The game industry was upended during most of 2020, not unlike other businesses in the entertainment industry. Beyond coronavirus-related delays of games, the new generation of consoles is set to release in November, and Microsoft acquired Bethesda.
We also saw Microsoft making a massive push into a subscription model for games, with current and in-development first-party titles being planned to release on Game Pass on day one; we also got word that EA Play would become a part of Game Pass, making select titles available as part of the $10 per month subscription price.
Sony, meanwhile, is doing what they do best by continuing to support their exceptional lineup of first-party studios that have been responsible for creating some of the greatest games of all time.
While the industry is in a state of flux, there are so many great games coming in 2021. Here are some of them!
Horizon II: Forbidden West
After Sony firmly stated that they were following the traditional console generation model and future first-party titles would launch exclusively on Playstation 5, they recently announced that Horizon II: Forbidden West would also be coming to the Playstation 4 generation after initially revealing it as a PS5 title.
While details about the new game are sparse, we did get a glimpse of the game in the trailer reveal. From the footage, and according to Guerrilla Games, the game area will span several regions, including California, Utah, and Nevada, which is a change from Zero Dawn, which took place in a region that used details from Colorado and Montana.
From the trailer, we see new robot dinosaurs, rideable mounts making a return, potential new underwater areas to explore, and the return of the first game’s protagonist, Sylens. Expectations are high that exploration, engaging gameplay, and storytelling will remain a top priority.
Ratchet & Clank Rift Apart
Footage from Ratchet & Clank Rift Apart has been shown on a few occasions, but recently Insomniac released an extended gameplay segment. Insomniac are masters or fast-moving gameplay with unique weapons and styles being offered to players to let them enjoy the game how they want. See Spiderman and Sunset Overdrive as examples. Fans of the previous Ratchet & Clank games are no doubt excited from what we were shown.
In the footage, we learn the setup for the game. During a moment of boasting by Dr. Nefarious, Ratchet shoots and damages Dr. Nefarious’ Dimensionator, causing portals to other dimensions to open up all over Megalopolis. The SSD speed is on display here, showing how players can jump through the environment quickly or switch between different worlds in seconds.
We are still waiting for more information about each of these worlds, but they appear unique, with new enemies and challenges waiting for the player. Oh, yea, also a female Lombax.
God of War: Ragnarok
God of War: Ragnarok was recently announced for 2021. Whether it will run on the PS4 is still unknown, but with revelations about Miles Morales and Forbidden West being PS4 games, it feels like a strong possibility that God of War: Ragnarok will go that direction.
The name Ragnarok is a callback to the first game where at the end, Kratos and Atreus are told that their actions have caused the prophecy of Ragnarok to unfold more quickly than anticipated. In Norse Mythology, Ragnarok is the destruction of the cosmos and everything in it, including the gods. If you went back to your destroyed home and sleep in bed at the end of the game, Atreus has a dream with Thor showing up in the future. Will Thor be the main antagonist in the next game? We sure hope so!
The big Halo Infinity reveal during Microsoft’s July 23 Gameplay Showcase was met with a lot of criticism. Halo Infinite is an open world cross-gen title and had been pitched repeatedly as a major launch exclusive for the Series X and recently unveiled Series S. Suffice to say expectations for Xbox’s flagship title running on the “world’s most powerful console” didn’t land with the punch Microsoft was hoping for. Most cited the lighting and overall level of detail on characters as major shortcomings.
So surprising was the backlash that Microsoft delayed the release of Halo Infinite into 2021. Some were even calling for Microsoft and 343 to drop support for Xbox One. For now, the game will continue development on the Xbox One generation of systems.
It should be said that there were strong supporters of how the game looked. Some commentators celebrated the return to the original Halo’s aesthetic, including art style, music, and character design.
Halo Infinite promises a vast open-world experience with modern gameplay touches that appear to take cues from recent entries in the Doom series, while also adding the rolling update model seen in Destiny where new areas of the world, quests, and story elements unlock over time.
Third-party games are not exclusive to either console. No matter what console you choose, you are in for a great time. These are some of the games we are most looking forward to. Check the links to find out more.
- Resident Evil Village.
- Gotham Knights.
- Diablo 4.
- Hogwarts Legacy.
- Hitman 3.
- Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time Remake.
- Far Cry 6.
- Little Nightmares II.
- Psychonauts 2.
There are plenty of other titles on their way, but many games don’t yet have formal release dates. You can see more upcoming games here.