It’s that time of the year again, when there’s a collective intake of breath as we await exciting announcements from the biggest gaming show on the planet. Though it is remote once again this year, Gamescom is still playing host to a plethora of new trailers and announcements.
Geoff Keighley hosted the Opening Night Live event this week, which featured a reboot of Saints Row, an extended look at the Call of Duty: Vanguard campaign starring Laura Bailey as Polina Petrova, and the debut of Halo Infinite’s multiplayer. What was your highlight? Let us know in the comments.
Liam | Forza Horizon 5
I have fond memories of Forza Horizon 4, its party-like atmosphere and laid-back take on racing and stunts (the game’s Halo inspired showcase was a particular highlight).
Not only was the gameplay great but being set in the UK was an extra bonus for me, as I happened to be living in Europe at the time and it was nice to be able to cruise around familiar looking roads and countryside every now and then.
Forza Horizon 5 and its more exotic setting, however, could well be the perfect remedy to being stuck in old Blighty for the past 18 months or so. The gameplay shown off last week looked as exciting and over-the-top as I’ve come to expect from a Horizon game, and I’m looking forward to taking a virtual holiday and tearing around the gorgeous environments on offer.
It looks like there will be plenty of variety across the game’s map if the video was anything to go by, with tropical jungles, deserts, and even volcanoes all making an appearance. The big sandstorm set piece also looked pretty impressive, though hopefully they’re not an overly regular occurrence as I could see them getting a bit annoying if you’re just trying to get from A to B.
Sam | Marvel’s Midnight Suns
I don’t think the line-up at this year’s Gamescom was up to much, likely as a continuing result of the pandemic. The Saints Row reboot looks to strike a balance between the series’ roots and eventual wacky direction, which works for me. Marvel’s Midnight Suns, however, works even better!
While XCOM and Gears Tactics are great, turn-based tactical games arguably shine brightest when combined with exploration and traditional RPG elements; two excellent examples being Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle and Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden. Throw a cast of iconic Marvel superheroes into the mix and Midnight Suns sounds like a recipe for success.
The game showcases a darker side of the Marvel universe, set in the underworld where the likes of Wolverine, Doctor Strange and Blade fight hordes of demonic forces. There’s also a bespoke central character called The Hunter, which players build into their very own hero. That in itself is an enticing prospect, despite the uninspired name.
What’s most exciting is Firaxis Games being at the helm. This studio is arguably king of the turn-based strategy genre, ruling over both the Civilisation and XCOM franchises. It’s hard to see how the project can go wrong, but then the same could have been said for Crystal Dynamics’ The Avengers…
What was your favourite Gamescom 2021 reveal? Let us know below.