2020 is shaping up to be an absolute epic when it comes to gaming. As the title of this article suggests, I am going to be giving you a list of ten games that I am most looking forward to being released this year. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
Dragonball Z: Kakarot
Dragonball Z: Kakarot encompasses all of the excellent work that CyberConnect2 have previously implemented in other anime games that they have developed, in particular, the Naruto Shippuden series. From all of the previews and demo gameplay I’ve experienced, I am expecting big things from their first venture into the Dragonball universe alongside long-standing developers Bandai Namco.
Of all of the anime I used to watch as a kid, Dragonball Z was up there as my number one. I’ve watched every episode (at least three times) and every movie, and I’ve had every game that has been released. So, after getting a taster of Dragonball Z: Kakarot at EGX 2019 I knew that this was going to be high on my list of must-haves in 2020. At the time of reading this, the game will have been released, and I am incredibly excited to play it.
Along with practically everybody else in the world, I’m incredibly hyped for the release of Cyberpunk 2077. Since his reveal at E3 in 2019 the world has been captivated by everybody’s favourite badass, Keanu Reeves, taking centre-stage and announcing what looks to be one of the most awesome games to use the REDengine – which is really saying something when we consider the only other games to use this prior to Cyberpunk 2077 were The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings and the critically-acclaimed The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (who doesn’t love Geralt, right?).
I think I speak for many people when I express my disappointment in CD Projekt RED’s most recent announcement that the game has been pushed back from its original 16th April release date to 17th September, but it seems as though it has been done for all of the right reasons. They want to ensure that everything is perfect when the game is released, and as a result, it looks like it is going to be one of the final crowning jewels of the current generation of consoles with the Playstation 5 and the Xbox Series X looming imminently in the closing months of 2020.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
I’m not even ashamed to admit this: Animal Crossing: New Horizons is my most anticipated game of 2020. I absolutely adore the game series and it is a fantastic way to just relax and have fun with your friends in a world where you can take a break from the intensity of competitive gameplay and skill grinding MMOs. I still occasionally turn on my Nintendo 3DS and play Animal Crossing: New Leaf.
The latest iteration comes to the Nintendo Switch on 20th March, and Nook Inc. is moving to a desert island getaway to follow a new business venture by ever-loved mainstay Tom Nook. This is a great new landscape in which to build your home away from the cityscape of previous editions of Animal Crossing and it comes with even more customisation than ever before. With up to eight players capable of residing on one island at any time, I’m really looking forward to the multiplayer aspect of the game and building a new home with my buddies!
New World is the first venture into the MMO space for the developers over at Amazon Studios, and it is shaping up to be one of the highlights of 2020. With many other MMOs scheduled for release, this year Amazon is bound to face some fierce competition, but from watching previews and reading through development diaries I am really looking forward to what this game has to offer.
New World is set on an island called Aeternum where the mysterious element aptly named ‘The Corruption’ has plagued the land and is trying to rid the world of humankind. The aim is to do two things: fight those that have been Corrupted, and gain riches & power. Doing so will require the help of friends and you will be able to form ‘Companies’ whereas a group you will be expected to use various levels of skill in hunting, crafting & PvP to showcase your dominance and bend the will of Aeternum in your favour.
The game is due to be released on 26th May and is available for pre-order at £34.99 for the Standard Edition, with the Deluxe Edition retailing at £43.99. The Deluxe Edition will come with additional emotes, a house pet and armour skins, however pre-ordering either version of the game will grant you access to the Closed Beta in April.
Dying Light 2
This was one of the games at the very top end of my list of those I was desperate to play in 2020. Having not really involved myself in the zombie-horror genre before, the first Dying Light game was my first experience late in 2017 after its 2015 release (I apologise to those of you that are reading this in shock of the fact I’ve never touched a Resident Evil or Silent Hill game). I was pleasantly surprised to find such an open world feel to Dying Light and the story mode kept me engaged right until the end. I really appreciated the first-person aspect to the game too, which I am hoping in future editions means that this could advance to VR capability.
Sadly over the last week Polish publisher, Techland announced that similarly to Cyberpunk 2077, the game is now to be delayed. Unlike Cyberpunk, however, there is no confirmed date as to when this game is due to be released, meaning that fans of the franchise like myself are now stuck in limbo until Techland give a further update.
Now, if this doesn’t hit you right in the pit of your nostalgic guts, nothing will. Playstation icon, Abe, returns in a brand-new game developed by Oddworld Inhabitants in the sequel to Oddworld: Abe’s Odyssey, which is essentially a re-imagining of previously released Oddworld: Abe’s Exxodus. A nominee for Unity Awards’ ‘Most Anticipated Game’, my inner child is crying out to get hold of the latest platformer in the Oddworld series.
I’ve always been a massive fan of Abe, and I can still remember hitting that circle button repeatedly as a child just to hear him mimic the noise of a fart, or meditate with R2 to take over the minds and bodies of the Sligs. The original game was remastered in 2015 when the developers release New ‘n’ Tasty – Oddworld: Abe’s Odyssey and since then fans have been eagerly anticipating the release of another new title in the series. Well, friends, that day is on the horizon. Watch this space for it arriving later this year.
Everybody in the world knows how great the developers are at FromSoftware by now, what with their unbelievable record of fantastic titles including the likes of the Dark Souls series, Bloodborne and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice; and it seems like 2020 is going to be yet another huge year for them in the form of their open-world Action-RPG: Elden Ring.
FromSoftware’s president, Hidetaka Miyazaki, has promised that while the game will be open-world, gamers can still expect a very ‘Souls-like’ experience and plenty of boss battles throughout.
Having linked up with the world-renowned author of A Song of Ice and Fire, George R. R. Martin, we can expect that the storylines inside Elden Ring will be epic, alongside all of the sensational work that FromSoftware have developed within their own engine on the aforementioned titles. Speculation persists that the release date will be in or around June, with further announcements due this coming February.
Sticking with the theme of open-world Action-RPGs, it would be remiss of me to not include Blizzard’s hugely anticipated sequel in the Diablo series: Diablo IV.
Unveiled after months of speculation at Blizzcon 2019, the latest trailer for the newest game showcases the return of Mephisto’s daughter, Lilith, after a blood sacrifice made by three ‘willing’ loot hunters. With every promise of another epic with tons of darkness, Diablo IV is determined to reach us at the back end of 2020, which means this could be one of the major titles for the next generation consoles. We know so far that Barbarian and Druid classes will return amongst many others, that customisation will remain and that mounts will feature prevalently. Blizzard have also hinted at the fact that cross-play could happen with Diablo IV and that with it being open-world, there will no longer be any loading time between dungeons as this will all happen in real-time.
I really hope that this game does reach us this year, with Blizzard already informing that “the game won’t be out soon; not even Blizzard soon.”
We’ll have to wait and see.
The long-awaited sequel to Halo 5: Guardians is almost upon us, and I’m so excited about the return of the legendary Master Chief! I’ve been a long-standing fan of the Halo franchise and I spent countless hours playing local co-op ‘Capture the Flag’ games at home with my friends as a teenager until 3 am, so you better believe that I’ll be doing the same when it comes to online multiplayer!
Microsoft have already announced that Halo Infinite, developed by 343 Industries, will be available “for the entire Xbox family of devices”; meaning that this will be one of the very first headline titles on the new generation of consoles when the Xbox Series X is released later this year.
The initial announcement for the newest title in the franchise was announced at E3 2018, but we have since seen the ‘Discover Hope’ trailer at E3 2019 which showed a heart-warming hologram of a mother and baby leaving a message for the pilot of the UNSC Pelican, who attempts to send a distress call via radio comms after collapsing. He wipes away the mist from his windshield to find Master Chief’s body stuck in orbit and returns him to the ship. The pilot powers up Chief’s suit, and from there on in Chief is back to his good old ass-kicking self.
We haven’t seen much in the way of gameplay, but there are questions surrounding what happens next with Chief, the destroyed Halo Ring, and what it means for the battle against The Flood.
Only around ten more months to wait!
And last, but by no means least, we get to The Last of Us: Part II. The sequel to the incredible Playstation exclusive is due to be released on 29th May, and I’m incredibly anxious, but in the most positive of ways. Never has an action-adventure game caught such a grasp on my feelings than The Last of Us back on the PS3, so I’m beyond thrilled for the sequel to land this year.
Developers Naughty Dog have progressed the story of Joel & Ellie in such a way that it is almost impossible to believe that they were once strangers and Ellie seemed so helpless. Joel has brought her through half of America and watched her grow as if she were his own daughter, and while we were led to believe that he had died between Part I and Part II, the most recent cinematic trailer from September 2019 shows that he is still alive and kicking as part of the settlement in Jackson, Wyoming.
This time, however, we play solely as Ellie as she looks to hold those accountable that disrupt the peace through violence. We know that the game will give us choices and consequences of Ellie’s actions, and I can’t wait to see how they impact the storyline!
I think it is fair to say that, even with all eyes on the holidays for the next-gen consoles being released, there are some truly epic games landing in 2020. I for one will be grabbing hold of all of them on this list (that manage to actually reach us as promised!) and I can’t wait to experience the emotional rollercoaster that these stories are going to take me on. What games are you most excited to see in 2020? Be sure to let me know your thoughts!