E3 2015 may well be remembered as the year that virtual reality (VR) took center stage in the video game industry. Take Maximum Games' Loading Human as just one example: Crafted for the PlayStation 4's Project Morpheus, the game immerses players in a far-future world designed to be explored in intricate detail. Set in 2185, the three-part story sends players on a mission deep in space to retrieve a mysterious energy source. Along the way, players must navigate the main character's memories, jumping from time to time and place to place to assemble the information necessary to save him. The game offers up a variety of rich environments to explore in VR, from a science outpost at the North Pole to an underwater lab. With the help of a pair of PS4 motion controllers, players can manipulate objects in the environments naturally and intuitively. The first of Loading Human's three chapters arrives on Project Morpheus in spring 2016, with the remaining two episodes arriving at a later date.
From the far future, Maximum Games travels to the near past with Alekhine's Gun. This third-person stealth game is set at the height of the Cold War, with players taking on the role of a former Soviet assassin--the titular Alekhine--who is now working with the CIA. With 11 nonlinear levels set across the United States, Europe, and Cuba, Alekhine's Gun features a robust suite of stealthy tools for players. They can don disguises, pick locks, craft distractions, stage accidents, and even employ poisons to achieve their objectives without being detected. The better they do, the higher their stealth rating, and the better the rewards upon level completion. All the while, real historical events unfold around the characters, leading up to the terrifying moments of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Players on Xbox One, PS4, and PC get a chance to sneak through the Cold War this fall.
Taking things in a much more fantastical direction is Lichdom: Battlemage, a first-person shooter that replaces the traditional arsenal of firearms with massive amounts of magic. Stepping into the robes of a powerful mage named Dragon, players do battle against cult members, demons, and the undead on the way to making the evil Count Shax pay for murdering Dragon's spouse. The only weapon at players' disposal is raw magic, but Dragon needs nothing more: He can unleash unlimited spells, crafted and customized to suit the player's own style via near-limitless combinations of eight sigils. Would-be spell-casters can craft their own magics when Lichdom: Battlemage arrives on Xbox One and PS4 this holiday season.
Finally, Maximum Games rounds out this year's offering with Dr. Nano, a downloadable third-person germ-targeting shooter for the whole family. Players on Xbox One, PS4, and PC wear the lab coat of the titular doctor, who uses shrinking technology to enter the bodies of infected humans. Employing specialized medical equipment, players engage in battle with alien antigens and the bodies' own immune systems, traveling through inner space via a variety of technological means. With a lighthearted, retro-futuristic style, Dr. Nano begins accepting patients this coming holiday season.