51 British Games to Look Out For in 2016

By Keza MacDonald on at

There's a lot of game development happening on our little island. Last year, UK developers gave us Until Dawn, Her Story, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture, Batman: Arkham Knight, Tearaway Unfolded and loads more interesting games.

This year, there's not quite so much in the big-budget category, but there's a flurry of activity in indie and mobile. Micro-studios have been springing up all over the UK in recent years, forming development communities in places like Brighton and Leamington Spa that are making some really cool things.

After looking through over 100 British-made games planned for 2016, I've selected 51 to look out for. The main considerations were:

  • The games had to be announced (so, although we'll see some more Disney Infinity this year from Studio Gobo in Brighton or Sumo in Sheffield, for instance, we didn't speculate about what it might be)
  • They had to have enough screenshots/video to be able to tell what they were about
  • They had to look interesting
  • They had to have a reasonable chance of actually coming out in 2016, and must not have been released before on a different format.


No Man's Sky


No Man's Sky needs no introductions: it's an epically enormous space-exploration game with literally billions of planets and permutations, populated by unique creatures. It's finally out in June. [Website]

Crackdown 3

most anticipated crackdown 3

Crackdown 3 – the superhero action game with extraordinary real-time destruction – is an Xbox exclusive in development at Reagent Games in Dundee, with help from Sumo Digital. I played it at Gamescom last year and it was already excellent fun.


Baffling, bananas, quintessentially British: Dreams is many things, but rather hard to pin down. Developer Media Molecule hopes that it will evolve into a universe of experiences, all created by players. I feel like I could live in this game. [Website]

Heat Signature


Infiltrate, rob, and hijack procedurally generated spaceships across the galaxy in an ongoing war. Like FTL, but with hitting things in the head with wrenches. From Tom Francis, creator of the inordinately popular Gunpoint. [Website]


We've not seen much of Before besides a trailer released back in 2014, except in development blogs from Facepunch Studios. It seemingly puts you in control of a small tribe of cavemen who struggle to survive in a world of harsh winters, predatory animals, and dwindling supplies. [Website]

Time is An Island

You are a hiker, dying alone on the Scottish isle of Ulfrey. By deciphering the words of those who came before you, you start to uncover the history and purpose of the place. An experimental form of interactive storytelling. [Website]

The Ship: Remasted


Brilliant and much-loved murder-mystery game The Ship is getting the full re-mast-er (geddit?) treatment this year. It'll be out on February 15th. [Website]

Fable Legends

fable legends

Fable Legends from Lionhead is a free-to-play 4-versus-1 multiplayer take on the Fable universe for PC and Xbox One; it’s funny, likeable, bright, and quite clever. Originally planned for 2015, it's now due later this year, after an extended beta. One of those games that makes more sense once you've played it. [Website]

The Assembly

the assembly

A VR adventure-mystery game: you’ve been abducted by a shady science corporation and have to figure out what’s going on, with two main characters. Jules had a great time with it last year. [Website]


brochureimage copy2

Keyframe is a free game for tablets that is about how we process memories, family dynamics, and abandonment. A curator has arranged the memories of an estranged father into picture frames in a strange gallery: the pictures are puzzles that eventually lead the father to face up to reuniting with the daughter he left behind. [Website]

EVE Valkyrie

eve valkyrie 2016

The VR game of many people’s dreams: dogfighting in space. EVE Valkyrie has been in development in Newcastle for years now and is one of several promising British games in the first wave of VR. [Website]


battlezone vr

Rebellion is rebooting the classic '80s arcade game, putting you in the cockpit of a tank in a future war. Except now, with full on VR, your view is going to feel more claustrophobic than ever. [Website]

Radial G: Racing Revolved

Race a superfast, futuristic car down the outside of a cylindrical cable while dodging obstacles all along the way. This looks like a VR game to really make you sweat, and it's been a big hit at our Kotaku UK game nights so far. [Website]

Fabulous Beasts


A combination of Jenga and Viva Pinata: create bizarre ecosystems by stacking polygonal blocks on a base, trying to dominate more of the planet than your opponent. Great fun as a spectator sport, too. [Website]

Planet Coaster

As well as making Elite Dangerous, Frontier is known for its rollercoaster games. Planet Coaster looks like a massive leap on from anything the team has managed before, though. You can design modular coasters that can be shared between friends, mould the world of your park, letting you design the theme park you’ve always dreamed of. [Website]

Super Rude Bear Resurrection


Funded by Creative England, Super Rude Bear Resurrection is a super-hard platformer with a twist: whenever you die, you leave your corpse behind, making the level slightly easier next time around. It's coming out on Steam, PS4 and Vita. [Website]

Factotum 90

Coming to Xbox One early this year, Factotum 90 is a space-puzzler where you – trapped on a ship that's had a collision – control a couple of little robots charged with fixing everything. [Wesbite]


Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 15.49.40

Endearingly chaotic, clever asymmetrical local multiplayer game in which a team of players invades old video games to smash things up, and another player is the Architect, changing the environment around them. [Website]



This procedurally generated horror game was first revealed back in 2012 and it looked as good then as it does now. The whole game has a chunky ‘80s sci-fi aesthetic which is pleasing to the eye. Underneath those good looks, though, is a game about exploring an abandoned lunar base and trying to avoid whatever it was that made its occupants leave in a hurry. [Website]



Lumo looks super – it's an isometric puzzle-platformer that will be familiar gameplay-wise to anyone who played '80s/early-'90s British games, but with lovely HD looks. It's got lots of retro references, too. [Website]

I Want to Be Human


Simple, stylish, side-scrolling splat-em-up with a Mad World visual vibe and a dark sense of British humour, featuring a love-struck vampire girl on a bloody rampage. It has already made its way through Steam Greenlight. [Website]


Beautiful colour-based puzzle game with creative gameplay and an interesting-sounding narrative. [Website]

Man O’ War: Corsair

man o war corsair

Based on the Warhammer tabletop game, Man O’ War is a game about ship-to-ship combat. As well as managing a fleet in battle against other, vicious species, you’ll need to manage your fleet, trading for resources, hiring new crew, keeping your ships repaired. It all sounds like a good deal of hearty, seafaring fun. [Website]



SkySaga – or, Bastion meets Minecraftas we described it back when it was announced – has been in alpha for over a year, but is due to finally launch in 2016. It's a very good-looking mix of Minecraft-style creative gameplay and the questing and fighting of an MMO. [Website]


The civilised world has come to an end, leaving you in charge of keeping a family alive in their small bomb shelter under the surface of a ravaged planet. As well as managing your supplies so your family don’t starve or get ill, you have to fend off bandit attacks and untrustworthy visitors. [Sheltered]



Maia puts you in charge of settling an alien world, building a colony that will keep your colonists safe in an unwelcoming environment. Not only do you have to keep them safe from environmental hazards but the work, loneliness, and stress of an alien world can send your workers into a deep depression unless you look after their needs. [Website]

Chronicle: RuneScape Legends

Jagex’s take on collectible card games is like no other I’ve seen. Using the Runescape world as a backdrop, players place down enemies and items in their own path, only attacking each other second-hand. So, you might want to place an enemy in your path that will level up your attack so you’re tough enough to take on an enemy later in the level. Or you could place a card that triples the attack of the monster your opponent just placed in their own path. [Website].

Democracy 3: Africa

democracy africa

Essentially, this is Democracy hard mode. Positech is taking the systems it created to capture the political machinations of western nations and applying it to countries with much more extreme factions. You’ll have to deal with resource rich but politically weak governments, negotiate with many more border neighbours, and manage a nation that rapidly changes. [Website]


A top-down adventure game set in the colonial India of Rudyard Kipling's book Kim. Rather than a fixed story, the world is procedurally generated but populated with characters from the book. [Website]


Think multiplayer Hotline Miami with this one. Gunkatana is neon-soaked, brutal, fast-paced, arcadey and very cool. It's currently multiplayer-only but the developer is hard at work on a single-player component. [Website]


Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 17.07.22

In development at Scottish outfit Ruffian Games, Fragmental is another chaotic-looking top-down local multiplayer shooter, with one-shot kills and awesome-looking arenas. [Website]



Modelled on William S. Burrough’s cut-up technique and other surrealist fiction, Tangiers is a stealth game set in a world of abstract enemies, where locations can be carved up and moved around the space depending on your actions. At times its environments are eerily beautiful, other times horrifying. [Website]

Return of the Obra Dinn

return of the obra dinn askldn

Travel back to 1802 and explore the deck of the Obra Dinn, an East India Trading Company vessel, and try to find out what happened to all of its crew. A first-person mystery from the maker of Papers, Please. [Website]



Z-Exemplar looks EXACTLY like a ZX Spectrum game. Sounds like one, too. It's a retro vertical shooter – developed by Suminell Studios in Scotland – that pays tribute to Britain's gaming past. [Website]

No Trace


Like a cross between Volume and Hitman, No Trace is a top-down stealth game where you have to identify and study your targets before finding a way to kill 'em - but being a professional assassin takes a toll on the main character. I'm really intrigued by the detailed, polygonal art style. [Website]



A competitive cooking game for 1-4 players? SIGN ME UP. What an excellent idea. You have to tackle bizarre kitchen gauntlets, working together or against each other. [Website]


The first three Sorcery! games are critically acclaimed mobile games that are being ported over to PC right now, and the fourth one is coming out later this year. These are great, choice-based fantasy games where the story is rewritten as you fly. [Website]


Screen Shot 2016-01-21 at 16.15.24

By the same people behind the super Regency Solitaire, this prequel is a card-battling game set in late 18th-century England. The star character, Lady Darkmoor, has a dual life as a highwaywoman called Shadowhand. A mix of crime story, mystery, and strategic card battles. [Website]


In Wulverblade, you play angry, intensely violent tribesmen (and women) defending the north of Britain (ie, what would later be known as Scotland) from Roman invasion in a side-scrolling beat-em-up, Golden Axe style. Gets my Scottish blood running. [Website]

Drive Any Track

Drive Any Track is a stunt racer that lets you turn any song into an awesome futuristic race track. It's in Early Access right now, where it is pretty damn popular. A full release is planned this year. [Website]

Glyph Quest Chronicles

Screen Shot 2016-01-21 at 16.32.43

The Glyph Quest games are popular puzzle-RPGs for mobile, created by a teensy two-person team. Super Glyph Quest was especially well-received, and the sequel Glyph Quest Chronicles is coming this year. [Website]



This is a racing game about racing several different tracks at the same time, with music by ZOMBI. It looks damned pretty. [Website]

Featherpunk Prime

More neon! In Featherpunk Prime you are... I was going to say a robot ostrich, but the site tells me it's a robo-flamingo. It's got big bosses, randomised level layouts and lots of explosions. [Website]

101 Ways to Die

101 ways to die

A puzzle game about killing with style. You have to design infernal contraptions out of a toolbox of malicious weapons that will slice, dice, and burn enemies in an impressive manner. [Website]


A tile-based puzzle game featuring time-travel and tentacles, Causality looks like it will strain the mind of the keenest logician. [Website]


The future is here: self-delivering parcels. You play a box who needs to make it to its delivery address. You'll have to roll and jump between platforms, avoiding the flames, water, and anything that might damage your contents. Unbox is wonderfully colourful and looks like flat out, silly fun. [Website]

City of the Shroud

city of the shroud

A turn-based tactical game, you lead a party of adventurers through the city of Iskendrun, fighting your way through its enemies. One interesting aspect of the game is the developer's plan to write the story as players are playing. Using data from the game the team can tell which faction of parties is doing best in the city and write the story to reflect that. [Website]

Super Arcade Football

This looks like a spiritual successor to Sensible Soccer, the top-down arcade football game from the '90s. Unlike Sensible Soccer, Super Arcade Football has been built with a focus on multiplayer. It looks like it's going to be a great party game. [Website]

Fractured Space

fractured space

A tactical MOBA about managing a fleet of capital ships in space warfare with your opponent. You'll need to use each ship's loadout and the space clutter that litters the battlefield to outmanoeuvre your enemy and dissect their forces. Built in the Unreal engine, it's a damn fine thing to look at. [Website]


Guide a water droplet past the dangers of a great, gnarly tree in this mobile puzzler. I really like the sound of using your fingertip to control the water droplet as your move it past obstacles; it makes Baum a little like a more painterly and serene version of operation. [Website]

Atom Universe

atom universe

A bit of an odd one this. Atom Universe is a theme park hub where the different rides are minigames you can play. However, the focus seems to be on the hub, where you can sit on benches, interact with other players, and post for photos. It sounds a lot like PlayStation Home. [Website]