We haven't seen the end of the Battle Royale craze

We could debate where the "Battle Royale" genre was born, but I feel comfortable in saying that 2016 first popularised the genre with games like H1Z1 - where 2017 made it an outright sensation with PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds and Fortnite. It looks like 2018 is going to continue the trend, with multiple new games and spin-off modes for existing franchises joining the fray.

I had a great time this year with Fornite: Battle Royale and towards the end of the year, the Xbox One version of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds - although neither made my top ten list for 2017. Both games feel like there is a lot of combat polish required before they can be taken seriously as competitive games.

With tens of millions of players between them, the interest in the genre is clear and the landscape feels ripe for disruption. Hi-Rez Studios recently announced a BR mode to their popular hero shooter Paladins - gameplay footage of this can be seen here. A similar announcement from Blizzard for Overwatch would have my attention, despite it being incredibly unlikely.

PC Gamer have a list of some of the standout Battle Royale titles coming this year. From the list, Tencent's Europa looks like the most likely to succeed, although may never see a release outside of China. The Darwin Project appeals to me the most aesthetically, but I feel that Fortnite is already scratching that quasi-cel shaded itch.

 Tencent's Europa

Tencent's Europa

The most eye opening game on the list is the rumoured Counter-Strike GO Battle Royale mode. I don't think I will have too many arguments if I was to say that Valve's premier FPS has some of the best feeling shooter mechanics, so applying this to a much larger map and a hundred players sounds extremely exciting to me.

There are likely many more attempts to take a slice of the pie in development that we are not aware of, so it will be interesting to see who rises to the top, much like a Battle Royale of its own. I do fear the genre will also reach saturation point by the time the year is up, but I at least hope we get a few gems, as I enjoy the concept a lot.