New games for Xbox and PC: All announcements and trailers from the Xbox Developer Direct
Developers from Xbox Game Studios have presented new trailers and gameplay impressions from upcoming Xbox-exclusive games. There was also a big surprise.
Microsoft launched a new livestreaming format on Wednesday evening. In the Xbox Developer Direct, developers get a chance to present their games with in-depth gameplay videos.
In the run-up to the event, Microsoft emphasised that one should not expect a big show with countless new games and surprises - the focus of the first Developer Direct would be on four games: "Redfall", "Forza Motorsport", "The Elder Scrolls Online" and "Minecraft Legends". But there was still one big surprise. The "Evil Within" developer studio Tango Gameworks unexpectedly unveiled a new game that was available for download on the same evening.
Phil and I watched and commented on the event.
No time for the whole livestream? Here's a roundup of all the videos and information from the Developer Direct.
"Hi-Fi Rush" - the big surprise of the night
"Hi-Fi Rush" is visually reminiscent of the Dreamcast classic "Jet Set Radio". You take on the role of a wannabe rock star and have to fight your way through hordes of killer robots. The special thing about it is that the combat system is designed to the rhythm of the music. Instead of hammering on buttons at random, you have to beat up the nasty robots to the beat of the song that is playing. In addition to licensed songs by Nine Inch Nails, The Black Keys and The Prodigy, "Hi-Fi Rush" also includes a number of new songs composed especially for the game.
The game was developed by Tango Gameworks. The studio of "Resident Evil" creator Shinji Mikami is otherwise known for dark horror games like "The Evil Within". As if that wasn't surprising enough, John Johanas, the game's director, announced that "Hi-Fi Rush" is available now. You can download it on Xbox Game Pass or on Steam.
"Redfall" - finally a release date for the vampire shooter
Arkane Austin got the most space at the Developer Direct with a roughly eleven-minute gameplay presentation on "Redfall". The developer studio is known for immersive sim games like "Dishonored" and "Prey", which give you a lot of freedom and combination possibilities in the gameplay. This seems to be the case with "Redfall" as well.
"Redfall" is a story-based shooter that you tackle either alone or in co-op mode with three other players. You must save the island of Redfall, overrun by bloodthirsty killer vampires, from destruction. Each of the four playable characters has their own special abilities, which you can develop further in an extensive skill tree. The presented weapons, supernatural abilities and the beautifully staged open world definitely make you want more.
A concrete release date for the game is set for the end of the year.
Arkane has also revealed a concrete release date. "Redfall" will be released on 2 May 2023 for Xbox Series X/S, Steam and Epic Games Store.
"Forza Motorsport" - The graphical highlight
The eighth instalment of the Forza racing game series is set to be the "most technically advanced racing game ever made", according to Turn 10 Studios. The game has been developed from the ground up for the new generation of consoles and is said to run in 4K and 60 FPS with ray tracing. Compared to the Playstation competition "Gran Turismo 7", there are ray tracing reflections not only in replays and in the garage, but also during the races. The material shown at the Developer Direct certainly looks promising.
There is one small disappointment to report regarding the release date. The game was originally announced for spring 2023. The new launch window has been extended to sometime this year. I expect a fall release for Xbox Series X/S, Steam and Epic Games Store.
"The Elder Scrolls Online" - new fodder for MMO fans
Zenimax Online has presented a new expansion for the now nine-year-old MMO "The Elder Scrolls Online" - "ESO" for short. The new chapter is called "Necrom" and takes you to the unexplored realms of Morrowind. In addition, there is a new playable class in the form of the Arcanist.
You find the trailer exciting, but are afraid of plunging into such a large and overwhelming MMO? For a short time, a free trial of the game will give you access to all the expansions that have been released so far and you can see the fantasy world for yourself. This should make it easier for new ESO adventurers to get started.
After the Developer Direct, another separate deep-dive video on the expansion was released. "Necrom" will be released on 20 June 2023 for Xbox Series X/S, Steam and Mac.
"Minecraft Legends" - PvP mayhem with tower defence elements
In addition to the story-based single-player campaign, "Minecraft Legends" also features an eight-player PvP mode. Your team has to collect resources and build a base to fend off the attacks of the opposing team. At the same time, your team must try to capture the enemy base. The procedurally generated game worlds ensure that every online battle is unpredictable. The chaotic multiplayer gameplay already looks very fun and has made me very curious as a Minecraft noob.
Mojang Studios has also revealed an official release date. "Minecraft Legends" will be released on April 18, 2023 for Xbox and Playstation last- and current-gen consoles, as well as on Steam and on the Nintendo Switch.
My love of video games was unleashed at the tender age of five by the original Gameboy. Over the years, it's grown in leaps and bounds.
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