Android gaming has become an increasingly viable alternative to handheld console games in recent years. 2020 showed us many Android games that have graphics comparable to last-gen consoles. Phone specs have also jumped leaps and bounds, with premium Android phones now equipped with six-core gaming CPUs.
Some manufacturers are including liquid cooling in their phones to minimize heating issues in such small devices. As phone technology improves we can expect rapid development in the viability of Android phones as handheld gaming consoles, and with that said, here are the upcoming Android games in 2021 to look forward to.
Expected to be released in early 2021, Pokemon Unite will feature MOBA-style gameplay. Two teams of five players will battle it out in a MOBA style arena, with players scoring points for capturing wild Pokemon throughout the map.
This could be a very unique gameplay experience in the Pokemon universe, mixing MOBA mechanics familiar to gamers with the Pokemon world. If you can’t wait to try Pokemon Unite, you can play .io games online that are based on Pokemon, such as Pokemon Mega and Pokemon Tower Defense.
The game is set to be published by Tencent, and is being developed by TiMi Studios. This marks the first time that a Chinese game company is being allowed to develop a title in the Pokemon franchise, although Nintendo has expressed interest going as far back as 2004 in working with a Chinese company to develop Pokemon games.
League of Legends: Wild Rift
Currently available in regional beta throughout Asia, the full official global release of League of Legends: Wild Rift is expected sometime in early 2021.
Wild Rift is the same core MOBA gameplay of League of Legends featuring many of the same characters and game mechanics, but optimized for mobile gameplay. Overall matches happen much quicker on mobile, with the average match lasting around 15 minutes, compared to the 45 minute matches that can happen on PC.
Feedback on the beta version has been positive so far, so Riot Games is continuing to make small optimizations based on beta feedback before the official global launch.
Blizzard’s Diablo III is one of the most popular ARPG games for PC, selling over 12 million copies when it was released in 2012. Fans have long been demanding a sequel, but Blizzard has chosen to focus on releasing a mobile game.
Diablo Immortal will thus be set between the story of Diablo 2 and Diablo 3, instead of being a true storyline sequel. The gameplay is very similar to the loot-and-grind mechanics of the Diablo series, but will also feature MMO elements.
It is very likely that Blizzard will release Diablo Immortal in 2021, followed by Diablo 4 for PC in 2022.
Dawn Awakening is a long-awaited open-world zombie survival game from Tencent, being developed by the same studio that brought us PUBG Mobile.
It is being built on the Unreal 4 engine, and the studio claims it will bring a very console-like gaming experience to the mobile platform. You can also expect many players to use Android emulators to play on PC.
Gameplay will strongly feature supply looting, base building, and a dynamic weather system. Exact details about gameplay mechanics are still relatively unknown, but beta gameplay videos show a game very similar to PUBG Mobile set in a zombie-infested world.
Plants Vs Zombie 3
EA and Popcap Games released a pre-alpha version of Plants vs Zombies 3 early in 2020, with a very limited number of available downloads. They also released a soft-launch in limited territories, but it is no longer anywhere to be found on the Google Play Store.
EA and Popcap Games haven’t released any statements on a cancellation of the game, so it is very likely that they are polishing the game based on pre-alpha feedback, and another release will be coming in 2021. Whether it is an official release or another round of beta testing is yet to be known.
Path of Exile Mobile
While Diablo 3 reigns supreme in the mainstream ARPG market, Path of Exile has been catering to a niche audience of hardcore loot-and-grinders since 2013.
Thus, it’s actually probable we could see two different Path of Exile releases in 2021. The first will be Path of Exile Mobile, as Grinding Gear Games claims that the endgame Atlas mapping system in PoE fits perfectly to touchscreen devices.
The second could be an actual PC sequel Path of Exile 2, which GGG has said could enter beta testing in late 2020 or early 2021.