EA released Def Jam: Vendetta back in 2003 and had some of the biggest hip hop stars of that era featured in a gritty brawler. My favorite in the series, Def Jam: Fight for NY released a year later in 2004. Not only did they have Hip Hop megastars such as Method Man, Redman, Snoop Dogg, and DMX but there were also upcoming talents such as Joe Budden; who was a rookie in the rap game at the time. Even though the game was endorsed by Def Jam, it also featured a number of talents that weren’t exactly part of the Def Jam roster at the time.
While reminiscing about how dope these games were—minus Def Jam Icon—I got thinking which rappers would be included in a 2021 roster for Def Jam Vendetta. Def Jam is currently teasing some kind of game announcement, so who knows, this could very well become a reality.
🤔 The streets saying we need a new Def Jam game pic.twitter.com/PSaqxryiDR
— Def Jam Recordings (@defjam) August 9, 2020
This list will contain Hip Hop legends never featured in a Def Jam video game before. Along with rappers who are much newer. It’s also important to note that not all of these artists are signed to Def Jam.
Disclaimer: Though this is a real wishlist there is some satire involved.
DaBaby is one of the newest rappers in the industry killing it right now. His success is so hot that he’s crossed over to popstar status. But if you know anything about the Charlotte-born star’s past, you know that he’s not one to mess with. In a new Def Jam game, I would love to see DaBaby be one of the up and comers who assists our main protagonist throughout the story mode.
A new Def Jam game would need a big bad boss for all these rappers to take out. Who is more boss than Birdman? Picture this Cash Money kingpin pulling up on you for not putting enough respek on his name. It’s a frightening thought.
Def Jam Vendetta 2021 wouldn’t be complete without an after credit scene at the end with Birdman reciting his classic phrase, “Yall finished or y’all done?”
Meek Mill is another one of those rappers who is clearly with the shits. Meek has had to adjust his lifestyle significantly to find mainstream success. And after having to do a bid at the hands of a corrupt judge, these days he’s really about uplifting the people. Put him on the protagonist’s side and I think he’d make a fantastic supporting character.
Clearly, 50 Cent is the one rapper that people wished was in both Def Jam: Vendetta and Def Jam: Fight for New York. Those games released when 50 Cent was in his prime, and those who are as invested in the South Side Jamaica Queens native as I am, know just how much he terrorized the industry at that time. Put 50 Cent next to Birdman and you have a devastating duo that nobody would want to mess with. Perhaps he could even be named Kanan in the story mode.
Yes, I want all of the Migos in the game. But I had to choose one for this list and I settled on Offset. Though Quavo is viewed as the music leader of the crew, I feel like Offset’s relevance in the culture is a little higher at the moment. He’s married to one of the Queens of Hip Hip right now (Cardi B) so I would hope for some kind of cameo for the ladies. But the main reason we need the Migos in this game is so our characters can be just as well dressed when they intimidate the ops (opposition). You can’t tell me the Migos wouldn’t make the cosmetic DLC in this game a hot commodity.
Conway The Machine
If you ask me which rappers are killing the game right now, I’m going to tell you its the Griselda camp, consisting of Conway The Machine, Benny the Butcher, and Westside Gunn. Ideally, I’d like all three of them in Def Jam Vendetta, but for the purpose of the game, we’ll go with Conway. Conway has a compelling story after surviving a shot that paralyzed the side of his face. A man that’s been through this kind of trauma could be the perfect backup for our main protagonist.
If you follow the Hip Hop scene, you know how much of a wildcard Pusha T is. Not only is he one of the best lyricists in the game but he also doesn’t shy away from any drama, as proved by his willingness to throw (verbal) shots at anyone he views as the opposition.
In Def Jam Vendetta 2021, let’s have Pusha T be a rogue character who isn’t down with the protagonist nor Birdman’s crew. He’ll just be that blood-thirsty tough guy that comes and terrorizes everyone.
With all the superstars I’ve listed so far, if this man wasn’t there it would stand out like a sore thumb. Drake can be that fly and flamboyant character that everyone on his team secretly hates.
Also, if we’re going after Birdman in this game, why not have a former member of Young Money attempting to set things straight? He could be the peace-keeper who sometimes has to get his hands dirty.
I mean, he actually was pretty convincing in his new UK-style drill song with Headie One.
Guess what? Bobby Smurda is almost home! What would say Welcome Back better than including him in the game? Bobby’s reputation is 100% solid as he never sold out any of his people (unlike another rapper), so I feel like it would be an honorable move to include him. Plus, despite this being a fighting game, we need some dope emotes, and the Shmoney Dance is the one I would select on my customizable character. Just make sure you pay Bobby his money for the dance…(I’m looking at you Fortnite).
Okay, okay, I get it. Right now in your head, you’re thinking HELL NO! we don’t need this rat m@$*****@A in the game.
But what better punishment for 6ix9ine’s boastful “you can’t touch me” persona than to beat the crap out of a pixelated rainbow-colored depiction of Hip Hop’s most hated figure? Just think about it.
He could even be a free piece of DLC that’s added as an after-thought (kind of like on this list).
Drop your personal Def Jam Vendetta 2021 wishlist in the comment section below!