Breaking down Microsoft's lineup of Xbox One launch titles
A computing device is nothing without software. Getting a glimpse of the raw horsepower behind the new Xbox One is one thing, but you don't buy a game console to do tech demos. You want to know about the games. We've already broken down some of the biggest games we'll eventually see on next-gen consoles, but which ones are we actually getting at launch? Gizmag is here to walk you through some of the highlights on the Xbox One.
Ever since Ubisoft demoed it at E3 2012, Watch Dogs has been one of the most hotly anticipated games around. The long wait to hack your way through a computer-controlled version of Chicago is almost over, and the Xbox One is one of six platforms that will support Watch Dogs this holiday season.
Call of Duty: Ghosts
It wouldn't be a holiday season without a new Call of Duty entry, and trigger-happy Xbox One owners will be happy to know that the latest entry in the behemoth war shooter franchise will be available on day one.
EA's rival Battlefield 4 is also part of the Xbox One's launch lineup. The latest entry brings some huge changes to multiplayer, including Commander Mode (a player on a smartphone or tablet can hop in and influence the match from above) as well as destructible environments. Like, say, the one we watched at E3 2013, where a stage full of Battlefield 4 multiplayer combatants brought down a friggin' skyscraper.
Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
Ubisoft's other big holiday release takes the Assassin's Creed brand to the high seas, adding a new Pirates of the Caribbean element (sans Disney and Captain Jack) to the franchise's aging formula. Xbox One owners will be able to pilot new protagonist Edward Kenway through countless naval assassinations at launch.
Ryse: Son of Rome
The first Xbox One exclusive on the list, Ryse puts you in charge of Roman general Marius Titus, as you bludgeon your way through his lifelong tale of revenge. Ryse may turn out to be an early showcase title for the new Kinect, as you can command your legions using voice and gesture, all while eviscerating your own enemies using the traditional Xbox One controller.
Madden NFL 25
You could also say it wouldn't be a new console without a Madden game, and the Xbox One fits that bill too. Madden 25 celebrates a quarter century of EA's monopolized NFL series by implementing the company's new Ignite game engine.
NBA 2K14, NBA Live 14
After a two-year hiatus, EA's NBA Live series is back to go one-on-one with 2K Sports' industry leading NBA 2K franchise on the Xbox One. Live 14 will try to retain its all-star glory of years' past with a new physics-based dribbling mechanic, while 2K14 expands beyond North American borders to add Euroleague teams.
Dead Rising 3
Now here's a novel idea: a video game about zombies! Okay, so maybe the genre is a bit overdone, but we're still looking forward to using the Kinect's microphone to distract zombies while fighting for hero Nick Ramos' life. Capcom's Dead Rising 3 is another Xbox One exclusive.
We had a quick hands-on with this title at E3, and it looks fun and quirky, but also more of a quick pickup-and-play arcade game than a hardcore and in-depth blockbuster. It's a motorcycle racing game, where you're a poor schmuck hanging on for dear life to a Tron-like cycle with a mind of its own. Quirky, indeed.
Lego Marvel Super Heroes
The Lego games just keep on coming. After tackling Batman and other DC Comics characters, the brick-building company struck a similar deal with Marvel, to bring the likes of Spiderman, the X-Men, and the Avengers to a game of their own. If you've played any of the Lego games, you can probably guess what you're in for here. Lots of brick-smashing, brick-building, and puzzle-solving fun for kids and adults alike.
The above titles might be the ones we're most itching to play, but they're far from the complete list. Also among the Xbox One's launch titles are:
- Crimson Dragon
- FIFA 14
- Fighter Within
- Forza Motorsport 5
- Just Dance 2014
- Killer Instinct
- Need for Speed: Rivals
- Peggle 2
- Powerstar Golf
- Skylanders: Swap Force
- Zoo Tycoon
- Zumba Fitness: World Party
New gaming consoles typically rely on the buzz of their newness during their first few months, and then gradually build up a worthy game library. From that perspective, we've seen much worse launch lineups than the Xbox One's. If this doesn't tickle your fancy, though, then stay tuned for our preview of the PS4's launch titles.
Official list via Xbox Wire