2019 will be known for many things but probably not as one of the years that changed gaming. Yes, while Hideo Kojima returned with Death Stranding, and EA released a good Star Wars game, there weren’t too many other big highlights. But now it’s 2020 and it’s time to look towards what awaits us this year, in addition to what we hope to see.
In anticipation of what’s looking to be a great year for the industry, here are some predictions for what may await the gaming community in 2020:
E3 2020: A Battleground for Next-Gen Consoles
If there’s one thing that 2020 will most definitely be remembered for, it’s the release of the next generation of Xbox and PlayStation consoles. Although Microsoft has already revealed some information about their next console, perhaps they and Sony will take the opportunity to divulge more at the biggest conference in the gaming industry.
With both companies pushing the power of their respective consoles, a battle to steal the show (and the hype) at E3 may be imminent.
Nintendo Releases the Nintendo Switch Pro
Nintendo had a great 2019 in both the software and hardware departments. They released a smaller version of the Switch in the Nintendo Switch Lite. Although it sold well, many didn’t expect a cheaper version of the Switch.
The reason for this is that if Nintendo want to compete with the next-generation of consoles, they will need to release a more powerful device. This could be the long rumoured Nintendo Switch Pro, which could also add many highly-requested features to the device. (Let’s hope that it doesn’t suffer from Joy-Con Drift issues.)
Loot Boxes Disappear from the Gaming Industry
Loot boxes have been the centre of controversy for some time now but there is no denying that the model has declined in popularity over the last two years. Perhaps, it is hopeful to think that it will disappear from the gaming industry completely this year.
However, with the legal repercussions surrounding them and gamers turning their faces up, loot boxes aren’t exactly the best option for developers looking to extend a game’s lifespan. If loot boxes were completely removed from gaming, it would be interesting to see what sort of new model would replace it.
Sony’s Backwards Compatibility Goes Further Than We Think
Many gamers love playing old games and so backwards compatibility is really a must for new consoles. Microsoft had Sony beat when they found a way to make the Xbox One backwards compatible. The Japanese tech giant didn’t really have an answer with the PS4, so they set their eyes on the PS5.
While Microsoft has said that the new Xbox will be backwards compatible, the PS5 remains a mystery. Sony has confirmed that there will be backwards compatibility but to what extent remains unknown. Perhaps to make up for the failures of the PS4, the PS5 will allow players the opportunity to play games from every generation.
Cyberpunk 2077 Redefines Open-World Games
Both The Witcher 3 and Red Dead Redemption 2 changed how we viewed open-world games, and CD Projekt Red is looking to change it again with the long-anticipated Cyberpunk 2077. The choose your adventure, open-world RPG, Keanu Reeves game is one of the most ambitious titles of 2020. It is set to show everyone, once again, why CD Projekt Red is one of the best developers in the world.
Sony and Nintendo Both Make Changes to Their Online Services
We’ve gotten used to online subscription services over the last few years with Microsoft leading the way with Xbox Live and Xbox Game Pass. If Sony and Nintendo want to continue to compete with such services, they will have to make some big changes to their own in 2020.
Sony’s PlayStation Plus services have seen its fair share of criticism for its offerings, which are much less than that of their competitors. Nintendo still seems to be trying to work out all the kinks in their online service too. Perhaps, they’ll finally get around to making them more competitive?
Battle Royale Starts to Decline
Over the last few years, the battle royale genre has grown to become the most popular in the industry. Both PUBG and Fortnite have dominated the market for sometime now, with the latter being somewhat of a generational cultural icon at this point.
Every year since about 2018 somebody says this, but perhaps 2020 will be the year that we’ll start to see battle royale games drop in popularity.
Nintendo Has A Great 2020
Microsoft and Sony are both predicted to have a good 2020 but that doesn’t mean Nintendo will be left in the dust. Switch owners have a lot to look forward to this year.
Nintendo has confirmed that highly-anticipated titles, such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Xenoblade Chronicles Remastered, Doom Eternal, Overwatch 2 and No More Heroes 3 will be making their way to the Switch in 2020. This isn’t even counting Bayonetta 3, Metroid Prime 4, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2, which are all rumoured to release sometime this year too.
Will 2020 Really Be That Great?
Of course, these are all just predictions. It is possible that none of them may come true but that doesn’t mean they won’t either. With looking at what is on the cards for 2020, it does seem as if it will be a year to remember for gaming as we all take the next step in moving the industry forward.
What is your gaming prediction for 2020?