Legends tell of three great gaming giants, each hoping to bring the other to their downfall, yet each coming together to do the same exact thing half the time somehow. Yep, after Nintendo and Sony dropped their direct-to-viewer, pre-taped video presentations, it became time for Microsoft to do the same. On Tuesday, Xbox continued their Inside Xbox series with a games presentation of their own.
To be fair, Inside Xbox stuck with their older, unique approach. It felt less like a beat-by-beat presentation of games, like Nintendo and Sony have opted for, and more like an E3 presentation. Among the game discussions were interviews with developers and more extensive discussions of certain games. Unfortunately, it was mostly recaps of older games, but if you’re interested in the games they talked about, many include little tidbits about the games, or are new trailers altogether. There was even one mini-documentary about an indie game! So quaint.
If you opted for another presentation and used up your lunch break on it, here’s a quick recap of what went down.
The event started off with plenty of talk about the upcoming pirate game Atlas. In this “persistent, open-world sandbox game,” you and your friends can run around and do possibly the most pirate things possible. This event’s host admitted that Sea Of Thieves exists in the Microsoft sphere, but says they’re “two very different experiences.” Atlas is a little less doofy, it looks, and more of an intensive experience. They spoke with the lead game designer about the nitty-gritty of the game. It does sound like they’ll be introducing cross-play for PC and Xbox, and gameplay content will be rolled out in phases.
Microsoft is really eager to join every other development company in trying the hip new thing. This time, it’s cloud gaming. Kareem Choudhry, Corporate VP for the division, discusses how they’re eager to bring it to the mainstream and get Xbox games on mobile devices.
Choudhry also brings news for the project: open sign-ups for the public testing phase. Interested Microsoft loyalists, or curious gamers, in US, UK and Korea can sign up to hopefully get a peek at the old-but-new-again system. The first games available will be Halo 5: Guardians, Sea of Thieves, Gears 5 and Killer Instinct.
Xbox Game Pass
Obviously, given the success of Gears 5 on the Xbox Game Pass, the presentation couldn’t go on without a massive, well-earned Xbox Game Pass bragging spree. Given the opportunity, they re-introduced a few games coming up for the platform, too. Bad North, Dirt Rally 2.0, Cities: Skylines and more are going to slide in over the next few weeks.
For Game Pass users, they’re also unveiling beta versions of UI changes and under-the-hood fixes.
If you’re interested in more indies for the Game Pass, there’s going to be an indie showcase called ID@Xbox Game Pass. It airs September 26 (that’s tomorrow) at 9 AM PT.
The Outer Worlds
The much-anticipated open-world RPG, The Outer Worlds, had a little bit to say during the presentation. This time, it was a new career path: the “mad scientist.” Of course, with Outer Worlds’s light-hearted approach to its world, the mad scientist will bring the goofier technologies into the world. This path will introduce interesting weapons like shrink rays and the mandibular arranger.
There was also an interview with Megan Starks, the senior narrative designer, who outlines what makes Outer Worlds unique and interesting.
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Ghost Recon: Breakpoint Beta
Fans of the Ghost Recon series will be glad to hear that Breakpoint’s open beta will be opening… tomorrow. Yep! If you have time to try it out in the slew of news and betas about first-person shooters, it’ll be opening up for open beta starting September 26th, until September 29th. You can sign up on the game’s website, and preload now.
They also go through some of Breakpoint’s major plot points. In the wake of protagonist Cole Walker’s anger, he sets out with a new crew to take down the evils of the world as they set to wreak havoc.
By the same creators of Oxenfree, humorous narrative tale Afterparty outlines the adventures of a duo trying to escape Hell. They died before their college graduation, but they have one chance to make it out: by out-partying Satan.
If you liked it at State of Play, the studio’s director, Sean Krankel, the studio’s director, gave a more in-depth interview about the game for Inside Xbox. He talks a little more about the universe behind the game. Of course, the demons torture and humans suffer all day, but they party the River Styx by night and hit the clubs to unwind. Krankel explains they mix many concepts of underworlds, or an afterlife, into one here. He also discusses the gameplay, including how drinks work.
Trailers And Reveals
Of course, there were plenty of cool minor trailers and reveals as well. Some were just Xbox versions of their multi-platform counterparts, while others were Xbox-exclusive. These included:
- Children of Morta — A quick recap of what takes place in the family-themed RPG.
- Code Vein — Run-down of the basics of the upcoming vampire RPG.
- El Tropico 6 — Unsurprisingly popular (but kind of goofy) dictator simulator.
- Hitman — New information for the “Haven” island level.
- Felix The Reaper — If you’re interested in the game, the developers shared a mini-doc to introduce the concepts and themes behind the dark-humored, but somewhat sweet, game.
- Ace Combat 7 — Introducing the first missions and basic premises.
BONUS: Gears 5 Rockstar Drinks
Another day, another energy drink promotion, I guess.