5 Holiday Gifts Gamers Won’t Get In 2017 - Switch VC, Red Dead & More

  • Playstation 4
  • Xbox One
  • Action-Adventure
  • RPG
'Kingdom Hearts 3' will feature the Mysterious Tower, and Master Yen Sid will be there too. Check out this cool Astro Blaster attraction flow attack.
'Kingdom Hearts 3' will feature the Mysterious Tower, and Master Yen Sid will be there too. Check out this cool Astro Blaster attraction flow attack. Square Enix/Disney

Gamers will be opening up lots of gifts for the holidays, and, as awesome as that is, it also reminds us of the lost presents we’ll never get in 2017. It was a big year for Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo, but these five high-demand items weren’t part of the conversation.

1) Virtual Console On Switch: As soon as the Switch was revealed last year, gamers everywhere dreamed of how great it would be to have Nintendo’s Virtual Console service on a hybrid console. Yet, despite the demand and anticipation, we still don’t know if VC will be on Switch at all or what form it might take.

The general assumption is that we’ll learn more about Virtual Console when Nintendo launches its paid online platform sometime next year, but it’s hard to say for sure. There have been promises to include online-enabled classic games with subscriptions, but will that offering be substantial enough to stand in for a truly robust library? As more and more retro titles get released on Switch as Arcade Archives or seperate games, the waters are getting muddy. It’s a sad reality that won’t change this year.

2) An End To Industry Greed: One of the late emerging trends among 2017’s hottest games was their pervasive use of loot boxes and microtransactions. Over the past few months, titles like NBA 2K18, Star Wars Battlefront 2, Destiny 2 and Middle-earth: Shadow Of War have been lambasted for pushing players toward additional payments in $60 products.

In that sense, as many of you open your new games in the days ahead, you’ll probably be greeted by frustrating suggestions to trade your precious dollars for some kind of premium virtual currency. Even those who decline to partake could likely be held up by an infuriating progression roadblock at one point or another. Whether it’s the fault of developer or publisher, you may not have as much peace of mind about the extra cash you get from loved ones. It’ll be spent on items that probably should’ve been included with the cost of entry.

3) A Big First-Party Xbox One Exclusive: The Microsoft-exclusive games calendar for 2017 is highlighted by Halo Wars 2, Cuphead and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. Cuphead truly is a small-scale work of genius, but Halo Wars has mostly been forgotten and PUBG is still very broken. During a year where games like Persona 5, Horizon, Breath Of The Wild and Mario Odyssey dominated sales charts for the competition, Xbox had to announce that Crackdown 3 won’t be coming out in 2017.

You’ll be getting lots of great third-party games as gifts if you play on Xbox, but there won’t be a single new exclusive in the pile. Let’s hope Phil Spencer has something big planned for 2018. With a healthy Nintendo now in play, he’s going to need it.

4) PlayStation Network Name Changes: If Microsoft’s 2017 Achilles’ heel was exclusives, Sony’s continues to be its mess of an online network. The basic functionality is in place and PlayStation Plus remains an outstanding value, but you still can’t change your PSN name without losing all the purchases you’ve made and trophies you’ve collected. Xbox Live has had name changes for years, and you can even change your display name on Switch if you want. PlayStation, however, failed to get its act together in 2017.

The good news about this particular missed gift, though, is that Sony recently confirmed that work is being done to make name changes a reality. By late 2018, all those terrible names you’ve been forced to stick with should be gone forever.

5) All Those Developing Games: Developers were fairly good at making release dates and sticking to them this year. There are, however plenty of games in the works with continued, torturous development cycles. It’s time to talk about games like Kingdom Hearts 3, Half-Life 3, Star Citizen and Red Dead Redemption 2. It feels like we’ve waited long enough, but 2017 wasn’t the year for any of them.

Looking ahead we bet we’ll see Red Dead in 2018, but the rest is far more nebulous. Half-Life 3 and Star Citizen fall into the “possibly never” category, while we’d be surprised if Kingdom Hearts 3 hits its 2018 target. With Square Enix at the helm, that one has a delay to “early 2019” all but guaranteed. Different developers will offer different reasons for why games like these are taking so long to complete, but one thing they have it common is that you can’t check them off your wishlist this year.

What holiday gift are you missing most in 2017? Which of these requests is most likely to be met in the year to come? Tell us in the comments section!

Join the Discussion
Top Stories