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100… err 50… err 10… err 5? Yes, Five Games to Look Forward to in 2020.

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By Nelson Schneider - 01/04/20 at 03:35 PM CT

The monthly ‘Backlog: The Embiggening’ articles I assemble for MeltedJoystick are usually depressing enough. But I received a special request from a reader to ring in the new year with a list of ‘kinda-sorta-confirmed-we’ll-get-back-to-you-on-that’ game releases coming over the entirety of 2020. The big games journalism sites would just dump everything in a big pile and point excitedly, kinda like Nintendo Power Magazine used to do when EVERY trash NES game got coverage and generally-positive reviews (I’m still traumatized by the fact that “Bayou Billy” got a WHOLE ISSUE dedicated to it). Or, at bare minimum, they’d gather together all the “AAA” swill and Sony-produced ‘Is-This-a-Movie-or-a-Game?’ titles that mainstream trough-feeders can’t get enough of and tell us to get excited about spending our hard-earned cash on those.

At MeltedJoystick, though, some of us have higher standards and something resembling a curator’s eye. Thus it was difficult to scrape together anything to get excited about in 2020, but I managed to dig through the mountain of ports to find 5. Enjoy.

5. “Dreams” (PlayStation 4)
Holy crap! A new game from Media Molecule, the Sony-owned developer that brought us the PlayStation 3’s sole redeeming feature, the ‘LittleBigPlanet’ series. “Dreams” looks to bring back the Play/Create/Share ideology that has sat unused for the vast majority of the past 8 years, only with 3D platforming as the flavor du jour. I hope Chris can find this game for cheap so we can co-op through it on his PS4, since I’m certainly not buying an End of Life console for ONE game!

4. “Psychonauts 2” (Microsoft)
It has been decades since Double Fine produced the original “Psychonauts” back in the PS2/Gamecube/Xbox OG era. I found it to be a devilishly clever and intelligently written game (moreso by far than the typical 3D platformer aimed at babbys and/or Nintendo fanboys) that, unfortunately, suffered from a small lack of polish. But I still enjoyed it, and I’m looking forward to this sequel, which will likely only appear on Xbox and Windows, since Microsoft bought Double Fine last June.

3. “Wasteland 3” (Microsoft)
Man, 2019 was a terrible year for RPGs, with the only noteworthy releases in the genre being the National Dex-eviscerated “Pokemon Sword/Shield” and the ‘you really should be high to enjoy this’ “Disco Elysium.” At least 2020 will bring us a new entry in the ‘Fallout’ progenitor series, ‘Wasteland,’ which was resurrected by inXile in 2014 after finagling the IP rights. Of course, Microsoft also bought inXile in November 2018, so this game will likely only appear on Xbox and Windows as well.

2. “CyberPunk 2077” (Multi)
Chris can’t stop thinking about this game, and I also believe in its potential. CD Projekt has been busy on this cyberpunk-themed Sandbox/FPS since they finished “The Witcher 3,” and I’ve been itching for a game in that genre since “Fallout 4” disappointed me so severely. I’ve also been itching for a cyberpunk game with some truly impressive cybernetic augmentations available for body modding, and it looks like “CyberPunk 2077” will bring all of that in spades.

1. “Baldur’s Gate 3” (PC)
I actually doubt this game will make it out the doors in 2020, but even in the face of the Games Industry’s crushing despair, sometimes you have to hold onto hope. Between Larian’s incredible pedigree with “Divinity: Original Sin” and its sequel, and the decades of incredible lore provided by D&D’s Forgotten Realms campaign setting, I feel like “Baldur’s Gate 3” has the potential to be the Game of the Decade, provided something doesn’t go horribly wrong.

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Matt

Wrote on01/12/20 at 09:49 AM CT

Probably a +4 for my backlog... at some point. I also don’t see purchasing a Sony console just for Dreams, however I did enjoy Little Big Planet quite a bit. Microsoft releasing titles on both Xbox and the Windows store is definitely a good move. Sony could do the same... but never will.

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dbarry_22

Wrote on01/06/20 at 12:42 PM CT

I agree 2020 in general doesn't look like it's going to be a great year. I'm looking forward to "The Last of Us Part II" more than any of the games on this list though. Dreams looks like it's trying to be too ambitious and that will be a wait and see for me and while the gaming community is really high on CyberPunk 2077 I have yet to get in that genre all that much so I think I can wait on that as well.

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