Game Picks: Star Wars Battlefront leads charge as blockbuster games hit the market

It's the time of the year once again when video game publishers push out their blockbusters, and there isn't a shortage of good ones this year.

The past few weeks have seen the release of a slew of heavyweight titles. These are games that hold genuine mainstream appeal. Even if you've never held a controller before, you surely would have heard of Tomb Raider, right?

Here are some blockbusters to check out this weekend.

Star Wars Battlefront

There has been a new surge of interest in George Lucas' spacefaring series thanks to an eagerly-awaited seventh movie that is coming out in December.

Until then there is Star Wars Battlefront, which puts you in the boots of a Rebel Alliance soldier or an Imperial Stormtrooper in iconic battles from the original Star Wars trilogy. Gamers can play in huge multiplayer skirmishes against other players. Even characters like Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker and Han Solo are controllable.

The key here is authenticity. "This game looks, sounds and feels like being inside Star Wars," The Guardian writes in its review. For many a die-hard, that could be enough to thrill.

For everyone else, be warned that the game looks a tad skimpy on content, and that more maps and modes will come at a cost when the first downloadable content releases in 2016.

Available on: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC

Fallout 4

Fallout 4 is the latest in Bethesda Softworks' long line of open-world role playing games - put simply, these are games that let you go anywhere and do absolutely anything you want.

It is set in a post-apocalyptic United States, 200 years after a nuclear holocaust, and is jam-packed with places to discover and quests to complete.

New in this instalment, the first Fallout game since 2010's Fallout: New Vegas, is the ability to build a settlement using materials you find, finally giving purpose to the countless junk items scattered around the world that you can pick up.

It's a game that demands long hours, but not enough to deter many. After all, 12 million copies have been sold within 24 hours of its Nov 10 launch.

Available on: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC

Rise Of The Tomb Raider

Almost 20 years on from her debut, Lara Croft is going strong with the second game of Tomb Raider's second reboot coming out earlier this month.

By most accounts, Rise Of The Tomb Raider is a solid action-adventure title that features survival elements and a crafting system where items can be created from materials scavenged from the environments.

Unfortunately, limiting the game's initial release only to Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles -a decision that was met with a huge negative fan reaction - and releasing on the same day as Fallout 4 seem to have hampered sales. Let's hope the game finds its audience when PC and PlayStation 4 versions come out in 2016.

Available on: Xbox 360, Xbox One (PC and PlayStation 4 in 2016)

Assassin's Creed Syndicate

The Assassin's Creed series is one of the best around at what I'd like to term as "in-game tourism". The games take players centuries into the past with recreations of eras like 16th-century Renaissance Italy and Paris during the French Revolution.

Syndicate is set in London in 1868, and the Industrial Revolution setting is as well-realised as ever.

It's been a while since I've played an Assassin's Creed game set on land (2013's Black Flag was a rip-roaring piratical adventure on the Caribbean seas). Perhaps it's my time away from the series that has helped, but criticisms that the games have become formulaic and tired don't seem to apply to Syndicate. A lessened focus on stealth, something the games have never been good at anyway, and the twin protagonists help make it feel fresh.

It's a worthwhile time sink for lapsed Assassin's Creed fans to get back into.

Available on: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC