OPINION

2021- Xbox Game Studios Games we want to see more of this year!

Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II

The sequel to Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice was announced more than a year ago alongside the Xbox Series X and showed off an incredibly impressive trailer.

The original game looked absolutely stunning and was developed with a small team and a modest budget. With more resources under Xbox, and assuming Ninja Theory can match the visuals in the announcement trailer, the sequel has a chance to significantly surpass its predecessor.

Hellblade II was in early development when it was announced, and it is difficult to know how much Covid-19 impacted the studio.Hopefully Ninja Theory have been able to make solid progress on the game and they’ll be able to show off more this year.

Ninja Theory are one of the world’s best developers, and have a case as the best studio under the Xbox Game Studios umbrella. With Hellblade II, they’ll have a chance to prove it.

State of Decay 3

The third installment in the State of Decay series has a chance to be a truly special game. The first two games were unique but flawed, mainly due to engine and budget issues. After being acquired by Microsoft, Undead Labs has a chance to finally shine and make a game that doesn’t suffer from a rough launch or other issues.

State of Decay is a systems based, simulation series where your goal is simply to survive a zombie apocalypse. While most games in this genre will focus on mowing down hordes of the undead, State of Decay focuses on supply management, building a community, and making the best of a bad situation.

There isn’t really anything else like it on the market, and a new game with a bigger budget has a chance to be special. Hopefully we see actual gameplay in 2021.

Starfield

There have been a few rumors and leaks that suggest that Starfield is coming as soon as this year. If that were to happen, it would be a huge boost to Xbox’s 2021 slate. But before that happens, we need to actually see the game.

Starfield is Bethesda Game Studio’s first IP in decades after going back and forth between The Elder Scrolls and Fallout. All we know about the game is that it will be an RPG set in space. The premise alone is exciting, but it will be interesting to see what Bethesda does with the idea.

Will they continue on the path of Fallout 4, which was more about base building and action rather than being a pure RPG? Or will they pull back and improve their RPG systems and reclaim the throne as best RPG studio in the world? These questions are interesting, but there is an ever bigger question for the game that has yet to be answered.

Bethesda was acquired by Xbox in September, and since then everyone has been reading the tea leaves trying to figure out if Starfield and the other Bethesda Games will be exclusive to Xbox. We believe Starfield will be exclusive, but it is also possible the game ends up on all platforms as well. The reveal of this question may be as big as the reveal of the game itself.

Whether or not Starfield does release in 2021, is or is not exclusive to Xbox, it is time to finally get more information about the game. Starfielf was announced in 2018 with a vague teaser, and since that point we do not have any more concrete information. Starfield is exciting in many ways due to the unknown, but we are hoping by the end of 2021 we know a lot more about the game then we do now.

Halo Infinite

We know we will Halo Infinite this year as it’s currently scheduled for a Fall 2021 release, but how it looks in motion after a delay is still a huge question mark.

A recent update showed major improvements in terms of detail and fidelity via screenshots, but actual gameplay will be needed before we we can make final judgments.

Outside of how it looks, little is known about the actual game itself. We have seen just a small glimpse of gameplay, but still do not have a full picture of what Infinite will end up being.

The next time we see the game in action will need to be incredibly impressive, as 343 can’t afford anymore public blowback. Whenever we do see the game again, it should be something to behold.

Fable

Fable is easily one of the most anticipated games coming out of Xbox. Fable is a beloved franchise in the Xbox catalogue and we haven’t had a true entry in the series in a decade. The upcoming game will be made by Playground Games who are known for their excellent open world racing series Forza Horizon.

We hope to see Fable fully revealed this year after a teaser trailer was dropped last July. It will be interesting to see how the series has evolved under a new developer, and if Playground Games will truly be able to capture the Magic of the original games.

There hasn’t quite been a series like Fable, and Xbox could have something quite unique on their hands if Playground is able to pull this off.

This game is still early in development, so we aren’t expecting a full fledged gameplay demo in 2021. But at ths point, any new information is welcome, and we’re hoping it comes this year.

Everwild

Everwild continues to be a giant mystery after being announced in late 2019. We do not know much of anything about the game, only that it should be another shared world experience from developer Rare.

The game has a gorgeous art style and seems to be a pretty relaxing game where you hang out with unique animals and conjure magic. It looks like a very Rare game.

Rare’s last game Sea of Thieves is quietly one of the biggest games in the world, and there is assuredly internal hope that Everwild can capture the same magic that Sea of Thieves has. Hopefully they are finally ready to show what the game is all about after more than a year of teasing the game.

Austin "Proven" Nelson

Writer and Host of "You Had Me At Halo Podcast" for XboxEra. Halo 3 apologist.

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