With MrJohnSherry kick starting our series of prediction posts with Sony, I thought I’d look at their big rivals; Microsoft!
I’ve went for a slightly different direction from Sherry, I’ve went with what I genuinely think they’ll run with and not what I’d like them to run with. Without further ado – may I present to you all, what I think MS will do this E3!
Gears of War (including 4 & HD Collection)
The HD collection has been heavily rumoured for months now; hell it even had a screenshot leak.
The leak only confirmed Gears 1 but I will be shocked (and horrified) if this HD Remaster was not a trilogy pack! I couldn’t imagine fans being happy with the first game being a standalone remaster.
I fully expect the Markus Fenix Collection(?) to be officially unleashed this E3. I also reckon that it’ll come with a Gears of War 4 BETA too!
Speaking of GoW 4 that’ll be unveiled with a cinematic highlighting the new setting and new protagonist.
Quantum Break/Halo 5/Rise of the Tomb Raider/Forza 6/Scalebound Updates
These are the games that we already know about, the major first-party exclusives that will be released this year (except quantum break). For these I imagine concrete release dates to be announced as well as playable builds open to the floor and maybe some form of demo for the rest of us.
Quantum Break is a special case, I cannot see past Microsoft showing us a little of the accompanying TV show (remember this?) with the pilot being released “Right Now on Xbox Live” and the rest of the season released periodically, up to the game launches and continues the story and sets up season 2.
Other Major 1st-Party Games
Crackdown will be playable. The replacement for Phantom Dust will be announced. A new internal developer will rise from the ashes of Darkside Games.
Phil Spencer has said that this year is the strongest year of 1st-party games in Xbox history so I expect 3 new IPs (No idea what they will be) to make their debut, perhaps only in tech version/logo/names/developer form but I expect MS to hit hard this year. It’s a pivotal year for the Xbox One, Phil Spencer is aware of this – if they are to claw back some of the lost ground they need games!
ID @Xbox Updates
Speaking of games…
…Remember those indie games Microsoft unveiled last year and many are still not with us? Well we’re gonna see them again! Below, Beyond Eyes, Hyperlight Drifter and SMITE will return and MS will unveil new exciting projects to try to head off the momentum Sony will try to continue with No Mans Sky.
I expect a lot of ID@Xbox announcements
New controller details
The worst kept secret in gaming, we KNOW that the new controller will have a 3.5mm headphone jack, but what other improvements? Perhaps better bumpers that respond to presses over their length? Improved haptic feedback on the triggers?
This picture was leaked by a retailer (as is protocol now) and the name is interesting ‘covert forces’ it looks like a ‘Call of Duty’ special edition without the moniker – this adds fuel to the rumours that CoD is now partnered with Playstation and not Microsoft.
Could be interesting.
Why redesign the controller and leave the console? Rumours are abound of a new improved design for the actual console too!
This makes sense as well; history has proved that console redesigns have coincided with spikes in sales. With the Xbox One currently lagging behind PS4 a redesign could provide a; much-needed, shot in the arm. Expect it to be smaller, quieter, quicker and all-round more attractive.
To further inject sales they may even offer some sort of trade in deal – exchange your Xbox 360 for this redesign and save ‘x’ amount of dollars. This will push those who haven’t upgraded to do so and keep them in the ‘xbox family’.
My Long Shot predictions
Xbox Now – a competitor to Playstation Now, play legacy Xbox titles instantly!
EA Access to extend reach – Microsoft to announce partnership with EA for early DLC access (to replace them losing Activisions support).
Phantom Dust to resurface as a new Arcade title – probably not gonna happen.