The video games of 2021 that we look forward to most from a photographic point of view

The video games of 2021 that we look forward to most from a photographic point of view
2021 does not bode well for the gaming world. The global situation has damaged the industry in a worrying way, leading several stocks to sudden slippage or not exactly exciting market releases. The year has already started with several postponements, one above all that of Hogwarts Legacy, one of the most interesting IPs that were destined to come out in this 2021. Consequently, it remains difficult to make predictions for a year full of titles without release dates well specified, many of which are extremely ambitious and with stringent working needs to be able to bring a product that is not only complete, but also cohesive and coherent. However, we want to try it anyway; we want to hope for a 2021 full of interesting titles, able to finally kick off the new generation of consoles and also benefit the PC market. And we want to go even further. In this special we will show you the video games of 2021 that we look forward to most from the photographic point of view.

What do we mean by "photographic point of view"?

We have talked in depth about virtual photography over the months past, so we will avoid going further on the question, but we still want to spend a few words to quickly explain what this "strange" trend is that has accompanied the videogame medium for some years.

Virtual photography is basically traditional photography transposed into a digitally created universe (in this case, videogame).

Obviously, the two things are quite distinct (one uses a device that impresses the light, the other simulates this device) , but both can have the same appeal on those who experience them. Of course, on the one hand we interact with worlds made of zero and one, on the other with organic reality, but it is always about immortalizing something.

For many virtual photography can be labeled as something useless, absolutely not comparable with "real photography" (which, we repeat, it is in no way willing to do), which anyone can recreate at any time because "games are meant to be the same for everyone", but we assure you that it is not at all easy to recreate an in-game shot exactly identical to the one made by another player, unless it is the still-frame of a scene from 'interlude which, for obvious reasons, is not virtual photography; trying it would be like trying to take the same photo taken by someone else at the Colosseum or any other real place: the result could be similar, but never the same.

Having the possibility to choose the composition, to position a character, to seize a fortuitous and unrepeatable moment allows those who experience the title to capture what they want in the way they prefer. The subjects may be the same, but it is the way in which they are valued by the individual that makes the difference between one shot and another.

If we had to follow the theory of "real photography", then neither would the Animated films in computer graphics should be considered "films", as they do not involve the use of a traditional shooting system, but are created from scratch thanks to dedicated software.

But this is another matter. We are here to talk to you about our expectations from the photographic point of view of this 2021, not to bore you with debates regarding the value of new artistic forms. Here, then, are the 2021 video games that we look forward to most from a photographic point of view.

Horizon Forbidden West

Let's start with Horizon Forbidden West, the sequel to a title that represented one of the highlights most important turning points for the development of virtual photography in recent years.

Horizon Zero Dawn presented an impressive photographic sector, enriched by the graphic detail and the lighting system, which gave its best at sunrise and sunset , but also from the vast game environment, saturated with extremely peculiar creatures and views.

The photo mode was able to provide great freedom to the player, from the management of the depth of field, to the various poses and expressions for Aloy , up to the dynamism offered by some fighting against the mighty machines that inhabit the game world.

For this sequel we hope to see (in addition to an increased detail made possible by the power of cast lo of the new Sony console) greater care for both daytime and nighttime hours, extremely mild in the previous chapter, but also to find non-player characters less "plastered" and more expressive, so as to have other interesting subjects to immortalize more than once, besides Aloy.

For the rest, we can't wait to go back and immerse ourselves in the dystopian future proposed by Guerrilla Games.

God Of War 2

Another Sony exclusive, God Of War 2 (or Ragnarok) is perhaps one of the most anticipated titles of this 2021 (hoping that it will not need to be postponed to next year, although it will almost certainly be so).

The first has made many gamers fall in love for different aspects, the most linked to the extremely cinematic management of the title (remember the choice of creating a single sequence shot with hidden uploads). Obviously, we are impatient to see how the new generation hardware will manage this directorial solution, with uploads that will be even faster and that, therefore, will allow, perhaps, to have access to even larger and more detailed areas.

From the point of view of photo mode, the previous chapter certainly did not stand out. You had to go a little off the cuff with the cumbersome management of the controls to get the shot you wanted, but the subjects were so interesting to capture (especially in action) that the effort was undoubtedly rewarded.

For this reason Ragnarok we sincerely hope to find ourselves in front of a leap forward compared to what we have seen in other PlayStation titles from a photographic point of view (see Days Gone), so as to be able to unleash the photographic potential of the title in all its fury.

Riders Republic

Riders Republic, the new Ubisoft IP halfway between The Crew and a Steep, seems to offer a sandbox universe for all fans of extreme sports (and not only) like never before seen.

The game is still far from release and we have seen little and nothing, but, according to what Ubisoft has proposed in terms of photo mode in recent years, it seems quite obvious that it will be possible to immortalize the most spectacus lari at any time, perhaps through replays (as happened, in fact, in Steep and The Crew).

Since there are never enough titles that offer a lot of dynamism, we look forward to Riders Republic, impatient to immortalize the craziest tricks.

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

Sony has shown great interest in virtual photography and its community, so much so that it also offers dedicated contests. Consequently, it seems almost unthinkable that Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, the new title of Insomniac Games (authors of one of the most popular photo fashions ever, that of Marvel's Spider-Man, which later evolved into that of Miles Morales) is not present. a photographic mode dedicated to highlighting the various details of a title that seems really valid from a technical point of view.

We'll see, but it would be a really welcome surprise.


Scorn, a title inspired by the art of HR Giger and presented exclusively for Xbox Series X | S and Windows PC, immediately attracted our attention with a game world bordering on the surreal, where organic matter pervades the environment that we will find ourselves exploring (probably) in a few month.

Also in this case, ours is more a hope than an expectation, as it is not yet clear if there will be a photographic mode. Not having it would be a real shame, as the title has all the air of offering extremely suggestive glimpses and moments of tension that could allow you to take respectable shots.

Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury

A bit of Nintendo certainly cannot miss in our expectations for this 2021. In this regard, we find the remake of Super Mario 3D World, one of the few titles for which we are sure of the presence of a photo mode.

We had already had the opportunity to immortalize the most famous plumber in the world in the previous Super Mario Odyssey, where a rudimentary photographic mode made it possible to create very valid shots, thanks also to the amazing artistic sector, rich and colorful.

We can't wait to get our hands on the title, not only to see how Nintendo has brought the Wii U adventure back to life, but also to see if photo mode has evolved or remained at levels li from Odyssey.

Skull & Bones

Skull & Bones didn't have an easy time.

After being completely rethought, the title looks like it will finally be released in the year 2021. It remains to be seen how it will look now, given that it has not yet been shown to the general public.

Of course, the fact that Ubisoft calls it an AAAA or quadruple A project bodes well for an out of the ordinary result. ordinary, even if the budget and development costs do not imply a guaranteed success (the market has given us ample proof of this in recent years).

We will see what Ubisoft invented this time and, given that it is about the Canadian company, we do not exclude that a respectable photo mode may also find space within the game.

Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2

In some respects, Vampire : The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 reminds us of another "fairly" rumored title recently: Cyberpunk 2077.

First to light the torches and point the pitchforks at us, at least let us explain the reasons.

Our discussion concerns the pure and simple photographic aspect and the possibilities that the game could offer through a (hypothetical) photo mode.

The dialogues are fundamental parts of both titles, consequently the interlocutors become the most inviting subjects to be immortalized, either for a particular attachment to their events, or for situations where the lighting, position and movements of these the latter light up our photographic nature.

We say "hypothetical" because, even in this case, we do not know if there will actually be a photographic mode. It must be said, however, that Nvidia Ansel will most likely solve the problem for all PC gamers.

Elden Ring

And here we come to the sore point; to the title that everyone is waiting for, but of which little or nothing is known, apart from the collaboration between Hidetaka Miyazaki and George R.R. Martin.

We have no idea what the game will offer both technically and photographically. We can only hope that it is something truly stunning, visually stunning, and that it contains a photo mode that matches the game world.

The recent remake of Demon's Souls, curated by Blue Point and Japan Studio, has certainly brought new hope (also from a photographic point of view, considering the work done by the aforementioned studies) towards Elden Ring and From Software.

They have several arrows in their bow. Let's just hope they don't miss the target.


Although the game has been out for quite some time, we can't help but wait for Control to arrive on PS5 and Xbox Series X | S too. .

The title is visually stunning and immortalizing it is extremely fun and stimulating.

Given the huge amount of computing power required to run the game to its fullest potential (which with the console of previous generation was not possible to obtain), we are really curious to try it and to savor every little oddity even through the photographic mode.

Far Cry 6

We close with the last hope of this list: Far Cry 6.

The Ubisoft saga has already seen the implementation of a photo mode in the past, even if made available in a period following the release of the previous chapter, Far Cry 5.

In the early days, only certain mods on PC allowed the title to be eviscerated from a point of photographic view.

Given the aforementioned commitment by the Canadian software house regarding the implementation of photo mode within its most recent titles, we are practically certain of the presence of a photographic mode also in Far Cry 6, possibly already at its release.

These are the video games of 2021 that we look forward to the most from a photographic point of view.

Let us know which ones you are waiting for and if for you the photographic mode has reason to exist or is it just a pastime with no future.

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