2021 Game Collage

Now that 2020 is out of the way and we are one month into 2021, it’s time we start looking ahead into the future. Time to plan ahead of any purchases and games we expect to play. Sadly, there’s a lot without dates at the moment, and some that are absolutely going to get pushed to 2022. I’m going to try and avoid picking those and come down to my top five that are either scheduled to release or more than likely will release.

So here they are. My top five games I’m looking forward to playing in 2021:

5. New Pokemon Snap

2021 Pokemon Snap
Credit: Bandai Namco, Nintendo, and the Pokemon Company

Where was this on the Wii U? It would have been perfect! Oh well, better late than never I suppose. It’s so great to finally see Pokemon Snap return, and with all these years past since the original, I’m hoping this one is great. So many new Pokemon to take pictures of which hopefully means tons of areas to check out, secrets galore, and more. I have been eagerly waiting for a new Pokemon Snap game for a long time, and thanks to Bandai Namco, it’s finally happening.

Question is – will it hold up? The original was something different at the time and a fun take on the Pokemon series. I don’t know if simply giving us more of the same will work. There has to be more to it than that. I’ve tried not to look too much into this game for fear of spoiling myself surprises, so I don’t know really what to expect. What I can expect is to have a lot of fun playing this game and getting my paparazzi on.

4. Mass Effect: Legendary Edition

2021 Mass Effect Legendary Edition
Credit: Bioware and Electronic Arts

While I haven’t waited as long for this one, I’m still surprised it took this long. What was EA thinking to prolong the trilogy release of one of the greatest video game series of all time in Mass Effect? Well, it’s here. I’m excited to replay them. Hoping to god something wasn’t screwed up along the way. Because let me tell you if Mass Effect: Legendary Edition has the same problem with bugs and whatnot that Mass Effect: Andromeda did…oh EA and Bioware…you’re going to be eviscerated by fans.

Let’s assume though that it works as intended. HOP ON THAT! Show EA that this series is still desired. It should be! It’s one of the greatest things to grace video games. This series is the only western RPG game that I can think of that absolutely consumed me. The story is fantastic, the characters are wonderful, and it’s hard to find a plot that ramps up through three games on this sort of level…even if it falls a little flat at the end. Still, I’m so incredibly excited to replay this series again.

3. 12 Minutes

2021 12 Minutes
12 Minutes Interrogate Both Screenshot

12 Minutes was revealed at E3 2019, and ever since then, it has owned a small space in my head. The concept behind the game is wonderful, and part of that is because I’m a sucker for weird time loop stories. I am utterly fascinated with where this game could go and I’m eager to see it for myself. I know I sure as hell wasn’t expecting to see a star-studded cast as voicework for this little game, but it has me hyped even more so now that it does.

Luis Antonio has been open about what is going on behind the scenes, which I appreciate, and it fills me with confidence that the game will be fantastic. I’m still a little worried it’s not going to hit 2021, but if it has to be pushed out further to make the game even better then there should be no hesitation. 12 Minutes looks to be a spectacular game in line with the rest of the games that Annapurna Interactive release, and I’m excited to finally solve the mystery both with why this man is breaking into the apartment, but why time seems to loop repeatedly as well.

2. Gotham Knights

2021 Gotham Knights
Credit: WB Games Montreal and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Okay, I may be cheating a little bit here. I won’t be completely surprised if this one is pushed to 2022, but I’m going to hold out hope. It’s been a long time coming, and I’m glad that it was finally revealed last year at the DC FANDOME. I’m a huge DC fanboy, and while Batman isn’t my favorite, he’s definitely up there. I am excited he isn’t front and center and instead Gotham Knights extends to the secondary characters around him. This allows for a different story to be told (from multiple angles), although I’m fully expecting Batman to be the main Talon you fight in the game. Please don’t let it be that though…

I know WB Montreal received a bad deal with Batman: Arkham Origins both by how WB treats it as the black sheep and the fans try to ignore it, but it had a lot of cool ideas. Gotham Knights look to shake up the Batman games a bit in a way it desperately needed. I can’t say for sure if it will succeed or not, but I’m hopeful. At the very least, it’ll be great to finally play the game this team has been working on for a long time now. Though I’m still a tad bit disappointed it wasn’t the rumored Batman Beyond game…

  1. Cris Tales
2021 Cris Tales
Credit: Modus Games and Dreams Uncorporated LLC

During the Steam Game Festival over the summer, Cris Tales was one of the games I demoed. I instantly fell in love. The look of the game is stunning and the voicework is extremely well done. The combat looks like it could be really interesting, though it’s hard to say with how little there was in the demo itself. The thing that probably works the best is the time manipulation mechanics. I won’t be surprised if there’s a lot of puzzle aspects relying on it, but even so, it’s still such a great idea.

My fear is that it will land the same way Haven did to me. Haven was another game I loved during the Steam Game Festival, but then when it came out, it didn’t expand much from that demo. However, I’m hoping that with the extra time Cris Tales took to release its game, it’ll benefit heavily from the delay. All I know is there is no other game this year, set date or not, that I want to play more than Cris Tales. I look forward to finally giving it a full go come July.

To check out more anticipated 2021 games, check out the other lists here by the VGU.tv staff and listen to the Player’s Club Podcast with Emmett Watkins Jr. and Hunter Davenport!

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