The most exciting gaming highlights for 2021

The Game Awards traditionally take place in December, and this is also the case this year. There are not only numerous prizes to be won for the developers. They also whet gamers’ appetite for the games in the coming year.

In line with the pandemic year 2020 and the industry, the Game Awards took place virtually on December 10 this year. The presentation was streamed live on over 40 platforms, only the respective production team and the moderators were on site (in Los Angeles, London and Tokyo). Not surprisingly, “The Last of Us II” was the big winner of the evening and won the categories “Game of the Year”, “Best Game Direction” and “Best Narrative”, among others. What gamers around the world are likely to have been even more interested in than the award ceremony are outlooks on the games announced for the coming year 2021. Here come the gaming highlights.

2021 could be a good year for gamers

The biggest titles we can look forward to as early as 2021 are certainly the new “Mass Effect”, “Dragon Age 4” and “Call of Duty: Cold War”. All series have already made a name for themselves. Now their makers have shown new or even the first trailers.

The teaser for “Dragon Age 4” still doesn’t show any gameplay, but it allows you to look much deeper into the story than before. Against the villain Dread Wolf, a new, as yet unknown hero may compete, who ends up in the kingdom of Tevinter, led by magicians. The first trailer for the new “Mass Effect” confirms what fans have been waiting for for a long time: it’s back to the Milky Way! There are numerous indications in the teaser that it is a sequel of the original trilogy. At the end you can also see a familiar face, namely that of Asari Liara, an ally of Commander Shepard, the battle-hardened veteran from the first three parts.

While many games do not start in the very near future, December 16 has been confirmed for Season 1 of “Call of Duty: Cold War”. At the Game Awards, the trailer showed what the gameplay and map look like. “Returnal” also has a fixed date for the PlayStation 5 . The exclusive title starts on March 19, 2021.

Trailers whet the appetite for the new gaming year

The trailer for “Crimson Desert” also stood out. In 2019, the development studio Pearl Abyss announced the game, back then as an MMORPG. Now the final move to the single-player game followed and this is also underlined by the trailer shown at the Game Awards 2020. In it, the player ends up on the beautiful continent Pywel, known from the MMORPG Black Desert Online. As the leader of a mercenary gang, the area is to be systematically recaptured. In the teaser, the optics and the beautifully designed landscape are particularly impressive. The sketched storyline makes you want more, the release is planned for winter 2021.

Another highlight of the Game Awards 2020 was the trailer for “It Takes Two”. The co-op game breaks with the genre traditions and tells the story of a falling out love couple who are transformed into dolls and transported into a magical world. Gamers can also look forward to “Monster Hunter Rise”, which will be released on March 26, 2021 and will probably have a demo version available from January. According to the trailer, the popular “Microsoft Flight Simulator” for the new Xbox Series X / S console will also be released in 2021. The trailer for “The Callisto Protocol” by “Dead Space” creator Glen Schofield also draws attention; a big title for horror fans could be in the starting blocks!

The winners of the Game Awards 2020

Besides “The Last of Us II” there were of course many other winners that evening. “Final Fantasy 7 Remake”, “Hades” and “Ghost of Tsushima” were also often nominated. Nintendo’s long-running “ Animal Crossing: New Horizons ” was also able to convince as “Best Family Game”, but failed as “Game of the Year” because of “TLoUII”. The best mobile game was “Among Us”, which was head-to-head with “Genshin Impact” and “Call of Duty Mobile”. Incidentally, “TLoUII” also won in the role-playing category and thus prevailed against other strong nominees such as “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla” and “Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order”.

The winners of the main categories at a glance:

  • Game of the Year: The Last of Us II
  • Game Direction: The Last of Us II
  • Narration: The Last of Us II
  • Art Direction: Ghost of Tsushima
  • Music: Final Fantasy 7 Remake “
  • Audio design: The Last of Us II
  • Acting performance: Laura Bailey as Abby in The Last of Us II

The way the categories are presented is not the only reminder of the Oscars awarded for films. The entire presentation also underlines the great importance of the Game Awards 2020.

  • Games for Impact: Tell Me Why
  • Running game: No Man’s Sky
  • Indie game: Hades
  • Mobile game: Among Us
  • Best community support: Fall Guys
  • Best VR / AR game: Half-Life: Alyx
  • Innovation in Accessibility: The Last of Us II
  • Action game: Hades
  • Action-Adventure: The Last of Us II
  • RPG: Final Fantasy 7 Remake
  • Fighting Game: Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate Edition
  • Family game: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
  • Simulation or strategy game: Microsoft Flight Simulator
  • Debut: Phasmophobia
  • Game waiting for a master: Elden Ring

It is also interesting that it was not “The Last of Us II” that won the audience award, but rather its competitor “Ghost of Tsushima”. As expected, the best esports game will be “League of Legends”.

  • Audience Award: Ghost of Tsushima
  • Esports game: League of Legends
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