Five Nights At Freddy's 5
Developer: Scott Cawthon
It's somewhat worrying for the Five Nights At Freddy's franchise that, while Warner Bros. is reportedly working on a movie tie-in, it's been some time since developer Scott Cawthon brought anything new to the IP in terms of games. The last couple of releases have arguably been rehashes, re-treading old ground or, even in the case of Five Nights At Freddy's 4, stripping back play to a criminal degree.
However, even critics would have to admit that the Freddy's franchise is unrivalled when it comes to delivering fear at its most fatal on mobile, and we think if Cawthon spent a bit more time on the next game rather than rushing it out to build on current buzz, it could be the most memorable release in the series to date.
We were by no means alone in heaping praise on Alto's Adventure when it hit iOS and Android at the start of 2015, which means it's hardly surprising we'd be after a little bit more llama chasing action come 2016.
Though it would be unwise to move all too far away from the game's intentionally simple take on the endless runner – jumping and performing mid air tricks all handled by simply holding a finger down on the device's screen – we think there's room enough for developer Snowman to have a play around with Alto's parameters and serve up something with a little more meat on its bones.
If not, we'll be forced to simply keep playing the first Alto's Adventure over and over, over and over. Actually, we might just do that anyway.
Lets not beat around the bush: both Sonic Dash and its sequel, the needlessly pun-laden Sonic Dash 2: Sonic Boom
, are pretty awful. As regular readers will be aware, the latter scored just 5/10 when we put it to the test back in October, with our main criticism being that the half-hearted nature of it meant it was “offensive to committed Sonic fans”.
Nevertheless, given the main tool in Sonic's arsenal is speed, a well designed endless runner that takes advantage of this seems like a logical step, and it may actually deliver something SEGA has been craving for years: a hit. If the Japanese publisher can simply drop its obsession with turning Sonic into a 3D experience and, instead, accept that super speedy hedgehogs are meant to exist in two dimension only, it might start getting somewhere.
It's a long long time since we came across a rhythm action game on any platform really caught our attention, but Planet Quest's weird and wacky take on tapping in time got us gripped earlier this year. With original music – catchier than your average Eurovision winner – and a premise as mad as it was simple (tapping the screen in time with the beat as the game revolved around different themed planets), Planet Quest's quite literal take on dancing with the stars was an instant classic. Which, quite simply, is why we want to play more. A lot more.
Though Planet Quest has suffered a couple of clones since it first hit the App Store, it's more genuine OutOfTheBit action that we're after. Would a second jaunt into outer space be too much to ask for?
Developer: From Out There
Kung Fury could have easily been rubbish. In fact, a game designed to tie-in a short, crowdfunded mock 1980s martial arts action film could and should have been as cheap as it sounds. However, in reality, its arcade style take on a button brawling fighter was as addictive to play in practice as it was beautiful to look at – the mock cabinet screen adding a real touch of class to the whole affair.
Problem is, we found ourselves wondering just why more games haven't adopted this level of attention to detail.
So, while a straight up arcade fighter would be unnecessary – the original Kung Fury has that covered – a follow up that touched on other genres big in the arcades in the 1980s would be a welcome release in 2016.
Developer: Creative Distribution
We're not going to sugar coat it: Rambo – The Mobile Game was one of the worst games we've played. Ever. On any format. Yes, that's including Duke Nukem Forever.
Rambo was as lazy as it was archaic, charging you with doing little more that shifting left or right as a Sylvester Stallone lookalike walked through a series of randomly generated 3D levels. Despite attempting to mirror the plot of the source material, Creative Distribution's take on Rambo made no move on touching on any of the film's efforts to mirror the Cold War.
As such, we think such an influential IP as Rambo deserves a game fitting enough to carry the name – though maybe developer Creative Distribution might not be the developer to call upon to do it.
Developer: First Touch Games
The Score series has grown from a simple little game designed to help you recreate classic goals from football games of old to one of the slickest simulations of the beautiful game available on mobile.
We'd like to see developer First Touch Games go a little further, however, and instead of giving you a linear career path to head down, give you the option of actually losing matches if your swipes aren't well placed. Maybe there's even a way to bring referees into the game? Maybe a duff swipe could also bring about a bone crunching tackle and a swift red card?
Whatever the direction First Touch Games goes in, we think there's room aplenty for this franchise to grow and grow.
Always Sometimes Monsters 2
Developer: GHI Media
We might be being a little ambitious asking for GHI Media to make an Always Sometimes Monsters follow up within the next 12 months – few games even attempt to offer players quite so much power over just where the game heads, including picking the lead character almost unknowingly within the first few minutes of play – but we want one, nevertheless.
Though it was by no means perfect, Always Sometimes Monsters' decision to delve into the darker side of every day life made it stand out and, though it has significant replay value, we think we'd like another dip into the game's chaotic world where every choice has a consequence, even if you don't realise you're making a choice in the first place.
Developer: Vanguard Games
Now, it's worth pointing out that if there is to be another Halo release from Vanguard Games – two having already rolled out on mobile in the last few years – it's very unlikely to be called Spartan Strike 2, given Strike was itself a follow up to the initially Windows Phone exclusive Spartan Assault.
Either way, both games have offered top class top down twin stick shooter action, not only complimenting the world of Microsoft's biggest IP, but adding to it, offering new players a fresh take on humanity's struggle against The Covenant in the form of VR training missions.
To be frank, we'd like to play more regardless of what happens to the main Halo series on Xbox. Could 2016 be the year when Vanguard makes its mark yet again?
Developer: Mediocre AB
Humour in games is incredibly underrated, yet can be an important tool in a developer's arsenal. A game might not be perfect, but if it makes you laugh, it's only human that you'd be willing to overlook some of the faults you may come across during play.
Does Not Commute's step by step route planning – which involved tracing out individual routes for different vehicles, all before hitting play and hoping they don't collide with each other – was complimented by a seemingly needless script that, in practice, gave the game more character and more wit than almost any other release in 2015.
To put it quite simply, we'd love to see more stages, more characters and just more Does Not Commute this year. Would that too hazardous a journey for the dev to make?