces together is down to you, with many different events happening out-of-sequence based on your actions. If you liked Dishonored, you’ll love this!
Throughout the 2010s we were all a little upset about the lack of good Halo games hitting our Xboxes, but 343 managed to comeback with a banger of a new title in 2021. Halo Infinite takes the series to the open world, offering you the chance to explore the ringworld Halo Zeta and complete missions and tasks at your own leisure. Despite this change in pace, it’s still very much a Halo game first and foremost, with all the iconic weapons, abilities and expectations you’d find in the series. Along with a few surprises.
CALL OF DUTY VANGUARD
Call of Duty is a bit of a guilty pleasure for some. The games don’t really innovate year-on-year, neither do they offer a lot that a competitor can do better. However, Call of Duty exists as the perfect action shooter to jump in and out of when you have a spare 20 minutes. Meanwhile, the latest iteration Call of Duty Vanguard takes the series back to its WWII roots, offering a different theme to other shooters currently on the market which seem to be skewing in a more sci-fi and futuristic angle at the moment.
If wacky sci-fi is your thing, Control might be right up your alley. I’d say it’s a mix of The X-Files, David Lynch and those SCP creepypastas you read online from time to time. As Jesse Faden, the new director of the FBC, you’ve got to control a containment breach within the bureau which has released deadly enemies known as the Hiss. You use a gun known as the Service Weapon to dispatch foes, but can also utilise supernatural abilities like telekinesis and levitation to get around the building. Control uses a metroidvania format to keep you returning to earlier areas, but with new powers that let you see more of the facility.
SEKIRO SHADOWS DIE TWICE
Sekiro is a game that requires pixel-perfect timing and a lot of patience. As the titular Wolf, you navigate a hostile and deadly world inspired by Feudal Japan as you attempt to rescue the Divine Heir from enemy forces. The game’s combat is very much inspired by the arts of katana swordplay and old samurai films. It replicates the “clashing of swords” feel of those stories, while also delivering it for an action experience that feels intense, methodical, yet rewarding. If you’re a fan of Dark Souls, you may enjoy Sekiro due to it being from the same developer. It’s much more difficult, though.
The recent Spider-Man games have been praised for their dedication to making you feel exactly like the friendly neighborhood masked dude as he soars through the streets of New York. But the games’ action combat is also a lot of fun for those who desire a more relaxed experience compared to the other titles on this list. Spider-Man is a power fantasy in being a crime-fighting superhero, where you can beat up gangs of bad guys with the finesse and fluidity exactly as you would have imagined it from the panels of the comic books.
What are the best action games you would recommend? Let us know on our social channels.
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Featured Image Credit: FromSoftware