The 2020 Player 2 Video Game Fantasy Draft – The Selections
The Player 2 Fantasy Draft has returned for 2020, and with the big releases all beginning to rain down upon us, we thought it was high time we got our selections in for the year. The same rules apply as they always have, each contestant (in snaking order) selects a total of four different games (once a game is taken, it’s unavailable to anyone else), plus one wildcard game. At the end of the year, the four games scores (based upon their Metacritic score for the top reviewed SKU) are tallied and a winner awarded. The Wildcard game is to top a player up if their game gets delayed in 2021 or beyond, or if their wildcard game reviews better than one of their original four selections. Remasters and ports are a no-no, remakes are acceptable, as are speculative picks for example NBA 2K21, Call of Duty 2020, or Assassin’s Creed Ragnarok.
*Editorial note* We’ve used Metacritic scores for many years to underpin the competition, but just this week we were added to Metacritic’s roster of represented publications. To ensure no conflicts of interest arise, anyone who selected a game in the draft will NOT be doing any review coverage of the game to ensure our reviews still hold the utmost integrity.
Without further adieu, let’s see what everyone selected, shown in the order that they made their first selection
To get ahead of the end-of-year articles that will slather our eyes, I approached the Draft through the aptly meme-worthy “Hindsight in 2020”. My list is filled with the experiences of my last decade of gaming, and the eager wait to immerse myself in these familiarities again in the eighth generation. 2020 is going to be a year where I am going to find community again as I journey along the Archipelago of Animal Crossing: New Horizons. 2020 will refresh my experience of “Boy Band RPG” that I adored half a decade ago as I roleplay my way through Yakuza: Like A Dragon, and will hopefully allow me to return to my old adventures in Luxendarc with the official sequel Bravely Default II. 2020 will compliment my recent journeys to find home and a sense of place in Unpacking. Lastly, 2020 will harness my childhood enjoyment of ancient myths and legends, funnelled into my decade-long enjoyment of isometric RPGs, as I await Hades to exit early access later this year.
Of these games, only Animal Crossing is a definite release for this year, with the rest listing late-year release windows. So in terms of the Draft, I have probably shot myself in the foot in that regard. However, encapsulating these hopes for my gaming adventures for this year has been a wonderful activity in condensing my comfort games into a list that I can hand off to the Fates and cross my fingers.
Ok folks, this is it, this is the year where Barry finally takes the crown.
I mean look at this stable of games that I was able to secure while my competitors were looking silly games like Animal Crossing and the Last of Us (part 2).
Final Fantasy 7 Remake, the demo dropped for that just the other day and boy is that running hot on both the nostalgia and sweet new game radars! The fact that it is episodic means that I will be able to pick this game for more than 4 years in a row, which is just something that appeals to me. Elden Ring. What is Elden ring? Who knows! All we know is its the smart cookies from From Software and tug boat captain himself George R.R Martin are joining forces to make a game, and that game is Elden Ring. Knowing both From Software and George Martin’s work, the game will be amazing, and also probably/will take an extra 7 years to be released. Demon’s Souls Remake, Ok so this one is less an announced game and more a rumoured game for the PS5. Now keep in mind the game has been rumoured for years at this point, and probably will continue to be, but my heart still yearns for co-op Demon’s souls after the servers were shut down for the “only reason to still have a ps3” OG Demon’s Souls.
Corruption 2049, Ok so I got VERY lucky with this one, I picked this game about a day or so before it was released which only JUST made it eligible for selection and BOY am I glad I did because this game is fantastic. It’s Not Xcom 2 fantastic, but its a very very good tactical game, sure the customisation options could do with a boost, and the story isn’t super complex, but man stealth tactical kills are still stealth tactical kills! And that brings us to the Wild card (As if 2 of my picks aren’t already wild cards…) Dark Alliance. Now I had no choice but to pick this reboot / next chapter in the Baldur’s Gate franchise, and that is due to the sheer amount of time I spent playing Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance 1 and 2 on the OG Xbox. I really don’t know a lot about this new Dark Alliance, but I hope it’s awesome!
So that’s it for me. Two incredibly solid games with Corruption 2049 and FF7R, an incredible long shot with Demon’s Souls Remaster and a pretty solid hope with Elden Ring. And when Demon’s Souls Remake continues to be an unannounced, but rumoured game, Dark Alliance is there ready to pick up the slack. And it will pick up the slack right? RIGHT?!
I’m fortunate enough to be looking at everyone else’s reports as they send them through to me for this piece, and there’s one commonality that I’m observing – a distinct lack of respect being shown the reigning champion! Those doubting my selections this year do so at their own peril. Anyone who doubts that The Last of Us Part II is scoring anything less than 90 is insane – Persona 5: The Royal, basically being an upgraded version (a remaster without being a remaster) of a game that scored 93 previously is another sure thing. My next two are punts somewhat, the tactical genre, and those who play them can be a bit fickle, but I’m quietly confident that Xbox, The Coalition and Splash Damage can pull it together to craft a fantastic product. As for the one that everyone is doubting me on – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 – I have my doubts too, but if it pays off… I just win, simple as that. With the 2020 take on Call of Duty in my back pocket though, I might just win either way!
There is some stiff competition though, Adam has an imposing line-up (anything with a CD Projekt Red title in it, needs to be feared), but Stephen has put up an almighty case to take the crown again. If all my pieces come together as I hope they will, then I expect to win – but it won’t be by a lot. Let’s cross our fingers.
The 2020 draft was always going to be tough. You may be thinking why, and who could blame you. It’s tough because we’re all expecting a new console to launch at the end of the year and what this equates to is limited game titles, releases and news (as they’ll no doubt trickle in over the next 9 or so months). So when it came to picking game titles, the pickings were slim. Over the first two rounds, all the notable games were already chosen and we all have to start taking some risky choices on games that were ‘likely’ to be released this year. All that being said and done, my list is solid and I’m totally gunning for that first place trophy again!
Another year, another Player 2 Draft. After winning the inaugural year and following up with a 3rd place the next, I haven’t caught a break since. Given the small pool of potential 90+ Metacritic scoring games each year, oftentimes it seems that the draft order is having a bigger and bigger influence as each writer battles for the most coveted upcoming releases of the year. Casting my eyes across the 2020 selections, however, I don’t feel that there is a particularly strong contender – in fact, each entrant seems to have at least two titles that are a shoo-in for high scores, while the rest could reach those same heights or hover around the low 80’s as many titles are wont to do these days. Hell, even Barry has a chance this year if the FromSoft winds favour him. As for my own selections, RE3 Remake and Hollow Knight: Silksong seem sure things given the reception of the RE2 Remake and Hollow Knight, and I’m hoping that the limited pool of VR owners will positively influence the score of Half-Life: Alyx. Minecraft Dungeons and Persona 5 Scramble seem surefire bets given the love their source material receives and their use of mechanics from other popular franchises – the clickbait writer in me just sees Minecraft Diablo and Persona 5 Warriors getting a large amount of attention.
If I had to pick a frontrunner for this year, it would be Adam – his combo of Cyberpunk, Halo Infinite and Watch Dogs: Legion seems incredibly strong at this point. However, Paul could take the lead if Nintendo schedule Breath of the Wild 2 for release this year and critics don’t savage The Last of Us 2 given how well regarded the ending of the first game was. All in all, I think the biggest enemy to all of us this year is, as with most years prior, release schedule delays. Most of us have put bets down on games with no scheduled release date this year or severely run the risk of delays – can we be saved by the impending release of next-gen consoles and publishers that want current-gen products out before they hit? I guess we’ll know by November.
Well, it’s my first year being officially part of P2 and I managed to scrape into the draw, so I’m choosing to use that to justify the fact that I made some weird choices. I’m really hoping Psychonauts 2 lives up to the hype, and as a fan of Life is Strange I’ve got my fingers crossed for Tell Me Why. My biggest release has gotta be Marvel’s Avengers, but it still feels like such a wildcard even though it’s only a few months away. Guess I’ve gotta hope it’s earth’s… mightiest game? Pretty sure Paul has got this in the bag, though. He’s clearly the champ, and The Last of Us alone puts him way out in front. If Breath of the Wild 2 is released, nobody else stands a chance (I was definitely going to steal that one too, curse him!)
Well, the draft could have gone a bit better for me. While I had the benefit of two quick picks early it was a long time between drinks and I was left watching my list of potential picks get smaller and smaller as the highly coveted games were snapped up. As a result, I am not too sure how I will do this year, although I think Matt and Adam will be the ones to beat as they managed to snag a number of good games between them. After a strong showing in my first draft last year I was hoping to take the trophy this year, instead, I’m just hoping to end up somewhere in the middle of the pack. Only time will tell.
So here we are after another disappointing year of me being robbed by delays. But fear not dear readers because I am nothing if not persistent. This year, despite getting the last draw in the first round, I have managed to snag some absolute cracking titles for my draft list. Ori and Doom are almost shoo-ins for high scores, Vampire the Masquerade 2 has some hot buzz surrounding it and I have a theory that Dying Light 2 was delayed so it could be a launch title for the new systems later in the year so that with the previous positive word, means it is also in a good spot for a high score. To round things out is the freshly shown Outriders, which from all reports from those who played it, is that it is a good bit of Destiny style fun, so it should be a safe back-up should Vampire or Dying Light stumble.
Threats this year, well Paul is crowing early but I think he has a couple of iffy choices in his bag, namely Gears Tactics, Persona 5 Royal and Breath of the Wild 2. Breath is no way going to hit this year and the other two could go either way. No, I think my real threat is from last year’s winner Adam, who snagged Watchdogs, Cyberpunk and Halo, three titles that I feel are going to do exceptionally well. His back up choice Dragon Age 4 is, however, laughable. Other strong contenders are newbie Jess, with some off-centre but strong picks and Stephen with the big double act of Resi 3 and Silksong. Oh and I expect Barry to bring up the rear for the 4th year running, even though Final Fantasy VII will finally come out. In all, I actually feel like this will be the tightest year yet, so let’s get it on.
Stay tuned as the year rolls on for updates, and a few cheeky twists in the tail before the final scores are in!
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