Xbox races towards next-gen with ‘biggest exclusive games lineup ever’
At E3 2021, Xbox unveiled 30 games with 27 of them coming to Xbox Game Pass. It is a big step towards 'next-gen' gaming with console exclusives, game subscription, ray-tracing, 120fps support, and more.
Microsoft is putting its game subscription service, Xbox Game Pass, front and center in the transition to next-generation gaming. Most of the games announced at the Xbox event will come to the service on day one. - "Our growing family of 23 studios is devoted to advancing the medium we all love, so we were happy to share that now through the end of the year, you can look forward to back-to-back monthly releases coming to Xbox Game Pass on day one, led by a record five new titles from Xbox Game Studios this holiday, including Halo Infinite," the company said.
Ray-tracing, 120fps, more
Many of the titles have yet to be fully detailed but Microsoft and partners did confirm that Forza Horizon 5 will support ray-tracing for more realistic lighting effects. Doom Eternal will also soon receive a free next-gen update with raytracing and 4K60 support, and an optional 120fps mode running at lower resolution. Also read: Review: Xbox Series X Bethesda's Starfield will be console exclusive to Xbox Series X/S at launch (plus PC) – a disappointment to PlayStation users. Here is a summary of what Xbox announced.
Xbox at E3
In Microsoft's own words: The Biggest, Exclusive Games During the show, we announced a stellar line-up of AAA titles, including a number of must-play titles from Xbox Games Studios and Bethesda that will be available with Xbox Game Pass on the day they release. Immerse Yourself in Mexico in Forza Horizon 5 and Experience Our Largest, Most Diverse Open World Ever The ultimate Forza Horizon adventure awaits. In Forza Horizon 5, explore the vibrant and ever-evolving open world landscapes of Mexico with limitless, fun driving action in hundreds of the world’s greatest cars. This highly anticipated follow-up arrives on November 9 on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One consoles; PC on Windows and Steam; and Xbox Game Pass including console, PC, and Cloud Gaming (Beta). Explore the vibrant, ever-evolving landscapes of Mexico with limitless driving action! A First Look at Halo Infinite Free-to-Play Multiplayer Gameplay During the show, 343 Industries shared a world premiere of Halo Infinite’s multiplayer gameplay. Halo’s legendary multiplayer combat returns reimagined and evolving over time with seasonal updates, new modes and maps, and community focused content. Players can explore endless combat possibilities by mixing and matching a rich variety of on-map weapons and equipment to experience unique gameplay that feels distinctly Halo. Coming on day one with Xbox Game Pass on PC, Console, and cloud gaming (Beta). And for the first time, Halo multiplayer goes free-to-play, inviting millions of gamers across Xbox consoles, cloud, and PC to join the fight. Redfall Revealed, Coming Exclusively to Xbox Series X|S and PC Redfall is a new co-op, open-world first-person shooter from Arkane Austin, the award-winning team behind Prey and Dishonored. Play it solo or team up with as many as three friends to take on a legion of vampires that have overtaken the once-quaint island town of Redfall. In signature Arkane style, you will choose your path across the island and through the vampire masses as you discover what caused this plague of bloodsuckers and put an end to the threat. Starfield Arrives Exclusively on Xbox Series X|S and PC on 11.11.22 Starfield is the first new universe in 25 years from Bethesda Game Studios, the award-winning creators of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Fallout 4. In this next generation role-playing game set amongst the stars, create any character you want and explore with unparalleled freedom as you embark on an epic journey to answer humanity’s greatest mystery. Explore a Terrifying, Ever-Changing Open World in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 The award-winning PC franchise loved by millions of players is making a true next-gen console debut with S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2. Experience a unique blend of first-person shooter, immersive sim and horror. The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone is a unique, dangerous and ever-changing environment. It promises a lot — the artifacts of unbelievable value can be yours if you dare to claim them. The price you may pay, on the other hand, is no less than your own life. One of the biggest open worlds to date, filled with radiation, mutants and anomalies, is yours to explore. All the choices across the way not only define your own epic story, but influence the future itself. Be mindful about what you see, do and plan, as you will have to find your way through the Zone or be forever lost to it. Experience the thrills on day one with Xbox Game Pass. Xbox Game Pass Those blockbuster exclusives from Xbox and Bethesda aren’t the only ones coming to Xbox Game Pass: we also announced a ton of titles from our studios and partners coming to Game Pass starting this year. Age of Empires IV launching October 28 on PCwith Xbox Game Pass, Available for Pre-order Now Age of Empires IV is coming to Xbox Game Pass for PC and Ultimate, Windows Store and Steam on October 28! Our trailer revealed two new launch civilizations – the Abbasid Dynasty and the French. The team also showcased the 100 Years War campaign with history icon Joan of Arc; the campaign will allow players to experience this long-fought conflict between England and France. Finally, the battle took to the water in the first look at naval combat! With so much covered, find out more at ageofempires.com. Microsoft Flight Simulator Lands on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox Game Pass on July 27 At the Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase, we announced that Microsoft Flight Simulator will take flight on the Xbox Series X|S on July 27 and will be included with Xbox Game Pass. The Microsoft Flight Simulator team also proudly announced a free Top Gun: Maverick expansion launching alongside the new Top Gun: Maverick movie on November 19, 2021 so you can experience first-hand what it’s like to be a U.S. Navy Top Gun. As we continue adding to the experience with free World Updates, themed DLCs, and true-to-life aircraft, Xbox Series X|S simmers will enjoy these updates on console as well. Back 4 Blood (Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment / Turtle Rock Studios) Back 4 Blood is a thrilling cooperative first-person shooter from the creators of the critically acclaimed Left 4 Dead franchise. Experience the intense 4 player co-op narrative campaign, competitive multiplayer as human or Ridden, and frenetic gameplay that keeps you in the action. Coming on day one with Xbox Game Pass on PC, cloud, and console. Hades (Supergiant Games) Recipient of more than 50 Game of the Year awards! In this rogue-like dungeon crawler, you’ll wield the powers and mythic weapons of Olympus to break free from the clutches of the god of the dead himself, while growing stronger and unraveling more of the story with each unique escape attempt. Among Us is Coming to Xbox Series X|S via Xbox Game Pass Later This Year Need a primer on a game that’s been dominating the world with over half a billion players? We got you. Among Us is an online, 4-10 person multiplayer game that has you and your friends attempting to prepare your spaceship for departure. Work together and complete your tasks quickly but beware… there may be impostors aboard! Among Us is all about communication, teamwork, betrayal, and deceit. Who knew sneaking around, accusing your friends of murder, and being wrong could be so fun? Yakuza Like a Dragon (Sega / Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio) Available today with Xbox Game Pass on PC, cloud and Console! Become Ichiban Kasuga, a low-ranking yakuza grunt left on the brink of death by the man he trusted most. Take up your legendary bat and get ready to crack some underworld skulls in dynamic RPG combat set against the backdrop of modern-day Japan in Yakuza: Like a Dragon. Even More Games and New Experiences to Look Forward to This Year and Next Want more? Well good, because we’ve got more! We shared details a bunch of titles that you’ll be able to play later this year and in 2022. Double Fine Reveals Psychonauts 2 Launch Date and Pre-order Availability with New Trailer Today, via video trailer shown during the broadcast, we announced that Psychonauts 2 will launch on August 25, 2021! Razputin Aquato, trained acrobat and powerful young psychic, has realized his lifelong dream of joining the international psychic espionage organization known as the Psychonauts! But these psychic super spies are in trouble. Their leader hasn’t been the same since he was kidnapped, and what’s worse, there’s a mole hiding in their headquarters. Raz must use his powers to stop the mole before they execute their secret plan—to bring the murderous psychic villain, Maligula, back from the dead. Play Psychonauts 2 on day one with Xbox Game Pass! Grounded Gets Its Largest Update Yet Today we shared a variety of quality-of-life improvements, including a big fan request, the ability to sit in chairs! We also announced new base building and weapon upgrades, the Demon Orb Weaver Spider, new Burg.L Missions, pets, and more! Obsidian Announces The Outer Worlds 2 Today, we announced that Obsidian Entertainment is bringing a sequel to The Outer Worlds franchise with The Outer Worlds 2. Taking place in a new star system with a new crew, we are excited to share more details with our community in the future. Fans of The Outer Worlds should always remember – It’s not the best choice. It’s Spacer’s Choice. Coming day one with Xbox Game Pass. Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean Sails into Sea of Thieves in the Ultimate Pirate Crossover The Season Three update launches later this month, and with it comes Sea of Thieves: A Pirate’s Life – an epic original story that brings Captain Jack Sparrow and his crew sailing in from beyond the horizon to spark new adventures spanning five narrative-driven Tall Tales. For more details, read our full Sea of Thieves: A Pirate’s Life blog post. The Elder Scrolls Online | Console Enhanced Releases June 15 & Blackwood Chapter Out Now The Elder Scrolls Online: Console Enhanced arrives on June 15 and will be a free base-game update for all ESO owners. Taking full advantage of the native power of the Xbox X|S, Console Enhanced gives you the option to run the game at full 4K or 60FPS. It also includes improvements to draw distance, textures, reflections, shadows, load times and more. ESO has never looked or played better on console. Fallout 76 Gets Steel Reign Update, a Free Week, and Reveals Expeditions: The Pitt It’s never a dull moment in Appalachia. Whether you’ve just emerged from the Vault or been settling the area since launch, Fallout 76 has a ton of exciting content coming to a wasteland near you. There’s an all-new Steel Reign questline, an upcoming Free Week and sales, plus the reveal of Expeditions: The Pitt. DOOM Eternal Free Next-Gen Update Arrives June 29 DOOM Eternal’s next gen update arrives for Xbox Series X|S and on June 29. This free update optimizes DOOM Eternal for next-gen machines, offering improved visuals, increased performance and support for raytracing, or 4K resolution at 60 frames per second, or an optional 120 FPS mode. Xbox and Avalanche Studios Announces Its Next New Exclusive IP: Contraband From Avalanche Studios, the creators of Just Cause, Contrabandis a co-op smuggler’s paradise set in the fictional world of 1970s Bayan. Coming day one with Xbox Game Pass! Far Cry 6 (Ubisoft) Welcome to Yara, a tropical paradise frozen in time. Far Cry 6 immerses players into the adrenaline-filled world of a modern-day guerrilla revolution. As dictator of Yara, Antón Castillo is intent on restoring his nation back to its former glory by any means, with his son, Diego, following in his bloody footsteps. Playing as local Yaran Dani Rojas, join revolutionary group Libertad and fight your way to Esperanza to take down Antón Castillo and his oppressive regime. Battlefield 2042 (Electronic Arts / DICE) A groundbreaking first-person shooter set to revolutionize the modern multiplayer sandbox. The game drops players into a near-future, all-out-war experience that includes the franchise’s hallmark, game-changing destruction. Featuring matches on maps optimized for 64 players on Xbox One, then up to 128 players on Xbox Series X|S, this unprecedented scale adds a new dimension to multiplayer battles. Battlefield 2042 also ups the action with the inclusion of real-time events that reshape the battlefield and tactical combat. All new weapons, vehicles and gadgets give players the freedom to be strategic and create jaw-dropping, only-in-Battlefield moments. Diablo II: Resurrected (Blizzard Entertainment) Diablo II: Resurrected is the definitive remastering of Diablo II and its Lord of Destruction expansion—two hallmark entries in Blizzard Entertainment’s genre-defining action role-playing series. New and veteran players alike can now experience Diablo II’s timeless gameplay with modern visuals and audio that take advantage of today’s gaming hardware. Diablo II: Resurrected is coming to Windows PC, Xbox Series X|S, and Xbox One on September 23, 2021. The Diablo II: Resurrected multiplayer open beta test, coming in August, will allow Xbox and PC gamers the opportunity to get in early and try the game with their friends for a limited time. A Plague Tale: Requiem (Focus Home Interactive / Asobo Studio) Following from the first, award-winning adventure, embark with Amicia and her brother Hugo on an intense new quest for hope, as a terrifying curse hunts them down. Sacrifice your innocence to save the one you love, facing the savagery of a collapsing world as it’s overwhelmed in a sea of teeth and claws. A Plague Tale: Requiem is arriving on Xbox Series X|S and also with Xbox Game Pass day one in 2022. Party Animals (Recreate Games) Fight with or against your friends in Party Animals! Choose your character from a diverse cast of adorable animals as you battle it out across multiple game modes to be the last one left standing in the ultimate competitive brawler. Paw up, grab a plunger, and get ready to party like an animal. Play day one with Xbox Game Pass. Twelve Minutes (Annapurna Interactive / Luis Antonio) A romantic evening takes a wrong turn when a police detective breaks into your home, accuses your wife of murder, and knocks you unconscious. In a heartbeat, you are immediately returned to the start of the evening before it all happens again and again. A real-time, interactive thriller, where you will need to use the knowledge of what’s about to happen, to change the outcome and break the twelve-minutes loop. Coming day one with Xbox Game Pass, including PC, cloud, and console. The Ascent (Curve Digital / Neon Giant) The Ascent is a solo and co-op Action-shooter RPG set in a cyberpunk world. The mega corporation that owns you and everyone, The Ascent Group, has just collapsed. Can you survive without it? The Ascent is entirely playable in solo or co-op (online and local) up to 4 players and available day one with Xbox Game Pass on PC, cloud, and console. Atomic Heart (Mundfish) Atomic Heart is an action RPG that takes place in the Soviet Union in an alternative reality sometime in 1955, where technology like the internet, holograms and robots have already been invented. The main protagonist is a special agent called P-3, who is sent by the government to investigate a manufacturing facility that has fallen silent. Day one with Xbox Game Pass! Somerville (Jumpship) In the wake of catastrophe you must find the means to make your family whole again. Somerville is a Sci-Fi adventure grounded in the intimate repercussions of large scale conflict. Immerse yourself in a hand-crafted narrative experience set across a vivid rural landscape. Navigate your way through the perilous terrain ahead of you to unravel the mysteries of Earth’s visitors. Play day one with Xbox Game Pass. Shredders (FoamPunch, I-Illusions, Let it Roll) Break into the snowboarding event of the year to pull off one of the most insane tricks imaginable, all for the hope of scoring a wildcard entry to an exclusive invitational. Master the art of park riding, buttering, rails and massive kickers and earn your place in the world of snowboarding. A love letter to snowboarding, Shredders takes inspiration from snowboarding movies, the Amped games from the original Xbox, and the snowboarding heroes on social media. Shredders is a project fed by passion and built to shine on Xbox Series X|S, and will be available day one with Xbox Game Pass Slime Rancher 2 (Monomi Park) Slime Rancher 2 is a sequel to the award-winning, smash-hit Slime Rancher that has been enjoyed by over 10 million fans worldwide. Continue the adventures of Beatrix LeBeau as she journeys to Rainbow Island, a mysterious land brimming with ancient technology, unknown natural resources, and an avalanche of wiggling, jiggling, new slimes to discover. As Beatrix attempts to unravel the island’s secrets and uncover its true purpose, she’ll build, ranch, and farm within a beautiful conservatory, whose sparkling glass walls give her full view of the prismatic paradise she now calls home. Play day one with Xbox Game Pass. Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes (505 Games / Rabbit & Bear) In Eiyuden Chronicles: Hundred Heroes take your turn-based strategy game experience to the next level with a fine crafted 6-character battle system. Utilizing meticulously created 2D sprites and beautiful 3D backgrounds, Rabbit & Bear Studios delivers a riveting story and gameplay unlike any JRPG that has come before. Eiyuden Chronicles: Hundred Heroes is designed to bring players a modern take on a classic JRPG experience. Get ready to lead 100+ playable characters through a war-torn world only you can save. Both games are coming day one to Xbox Game Pass. Replaced (Coatsink / Sad Cat Studios) Replaced is a 2.5D sci-fi retro-futuristic action platformer where you play as R.E.A.C.H – an artificial intelligence trapped in a human body against its own will. Replaced combines cinematic platformer, pixel art, and free-flow action combat with a deep engaging dystopian story set in an alternative 1980’s. Explore and uncover the mysteries in and around Phoenix-City from the perspective of R.E.A.C.H. who is learning how to be human in a society that has taken a turn for the worst. Everything is ruled by corruption and greed, The ones in power see humans and their organs as nothing more than just currency. Discover the dark secrets of Phoenix-City. Define your shared future. Play day one with Xbox Game Pass.