So, now that we are on way in 2016, depressingly back to the day job as well, its time to have a glance to the coming year and check out the Xbox 2016 Exclusives that are coming your way. Mike Nichols, Corporate Vice President Of Marketing For Xbox, highlighted the Xbox 2016 Exclusives for Xbox One, Xbox 360 & Windows 10/Steam. Nichols stated that the following were coming this year and hinted that there were some surprises awaiting us in terms of new additions, although they will likely fall into 2017. Note, some of these titles are also available on Windows, some more Microsoft Exclusive than Xbox 2016 Exclusives.
Xbox 2016 Exclusives – What’s on the cards?
- Gears of War 4 (Xbox One) – Multiplayer Beta in Spring 2016/Launch in Fall 2016
- Quantum Break (Xbox One) – April 5, 2016
- Halo Wars 2 (Xbox One & Windows 10) – Fall 2016
- Crackdown 3 (Xbox One) – Multiplayer in Summer 2016
- Fable Legends Open Beta (Xbox One & Windows 10) – Spring 2016
- ReCore (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
- Sea of Thieves (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
- Gigantic (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
- Killer Instinct: Season 3 (Xbox One & Windows 10) – March 2016
- Gears of War: Ultimate Edition (Windows 10) – Spring 2016
- Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition (Xbox One & Windows 10) – Spring 2016
- Cobalt (Xbox One, Xbox 360 & Steam) – Feb. 2, 2016
Let’s take a walkthrough these games and see what is in store. You can use the little circles to your left or the Previous/Next buttons to your right to navigate through
Gears of War 4 (Xbox One) – Multiplayer Beta in Spring 2016/Launch in Fall 2016
The first game in our Xbox 2016 Exclusives roundup is a biggy! What can we say about the Gears of War 4 gameplay trailer, well firstly we love gameplay trailers and frankly we’re not so keen on complete cinematic trailers. Gears of War 4 is going back to the dark, twisted and horror aspects of the original. Coalition’s (who took over the franchise from Epic last year) Rod Fergusson told IGN “We’re going back to something personal, intimate, dark, and mysterious, being afraid of the boogeyman,”Things to look out for in the trailer, weather effects (immense), ethereal blood splatter and clean movement between gameplay and cut scenes.
The full plot is yet unknown but it is expected to be more personal and intimate storyline with some moral ambiguity involved for the only character’s we’ve seen so far, Kait and JD, who are both in their early 20’s and less battle hardened than previous protagnists.
Quantum Break (Xbox One) – April 5, 2016
Time is Power people. Time is Power. From the makers of Alan Wake and Max Payne comes more slow-mo work with what looks like some force fields too – time shifts. The Remedy team have gone all out on the story line aspects of this employing some serious acting talent (watch the trailer) and mixing the gameplay with screenplay. It makes the trailers look very nice and the hype builds. This extends the game with an accompanying live action story that is influenced by the choices you make in the game.
When time breaks, catastrophe becomes your playground. As hero Jack Joyce, you’ll fight your way through epic disasters that stutter back and forth in time. But surviving this unstable world–and halting the end of time itself–is only possible by mastering your new time powers.
Halo Wars 2 (Xbox One & Windows 10) – Fall 2016
We know very little about Halo Wars 2. The trailer below is purely cinematic and is setting the scene. We know there is a character called Douglas for the Red Team and a gnarly looking, presumably, bad monster dude. Development is now in the control of the Total War team, Creative Assembly, taking over from Ensemble last time out. As a real time strategy game Halo Wars was ok, nothing special, didn’t raise the bar. Don’t expect a Total War style game as they have been told it should follow the same concept as the first. It is going to have to do a lot to really impress us. That said we still like playing Age of Empires.
Crackdown 3 (Xbox One) – Multiplayer in Summer 2016
We are very excited about how Crackdown 3 could turn out. Utilising the Microsoft Azure cloud platform Crackdown 3 will push processing requests across the cloud server farms to enable increasing processed power in the game. What this equates to is the ability to do more than the Xbox processors and memory can normally do, in this case a fully destructible multiplayer experience. Blow a whole in a wall, got my self a sniper spot. Blow up a building I’ve got utter carnage.
The single player offline elements will still be destructible but not to that level. We are looking forward to someone re-creating the final scene from Fight Club. There may even be a story line in there somewhere. Something about taking on the bad guys and taking out the hierarchy in any manner you fancy. We also like the approach taken in the trailer, a good look behind the scnes alongside explanations, nice touch.
Fable Legends Open Beta (Xbox One & Windows 10) – Spring 2016
A PC and Xbox cross-platform playable addition to the Fable franchise that will be Free to Play. Think traditional MMORPG style or in-app puchases, free to play the whole game, but to extend your character, earn you abilities it will cost coin. Silver can be earned in game and gold bought with real cash. Playing as one of four characters in Albion (The mythical land in Fable), either as a Hero or Villain, you can play the whole game either in co-operative modes or or with AI. Magic, swashbuckling sword action, creatures of all kinds, tricksters, brawlers and, erm, chicken chasers. What more could you ask for?
“The brave but foolish hero, he ended up most dead. A redcap got its halberd out and bopped him on the head. His eyes popped out, his kneecaps chopped, his bottom burnt off….”
ReCore (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
ReCore is set to be released in the Spring of this year (2016). The game’s main character, Joule, is the last person on the desert planet Far Eden. Joule is in control of a cool looking blue orb thingy that when she inserts into robots they take on their own life. In the trailer we see Joule and her robotic dog exploring a vault before they are attacked. Heroically, the dog blows itself up to destroy the enemy. Joule then finds a humanoid robot and inserts the orb into it and it comes to life. We haven’t seen any gameplay as yet but with former Bungie story writer Joseph Staten onboard we can expect a good tale.
Sea of Thieves (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
Something a bit different up next. Sea of Thieve is a multiplayer Pirate based adventure that will allow user to add to their own and others experiences with user created content built from in-game tools. Intriguing. The game is being developed by Rare so we feel it is in good hands. The graphics look very nice, it has stayed away from the reality look and provides a slightly more cartoonish feel, but looks great nonetheless.
“I think with Sea of Thieves, what you’re really going to see as you find out more about the game, is that it’s also about allowing people to create their own gaming memories,” says Microsoft corporate VP Kudo Tsunoda ito the Official Xbox Magazine. “It’s about enabling people to create their own stories through limitless possibilities, and I think that’s what Rare has always done a great job of historically – it is great at creating these super emotional memories and attachments that people have to games.”
Gigantic (Xbox One & Windows 10) – 2016
With a similar style of graphics to the Sea of Thieves game previously discussed Gigantic has a cartoony feel to its characters, but again looks very good graphically. The game see’s you take on 5 v 5 player battles accompanied by a Guardian, a “Gigantic” Guardian. The gameplay combines all out action, strategy and stealth with your customisable hero as you look to take out the opposing teams heros and steal strength from their Guardian. Once a certain level of battle damage has been achieved we go all old school and have a battle finale where the Guardians are truly unleashed and its a battle to the death. Gigantic is another Free to Play Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA).
Killer Instinct: Season 3 (Xbox One & Windows 10) – March 2016
March 2016 see’s the return of the Killer Instinct competitive fighting or beat ’em up with Killer Instinct : Season 3. Killer Instinct is famed for it’s over the top action and characters, rocking and slightly midi 80’s inspired beats and lots of freakin’ combo’s. I mean lots of combo’s! Some of the first information out about Killer Instinct : Season 3 was the addition of Battletoad Rash and more recently Microsoft Studios Creative Director Adam Isgreen confirmed in a Twitch session that Tusk will be returning.
Gears of War: Ultimate Edition
At this stage of the Xbox 2016 Exclusives we are jumping into some remakes. First up is the original Gears of War is to be re-released on the Xbox One under the title Gears of War : Ultimate Edition. This takes the original version and updates it for the Xbox One bringing new remastered sound, 90 minutes of new campaign content from the PC version, new achievements and updated multiplayer. Get prepared to lead Marcus Fenix into a for battle for survival against the Locust Horde, a nightmarish race of creatures that surfaced from the bowels of the planet.
- Remastered for Dolby 7.1 Surround
- 90 mins of new campaign content from the original PC game
- New Xbox Live achievements (1,250 Gamerscore)
- Concept art gallery and unlockable comics
- Modernized Multiplayer featuring:
- 60 frames per second
- Dedicated servers
- Skill-based matchmaking
- New game types – Team Deathmatch, King of the Hill (Gears of War 3 style), and new 2v2 Gnasher Execution
- Total of 19 maps, including all DLC and PC-exclusive maps
- 17 unlockable Gears of War 3 characters for Multiplayer progression
- More Match customization including Actives, Respawn Time, Self-revive and Weapon Respawn
- Modernized gameplay with smoother movement and updated controls:
- Alternate Controls and all new Tournament Controls
- All controls tuned for Xbox One
- Adding the Gears of War 3 features you love: Enemy Spotting, Multiplayer Tac-Com, Improved sensitivity customization
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition
The beautifully designed and fun platformer has had it’s definitive edition delayed into 2016, Spring time. In Ori and the Blind Forest you play Ori, a white guardian spirit, who has the can wall jump and joinsup with a spirit named Sein that can shoot Spirit Flames. Sein is the light and eyes of the forest’s Spirit Tree. In order to progress forward in the game, players are tasked to move between platforms and solve puzzles.
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition developer, Moon Studios, has also confirmed via it’s Facebook page that the Definitive version will be cheaper for those who already own the original. There is also rumour that the developers are interested in the proposition of a movie as well. Stay tuned.
Cobalt (Xbox One, Xbox 360 & Steam) – Feb. 2, 2016
The last game in our Xbox 2016 Exclusives roundup is Cobalt is a side scrolling platformer with a very 80’s feel except the graphics are great. The developers behind Cobalt are Oxeye Game Studio alongside none other than Mojang of Minecraft fame. Cobalt also has a multiplayer mode with variations on standard game modes such as Capture the Flag, but its a Plug instead. Teamstrike, which is a 1 life Counter-Strike style deathmatch. You play as a cute little robot who loves rolling around punching, jumping, fighting with killer hamsters….the usual. Check out the trailer below. It sums it up perfectly. All in-game footage. You can still access the old Alpha for the Mac or Windows machines as well to get a taster. So not quite an Xbox 2016 Exclusives, but console-wise it is.
We hope you enjoyed the Xbox 2016 Exclusives roundup. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.