Dead Space, Forspoken, and More Exciting Games Coming Out in January

Nathan Birch
Games Coming Out

Keeping track of all the latest video games coming out is an increasingly complex task, what with multiple PC storefronts, Xbox One, PS4, Switch, mobile, and more to keep track of, but don’t worry, I’m here to help. Every month I'll be running down the games you need to be keeping an eye on, from the big triple-A headliners, to the intriguing indies you might otherwise overlook.

Usually January is a bit of a slow month as the industry continues to recover from its holiday season hangover, but the first month of 2023 is coming in surprisingly hot. Players can look forward to the next big Square Enix RPG, Forspoken, the Dead Space remake, Fire Emblem Engage, and more. Meanwhile, on the indie front, there’s the locomotive love letter SimRail: The Railway Simulator, the atmospheric Season: A Letter to the Future, and more.

Note: While I may have played demos or got early access to some of the games recommended in this article, in most cases I’m simply choosing games that look promising, and can’t vouch for the end product. Do wait for reviews before buying!

That said, here are the games you should be looking out for in January…

The Headliners

Fire Emblem Engage (Switch, Jan. 20)

Nintendo’s Fire Emblem franchise returns in January with something a little different. Fire Emblem Engage's colorful anime presentation and more traditional JRPG premise has been somewhat divisive, but its new Engage system, that lets you pair units up with the spirits of fan-favorite characters from the past like Marth, Ike, and Lyn definitely shows promise. Here’s everything you need to know about Fire Emblem Engage for those feeling that strategy RPG itch. You can pre-order the game here.

Forspoken (PC & PS5, Jan. 24)

Coming from Final Fantasy XV developer Luminous Productions, Forspoken attempts to give the JRPG formula a bit of a kick in the pants. Protagonist Frey feels more true-to-life than most JRPG heroes and the game’s parkour traversal system promises to make exploration more dynamic and challenging. Whether Forspoken’s experiments all pan out remains to be seen, but it’s nice to see a JPRG exploring new territory. Here’s everything you need to know about Forspoken. You can pre-order the game here.

Dead Space (PC, Xbox Series X/S & PS5, Jan. 27)

The Callisto Protocol didn’t end up being the Dead Space successor many were hoping for, but don’t worry, because Dead Space itself returns in January. Developed by EA Motive, the new Dead Space is not just a visual makeover, it also improves and modernizes the horror classic in many ways. Expect a redesigned seamless map, new dynamic horror events, more gruesome scripted moments, and more. Here’s everything you need to know about the new Dead Space. You can pre-order the game here.

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, Jan. 31)

The remake of SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom proved to be a solid success for THQ Nordic, so developer Purple Lamp Studios is back with a new all-original SpongeBob adventure. SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake sees our porous hero jumping between unique themed worlds and donning a variety of fun costumes. This one looks like an above average mascot platformer, which is good, because your kids are going to make you buy it either way. You can pre-order the game here.

Promising Indies

Vengeful Guardian: Moonrider (PC, PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 12)

Step into the new year with a blast from the past. A tribute to 16-bit action games of yore, Vengeful Guardian: Moonrider serves up kickass pixel art and chiptunes and the ability to customize your playable character with a variety of modifier chips. Developer JoyMasher has been at the retro thing for a while, producing entertaining throwbacks like Oniken and Blazing Chrome, so there’s every reason to believe this will be another thumb-testing good time. Here’s the Steam page for Vengeful Guardian: Moonrider.

SimRail: The Railway Simulator (PC, Jan. 13)

The title of SimRail: The Railway Simulator says it all. If you like trains and all the little bits and bobs that go into them, then this is the game for you. Jump into an array of trains from different eras and ride hundreds of kilometers of real routes recreated in exacting detail. A demo of the game released last year was quite well received, so expect good things from the full game now that all its train cars are in order. Here’s the Steam page for SimRail: The Railway Simulator.

A Space for the Unbound (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 19)

A Space for the Unbound is a laid-back adventure game that combines something a lot of gamers are very familiar with -- 90s nostalgia -- with something only a small percentage have experienced – rural Indonesian life. It’s not all slice-of-life moments though, as you can expect plenty of supernatural elements as well. Indie games can be a great window into other places and cultures, so get ready to explore. Here’s the Steam page for A Space for the Unbound.

Season: A Letter to the Future (PC, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 31)

Season: A Letter to the Future is a visually-striking adventure in which players bike around and record various details of their semi-grounded fantasy world (think Studio Ghibli rather than Tolkien) before it’s all destroyed in a mysterious apocalypse. The game has suffered some bumps in the road, including accusations of toxic management at Montreal-based developer Scavengers Studio, but it’s now cruising for a January release. Hopefully, the game plays as nice as it looks. Here’s the Steam page for Season: A Letter to the Future.

Full List of Games Worth Watching in January:

  • Children of Silentown (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 11)
  • Aquatico (PC, Jan. 12)
  • Lone Ruin (PC & Switch, Jan. 12)
  • Vengeful Guardian: Moonrider (PC, PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 12)
  • One Piece Odyssey (PC, Xbox Series X/S, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 13)
  • SimRail: The Railway Simulator (PC, Jan. 13)
  • UnderDungeon (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S & Switch, Jan. 13)
  • A Space for the Unbound (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 19)
  • Tortuga: A Pirate's Tale (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 19)
  • Fire Emblem Engage (Switch, Jan. 20)
  • Forspoken (PC & PS5, Jan. 24)
  • Hyperdimension Neptunia: Sisters vs Sisters (PC, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 24)
  • OddBallers (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, Jan. 26)
  • Wonder Boy Anniversary Collection (PS4, PS5 & Switch, Jan. 26)
  • Dead Space (PC, Xbox Series X/S & PS5, Jan. 27)
  • Raiden IV x Mikado Remix (PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 31)
  • Season: A Letter to the Future (PC, PS4 & PS5, Jan. 31)
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake (PC, Xbox One, PS4 & Switch, Jan. 31)

And those are the games you should be keeping an eye on this coming month. What games are you planning to pick up in January? Did I miss anything you’re looking forward to?

 

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