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Nine Things Will Totally Happen In Gaming In 2021

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These nine Things Will Totally Happen In Gaming In 2021

With 2020 just about wrapped up and all the best games of its recognized in our annual Best Of awards, the team at GameSpot would love to enable you to anticipate what lies ahead by correctly predicting the future (or attempting to). 2021 is actually looking to be an exciting proving ground for new generation consoles PS5 and Xbox Series X|S, as they both enter the next stage after the latest launches of theirs. Will the year bring fantastic games and experiences which will drive the new hardware toward exciting new heights? Or perhaps will we still have to wait some time before the heavy investment we made this past holiday season becomes worth it? And let us not forget; Nintendo just might make use of this year to release the long rumored upgrade to the Switch–we think as much, at least. Whatever might happen, time is going to tell (or we’ll in our predictions)!

In GameSpot’s annual prediction series, we have put our brains together to determine what could happen next year in the world of games. While the accuracy of ours in predicting the future is not always on the mark, it still will not stop us from speculating.

Below you are able to find our gaming predictions for 2021. Regardless of how plausible or perhaps absurd these predictions may be, these’re what we think will come true in some form next year.

Because we do this every year, you need to take a look at our feature covering our 2020 predictions to see just how correct (and painfully incorrect) we were. Or else, be sure to look to our Most Anticipated 2021 hub, which contains features detailing probably the biggest games to play next year.

 

What do you predict will happen in games next year?

Let us know in the comments below.

Halo

Nine Things
Nine Things

Halo Infinite Will Actually Release, And It’ll Be Great
Following many years of development and a big delay, Halo Infinite will finally release in 2021, and it is gon na be great. I am calling it right now. After the struggles of Halo: The Master Chief Collection, 343 Industries is understandably taking the time of its to ensure Halo Infinite starts out strong.

It is a bummer the game did not release as a launch title for the Series X as was expected, but I’m in full support of the team taking the time it needs to actually nail it. This should be an especially tall task as the teams work from home during the pandemic.

The developer update for Halo Infinite released in December provided some excellent insight and depth on what 343 is actually spending the time of its on, which includes improving the graphics and ensuring fans that the free-to-play multiplayer element will not be a pay-to-win catastrophe riddled with excessive microtransactions. All of it sounds very positive, and I’m very excited to see the fruits of the team’s labor in 2021.

I’m particularly excited to see what 343 has in store for multiplayer, and that is the bread and butter of the Halo franchise. The latest Halo Infinite map tease was certainly exciting, promising a beautiful art style and amazing graphics. Master Chief has saved the universe countless times, and I am not going to bet against him now. — Eddie Makuch, Associate Editor

Nintendo

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Nintendo Will Celebrate Mother 3’s 15th Anniversary By Finally Localizing It In The West 2020 may not have been probably the best year, but that will not stop me from continuing a time honored tradition. Like year that is last, I was wrong about Mother three coming to Nintendo Switch in 2020. While it may be smart of me to give up hope at this point, I know doing so would dishonor the former boss of mine, Justin Haywald, who I imagine, like me, is just as disappointed that we have still not seen the third entry in Nintendo’s cult favorite RPG series come to the West. Cumulatively, we have spent 4 years now predicting that Nintendo will fulfill the wishes of ours and release Mother three, but no such luck.

In the past, I often justified a potential release based on how Nintendo was moving toward making its classic catalog more readily accessible via its online service. I actually thought it may follow suit with other Japanese companies, like Square Sega and Enix, which have been re releasing games that are classic on modern platforms. But this year, I believe I have finally found a solid basis on which Nintendo could yet give us Mother three.

You need only look at the specific way Nintendo has been celebrating games that are classic in 2020. In September, the company launched Super Mario 3D All Stars, a collection of that series’ 3D entries, to commemorate Mario’s 35th anniversary. Additionally, on Fire Emblem’s 30th anniversary, it localized and re released the first Fire Emblem game, making it available to play in English for the first time. Both are actually limited time releases, which looks like some strategic way to ensure an influx of sales right at launch rather than the celebratory reasoning that Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser claimed it is all about. Regardless, Nintendo has grown to be increasingly open to highlighting the classic games of its in ways that are different than throwing them onto the Nintendo Switch Online service.

The thing that makes 2021 special is actually the point that it is the 15th anniversary of Mother 3’s Japanese release. As you are able to imagine, Nintendo’s recent behavior could very well leave room for the company to localize the game as a limited time celebratory release. In comparison to previous years that Justin and I’ve spent predicting this game will come, this’s probably the most likely year for it to actually happen. Really, I am getting goosebumps writing about this. Like, what if Mother three gets released this way and gets a slick physical collector’s edition along the lines of Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & The Blade Of Light? It would be a dream come true.

Naturally, time is going to tell, and in about a year, I may be just as disappointed as I’ve been for the past 2 years, predicting this in Justin’s stead. It is difficult to say because Mother three is still a problematic game, mostly due to characters and scenes that may be deemed too debatable for Nintendo to be associated with in this day and age. Even so, a smart localization could recontextualize and fix these parts, even if doing so may result in cut content or perhaps changes from the original intent. But no matter what happens, I will not give up hope. I have already come this far, after all. — Matt Espineli, Editor

Persona three

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Will Get A Modern Port This’s perhaps only wishful thinking on the part of mine, as somebody who had their save erased before completing the game. Nevertheless, I think there’s some sound logic in this particular prediction: Atlus is going to bring Persona three to modern platforms.

Because of Persona four Golden and especially Persona five, the series’ reputation has never been greater. And whereas the earlier games in the series adhered more to the Shin Megami Tensei foundation, Persona three is exactly where the franchise more closely began to resemble what it’s now. And yet, it continues to be available only on PSP and PS2, which barely makes it widely available today.

We have seen signs of expanding Persona’s availability: Persona four Golden came to PC, and Persona five Strikers will come to Switch and PC in addition to the more expected platform of PS4. Persona three hasn’t been forgotten, as its characters were a part of Persona Q and Q2, and were revisited for Persona three: Dancing In Moonlight in 2018. But today it is time to let more recent fans see where they came from without lugging out back-compat PS3, PS2, Vita, or a PSP .

The best case scenario would be a Golden/Royal style update for Persona three (in addition to what Persona three FES did for the original), but a port to modern platforms with some minor quality-of-life improvements would still be much appreciated by fans. The wait for Persona six will undoubtedly be a long one, and having the ability to re experience (or newly discover) Persona three would make a great deal of sense to keep fans engaged. — Chris Pereira. Senior Editor

 

BioWare

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

BioWare Will disclose The New Mass Effect Connects To Andromeda
Seeing a trailer for a new Mass Effect game during The Game Awards 2020 was a nice surprise. Given it is only a teaser, it is very unlikely this new game is actually coming in 2021. Nevertheless, I predict that next year, BioWare is going to confirm exactly how this new game relates to the majority of the franchise.

Though The Game Awards teaser zooms in on the Milky Way Galaxy, it initially showcases 2 different galaxies, something that BioWare project lead Michael Gamble said was “intentional” and that both were shown “for a reason.” Additionally, the trailer comes with a line which goes, “Ark six is away. Godspeed.” The Arks were the massive ships used to travel to Andromeda, although importantly, only 5 were sent prior to the events of Mass Effect three.

The line is also very reminiscent to what Nexus Control says to Ryder when taking off in the Tempest for the very first time in Andromeda, another “intentional” choice according to Gamble. But this new game will likely connect to the first Mass Effect trilogy as well, given that the asari in the trailer looks a great deal as Liara and Gamble confirms that the hunk of metal that she is climbing in the trailer is actually a Reaper.

All this can make me believe that in 2021, we are going to learn that BioWare is actually developing a game that acts as a follow up to both Mass Effect three and Andromeda. I would love to see a game in which a sixth Ark is actually constructed and used by the survivors of the war against the Reapers to leave the Milky Way to be able to find a brand new home, or perhaps a game where Liara, as an asari, manages to live long enough to see several of the Andromeda Initiative return to the Milky Way. — Jordan Ramee, Associate Editor

Metal Gear Solid

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Metal Gear Solid Will Be Remade
Perhaps it is since I am still riding the high of Bluepoint’s fantastic Demon’s Souls remake, but I have got it in the mind of mine that Metal Gear Solid has to be next. Konami’s iconic action franchise is currently languishing in the dusty intellectual property vaults and Sony is much more aggressive about delivering exclusive games that stoke nostalgia and give owners of the platforms of its a sense of PlayStation pride. What could be better at doing which than a remake of Metal Gear Solid, one of the games that defined the first PlayStation and a franchise which would drive folks to purchase PS5?

A complete remake handled by an outside studio would also work in Konami’s favour too, as it is able to enjoy the advantages of a brand new Metal Gear Solid without having to commit astronomical budgets to the development of its all on its own. If Sony is actually ready to foot several of the bill and even help out with the heavy lifting, why not take advantage?

Better still, series creator Hideo Kojima, who’s currently making games at his very own independent studio, may be brought in to guide on the task and give it the seal of his of approval. Fans of the franchise will no doubt demand it, and since Kojima already has a good working relationship with Sony as a result of Death Stranding, it is definitely within the world of possibility to get him involved.

The other major advantage for Konami is the fact that it rebuilds some good will. Whether for the wrong or right reasons, the very public bust up between Konami and Kojima soured a great deal of fans of the franchise on Konami. When it followed up with the very questionable Metal Gear Survive, they were incensed. That ill will has lingered, but what better way to have folks warm to the company again than to give their blessing to the remake of Metal Gear Solid? Of course, if Bluepoint, a studio which has a proven track record of doing remakes right, is actually on the job, it is sure to help old wounds heal. It feels as the time is actually right for Snake to make his triumphant return. — Tamoor Hussain, Managing Editor

Nintendo

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Nintendo Will Hold A 35th Anniversary Celebration For Zelda Nintendo celebrated Super Mario’s 35th anniversary this year with a number of game releases and events, and I fully expect the Legend of Zelda series to get similar treatment next year. All things considered, 2021 marks the franchise’s 35th anniversary, and as one of the company’s marquee properties, Nintendo will probably celebrate the milestone in a huge way.

Given what a sales success Super Mario 3D All Stars has been, it looks like a safe bet that Nintendo will release some kind of Legend of Zelda collection for Switch together with the anniversary celebration. The collection will probably include the series’ 2 N64 installments, Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask, and possibly even the rumored Switch port of Skyward Sword. The anniversary would also be the best occasion to finally bring over Wii U’s HD remasters of Twilight Princess and wind Waker, though I wouldn’t be surprised whether Nintendo chooses to re release each of those games individually.

We will also likely see some Zelda themed events in other Switch games next year together with the anniversary celebration. Since Mario themed furniture is actually on the way to Animal Crossing: New Horizons for Mario’s anniversary, I fully expect the game to receive Zelda furniture also. Which seems inevitable considering that Zelda items have appeared in every previous Animal Crossing title to date. This would also be an excellent chance to introduce Zelda villagers to New Horizons. New Leaf players could use Zelda Amiibo figures to invite Wolf Link, Medli, Epona, and Ganon to live in the towns of theirs, and introducing a similar means to get them in New Horizons will be a fun way to celebrate Zelda’s anniversary.

Naturally, there is also the upcoming Breath of the Wild sequel. Nevertheless, as fitting as it will be to see that released during the series’ 35th anniversary, I think it will be more realistic to expect the game to launch in 2022, especially considering that the COVID 19 pandemic has likely slowed down its development. That is one prediction I would be pleased to be wrong, however. — Kevin Knezevic, Associate Editor

Final Fantasy XIV

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Final Fantasy XIV Finally Comes To Xbox
It feels as each time I interview Final Fantasy XIV director and producer Naoki Yoshida, I’ve to ask him about any updates for Xbox or Switch ports of the game. Square Enix’s wildly successful (and unrivaled) MMORPG continues to thrive on PlayStation and PC systems, and probably the latest word from the team said they have exceeded twenty million players worldwide. And with every other Final Fantasy available on Xbox (barring the NES/SNES entries), it feels as FFXIV is actually a void waiting to be filled.

Yoshida-san’s response has always been akin to waiting for platform holders to give the greenlight, telling me last year his goal is always to “strive to have as many folks play FFXIV on multiple platforms.” He continued to say to hold on and that fans will be the first person to know, but also noted, “I want to allow individuals to play with their friends without any cross platform limitations. I’m currently in discussion with Nintendo and Microsoft to make this a reality.”

Hell, even Phil Spencer acknowledged the idea at X019 last year as well, saying to press at the event, “I wanted you to know, rest assured that we’ll be bringing that game [Final Fantasy XIV] to Xbox. We’ve a good connection with Yoshida san and we are working through what it means to bring [to Xbox] a cross platform MMO that they have run for years.”

Well, FFXIV is actually poised to have a huge year in 2021. A significant event is actually planned in February, and we suspect it will has a reveal of the upcoming expansion and the 5.5 update that will bridge players into the new storylines. It would also be an excellent chance to usher in a new wave of players that would come from the Xbox platform.

A huge part of Square Enix’s games live on Xbox Game Pass, even outside of Final Fantasy–but that does pose the question of exactly how a subscription based MMORPG will function on Xbox’s platform that is built around its own subscription model. I am certain they would devise a way to pitch it all, but subscribing is actually a hurdle that some face when trying to get into FFXIV on existing platforms. The game currently has an ample free trial available that lets you access the base game and very first expansion for free without a subscription (while removing some features), and maybe that’ll help get folks on board.

it is been all but confirmed at this point, so It has a pretty safe prediction to make. I am just excited for more folks to see what all the fuss is actually about. — Michael Higham, Associate Editor

Stadia

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

Stadia Will Find Its Footing
Google’s game streaming service, Stadia, has had a little over a year on the market, and so much it’s sort of stumbled. It is not that Stadia is actually poor from a technical standpoint–it’s generally a very solid cloud gaming service. But Stadia came out of the gate without much of a value proposition. In 2021, I think Google is actually poised to change that, at least somewhat.

The primary trouble with Stadia right now is it is expensive. While you are able to make use of a great deal of your individual devices as well as your current PC, in case you want Stadia to run on the TV of yours, you need the ninety nine dolars Chromecast and controller bundle. Google offers a ten dolars a month subscription service, Stadia Pro, that offers access to several games, but it still requires you to buy by far the most popular titles at full price.

There simply is not presently a huge value proposition for Stadia–you sink in a number of money before unlocking the extra convenience of streaming games on your products without the need for high end PC hardware. But there is a really simple answer to the question of how to make Staida more appealing: make it all cheaper.

As Microsoft has realized with Xbox Game Pass, the huge win with a service as Stadia is not selling games or hardware, but locking in users for long term subscriptions. Stadia could increase its cache by growing its game library and securing deals to include big titles at launch, much the way Microsoft does. I know I am making all that sound very simple when securing those deals requires investment and negotiation major, but this’s Google–it absolutely has the resources to make its streaming service a major contender.

Especially with expensive brand new consoles being tough to find, Stadia has a huge chance to break through with gamers by coming in cheaper compared to the other guys. With a year of experience in what not to do under the belt of its, I think Google is going to try to make some moves with Stadia in 2021 and find a niche where it may be more successful. — Phil Hornshaw, Editor

Nintendo Will Release A New Switch Model

Nine Things gaming
Nine Things gaming

As surely as the sun rises and sets, Nintendo is actually working on new hardware, and I predict we will see the company release a new Switch model in 2021. This is not really a bold prediction to make; after all, many outlets, like Bloomberg, have claimed that Nintendo plans to launch an “upgraded Switch” in 2021, so it looks like a safe bet that will indeed be the case sometime next year.

 

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Naturally, Nintendo, for the part of its, has repeatedly downplayed these rumors, but the company’s denials do not amount to much. Each time reports of new hardware spring up, Nintendo is actually quick to shoot them down, only to release said hardware a few months later on. You are able to find plenty of examples of that happening over the past several years, even as recently as 2019, when Nintendo dismissed reports that it was working on a cheaper Switch–just before it officially unveiled the Switch Lite.

Releasing an enhanced Switch next year also makes sense from a business standpoint. With Microsoft and Sony recently ushering in a new generation of consoles, Nintendo will need to do what it is able to to mitigate the power gap between the Switch and its new rivals, and a far more powerful model that supports 4K resolution, as Bloomberg reports, would surely help accomplish that. Time is going to tell whether those reports turn out to be true, but given how frequently the company would like to refresh the hardware of its, I certainly would not bet against Nintendo releasing a new Switch model next year. — Kevin Knezevic, Associate Editor

 

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