We're always hunting for exciting upcoming MMORPGs. However, in 2020, a lot of new releases underperformed (and that's putting it kindly). With a slew of new, potentially genre-defining releases lined-up, 2021 looks set to be a very different story. Below are our thoughts on the 5 most epic and exciting upcoming MMORPGs of 2021. We’ve also shared their official trailers, gameplay trailers, release dates, descriptions, platforms, and early-access insights. #ILoveMMOGames

Crimson Desert

Ashes of Creation

Developmental Status at Time-of-Writing: Alpha

Release Date: TBA

Studio: Intrepid Studios


First up, we have a game that we’ve written a lot about over recent months. There has been so much hype around this medieval MMORPG that we dedicated an entire article to listing the elements we’re most excited about. Ashes of Creation will feature 64 classes, religions, full-scale town sieges, engaging PvE, 500-player PvP combat, challenging end-game bosses, and a complex player-driven economy based on a caravan system.

Arguably, its most exciting feature is its nodal system which is expected to create a revolutionarily transient, dynamic world based upon the relative successes of players in different areas. Theoretically, the system should lead to a diverse, ever-changing environment.

Here at MMOGames, we love games with ambition, and AoC certainly doesn’t fall short in that department. In the MMO gaming world, Ashes of Creation has received an equivalent level of excitement as Cyberpunk 2077. However, thanks to constant, open, and honest development updates (with no non-disclosure agreements in their Alpha), we suspect it might get a much warmer reception upon release.

Dual Universe


Developmental Status at Time-of-Writing: Beta

Release Date: 2021

Studio: Novaquark

After playing and reviewing the Dual Universe beta, we found a lot to get excited about. Dual Universe’s ambitions may be less broad than Ashes of Creation, but they are no less lofty. The game aims to combine the complex player-driven space-bound economy of Eve Online with the DIY craft everything and anything ethos of Conan Exiles.

The love-child of these two popular genres has the potential to be a literal game-changer. Players will be able to craft their own unique ships from scratch, sell their blueprints, start colonies, and explore a sprawling single-server universe controlled almost entirely by the players. While the beta’s graphics were nothing to write home about, there have already been some amazing player-built ships coming from the community; from slick fighter jets to colony ships controlled by tight-knit crews.

We’ll leave you with a quote from our review:

“DU seems to offer a gigantic amount of potential. Just imagine rival factions launching fleets of capital ships at each other from their respective colonies with players occupying roles ranging from fleet commander to radar operator and everything in between. The scale of opportunity in DU is huge, and the game in its current state provides plenty of reasons to get excited. Even if new players are on the fence at launch, player-built creations are likely to attract new converts as the universe is filled with more and more things to see. As true of the game as it is of the in-game world, this may be humanity’s best chance to create the universe you’ve always wanted.”

Crimson Desert


Developmental Status at Time-of-Writing: Alpha

Release Date: Winter 2021

Studio: Pearl Abyss

We haven’t written much about Crimson Desert yet, but we often write about (and provide free loot for) its sister game and ex-prequel Black Desert / Black Desert Online. In fact, we crowned the game as our most beautiful MMORPG of 2020. Well big sister might want to hide that crown because it looks like a new princess is vying for the throne.

Once planned as the MMO-prequel to BDO, Crimson Desert is now a Gaelic-inspired RPG in a completely new setting that will fuse both single-player and MMORPG elements in narrative-driven gameplay.

Much is being kept secret about the game, and their impressive (albeit disjointed) highlights-reel style gameplay trailer leads us to suspect there is a lot still undecided about its final direction. However, from what we have seen it looks to be all about the Ghosts of Tsushima combat and unreal beauty. The trailer conjures up strong memories of Dragon’s Dogma, BDO, and Game of Thrones – so that’s not a bad start.

As more details are released, we’ll be sure to keep you updated.

Blue Protocol


Developmental Status at Time-of-Writing: Beta

Release Date: Early 2021 (Japan), TBA (Global)

Studio: Bandai Namco

Ever hoped for a stunning anime-style MMORPG that looks and plays like Breath of the Wild?

Following the success of Genshin Impact, the gaming world is calling out for an open-world anime MMORPG to obsess over. Bandai Namco have now officially announced that Blue Protocol will be gracing the EU and NA markets.

Despite claiming that the game was expected to go global from the start, there has been a drought of Saharan proportions of English-language content. Western fans have been piecing together clues like job advertisements to work out if they’ll ever get to play. Though this alone is testament to the strength of the trailers (which don’t even have an English YouTube page) which have managed to garner significant excitement in the MMO gaming community.

Blue Protocol is set on the planet of Regnus. Once ruled by a divine tribe using a “mystical light”, Regnus has fallen into ruin in the millennia since. The free-to-play PC game will feature four classes: Aegis Fighter, Twin Striker, Blast Archer, and Spellcaster. It looks like it may still be a while until western players get to be Spellcasters in this gorgeous anime environment, might we suggest a little Spellbreak to pass the time?

New World


Developmental Status at Time-of-Writing: Alpha

Release Date: Spring 2021

Studio: Amazon Games

This upcoming PC MMORPG from Amazon Games was delayed from 2020 to 2021, but we’re happy to be patient if the title can deliver on its promises.

“For centuries, many have come in search for its power. Only to fall to its corruption.” As you’ll see in the trailer above, New World offers us glimpses of a lost supernatural Island called Aeternum. However, the armour sets may not look all that unfamiliar. New World draws on real-world history as lost adventurers must survive the corrupted perils of Aeternum.

Gameplay trailers reveal an open-world that rivals Crimson Desert in its beauty. Which is perhaps unsurprising because the PC MMORPG from Amazon Games has the financial backing of Jeff Bezos, a man sitting on a fortune worth $139,000,000,000. While Amazon Games have had some success, many in the MMO gaming community suspect that this bold upcoming title may be the game to truly earn their place on the map.

The emergent open-world gameplay will be largely focused around warring guilds and a Dark Souls style action-focused combat system. It will feature thrilling PvE elements in the endgame, high-level customization, massive PvP siege battles, and so much more.

Those aren’t the only exciting upcoming MMORPGS and MMOs, there are also aspects of Crowfall, Starbase, City of Titans, Lost Ark, Last Oasis, Elyon – Ascent, Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen, and Magic Legends that we’re excited to see play out. Just to name a few. As always, we’ll keep you up to date on all the latest MMO gaming news.

If you think there are any spectacular upcoming MMOs that you think should have made our list of upcoming MMORPGs 2021, comment your suggestions below or reach out to us on social media using the hashtag #ILoveMMOGames.

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