Inside Xbox: First Look at Xbox Series X Games
Xbox Game Studios just held an Inside Xbox that gave us our first look at a handful of Xbox Series X games. Head of Microsoft Studios Matt Booty took a few moments to address what's going on with Microsoft Studios, reconfirming more news on Xbox Series X first-party titles will be coming in July.
After another lovely glimpse at what we hope is the console's power-on theme, we were reminded all these games are optimized for the XSX. Everything has been captured in-game, so it faithfully represents what we can expect in the final product.
Here's what was shown off.
Assassin's Creed: Valhalla
The last thing shown during the presentation was perhaps one of the more anticipated titles: Assassin's Creed: Valhalla. As has been mentioned before, AC: Valhalla will support Smart Delivery on the Series X, meaning you'll be able to pick up an Xbox One version and have it upgraded to an XSX version for free should you buy the next-gen system later.
In the gameplay trailer, seen above, we saw churches, longhouses, wild landscapes, and Stonehenge, plus lots of axe throwing. You'll need to raid settlements for support, forge alliances, make tough choices with England's broken kingdoms, and take over fortresses to cement your foothold in England.
Much as we heard from Sony's PlayStation 5 discussion, one big feature of next-gen hardware for games like AC: Valhalla is removing load times and helping players remained immersed in the experience. There's an added bonus of designing worlds without load buffering areas, too.
Though that's about it for what Ubisoft discussed and showed, we're looking forward to learning more in the future.
Following Yakuza's roaring entry on Xbox Game Pass, we got our first look at the upcoming Yakuza 7, aka Yakuza: Like a Dragon, and oh boy, was it good. Ichiban's quest for redemption and revenge takes him across a range of environments and a number of huge setpiece fights against yakuza bosses. Somehow, it looks more over-the-top than ever before, and it's set to be an Xbox Series X launch title.
Bright Memory: Infinite
The first game shown was Bright Memory Infinite from Playism. It's a fast and brutal first-person shooter in an Eastern setting. There's guns, armor, swords, strange powers, and super-fast cars in road-rage scenes. Bright Memory Infinite was developed by just one person, built from the ground up. It's the pseudo-sequel to Bright Memory: Episode 1 on PC (Steam).
Codemasters' Dirt 5 showed off slick cars and even slicker courses. Absolutely gorgeous environments meet hectic, faced-paced racing antics. It's a Smart Delivery game, too, so it'll be coming to Xbox One as well, complete with a deep story, Troy Baker, and Nolan North. What more could a racing fan ask for?
Next up was Scorn. It's a Game Pass title set in a strange alien universe. Expect plenty of atmospheric wide shots, probably some body horror, and a decent dose of mystery as you journey to revive the husks of what looks to be your creepy alien comrades.
Deep Silver and Fishlabs showed off another Smart Delivery game: Chorus. It's a sci-fi space shooter centered on the feats of a famous fighter tasked with upholding a civilization — until that civilization decides she hasn't met their expectations.
Madden NFL 21
We knew EA was putting out a new Madden game, and they announced Madden 21 for Xbox Series X during the event. It wasn't so much a feature trailer — that's probably coming during EA Live next month — as it was a look back at how the series has evolved. But we're excited to see what Madden 21 has to offer nonetheless.
It's apparently not a straightforward Smart Delivery title, either. According to a report from The Verge, EA said you'll have to purchase the Xbox One version by December 31st, then upgrade to the Series X version by March 31st, 2021. It's not too surprising, since EA hinted at its own stance on Smart Delivery in its recent investor relations call, a program separate from the Microsoft Smart Delivery plan.
Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines 2
Sarah Bond, head of Xbox Partnerships, broke in to announce Microsoft has hundreds of publishers working on games slated for launch sometime in the console's first year, including big hitters like Capcom, Bethesda, and Bandai Namco.
What we saw first, though, was an incredibly creepy trailer for Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines 2 from Paradox. It's the holidays, and someone's rocking around the Christmas tree — with a bunch of hideous puppets that may or may not have been alive once. Expect plenty of seduction, gang warfare, blood, blood, more blood, and maybe some dances to classic big-band tunes as well.
Call of the Sea
Next up was Call of the Sea from Raw Fury, a colorful mystery game set on a paradise island that's too good to be true. It's about a woman journeying through grief and finding her own identity after losing a partner, while also attempting to uncover what it was that led to his death.
Then we had The Ascent, a dystopian shmup set in a cyberpunk world. Corporate greed runs rampant, and workers are basically slaves. A ragtag band of heroes groups together and tries to bring justice to the world, in a world where justice means basically destroying everything in your path.
Another Game Pass title shown off was psychological horror game The Medium. We don't really know what it's all about, but it gives off some strong Rosemary's Baby vibes and is set for a Holiday 2020 release. One thing we do know, though, is that the music comes from Silent Hill composer Yakira Yamaoka and more news is on the way.
Bandai Namco gave us a first look at another Smart Delivery title, Scarlet Nexus. Set in a futuristic, post-apocalyptic world, you deal with "The Others," which is a race of strange beings only you and your group of Psionic Warriors can fight with psychokinesis. It's sort of like a more anime Astral Chain meets God Eater, and we're really quite fine with that.
Second Extinction: Reclaim Earth
Yet another world-premiere and Smart Delivery game is Second Extinction: Reclaim Earth from Systemic Reaction. Second Delivery is also a post-apocalyptic title, but instead of weird aliens, you fight mutant dinosaurs across a range of beautiful, deadly open environments.
As mentioned, there's a lot more to come both from the Summer Game Fest and Microsoft itself. Stick with GameSkinny for more Xbox Series X and next-gen news as it develops. We'll have more on these games in the future!