Warm-up to the end of the year celebrations, Christmas and holiday season with the many new games launched recently. There are some that you absolutely must play with family and friends. So, what are the 5 games to play this holiday season? 

  1. Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millenium Girl – This 3DS role playing aficionado (follow up to Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan) is an anime-themed dungeon-crawler, you can play through a new, narrative-enhanced Story mode as well as Classic mode, a visually upgraded and mechanically finessed version of the original Etrian Odyssey.
  2. Beyond: Two Souls – Described as a “psychological action thriller,” the game lets you guide a young girl (voiced by Ellen Page) from childhood to adulthood while guided by a supernatural entity only she can communicate with. Expect an atypically high-concept story, exquisite character and world design, and critics fussing over whether to brand it as a movie-like game.
  3. Batman: Arkham Origins – A prequel to Arkham Asylum and City, it mines Batman: Year One territory thematically, depicting Bruce Wayne as a less experienced crime-fighter tangling with mainstay Bat-verse rogues. The big bad looks to be Black Mask, (we wonder though)  in an expanded, snow-filled, creepy Christmas-lit version of Gotham City
  4. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag – Imagine all the gameplay breakthroughs of Assassin’s Creed III folded into a bigger sandbox, 100% less Desmond Miles and you’re now a sort of buccaneer living smack during the Golden Age of Piracy. Everyone loves pirates, everyone loves assassins, so imagine the allure of playing a character who’s both in the most freeform riff on this crypto-historical series to date.
  5. NBA 2K14 – Developer Visual Concepts pretty much owns the hoops-based gaming scene. After releasing critically acclaimed b-ballers year after year, prepare yourselves for the NBA 2K14, which  (in addition to control tweaks and returning popular game modes) harnesses LeBron James for a new “Path to Greatness” mode that lets you future-cast his career by tweaking who he signs and plays with.