Infinite Summer 2022: Xbox + Bethesda Showcase Recap
Xbox had a jam packed Summer Game Fest presence with their massive Xbox + Bethesda summer event. They put a focus on games that will be playable in the next 12 months; trying to fight that misconception that Xbox doesn't have anything coming soon. They brought over 30 titles coming to Game Pass, further bringing value to the best streaming service in gaming. We also got some new players joining Gamepass with Riot Games and the makers of Persona bringing a partnership to Gamepass.
This was seriously the best Xbox Showcase in years, and the best one we got all year. It had so many surprises and so many games, that the idea that we are getting a extended follow up on Tuesday on top of it is insane!. They kicked off with Redfall, middled it out with Overwatch and Diablo IV, and ended with a huge bang with Starfield. Not only were WELL in the double digits for games, its was all almost gameplay! My only complaint is a lack of Halo. Outside of a small Halo themed update for Flight Simulator, we got zero Halo Infinite news. With such an embarrassment of riches, I feel bad to complain, but I would have liked to have gotten story expansion for Halo Infinite. It's open world and live service aspects lend itself to it and would have been great to hear for Halo fans.
1. Redfall - Gameplay Reveal
Look, Arkane has a lot of fans, and Dishonored and Prey were both highly praised titles. There are a lot of gamers who are really amped for Redfall. This is one of the next big AAA first party studio Xbox games on the list, and many are amped for it. When Xbox gave us the first cinematic trailer, I will admit, I found it a little sleepy. This game isn't for me, and the gameplay shown today didn't change that. I don't have any technical complaints other than a open world vampire hunter game just doesn't appeal to me. I'm sure I'm in the minority, but it was a good game to kick off the event.
2. High on Life
A goofy cartoony game made by the makers of Rick and Morty with bright talking cartoon guns? I will admit that this game looks hilarious and whimsical. I'm there.
3. Hollow Knight: Silksong
Gamers have been BEGGING for any Hollow Knight Silksong news. It has been years with no word, and this was one of the few games to show up that didn't present some kind of release window. We still have no idea when Silksong is releasing; however, we did learn it will be a Game Pass Day One title which is exciting.
4. Riot Games coming to Gamepass
This news was a total surprise and yet at the same time not surprising. Xbox has been making deals left and right to turn Game Pass into THE gaming streaming service. Nothing comes close to its value. Xbox, having absorbed Bethesda and soon Activision Blizzard, already has made deals with EA and Ubisoft for their services. Now, Riot Games has made a new deal with Xbox bringing their massively popular catalog of games to Game Pass. Now, at first Riot may seem like an odd fit as Riot has already embraced the free to play model across all their titles. All five of these titles can be played without Game Pass; however, Game Pass will unlock all or most characters in game, and give regular perks. It also looks like exiting players will be able to simply link their accounts so there shouldn't be a issue with the storefronts.
5. A Plague Tale: Requiem
A Plague Tale is a game I regret skipping. It looked great and reviewed well, I just never got to it. Now that we are getting a sequel, I regret that even more. This new look really excited me and many fans of this title.
6. Forza Motorsport
Forza is a series that managed to bring in countless new players who normally pass on racing games as Horizon 5 broke new ground as not just a "good racing game" but a GOTY contender. Horizon 5 was so good it took our Gi GOTY 2021. Motorsport looks to repeat history by bringing the more simulation and less arcade counsin to the masses. This is simply one of the most stunning showcases in today's event as new technologies continue to boost Forza's realism. This one just looks incredible.
7. Flight Simulator 40th Anniversary
Flight Simulator is another game I regret skipping. It looked so incredible and I really wanted to play it. I didn't have a PC the year it released and when I did get it, the install was just so huge I never let it finish. Eventually I an out of time and had to focus on current year titles. The 40th anniversary may be an excuse to go back as several of the plans showcased really excited me. I want to fly the Wright Bros airplane and the Halo content also excited.
8. Overwatch 2 - Free To Play + Release Date!
I have been waiting for Overwatch 2 for YEARS. They announced it way to early, as I just started to lose faith that it was ever going to release. It just update over update slowly slipped lower and lower on my anticipation list. The fact that we now are staring at a release date it unbelievable to me. I'm still nervous with the game being labeled "early access" after years of development, and early feedback of the multiplayer play test feeling like minimal this does seem to all rest on the new characters / maps and mainly the minimally seen campaign. That being said, it drops in October so I plan to spend my birthday dropping Dva nukes.
Overwatch 2 arrives on October 4 as a free to play experience featuring brand new content. There will be more shown at the Reveal Event on June 16 at 10 AM PT, streaming on Overwatch’s official Twitch and Youtube channels.
9. Ara: History Untold
10. Elder Scrolls Online: High Isle
11. Ark 2
Xbox dropped a short in engine trailer for Ark 2. It didn't show much other than a reminder this game still exists and is coming. We got to see Vin Diesel riding a T-rex so that was cool.
Scorn is a creepy, disgusting, looking alien-esque horror game that has been MIA for a while, and we finally got a new look. It also confirmed a 2022 release window which is exciting.
13. Flintlock: The Siege of Dawn
Flintlock looks like Forspoken with guns. Don't get me wrong, Forspoken looks phenomenal, so Flintlock is in good company. It was nice to see a quality third person action game like this show up during the event.
14. Minecraft Legends
I really enjoyed Dungeons, and Legends looks to be another new addition to the Minecraft universe. It looks intriguing, and I know fans of Minecraft will be excited for this new addition.
15. Bladepoint - Campaign + Game Pass + Xbox Release
I was really excited for this one, as Baraka Bladepoint was a fun surprising game last year that I really enjoyed. I never expected to have room for ANOTHER Battle Royale but Naraka is so different it doesn't feel at all like the others. The fantasy / melee focus really sets it a part. I was excited for the news that it was coming to Xbox and Game Pass! Cross play is confirmed to be coming this month, but I will be curious to get more news on cross progression. I can't find confirmation on that yet. For those of us who bought the original on Steam will we be able to move our content? That would be a great evolution, especially so we can play on multiple platforms. The announcement also revealed a story mode will be coming with a campaign! I love to see successful multiplayer titles add an optional campaign, and Naraka is perfect for one.
16. Grounded - Full Release
Honey I Shrunk the Kids simulator is leaving early access and going full release. This is more than a superficial statement of "game build quality" as the new update will involve more story and locations and other content.
17. Diablo IV
I think it was actually pretty bold (maybe foolish is a better word) of Xbox and Bethesda to still bring Diablo IV to Summer Game Fest. With all the controversy surrounding its spinoff cousin right now, Diablo Immortal is all in the gaming news for all the wrong reasons. With some of the worst most blatant pay to win microtransactions, that put Battlefront 2's controversy and all other games to shame, Diablo Immortal is slated to be the WORST REVIEWED game EVER. At a .3 on metacritic, Bethesda has put the Diablo name through the ringer, into a record book you don't ever want to be in. Now is maybe not the best time to showcase the full sequel of Diablo. That being said, they did anyways. Diablo IV is coming in 2023, and we got a nice extended look at the game. Fans of the franchise can only hope that IV won't require 100,000 real US dollars to level up your gear. That's right you read that right.
18. Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty
I thought the game was Nioh 3 at first until I saw the title reveal. This looks more Chinese than Japanese, and looks incredible none the less.
19. Persona on Xbox
In Addition to Riot games new big deal with Game Pass, the makers of Persona have an exciting partnership with Xbox bringing several Persona games to Xbox and Game Pass, including 5 Royal.
20. Starfield - Gameplay
Xbox ended their showcase on a huge bang. I will admit, my excitement for Starfield was pretty minimal. They had showed us nothing, and to be honest I am not a huge Bethesda fans. Sure I love space, but we hadn't seen anything.
Good lord was I wrong. This game just shot across an entire list of games to the near top of my excitement level on my anticipation list! Starfield, (pending Bethesda avoids a F76 repeat and puts the time in) this game could be an easy Elden Ring level GOTY juggernaut.