Multiplayer games are peculiar in that they tend to live on for many years thanks to updates, expansions, DLCs, and whatnot. This means many gamers will continue enjoying what they've been playing in 2020 even in the coming months; even so, there are some brand new multiplayer games worthy of attention coming your way soon.
Outriders (April 1st)
The latest incarnation of the shooter-looter genre ostensibly created by Bungie's Destiny, Outriders aims to marry several RPG elements with a lot of shooting. Set on the planet Enoch, Outriders will empower players with various types of superpowers; during combat, they're encouraged to keep an aggressive stance, because while there is a cover system health only regenerates by hurting foes.
Outriders is now set to launch on April 1st, though a free demo will be available on February 25th.
New World (Spring)
Amazon's MMO has suffered through several delays, following the decision to refocus the game design more on PvE (Player versus Environment) than PvP (Player versus Player). It is now scheduled to launch in Spring 2021, which isn't too far off.
Following the cancellations of Breakaway and Crucible, the pressure is all on New World to not be the third Amazon failure out of the company's three original game projects. As it stands, what we've played shows an interesting world and solid combat, but it is unclear whether there will be enough content to keep players coming back as they should in a game like this.
Deathloop (May 21st)
Possibly the most original game of our multiplayer games lineup, Arkane's Deathloop can technically be played just solo if you so choose. However, our inkling is that would essentially halve the potential fun.
Deathloop's main character Colt is an assassin stuck in a time loop, forced to eliminate eight targets before midnight (without being killed himself, of course). However, players will also get the opportunity to play as his antagonist Julianna, essentially invading another player's game in a way akin to what we've seen in the Dark Souls series.
Back 4 Blood....& co(operative horror game)
Left 4 Dead, or at least its spirit, is back. Mostly with Back 4 Blood, developed by Turtle Rock Studios, which is set to launch on June 22nd with largely the same gameplay formula (save for the addition of cards, which are used at the beginning of a level to adjust a character's health, damage, and stamina).
Evil Dead: The Game also sounds a lot like it, to be honest. This one is being made by Saber Interactive, which already found success with a similar formula in World War Z, and promises to feature characters and locations from the IP as well as both co-op and PvP modes (like Back 4 Blood).
Lastly for this horror trio of multiplayer games, there's The Outlast Trials. We don't know much about this one, but it will probably be a bit different than the other two; players are going to be forced to deal with the bizarre and sadistic experiments of the Murkoff Corporation.
Warhammer 40,000: Darktide
Swedish developer Fatshark found its niche with the Warhammer Vermintide games, where four players banded together to happily hack and slash at hordes of overgrown rats (the Skaven), Beastmen, and whatnot.
With Darktide, Fatshark is going to the futuristic version of Warhammer. This fact alone is also going to skew the gameplay more towards ranged combat rather than the overwhelmingly melee action of Vermintide.
Darktide will be a PC and Xbox Series S|X exclusive at launch, which means PlayStation fans will have to look elsewhere.
If you've ever wanted to roam Gotham City with a friend as Batman-inspired vigilantes, Gotham Knights seems to be exactly the game for the occasion. The action RPG can be played solo as well as in co-op mode with another player (drop-in, drop-out). DC fans will get to choose between four playable characters: Red Hood (Jason Todd), Nightwing (Dick Grayson), Batgirl (Barbara Gordon), and Robin (Tim Drake). Batman himself, it appears, is dead.
There's plenty of multiplayer games that we're anticipating this year beyond the few mentioned above in the shortlist.
For instance, Destruction AllStars is the first PlayStation exclusive in a long time to be fully focused on multiplayer. The vehicular combat game will be included with the PlayStation Plus subscription once it's out next month, which should ensure a meaningful base of potential players.
Of course, there's Halo Infinite's multiplayer mode. We know no real concrete details, but it is expected to be very substantial when the game lands in the Fall season, after a full year of delay.
Then, beyond the obvious new Call of Duty title, Battlefield fans will get a new installment from DICE sometime in the Fall season.
Riders Republic sees Ubisoft once again attempting to do the MMO sports/racing thing, after The Crew and Steep. Up to 50 players will get to partake in the following activities: mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, wingsuit flying, and rocket wingsuiting.
Elite Dangerous: Odyssey is technically an expansion, but it might as well be a standalone game for the Copernican revolution it's bringing to the game and franchise, allowing spacefarers to land and explore the surface of planets in first-person view at last.
On the MMO front, new expansions will be unveiled soon for both Elder Scrolls Online (titled Gates of Oblivion) and Final Fantasy XIV (currently unknown).
Last but not least, Starbase is a highly ambitious vertex-voxel space MMO where players, taking the role of robots, will find a fully editable (and destructible) galaxy once the title comes out on Steam Early Access (supposedly soon, in the first quarter of 2021).