11 Upcoming Games of 2021

March is the time to celebrate my blogging anniversary over here at gamergal.exe! I was unsure how to mark the occasion this year for my 4th anniversary, but I suddenly recalled a short while ago that I’d acquired a sudden urge to get back into writing game reviews, which I aired over on Twitter. With this in mind, I decided that the best place to start would be to write about the games I’m most excited about playing – and what better way to do that than talk about new releases! So, here we are with a list of 11 upcoming games I’m looking forward to (and will hopefully re-introduce reviews back to the blog once I’ve played them)!

I’ve already purchased a few new 2021 releases so far including Nioh 2 (Steam release), Little Nightmares II, Code:Realize Wintertide Miracles (Switch release) and Taisho x Alice Episode 3. I’m still working my way through these titles at the moment (I did finish Little Nightmares II), but once these are complete I’ll hopefully get started on some releases from this post. Although there are other games I’m interested in that haven’t made this list, the following titles are all games I’m very interested in buying on release. I’ll link a trailer for each one too.

Let’s get started!

11. Alisa

Release Date: 31st May 2021

Platforms: Steam

Alisa is an action horror game inspired by the late 1990s PS1 era. I played the demo on Steam as part of the Steam Game Festival last month and became really interested in the style of the game – which actually does a great job at recreating a classic 90s horror game. I’ll talk more about my thoughts on the demo in a post coming soon, so for now I’ll just say that I’m intrigued. The free demo is still available on Steam, so I definitely recommend horror enthusiasts go take a look – I don’t think you’ll be disappointed!

10. World’s End Club

Release Date: May 28th 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Honestly, I don’t know a great deal about World’s End Club but I remember being intrigued when I saw the trailer and found out it was created by the team behind Danganrompa and the Zero Escape series which are both highly rated for their narrative. World’s End Club will be fully voiced and includes both puzzles and action with side scrolling adventure gameplay throughout Japan where mysterious events are occurring. I’m still on the bench about this one as it sounds promising, but I can’t help but feel like the trailer doesn’t show a great deal as to what this game is actually about.

9. Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance

Release Date: 22nd June 2021

Platforms: Steam, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One

This trailer looks sick. D&D Dark Alliance is an action RPG with co-op gameplay in mind. I’m always on the look out for new games to play with WesleyWhale and his brothers, so this was a fantastic find that looks like it will be an immense amount of fun! With 4 characters to choose from, each with customisable abilities, I’m pretty sure there will be some opportunities for some spectacular combos and team moves in this atmospheric world packed with Dungeons & Dragons beasts. I’m pretty sure it will have difficult moments from what’s displayed in the trailer, but I’m up for the challenge!

8. Dairoku – Agents of Sakuratani

Release Date: 10th December 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

If you’re familiar with my blog, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of otome visual novels. Dairoku – Agents of Sakuratani is one of three new localisations from Aksys which will be released later in the year. I don’t typically like to look into these games much before I play them so I can get to know the characters myself, but from what I’ve gathered from the trailer and synopsis, I’m not as hyped as I was about 2020’s releases. I’m not a huge fan of the art-style and fantasy themed otome games aren’t my preferred genre, hence it being placed fairly low on the list.

7. Olympia Soirée

Release Date: 15th October 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Olympia Soirée is another of Aksys‘ scheduled otome localisations. I found it difficult to choose which game I was more interested in out this and Dairoku since I don’t know the ins and outs of each game yet, so pretty much everything I said before still applies here. Again, it unfortunately seems to be a fantasy inspired setting, but I much prefer the art style and traditional Japanese themes shown within the game trailer. Olympia Soirée is also the first to be released, which means it will also be the first one I play from Aksys later in the year.

6. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge

Release Date: Coming Soon

Platforms: Steam “and consoles”

Time for something totally different now. I’m a huge fan of co-op side scrolling beat’em ups – they’re one of my favourite types of games to play with WesleyWhale, so when I saw this trailer for TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge on Twitter a few weeks ago, I knew I had to add it to my Steam wishlist! Although I was never actually a fan of TMNT growing up, I have some fond memories of playing a TMNT side scrolling beat’em up cabinet arcade game which I first discovered at The National Video Game Museum a few years back when I visited with WesleyWhale. We’ve since seen the same game a few other times in various arcades, and now I’m looking forward to playing this similar looking TMNT game at home!

5. Root Film

Release Date: 19th March 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PS4

I know Root Film was released the other day, but my copy hasn’t arrived yet so technically I’m still looking forward to it! As a fan of mystery games, I played Root Letter last year and despite being a little disappointed with it overall, I decided to give Root Film a shot. Aside from the art design looking amazing and capturing my attention, this concept seems far more interesting than that of it’s predecessor so I’m just hoping the ending/s are much better this time. Hopefully I won’t be waiting much longer as this game is next on my list!

4. Famicon Detective Club

Release Date: 14th May 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Released in the West for the first time, this updated version of Famicon Detective Club (originally released in Japan in 1988) includes two games: The Missing HeirThe Girl Who Stands Behind. Just like Root Letter, I was drawn in by the plot/s, but I have to say that the animation in this game looks incredible. I’m really intrigued to see if this visual style impacts the horror themes within the game since it certainly seems to have an eerie feel – subtly reminding me of Higurashi When They Cry on the creepy scale. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’ll be getting a physical release of these games and they do seem a little pricey, but overall, Famicon Detective Club looks really promising and I’m excited to see what both games are all about.

3. Scarlet Hood and the Wicked Wood

Release Date: April 2021

Platforms: Steam

Scarlet Hood and the Wicked Wood is a new game from one of my favourite indie developers, Devespresso Games. After loving their previous game, The Coma 2: Vicious Sisters, I knew I had to play this demo when I noticed it as part of the Steam Game Festival last month. Scarlet Hood looks so much like The Coma 2 in terms of art style, but the fairy-tale genre is completely different which feels strange, yet familiar. It’s quite wacky, but I was really impressed with the demo and I have a feeling it’s going to be an enjoyable and interesting experience featuring a ‘relive the same day’ mechanic with plenty of puzzles. I can’t wait to play more!

2. The Caligula Effect 2

Release Date: 22nd October 2021

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PS4

The Caligula Effect 2 brings my two main interests together as one: gaming and vocaloid music. I played The Caligula Effect: Overdose on Steam back in 2019 and really enjoyed the combat mechanics and world building despite not being that into JRPGs. I actually found out about this sequel from vocaloid producer, Kairiki Bear, retweeting their character trailer for the game on Twitter which ramped up my hype as I’d not even heard their was a 2nd game in the making! To my surprise, I also found that it’s getting an English release in October! I’m hoping there’s a chance The Caligula Effect 2 will be released on Steam, but I’m just praying I can get a copy of the OST somewhere as Ayase, Kemu, Kairiki Bear and even Neru are writing songs this time around – I NEED IT! Unfortunately, I couldn’t find an English trailer, but I’m hoping we’ll hear more about this release in the near future.

1. Bustafellows

Release Date: Summer 2021

Platforms: Steam, Nintendo Switch

Hello, no.1 game! Bustafellows is an otome visual novel, brought to the West by PQube. I’m so excited for this game as the plot sounds really intriguing with the MC’s time-hopping power. I’m getting some Collar x Malice and Piofiore vibes from the trailer too, so I’m expecting a lot of action and a thrilling murder mystery story from start to finish! Let’s not forget the stunning art design and great voice cast as well as a seemingly interesting mix of characters. I hope Bustafellows is released sooner rather than later since we’ve got a very vague release date and I’m really hoping it’s not released alongside Aksys‘ localisations. The only thing I’m struggling with here is whether to buy it on Steam or on Switch

Bonus: Variable Barricade

Release Date: 25th February 2022

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

I’m a little disappointed that Aksys‘ 3rd otome announcement this year is actually scheduled for 2022… but at least that gives plenty of time for quality control, or so I hope. Variable Barricade would have probably matched joint 1st with Bustafellows if it had a 2021 release date, hence why I had to include it as a bonus entry. Everything about this game is appealing to me, from the bright art style to the plot about the MC, Hibari, who finds herself thrown into an arranged marriage situation by her grandfather. From the nature of the plot, it seems like we’ll have a headstrong MC (which is always welcome) and I’m expecting it to be quite light-hearted this time which would be a nice change to all the heavy plots we’ve been getting recently. Forgive me if I’m wrong…

So there we have it. Just writing this post has hyped me up for the year ahead with so many awesome titles being announced. After a recent gaming lull due to this lockdown, it’s been nice to feel positive about gaming again, and hopefully there will be reviews to follow! Let me know which games you’re most looking forward to in the comments!

Thanks for reading and joining my celebration of 4 years on WordPress!

I’m hoping to bring much more content to the blog this year!

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