4) Alien: Colonial Marines (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, PC)
Release Date: February 12, 2013
The Setup: A canonical sequel to the blockbuster film Aliens, Colonial Marines begins with Corporal Christopher Winter being sent to investigate the U.S.S. Sulaco in search of Ellen Ripley, Corporal Dwayne Hicks, and any remaining marines dispatched to LV-426. With nothing more than a pulse rifle, a welding torch, and a motion sensor, the marine boards the Conestoga-class starship, nary an inkling of the alien horror that awaits him therein.
Why It Made The List: While Gearbox may not have set out to create a survival horror FPS, its HUD-less, sc-fi epic certainly plays like one. Flickering lights, blood-covered walkways, and the echoing cries of comrades in dire need of help, are but a few of the elements that make Aliens: Colonial Marines a surprisingly suspenseful experience. The aliens' A.I. – developed to be much more 'playful' with the marines than ever before – also lends to the game's tense, cat-and-mouse gameplay, wherein you, the jittery space soldier, is constantly looking over your shoulder lest a slick xenomorph quickly crawls from around a corner, or out of a ventilation duct, and skull-fucks you to death. The multiplayer is no slouch either as being able to play as different alien types aims to capture what has captivated audiences for so many years.
3) BioShock Infinite (Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
Release Date: February 26, 2013
The Setup: A spiritual successor to a game that changed all the rules you thought you knew about FPS, BioShock Infinite sees the franchise return to the hands of gaming visionary Ken Levine and Irrational Games. While the direct sequel to the original BioShock was competent, it has been a while since the original dropped jaws with its underwater Art Deco architecture in the city of Rapture, a perversion of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged taken to its most primal extreme. With Infinite, BioShock rises from the depths of the oceans to explore new limitless frontiers, namely, the skies. Taking place in 1912 in a floating city named Columbus, Levine and Co seek to do with the American Ideal what they did with Objectivism.
Why It Made The List: In addition to extremely fluid shooting, exploration, and hoarding mechanics, BioShock is known for telling a seamless, gameplay-conveyed tale in a vein rivaled only by the Half Life series. Case in point, the original BioShock possesses one of the greatest plot-twists the young medium has ever known (WYK). If early trailers and demos are any indication, BioShock Infinite looks to build upon the strength of its heritage. You play as Booker DeWitt, a former Pinkerton agent sent to the cloud city to rescue a girl named Elizabeth whose central role in the game's plot is yet to be fully revealed. Booker will soon find himself caught in a civil war between the purist Founders and the Vox Populi, dogged at every turn by a single minded monstrosity set at reclaiming Elizabeth while the city crumbles about them. While Booker will make use of the psychokinetic powers the series is known for, the inclusion of Elizabeth and her time-space bending abilities promises new gameplay scenarios that are as limitless as the clouds about Columbia.
2) Metro: Last Light (Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
Release Date: March 2013
The Setup: Continuing from the canocnical 'Bad Ending' of Metro 2033, Metro: Last Light returns the ranger known as Artyom to the ruins of post-apocalyptic Moscow.
Why It Made The List: If you did not play Metro 2033, you without a doubt missed out on the very definition of diamond in the rough. I would say that along with Singularity, Metro 2033 remains as one of the most underrated FPS titles in recent memory. So before I launch into why you should be anticipating its follow-up, go on and play the original…now. Like, seriously, it's got some pretty intense moments. Okay, moving on. With Last Light, developer 4A Games is upping the quality of its FPS franchise, primarily by foregoing any kind of multiplayer option and focusing entirely on the single player experience. What does that mean for its fanbase? How about a multitude of new weapons, such as a bolt-action rifle, a hand powered chain gun, and even a homemade grenade launcher. Not enough for you? Last Light also features a number of graphical improvements, making the already bleak setting appear even more hauntingly realistic. Let's not forget tiny details like having the player wipe blood and other bits of gore from the screen. Prepare to have nightmares all over again.