Cubed3's Most Wanted 2020 Games

By Neil Flynn 06.01.2020 2

​It is the dawn of a new decade, and more importantly a new generation of machines is tantalisingly close to release. Details on the forthcoming 'Xbox' and PlayStation 5 are scarce for now but that doesn't stop the hype train for an indelible experience still to be had on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and the sensational Nintendo Switch. So, what are the most anticipated games for 2020? Carry on reading to find out!

Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Releasing 16 January 2020 (Japan), TBA for the rest of the world, exclusive to PlayStation 4

While there's no concrete Western release date for the latest Yakuza game, it's just around the corner in its native Japan. It's safe to say that the series is now well-deservedly recognised in the West as one of the finest gaming experiences to come out of the East, and with Yakuza: Like a Dragon due to take some risks by evolving its trademark formula, it will be interesting to see how this title performs. Turn-based combat and a new protagonist are the most obvious renovations, but Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio have managed to keep Yakuza perpetually in vogue throughout the franchise's lifetime, so there's little doubt this will deliver.

Having followed the Yakuza (Ryu ga Gotoku) series since its inception and having an absolute blast with every release it's easy to see that with the closure of the Kiryu arc that the developers want to try something new. The attention to detail, diverse content and crazy stories that mesh both dark crime and funny antics being paired with a new turn based strategic combat system sounds absolutely fantastic. Cannot wait for this one later this year! 
- Sandy

Final Fantasy VII Remake

Releasing 3 March 2020, timed exclusive for PlayStation 4


Final Fantasy VII is a special game to many fans for different reasons, and everyone will have their own personal tales and memories associated with it. Its massive following nudged Square to expand on its universe, but whilst prequels and sequels in all forms of media were created, it was a full-blown remake of the original game using modern technology that was what fans desperately craved. Although many will be wise to keep expectations in check, since these things don't always turn out the way people hope or expect them to, it will be exciting to see what Square does with the game, its characters and the story all these years later, fleshing out all aspects and perhaps delivering the title and tale the developers always wanted to way back when. Despite this release being just a fraction of the original game, Midgar is such a memorable and fascinating setting that it can most definitely hold its own as the centrepiece location for this first act. Given the name Square is running with, though (instead of labelling it "Part 1"), it is easy to forget that this really is just the opening portion of the original FFVII. Hopefully the rest of the remake doesn't take too long to come out as subsequent games, because there is plenty to look forward to that won't be in this first chapter. Whatever the case, this is going to be a jubilant occasion for FFVII fans when it releases in March.

The most anticipated for 2020 is as easy as the choice was in 1997. The game that started a lifelong love of RPG's for the western audience is well overdue. New control schemes, promises of new characters and story as well as breathtakingly gorgeous visuals mean March 2020 can't come soon enough.

The Final Fantasy series has a huge catalogue of titles, from mainline games to spin-offs, however one particular entry has been the front runner, and somewhat the perennial winner of the RPG rat-race since the late 1990's. That is why Final Fantasy VII: Remake is so hotly contested as one of the most anticipated games of the year. The demo that was showcased last year at EGX had huge lines in the London Excel waiting to play and for good reason. Big things are expected of Square Enix and surely, they'll deliver.

Nioh 2

Releasing 13 March 2020, exclusive to PlayStation 4


Team Ninja is following up their Dark Souls inspired 2017 ninja-action game with the prequel. Create your own character, earn new skills while defeating the Yokai with a variety of different weapons. Plus, there's also a new multiplayer mode with up to three players.


Releasing 20 March 2020, on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC. Nintendo Switch (TBC)


Slimy, yet satisfying. The team at id Software disappointed the masses when DOOM: Eternal got delayed from its initial November 2019 release window. Further frustration also occurred when they announced that the Nintendo Switch version will not see a simultaneous release. Nonetheless this will be one of the most gorgeous FPS titles of the generation. The reasons for the delay will be validated if id Software can stabilise a smooth 60fps at 1080p while avoiding any game breaking bugs. The 2016 reboot has whetted the appetite for the DOOM franchise once again and for the first time since the 1990s there are a huge number of people bursting with anticipation for the next entry into the long running and iconic franchise.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Releasing 20 March 2020, exclusive to Nintendo Switch


For all the greatness and escapism in videogames, they can often be nothing short of a headache
inducing stress-fest. What this reviewer is looking for is an easy ride on occasion. A stroll through a
world of happy-go-lucky residents, furniture patterns, fishing and mortgage payments. Relaxation
has always been a massive sell with the switch entry boasting a new desert island location and all
the peace that comes with freely exploring uncharted, untouched nature, a break from the stress
can't come soon enough.

Nintendo's popular life-sim, come weed-pulling-sim, come lost glove-returning-sim returns in 2020 to much anticipation. Delayed from 2019 to avoid developer crunch, it's hard not to feel positive about this wholesome community building and bug collecting game. It also wouldn't be surprising at all to feel positive of its performance, sales wise, with The Switch's massive install base. The big question is whether or not the new island setting and crafting mechanics are enough to freshen up the Animal Crossing formula. Can it do enough to put it ahead of earlier entries in the series and more recent indie darlings, such as Stardew Valley? Wholesome though it is, let's also not forget that Tom Nook is pure evil and it'll be enlightening to see how he goes about squeezing every penny out of the player when this game finally releases in March.
- Mike

Animal Crossing: New Horizons needs no introductions. Landing on a desert island that needs bringing to life with villagers will consume many Nintendo Switch owners on 20th March 2020. Familiar residents from previous games will share the island with the player, who as usual will be in debt to the always scheming Nook. New abilities of crafting items will be carried out alongside the usual planting of trees and flowers, fishing and bug hunting. Being at 3rd place in a list where all games are actually joint first shows the height of expectation these RPG life sims have. 

Resident Evil 3

Releasing 3 April 2020, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC


As someone that didn't play much of the original Resident Evil 2 apart from a magazine demo, it was still amazing to blast through Capcom's fabulous remake. So much so that having not even played Resident Evil 3 before, this re-do is easily one of the main games on this reviewer's personal wish list for 2020. The Resident Evil 2 remake was so good that just confirmation that Resident Evil 3 is getting the same treatment is all one needs to hear. It's great to see Capcom taking bold approaches to character design and altering the familiar heroes' looks to something more relatable and realistic whilst retaining aspects that keep them true to their original designs, and the addition of little-known voice actors is a great boon as proven in the remake of Resident Evil 2. If Mr. X was anything to go by, Nemesis is going to be burning holes in wallets as players bust through packs of fresh underwear.

Cyberpunk 2077

Releasing 16 April 2020, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC


CD Projekt Red have a lot to live up to after crafting this generation's finest RPG, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. From what little they have shown of Cyberpunk 2077, it's shaping up to be a very intriguing title indeed: the world of this gritty sci-fi RPG looks well-realised, as do the characters and the small snippets of gameplay elements that have been shown to the public.

Polish developer CDProjektRed put themselves on the map with the many plaudits that The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt received. Their follow up, Cyberpunk 2077, promises to expand on those foundations set of rich RPG mechanics and sharp, emergent storytelling, albeit in an all new gritty sci-fi IP and first person perspective. Informed by the tabletop game of the same name, as well as a heavy dose of Bladerunner and Akira influence, it's difficult not to salivate at the prospect of immersing in a vast, near-future dystopia of complex adult themes. There's the hope of an unparalleled player agency over this world and how to approach the various scenarios. Keanu Reeves in (Silver) hand, forming part of protagonist V's digital ego, early trailers and gameplay demos have been very promising.
- Mike

Trials of Mana

Releasing 24 April 2020 on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch


Growing up with Mystic Quest/Final Fantasy Adventure and Secret of Mana sets a familiar feeling of nostalgia being the first and second JRPGs that I ever had. Back in the day, the knowledge that a third game existed but was exclusive to Japan was heart-breaking. It didn't take long for adult-me to track down a physical copy of the third entry for Super Famicom, as a holy grail of sorts worthy of the extra cost of import. Playing it to completion on the original hardware with a guide and being blown away at how gorgeous it looked compared to everything else available on the system is something that'll never be forgotten. The fact that the west eventually did get Trials of Mana in its original form in the Collection of Mana on Switch somewhat lessens the impact of the release of the remake for me. However, this excitement to replay this game with a massive visual overhaul, as the original had everything going for it in the art department, and potentially new ways to enjoy this in multiplayer!

Marvel's Avengers

Releasing 15 May 2020, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC


Since seeing the live-action Avengers first grace our screens in 2012, Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics will finally allow us to play through it.  With a large roster of superheroes drawn from the Marvel comics, offline and online play with up to four players, 15th of May just can't come soon enough.

The Last of Us Part II

Releasing 29 May 2020, exclusive to PlayStation 4


On a personal level, most trailers and media have tried to be avoided in order to keep this game as fresh as possible upon playthrough. The Last of Us was a well-told father-daughter (but not quite) relationship story in among what was some quality stealth gameplay against a pretty unique take on the zombie and post-apocalyptic motif. Many years on, it will be very interesting to see what direction Naughty Dog has taken an older Joel and Ellie, with the latter looking to be the main controllable character this time around. Initial previews indicated a much more brutal approach to the story (and the first game had its fair share of those), so one wonders if it will be something that will turn away some players - but the developers may be looking to push out some messages of their own on multiple levels.

2013's The Last of Us left players eager for a continuation to Joel and Ellie's story, and thankfully, the wait is just a few months from over. Graphically, The Last of Us Part II looks set to push the PS4 to the very limits of its hardware, setting this title up to be one of the finest swan songs of any console generation to date. If this is anything like Naughty Dog's previous titles, it will be one zombie-infested hell of a gorgeous experience.

Beyond Good and Evil 2

Releasing 5 June 2020, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC


A stunning E3 trailer and an awesome monkey should be more than enough to pique curiosity. Gameplay offering massive open world areas and thriving civilisations on multiple planets, all traversable through various methods of travel could really make this one stand out as a triple A title. With not much chatter lately about a release however, here's hoping this doesn't get overshadowed by other titles with a major marketing push and popularity outside of just cult fandom.

Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga

Releasing 2020 TBC, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC


The epic Skywalker Saga will be able to be re-lived in Lego format. For the first time, all 9 films will be available in the one game: from The Phantom Menace right through to the Rise of Skywalker. With revamped combat and 5 stages for each film, there'll be a huge roster of characters and plenty of Lego to collect.

Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition

Releasing 2020 TBC, exclusive to Nintendo Switch


The original Xenoblade Chronicles came out at a time when JRPGs on more powerful consoles were only slowly moving towards open-world designs. The best games in the genre on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 tended to be more linear in design and Final Fantasy XIII[i] in particular, a flagship title of that generation, came under heavy fire for it, though that did little to slow down sales.[i] Xenoblade Chronicles however achieved in 2010 on Wii what most developers were shy to do on more powerful systems at the same time. It was also quite the artistically appealing title but understandably the Wii limited the impact on a pure technical level and the New 3DS version, while great in its own right, further cut back the visuals. This remaster however should finally deliver the truly stunning rendition of this fantastic journey that it always deserved.

No More Heroes 3

Releasing 2020 TBC, exclusive to Nintendo Switch


Both the original No More Heroes and its sequel on Wii are amongst my favourite titles of all time, in no small part due to the writing, the visual design and the voice acting, at least as far as the main characters were concerned. A new mainline entry was long overdue and when Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes was announced as coming exclusively to the Nintendo Switch back in January 2017, I couldn't be more excited. What we got however, while certainly not bad in its own right, was not what the fans were expecting from Suda 51. This one however, the properly numbered No More Heroes 3, should finally bring Travis Touchdown back to its roots. The first official trailer is a bit weird and doesn't show much of what Travis used to always do, but I'm not too worried as the "Goichi Suda" kind of weird is always good!

Psychonauts 2

Releasing 2020 TBC, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC


Tim Schaffer's Double Fine studio has been on quite the journey since opening its doors in 2000. Starting with larger, narrative-driven games which flopped financially, it eventually found its footing in producing smaller, idea driven and experimental affairs - as well as having one of the most successful kickstarter funders for a video game ever. Now, hot on the heels of a Microsoft acquisition, Double fine is coming full-circle and releasing the sequel to the very first game they put out. Psychonauts 2 promises to continue the story of Raz and his psychic spy cohorts, much in the same vein of the first much loved 3D platformer. The real hook of Psychonauts 2 comes from the premise, and the sublime creativity therein, of levels being set within the minds of other characters. Definitely one to watch.
- Mike

Garden Paws

Releasing 2020, on Nintendo Switch (available on Steam)


RPG simulation game visually beyond adorable with customisable avatars including cats, bears and rabbits. Aside from the obvious visual appeal there is great fun to be had foraging ingredients, creating and seeing items to build up a new home. There's been a delay from the hoped release date of winter 2019 on Nintendo Switch, with no estimated new date but it can be bought on Steam now. Frequent checking of the Twitter account for news may be the best course of action for 2020. 

Sakuna of Rice and Ruin

Releasing 2020 on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4


Taking a different protagonist stance to a popular series which has the player restore the harvest goddess powers, Sakuna actually is a harvest goddess in a world that needs rebuilding. Normal aspects of being a rice farmer such as sewing, growing, and harvesting rice looks like it may involve creating traditional rice dishes to sell, (here hoping for mochi and onigiri!). Dreams of being a rice farmer can be fulfilled through Sakuna's life which also includes fighting monsters alongside farming duties. Peace and chaos coexist in this engaging farm RPG. 

Halo Infinite

Releasing 2020 TBC, on Xbox One, Xbox Series and PC


With the announcement of Xbox came the first story trailer for Halo Infinite and oooh baby that classic aesthetic is oozing with next gen charm. The return of this styling and the situation master chief is in implies so much about potential new timelines, returns to the classic visual and audio stylings. Basically, anyone who likes sci-fi FPS' should be whetting their lips in anticipation of 343's newest entry in the series. 


Releasing 2020 TBC, on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC


Pacer has been in development for quite some time now, however it cannot be stated more than enough the pedigree that is working on this title. R8 Games have had a large amount of experience in the futuristic racing scene with the Wipeout series and have now turned their hand to Pacer. Having played a number of demos throughout 2019, and even interviewing the lead designer, I have to say that this will be a whole bunch of fun when it finally releases. Let's hope that 2020 is the year. 

Bayonetta 3

Releasing 2020 TBC, exclusive to Nintendo Switch


Bayonetta was a breath of fresh DMC inspired angel blasting action. Both the first game and second have been among the best of the best for skill action games. With the first two games having enclosed story arcs but with plenty of series spanning plot it will be interesting to see what situation Bayo gets written into in this third entry. It will also be insane to see which switch exclusive features are wrapped into the gameplay! 
- Sandy

2019 has been a stellar year for gaming, packed to the brim with a range of diverse quality titles that appeal to a wide audience. Feel like we missed off any important games that should be featured on the list? Feel free to comment below to make your thoughts known.

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Cyberpunk 2077, Marvel's Avengers and Final Fantasy VII Remake game delays already threatens to disrupt the release schedule of this feature, haha. 

Lol, don't get me started!

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