2020 looks set to be a big year for video games. The launch of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox’s Project Scarlett has already been confirmed, and 2020 will also let us know whether Google Stadia is here to stay or just another fad destined to fall into obscurity. But what about the new fighting games of 2020? Do they look any good? Absolutely.
2020’s fighting games will have to pull out all the stops in order to compete with the likes of Samurai Shodown, Fantasy Strike and Mortal Kombat 11. Luckily, 2020 and beyond looks to be rammed with fighting game releases, so let’s take a look at some of the biggest new fighting games launching in 2020 and beyond.
Expect this list to be updated as more fighting games are announced.
New Fighting Games of 2020
One Punch Man: A Hero Nobody Knows
PC, PS4, Xbox One
February 28th, 2020
Mighty Fight Federation
PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Guilty Gear Strive
Granblue Fantasy Versus
The King of Fighters XV
One Punch Man: A Hero Nobody Knows | February 28th, 2020
Developer: Spike Chunsoft Publisher: Bandai Namco Platform(s): PC, PS4, Xbox One
Okay, I guess you need a little bit more of an overview than that, so One Punch Man: A Hero Nobody Knows is a 3v3 arena brawler based on the popular anime and manga. Considering the franchise’s incredible success over the past years, this is the first time that One Punch Man has been playable as part of a console game.
The key feature of A Hero Nobody Knows is the Hero Arrival System. If players decide to pick Saitama in their team, they must survive a set amount of time before he arrives, at which point he can end the fight in an instant. With a fully fledged Story Mode that sees you creating your own Hero from scratch, One Punch Man: A Hero Nobody Knows has the potential to be Bandai’s best arena brawler.
Mighty Fight Federation | Q2 2020
Developer: Komi Games Inc. Publisher: Komi Games Inc. Platform(s): PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Since Power Stone, there haven’t been many great 4-player isometric brawlers (Shrek Super Slam, anyone?), so the release of Mighty Fight Federation will most certainly be a welcome one when it hits early access by the end of 2019, before launching fully on all platforms next year. Seriously, this one looks like a right laugh if you have mates to play it with.
While most 3D arena brawlers can be considered button mashing affairs, Mighty Fight Federation offers high combo potential for each of its 11 characters, making it appealing to both casual and hardcore players. With a Story Mode and Arcade Mode confirmed for the game’s full release, Mighty Fight Federation has the potential to be truly great.
Guilty Gear Strive | Late 2020
Developer: Arc System Works Publisher: Arc System Works Platform(s): PS4
Arc System Works’ premier series Guilty Gear is making a return in 2020 after the incredible success of Guilty Gear Xrd and subsequent updates Revelator and Rev 2, and we’re happy to see it again. No fighting games look better than Arc System Works’ fighting games, and no Arc Sys game looks better than Guilty Gear. Obviously, the gameplay is fantastic as well, but seriously: look at how gorgeous this game is.
We have seen characters like Sol Badguy, Axl, May and Ky make a return for Guilty Gear Strive, with more on the way. The game’s director Daisuke Ishiwatari has already stated that Guilty Gear 2020 will be “a brand new experience for Guilty Gear”, and “a complete reconstruction of the franchise”, making it one of the most exciting new fighting game prospects of 2020.
Granblue Fantasy Versus | February 2020 (Japan) / TBC 2020 (Worldwide)
Developer: Arc System Works Publisher: Cygames Platform(s): PS4
Granblue Fantasy is a highly successful mobile RPG developed by Cygames that I know absolutely nothing about. Granblue Fantasy Versus is a 2.5D anime inspired fighting game that’s developed in conjunction with Cy Games and Arc System Works, so it should be an absolute banger. We (as in, one of our writers jammy enough to go to EGX 2019) had some thoughts on Granblue Fantasy Versus after some brief time with the game, but suffice to say, it’s a lot of fun.
Versus also appears to be skewing towards a more accessible experience, with Skybound Arts offering special moves at the press of a button with a short cooldown, though players can use more complicated inputs for a shorter cooldown. With a fully fledged Story Mode that’ll play out like an action RPG/beat ‘em up, Granblue Fantasy Versus could be 2020’s new fighting game to watch.
Metal Revolution | TBC 2020
Developer: NEXT Studios Publisher: NEXT Studios Platform(s): PC
If you’re unsure of what the hell Metal Revolution is, allow us to educate you. Developed by NEXT Studios, Metal Revolution is a promising looking indie fighting game that boasts incredibly cool mech designs combined with real martial arts. It’s a style that’s incredibly unique to the genre right now, and one that could prove to be incredibly successful for the game.
Like other fighting games that have emerged over the past couple of years, Metal Revolution is attempting to court new players into the genre by offering simplistic controls and mechanics on the surface, along with plenty of depth for those willing to stick around. If it wasn’t on your list of anticipated fighting games before, now’s your chance to rectify that.
Project L | TBC
Developer: Riot Games Publisher: Riot Games Platform(s): TBC
Not much is known about Project L, Riot Games’ first foray into the world of fighting games, and that’s likely because we probably won’t see the game receive a full release until 2021. That said, we have seen brief snippets of gameplay footage that shows League of Legends characters in a 2D fighting game environment. Even at this early stage, it looks good. Real good.
What we do know about Project L is that it’s being developed by the Cannon Brothers, creators of the infamous EVO tournament, the accessible fighting game Rolling Thunder and the GGPO netcode system, often cited as the best rollback netcode in fighting games. It’s safe to say that Project L has the pedigree to be a big hitter in the genre, possibly becoming a groundbreaking new fighting game.
The King Of Fighters XV | TBC
Developer: SNK Publisher: SNK Platform(s): TBC
SNK have confirmed that their ever-dependable fighting game series The King Of Fighters is coming back with its fifteenth instalment, but that’s all we know right now. Seriously. All we got at EVO 2019 was the confirmation that SNK are working on the game and that it’ll be ready at some point. No roster confirmations, no story details; just a logo and a dream.
While details are scarce on what The King of Fighters XV will entail, KoF XIV was an incredibly enjoyable entry in the series that totally didn’t cause controversy because of its underwhelming graphics. Of course not. Whether The King of Fighters XV is a continuation of the mechanics shown in the previous game or something new entirely remains to be seen.
Punch Planet | TBC
Developer: Sector-K Games Publisher: Sector-K Games Platform(s): PC
Along with Granblue Fantasy Versus, we featured Punch Planet on our most anticipated fighting games of 2019 list. Unfortunately, Punch Planet is still in early access, with developers Sector-K Games promising that the full roster will only be playable by Q4 2020, according to the game’s official Steam page. That’s a long time to wait, but for Punch Planet, patience should be worth it.
A sci-fi 2D fighter that just oozes style, Punch Planet uses its science fiction setting to inform its gameplay mechanics, as characters can use “time-cancelling” abilities to travel back in time for a second in order to extend combos. We might be a way off before Punch Planet gets its full release, but I’m eagerly anticipating that day, as it deserves a proper release on all platforms.