Brace Yourself: All the Most Anticipated Gaming Releases of 2023—So Far


2023 is shaping up to be one of the most massive years for video game history—and we’re just halfway through the year. June was a wild month for major releases, with heavy hitters and beloved titles like Street Fighter 6, Diablo IV, and Final Fantasy XVI all dropping within weeks of one another and blowing every gamer’s mind. 

It’s worth noting, though, that there’s still a stacked gaming lineup you should keep an eye out for because blockbuster releases aren’t slowing down any time soon. And that’s great news for us, right?  

But since these highly anticipated releases can be a lot to keep track of, we’ve rounded up a handy guide of titles (plus, a handheld console) bound to keep you excited and on your toes until October. These are all available for pre-order via your SM Malls Online app

Two pre-order options

Tentative release dates have already been set for three big-name games and an ASUS handheld device (more on them later!), so now’s your chance to pre-order them—ensuring you’ll own one or two (or all) before they hit the stores. 

Go to your SM Malls Online app and click on the PS_Games e-voucher for the list of items available for pre-order. Add to your cart, checkout, and pay P0! This is a savvy, enticing option—but you can also pre-order with a standard downpayment starting at P500 should you choose to.

SM Malls Online will then contact you to confirm your slot reservation. On the release date, you’ll receive a P200 off voucher code that can be used to purchase your product of choice if you opted for the free pre-order. 

For standard pre-orders, you can get the P200 off voucher by using code SHOP200OFF with a minimum spend of P1,000. 

Place your order via the app and choose delivery or pick-up. 

Turning up the heat

We know you can’t wait any longer—so here are the newest releases (aka would-be chart-toppers) you don’t want to miss out on. Cue “Release the Kraken!” chants now.

Mortal Kombat 1

Platforms:  PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and Nintendo Switch

Release date: September 19

With a confirmed story mode, online multiplayer with rollback netcode, and online gameplay, Mortal Kombat 1 will be the popular series’ second reboot following their release in 2011 and is the 12th main installment of the franchise. 

Developed by NetherRealmStudios and published by Warner Bros. Games, the game will introduce a feature called Kameo Fighters, which will provide assistance to players during fights and chosen separately from the main roster before each battle. Watch out for reimagined versions of Liu Kang, Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Raiden, Johnny Cage, Kung Lao, Kitana, Mileena, Smoke, Rain, and Kenshi. Shang Tsung, on the other hand, will be offered as a pre-order incentive.

An extra to look forward to: Six additional characters and five Kameo fighters planned for post-release via the ‘Kombat Pack’ DLC. You can pre-order the fighting game at P0 or with standard downpayment of P500 to P700.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 (Standard)

Platform: PS5

Release date: October 20

This upcoming Spider-Man title from Insomniac Games and PlayStation Studios is a follow-up to Marvel's Spider-Man and Spider-Man: Miles Morales. 

You’ll be happy to know that both Peter Parker and Miles Morales return for this web-slinging franchise. You can swing, jump, and use the new Web Wings feature to travel across Marvel’s New York City, quickly switching between Peter and Miles to experience different stories and new superpowers, as they save the city and their loved ones from Venom. 

Pre-ordering the standard edition at P0 or P500 will get you the base game, the Arachknight Suit for Peter early unlock (includes three color variants), Shadow-Spider Suit for Miles early unlock (includes three color variants), Web Grabber gadget early unlock, and three skill points to spend straight away.

Assassin's Creed Mirage

Platform: PS4 and PS5

Release date: October 12

This is the 13th installment to the Assassin’s Creed series and the successor to Assassin’s Creed Valhalla released in 2020. You can pre-order the title at P0 or P500. 

Developed and published by Ubisoft, Mirage is set in 9th-century Baghdad during the anarchy at Samarra and will follow Basil Ibn Ishaq (a character first introduced in Valhalla) and his transition from a street thief to a full-fledged member of the Assassin Brotherhood. 

Mirage, an action-adventure stealth game, has been touted as a return to the series’ roots—intended to be reminiscent of the older Assassin’s Creed iterations. It has a bigger focus on linear storytelling and stealth gameplay more than its recent versions, which primarily centered on role-playing and open-world elements. Parkour, close-quarter combat, and stealth are core elements of Mirage’s world.


Release: July

A handheld gaming powerhouse from ASUS is headed to us this month. Powered by Windows 11 and an AMD Ryzen APU out of the box, the ASUS ROG Ally is set to raise the bar for what can be achieved on a handheld gaming PC. 

It sports eight cores and 16 threads, 12 inbuilt RDNA 3 graphics compute units, 16GB LPDDR5 RAM, and a 512GB M.2 SSD and is equipped with a seven-inch FHD (1920x1080, 16:9) alongside a 120Hz refresh rate display, which is a game-changer in the current handheld gaming landscape. Hello, buttery smoothness and performance!

Title-wise, the ROG Ally lets you access a myriad of indie, retro, and large-scale triple-A games without being tethered to a specific cloud gaming service, opening up many gaming possibilities. Some bestselling titles you can run on the ROG Ally under optimized settings include Cyberpunk 2077, the newly released Diablo IV, Fortnite, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Grand Theft Auto V, among a few. 

Pre-order this portable pro now at P5,000. 

Now available

If you missed out on pre-orders for Street Fighter 6, Diablo IV, and Final Fantasy XVI, don’t worry, your SM Malls Online still has you covered, as these games are all readily available for purchase. Pro-tip: Use code SHOP200OFF to get P200 off your orders worth P1,000 minimum. 

Street Fighter 6

Platforms: PS5, Xbox Series X, PS4

With total sales of two million units, Street Fighter 6 is smashing gaming records across the globe. Featuring classic Street Fighter action with training and gaming modes and a new single-story campaign, the title now lets solo players journey the Street Fighter universe via an immersive story mode. Get it starting at P2,795. 

Diablo IV

Platform: PS5