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What are your 'can't miss' video games this very crowded November?

And which games have to slip through the cracks?

We’re in the home stretch for notable releases this year, and after a pretty hectic September and October at Destructoid, many of us are behind schedule with our backlogs. Coming into November, I feel even less in control — there are so many dang video games coming out, and so many of them look great. It’s been one of those years where I don’t feel like there are one or two clear-cut best-of-the-best games; instead, there are a bunch of viable highlights. Our game-of-the-year discussions are going to be… interesting.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Halloween is still fresh on my mind (there’s actually some candy left), and I’m still accepting that I’ll need to save some horror movies for next year.

I need to snap out of it, though — we’re officially in November, and when it comes to games, November isn’t screwing around. Before we hash out our plans, let’s see the list.

Forza Horizon 5 screenshot

Oh my god, all of these games are launching in November

  • Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Happy Home Paradise (Nov. 5)
  • Call of Duty: Vanguard (Nov. 5)
  • Forza Horizon 5 (Nov. 9 / Nov. 5 early access)
  • Jurassic World Evolution 2 (Nov. 9)
  • Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition (Nov. 11)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Anniversary Edition (Nov. 11)
  • Shin Megami Tensei V (Nov. 12)
  • Battlefield 2042 (Nov. 19 / Nov. 12 early access)
  • Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl (Nov. 19)
  • Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker (Nov. 23 / Nov. 19 early access)
  • Many other cool new games that will get a nod in the comments.

Is there a drawer full of curled-up monkey paws I’m not aware of?

The stars have aligned (and surely realigned) in such a way that November 2021 — and also February 2022, but don’t you dare open that can of worms yet — is a great and also terrible time for generalists. People like me who enjoy a lot of games in a lot of genres are going to struggle to match their money, time, and energy with the right picks.

FFXIV: Endwalker screenshot

On the flip side, I bet that plenty of you are only interested in one or two names on this list of releases, and you’re planning to go hard with unrelenting tunnel vision. It’s a heck of a time even for “niche” IPs; so many series are finally having their breakout moment.

So, what’s speaking to you this month? Certain games are going to be better (and more complete-feeling) than others at launch, and some are going to quickly get holiday discounts, and some are so precious to you as a die-hard fan that you have to make time for them above all else. That kind of optimization can only go so far, though.

I’m grappling with many of my unfinished or not-yet-started games like Metroid Dread, Deathloop, Returnal, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, Life is Strange: True Colors, NieR Replicant, Hitman 3, and Death’s Door. (These are just the ones that immediately came to mind, which, yikes.) So my November is going to be more catchup in between sessions with the Animal Crossing: New Horizons DLC and Battlefield 2042. The rest? I think I can wait.

Do you need to make any hard calls, or are your November video games easily locked in?

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