HomeTech Perfect Dark, Indiana Jones and a new Gears of War: all the new games from the Xbox Games Showcase

Perfect Dark, Indiana Jones and a new Gears of War: all the new games from the Xbox Games Showcase

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Perfect Dark, Indiana Jones and a new Gears of War: all the new games from the Xbox Games Showcase

Xbox hasn’t had the best year so far. In January and February, a leaked announcement that previously Xbox-exclusive games were about to come to rival consoles, the PlayStation and Nintendo Switch, sent the most vocal part of its fanbase into a tailspin, convincing themselves that Microsoft was about to give up. completely exclusive to Xbox. (In the end it was only four games, but Xbox leaders took their time to clarify it.) In May, Xbox closed two beloved studios it had acquired at great expense a few years ago: Tango Gameworks (Hi-Fi Rush, The Evil Within) and Arkane Austin (Prey, Dishonored). All this is due to the drop in sales of its Xbox Series X/S consoles; analysts have estimated that the PlayStation 5 is selling them lately by a factor of 5:1.

Microsoft hoped to rescue the narrative with its Xbox gaming showcase, which was livestreamed on Sunday and screened at an event in Los Angeles for the media, the gaming industry and a circle of Xbox fans. Call of Duty: Black Ops 6, a new Indiana Jones game, and the return of the brutal Gears of War action game series led the pack in blockbuster games, but there were plenty of smaller-scale announcements as well. With its Game Pass service, which offers an ever-changing library of games for a monthly fee, Microsoft has made a billion-dollar bet on Netflix-style streaming as the future of video games, and after its recent merger with Activision Blizzard now has a large number of game studios creating games for it.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will be available on Game Pass when it launches on October 25 and is set in the ’90s after the collapse of the Iron Curtain. From Bethesda, which Microsoft acquired in 2021, came DOOM: The Dark Ages, a new installment of the venerable shooter series that will also be released on PlayStation 5 when it releases in 2025. EA and Ubisoft showed off new images of their upcoming cross-platform Dragon. The Age and Assassin’s Creed games will be released later this year.

Xbox exclusive games shown included the female-led spy shooter Perfect Dark, a series that began on Nintendo 64 in 2000, which is being revived by studios Crystal Dynamics and The Initiative, and which has clear echoes of Dishonored and Deus Ex in the first person. stealth and combat, and State of Decay 3, a cooperative zombie survival game from Undead Labs. Indiana Jones and the Great Circle was showcased with a gloriously over-the-top confrontation between Jones and some Nazis on a battleship stranded on a mountaintop.

South of Midnight is an adventure game set in a fantasy-flavored version of the American South, complete with giant talking catfish and alligators the size of islands. There was a long and promising trailer for Fable, the British fairy tale fantasy game in development at Playground Games. Ukrainian shooter STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl and the upcoming new Flight Simulator were also shown, in a trailer that somehow managed to romanticize agricultural aviation and private charter flights. And the final reveal of the show was a new Gears of War game, titled Gears of War: E-Day, set during the alien invasion that forms the backdrop for the rest of the series.

A handful of indie games, most of which are cross-platform, provided a counterpoint to a strong opening salvo of the show: Annapurna’s Mixtape, a magical-realist ’80s teen drama; FragPunk, a mix of card game and comic-book style hero shooter. An intriguing role-playing game called Clair Obscur: Expedition 33 is set in a world where a mysterious painter paints a number in the sky each year, instantly vaporizing everyone over that age. There was a hand-drawn game about a mouse trying to make a home in a forest, Winter Burrow, and the first screening of a new Life Is Strange game from Deck Nine, starring the series’ first protagonist, the fondly remembered Max .

The showcase was well received in a room full of Xbox fans, which, after a year of difficult PR times for the company, will no doubt be a relief for its executives. Aside from a very light schedule of PlayStation games for 2024 and 2025, the Xbox slate looks relatively packed.

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