2020 has been a write-off for most people, but we have seen some amazing titles launches. On top of that we have also witnessed the start of the ninth generation of video game consoles. Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 have both been released across the globe and both to huge sales.
However, with 2021 just around the corner it is time to start looking at 10 of the more anticipated releases that will hit the store shelves next year.
All release dates are accurate at the time of publication.
Agent 47 will once again come to our consoles and PC’s in 2021. Like it’s predecessors it is a third-person stealth game where you once again take control of Agent 47. The game will contain new locations and also gives owners of Hitman and Hitman 2 (2016 and 2018 respectively) the ability to import maps from those games. The game will be released on Windows, Xbox (One, Series X/S), PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch and Stadia on the same day. PlayStation 4 copies will also feature VR compatibility, with that same compatibility being applied to imported maps from previous games. At the time of writing this article the game is due to launch 20th January 2021.
Little Nightmares 2
Little Nightmares stole the hearts of the world. Receiving great reviews based on the games atmosphere, graphics and sound. It goes without mentioning that Little Nightmares 2 is a heavily anticipated sequel to the original. The game will take a slightly new format as the player will control a new character, Mono. The playable character from the original, Six, will become computer-controlled. Traversing The Pale City, which is inhabited by deformed citizens who are addicted to television, you must reach the Signal Tower to find The Thin Man who is controlling the population. Windows, Xbox (One, Series X/S), PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch will see the game 11th February 2021.
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury
For myself this is one of the games I am most excited for. Yes, I am aware it is Nintendo porting and regurgitating “old stock”, blah blah blah. However, since I purchased the Nintendo Switch on launch day I have badly wanted this game to come over to the platform. Super Mario 3D World was originally released on the Wii U in November 2013. The game was critically acclaimed for its level design, soundtrack and visual representation. Selling more than 5 million copies it was the second best-selling game on the platform. The issue was that not many people owned a Wii U so were unable to experience this absolute masterpiece. The new version will include 30% speed increases, local wireless and online co-op multiplayer, amiibo support and the Bowsers Fury addon. This is a console exclusive to the Nintendo Switch and releases, alongside the Cat Mario and Cat Peach amiibo’s, on 12th February 2021.
A brand new franchise, which is first-person, set in Toyko whereby the player uses various psychic abilities to defeat spirits? Yes please! With a combat system described as “karate meets magic”, the player will utilise hand movements that are inspired by Kuji-kiri – a practice of hand-gestures that is often found in old-school martial arts school for Ninjitsu and similar styles – to cast spells. The game was announced in 2019 and has a great development team with people such as Shinichiro Hara, who developed some of the combat system of 2016’s Doom. The game is set to be released on Windows and PlayStation 5 in 2021.
Playing as Colt, an assassin that is stuck in a time loop and an infinite party on an island called Blackreef. At the end of each night the party resets to the start, with the residents having no memories of prior events of the previous loop and Colt gaining memories each time. The objective is to take out eight targets across the island before midnight. In what sounds like a cross between a Coronavirus lockdown, Groundhog Day and Hitman is a game that is getting a lot of news. Published by Bethesda Softworks and developed by Arkane Studios it lands on Windows and PlayStation 5 on 21st May 2021 in what will be a one-year console exclusivity.
Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX
Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX was announced in June 2020 and is being developed by Merge Games and Jankenteam. It is a remake of the ever-popular Alex Kidd in Miracle World which first launched in 1986 in Japan and 1987 in North America and Europe. Alex Kidd contained 17 stages where the player must face monsters and the three henchmen of Janken the Great. The game contains block punching, motorbike riding, rock-paper-scissors playing retro awesomeness that has been remade for the modern generation. The remake will contain new levels, alternative boss fights and options to switch between modern and retro graphics. Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX lands on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC in 2021.
Far Cry 6
Far Cry titles have been heavily anticipated since the first game of the franchise launched in 2004. Set on a fictional Caribbean island named Yara, the player takes control of Dani Rojas, a guerrilla that is attempting to topple the dictatorship that is “El Presidente” Antón Castillo. Following on from other Far Cry games the player will need to make makeshift weapons, use vehicles and hire Amigos (a new “Fangs for Hire” system) to topple this tyrannical regime. The game has been in production for four years and was originally due a release on 18th February 2021. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic this has been delayed and it is expected that Windows, PlayStation 4/5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Stadia will see a release later into 2021.
Halo Infinite was due to be a launch title for the Xbox Series X/S launch but due to unknown reasons it was announced in August 2020 that the game would be delayed. Developed by 343 Industries and published by Xbox Game Studios it will be the sixth main entry of the Halo series. The game is due to pick up the story of Master Chief after the events of Halo 5: Guardians. The game is an attempt to return to some roots, with Master Chief’s armour being designed to look like that of Halo 2 and Halo 3, and the enemies are showing to be The Banished, a splinter group of the Covenants race that was first seen in Halo Wars 2. Regardless of the release date in 2021 it will be a huge launch for Windows, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.
Resident Evil Village
Braaaains! Braaaains! Resident Evil Village will be the tenth major instalment in the Resident Evil series. It is the direct sequel to Resident Evil 7: Biohazard. Quick question – was Resident Evil 7: Biohazard called Biohazard 7: Biohazard in Japan? Or with factorising was it just called 7? Regardless, Chris Redfield will be making an appearance, bringing the story to a mysterious village set in Europe. Capcom will be bringing Resident Evil Village to Windows, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S in 2021.
Bus Simulator 21 Untitled God of War Sequel
The ninth installment to the God of War series will be released in 2021 and published by Sony for the PlayStation 5. It will chronologically be the ninth game and a sequel to 2018’s God of War. Loosely based (very loosely) on Norse mythology it will once again feature Kratos and his son Atreus. The game is expected to follow the story of the initiation of Ragnarök. The game is currently in development by Santa Monica Studio.