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What I want to play in 2020 as a Solitaire game developer!
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You may be wondering what kinds of games a developer who focuses on solitaire development plays. While I do play hundreds of hours of solitaire a year as development / research / fun (maybe thousands I’m not exactly tracking that time, it’s part of my job), I play other kinds of games too. 2020 is especially an exciting year for gaming since so many major, highly anticipated titles are coming out.
A sequel to Nioh, but takes place earlier in the game universe’s timeline during the feudal wars of Japan’s Sengoku era. Though some people played Nioh and didn’t care for it, I loved that game, and am looking forward to Nioh 2. I played and fully beat the Nioh 2 demos when they were available, and played as much coop as I could helping other players clear areas and beat bosses. The Nioh games are in the “Souls” like genre but have their own qualities. The Nioh games specifically are very strongly Japanese in theme, and I feel have a more action quality to them compared to the weight of most of From Software’s Souls games.
Sekiro also has similar vibes, and is an excellent game (well deserving of all of the GOTY awards it got). But Nioh has much more Yokai characters which I love while Sekiro is more of a high fantasy / Chinese inspired game in some ways? Nioh 2 has even more Yokai characters, which is very enjoyable for me. Nioh’s “mimic chests” were Narikama Tanuki, and their “Illusory Walls” were Nurikabe — each of these were interesting variations where you had to emote at the characters to properly gain their favor. I love the atmosphere, and gameplay, and will certainly play Nioh 2 when it arrives.
Stoneshard is a turn base role playing game where you explore dungeons and slay monsters. We’ve seen that a million times, but this game is still interesting to me since I played its free Prologue on Steam a while back. Be sure to add it to your Steam wishlist!
A game where you’re an unspeakable monster. It’s like playing as The Thing from the 1982 movie.
I played Doom 2016 for the first time late last year in 2019 mostly because I was disappointed in id Software’s previous titles and did not have high expectations (Rage was a big let down for me, and Rage 2 I didn’t even bother with either). Eventually I got Doom for cheap, gave it a try, and ultimately loved it. I beat it on the hardest difficulty I believe, and really enjoyed the experience — though I wasn’t interested in going back to old levels to collect all of the goodies.
Doom 1 and 2 were some of my favorite games growing up. I played those shareware demos over and over again. 🙂 I still have my copies of the Doom books by Dafydd ab Hugh and Brad Linaweaver. Thanks to those books to this day I still associate the smell of zombies to that of rotten lemons. In Doom 2016 the lore has changed compared to the older Doom games / books, but I am fine with it as the new take is still good. I’m a little worried about Doom Eternal to make bad decisions with the story, but am still excited and am hopeful since it seems the crew working on it are true fans who will give it true justice.
Witcher 3 was really great, CD Projekt Red are true gamers who know how to make great games. They have my trust and I am not expecting them to deliver disappointment with Cyberpunk 2077, though I am not expecting them to blow my mind either. I expect Cyberpunk 2077 to be sort of a Deus Ex in gameplay with some extra polish, but not significantly more impressive. Maybe they will blow us all away though with scale, content, and gameplay. I’d say overall cautiously optimistic is the best place I would put my hype for Cyberpunk 2077.
I absolutely loved Tenchu: Stealth Assassins, and wished that Sekiro had a bit more of a stealth emphasis (it has some, but not really). Ghost of Tsushima on the other hand seems to fit that kind of gameplay as a possibility though, but we’ll see how far it goes. Ghost of Tsushima regardless seems like an easy win for me, I will gladly play it on day 1.
I am a huge Monster Hunter fan. This is a game series I have played for thousands of hours, and I can easily get back into the older titles and enjoy playing them all over again. I played Monster Hunter World on PS4 up until the higher ranks, but didn’t play after that, and didn’t play on PC. There’s a good chance I’ll play Monster Hunter World: Iceborne on PC with some friends when it releases.
The Monster Hunter series is the type of games you either love or hate. For me it is love. The core loop of the game is collecting resources → building weapons and armor → hunting mobs → getting mob exclusive resources → making better weapons and armor → taking on greater challenges → repeat. Naturally you have a progression from zone to zone (like forest to desert to volcano) doing story quests, and entering areas to hunt on your own terms. It’s fun, and not as hard as you might think. It is very grind heavy in some cases so you have to love that to enjoy Monster Hunter.
These I might play day 1 depending on how they look near release.
Gods & Monsters looks like a stylishly appealing and fun game. I don’t know much about it still but it has my eye.
It’s the next Halo game. I will most likely play it with my brother and his friends if it has online coop mode.
These are games I am interested in at least a little bit (not hyped) but probably won’t play on day 1.
Like most people I’m a Half-Life fan. I played all of the original games, and nearly all of the games in the franchise made by other developers. I think we all wish Half-Life: Alyx was Half-Life 3 but as a developer I completely understand Valve’s position and anxiety with handling that title and can relate to wanting to do something more “safe” first while still producing more good games.
I probably will watch a streamer play Half-Life: Alyx first rather than play it myself. The reason being I am just not on the VR bandwagon yet and would have much rather it been a proper PC game (which maybe mod makers will fix). I will for sure play Half-Life: Alyx eventually.
This is an MMO coming from Amazon and is built on the Lumberyard engine. Oh, I do not envy those developers. Lumberyard was painful for me to work with though I wish it the best I can only imagine the struggle the developers of New World had. The New World game seems interesting to me for many reasons. It might be great, but I do not expect it to be.
Looking back at Resident Evil I cannot help but have my memory more focused on Parasite Eve. Can we get a good modern remake/remaster of Parasite Eve please? Apparently Parasite Eve was trademarked by Square Enix in 2018 so there may be hope. Don’t get me wrong I loved the Resident Evil games growing up too but my nostalgia goggles are way more directed at Parasite Eve personally.
I loved some of the early multiplayer focused Predator themed PC games. For this title, I’ll certainly wait for its release to have any desire to play it. At the moment, I’m expecting it to not be worth my time. This kind of game of Team VS Solo Player has been fun to me before. Before Left 4 Dead, there was a Half-Life 2 mod called Zombie Master. In this mod, you were either on a team of players who needed to complete an object like reach the exit, or you were the Zombie Master and could spawn zombies / do other actions with your limited resources which could kill the players and give you a win. Zombie Master was very fun and humorous (thanks largely to its good community at the time) and I wish for another game like that with modern polish. Predator: Hunting Grounds is a PS4 exclusive, which more or less guarantees I will not play it since currently I only want to play games on PC.
I am in the camp of thinking that The Last of Us was too easy and boring. In so much that I never even beat that game. You know how some people quit a game because it’s too hard, I quit games because they are too easy. These narrative focused games are designed to be playable by as many people as possible, and this focus on story accessibility over gameplay greatly diminishes the overall experience for people like me. Of course they would just make a movie except they want to double dip on people who want a story told to them in a game form and people who want to play games. Now I played Death Stranding last year and loved that game even though it had hours of cutscenes (and its ending was nearly a 3 hour long movie) but I also enjoyed that game because it allowed me to push the limits of what the character could do to make the game challenging. Yes, in Death Stranding I climbed the mountain before I was supposed to. But Death Stranding still suffered from the same focus on accessibility / story drive over gameplay with many parts of that game feeling like they could have been so much better if the focus was on making a game not a movie! The Last of Us Part II is another game I will probably watch a streamer play if I watch it at all. It’s worth saying I’m not saying movies pretending to be games shouldn’t exist but that they are usually not for me unless the story itself is really engaging both character wise and thematically. In the case of Death Stranding I like hiking around in difficult terrain, and would love to play more games with similar “gameplay” so long as the world itself was interesting. Games like The Last of Us are not that kind of game because they have you on rails for the most part.
When I first played Minecraft my early thought was “this would be a great style of game to remake A Link to the Past in!” So why didn’t Microsft / Mojang do that with Minecraft Dungeons? You know, progress the actual Minecraft gameplay instead of only the brand. Minecraft Dungeons is an action RPG Diablo like. In some ways it reminds me heavily of Dragalia Lost. I’m not hyped, but it might be good.
There are games which I hope will be released (as good and final games) in 2020 but don’t have a release date. Among these is Baldur’s Gate 3. Larian Studios studios is making it which I trust to do it right. I played and loved Divinity: Original Sin and Divinity: Original Sin II with some complaints (some really cringe moments in both games are possible, my natural desire to push into harder content early can break the story in both games so if you want to play them my recommendation is to go where you think the game wants you to go instead of picking a random direction and pushing through — I did the same thing in games like Fallout: New Vegas and it obviously broke the story flow for me in that game too). If Baldur’s Gate 3 releases in 2020 it would be the cherry on top of an already surely incredible year in games.
Of those games confirmed for 2021 one of the games I am most looking forward to is S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2. I have played every game in this series, including in Russian before the games got official English translations. I adore tactical games with punishing difficulty and 1 hit kills possible in both directions. Something I loved about the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. specifically was the Anomaly hunt. Around the levels in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. you could find very dangerous areas with anomalous treasure hidden within. The anomalies were guarded by all kinds of hazards like pillars of fire and invisible walls of death (which you would throw nuts and bolts into to try and get a measure for where you would die if you walked forward), and could be sold for profit or equipped to gain some kind of extra stats. The lore was compelling too, and I wish more games had this kind of setting (but not locked to one area of the world every time — exploring a Chinese themed area would be super awesome). I’ve been waiting to play Escape from Tarkov and I may this year just to scratch that itch. Blowout soon, fellow stalker!
I want to believe that Diablo 4 may come out this year in 2020, but it’s more likely 2021 or even 2022 if they need the extra time. I am super glad that Diablo 4 is going back to the Diablo 2 vibes, and seeing the preview for it add just that much extra salt on the wound on how poorly Diablo 3 was handled stylistically, gameplay wise, and story wise. I am very glad Blizzard has put people in charge of Diablo 4 who actually love the game, world, and gameplay instead of trying to make it a clearly “Blizzard” game like World of Warcraft. R.I.P. Blizzard North.
There are games coming out this year which others may be excited for which I have no interest for. This includes Ubisoft games like Watch Dogs: Legion. Their game formula interests me personally less and less with every game they release.
We’re releasing new games in 2020 too! Among them is Faerie Solitaire Dire, which you can wishlist on Steam to be notified of its release. 😇
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