2020 looks very promising in terms of game releases. 2019 gave us some excellent games, but there weren’t many that made it into my collection, for various reasons. 2020 will be better – and by better I mean I’ll spend more money in 2020. Realistically though, I have such a huge backlog to clear I don’t really need to buy any new games but I’ve learnt by now that I have no willpower. I’m going to buy games. I’ve got a list of around 20 games I’m hoping to get my hands on this year, but seeing as I haven’t got a job, I’ve narrowed it down to 5. It wasn’t easy, but below are the 5 games I’m most excited for in 2020!
World of Warcraft – Shadowlands
I love World of Warcraft. World of Warcraft is my comfort blanket. Over my 10 years on the game, I’ve dipped in and out, having to really cut myself off the game seeing as I probably failed my A Levels because of it. For the last two expansions though, I’ve been pretty consistant as a player – WoW gets a lot of playtime from me. I’m not a particularly good World of Warcraft player. I don’t raid, I don’t do dungeons, I don’t do anything that could result in me getting shouted at by other people, so for me the main pull is the storyline. And for a while now, the storyline has been a bit…odd.
People hoped the next expansion would tie up the loose ends and fix up some of the plot holes, and we knew Blizzcon 2019 would reveal the next step in WoW’s storyline. Shadowlands was unveiled to very, very mixed opinions. I can’t go into WoW lore here, the post would be unreadably long, and also I don’t understand a lot of it. I do understand, though, that Shadowlands will be quite the shake up. I’m most excited to see Blizzard justify the decisions they made Sylvanas make, and I’d actually like to see her get a redemption arc, but I doubt it will happen.
Final Fantasy : Crystal Chronicles
When I was younger, and in my early gaming stages pre-internet, I saw a magazine which had a Zelda cheat guide as a free gift. I needed this, because I was playing Majora’s Mask at the time and failing. Inside the magazine was an eight page feature on Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles. I’d heard of FF by then, I think, but other than the name I was clueless about this series. I devoured these eight pages – filled with concept art and stories. I’d never seen this kind of game before, and I became obsessed with this game that I didn’t even know of outside of this magazine. One day, my sister came home with it for us to play and for some unknown reason, I never touched it. Not once. So this remaster has 15 years of high expectations to live up to.
Two Point Hospital -Switch Version
Facebook used to have a fantastic game based on Doctor House. You’d solve puzzles to get clues for diagnosing patients, and you’d fulfil prescriptions which would earn you special tokens, allowing you to create more meds, and use diagnostic equipment to help in A&E. It was a really addictive game, with a great soundtrack, which I really enjoyed. And then for no reason, it shut down, and I haven’t found a hospital simulation game that matched up to it since.
I saw Dr Mike playing Two Point hospital on YouTube a few months ago, which seems extremely promising. I held back on buying it from Steam, because I prefer to play things like that on a handheld console, so I’ve been waiting for the Switch release for a while. The Nintendo website still has the release date as TBC, but Gamespot is saying February 25th, so I haven’t got to wait too long before I can re-live my patient saving doctor days!
Pokemon SS Expansions – The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra
For me, the last great Pokemon series was X and Y. Sun and Moon were overwhelmingly disappointing, to the point I didn’t finish them. Sword and Shield were good, but over quickly, and almost too linear. I realise that I, a 28 year old Western woman, am not the target audience for Pokemon, but I did feel the game was more of a foundation than a complete game. In the past, we’ve seen Nintendo release a third game each generation, fixing bugs and adding new features that people missed – games like Crystal, Platinum and Z.
This generation, Nintendo are releasing expansions – adding new features, new stories, new encounters and new (or more accurately, old) Pokemon. Although it seems odd to get a Pokemon expansion, and many people are upset, I think it’s a much better idea. Its much cheaper than buying a third game, and it allows you to develop your story with your current team, rather than having to start all over again. Yes it’s a shame we didn’t just get these new features in the first game – but we know the Pokemon pattern. This is an exciting shake up, and a new twist to the Pokemon experience, and I’m excited to see what it brings!
Darksiders Genesis – Switch Version
The first Darksiders game was a work of art. The second Darksiders game was a work of art. The third Darksiders game was okay. And with one Horseman left to meet, we have one more chance at a work of art.
Darksiders Genesis takes place before the events of the first game, when War believed the seal had been broken and came to Earth, and sees War team up with Strife to restore balance to the world. It differs in game style but the other games in the franchise – the camera angles are more similar to Diablo or Path of Exile, and it’s more hack-and-slash than RPG, but Genesis offers a new twist on the Darksiders story and there’s a two player mode. Although you can play the game just fine switching between War and Strife’s combat styles, I’m much more interested in seeing what the 2-player mode has to offer. The game is already out on PC, and seems to have favourable reviews, so I’m confident its transition to the Switch will be just as good.
The list isn’t exhaustive, though! Animal Crossing : New Horizons is out in March, and that may well take over Final Fantasy. It’s amazing how much the Switch has become my go – to console!
What games are you excited for in 2020?