Microsoft’s Gamescom 2014 is a key component in the company’s effort to reinvigorate Xbox sales. Reports that the PlayStation 4 is dominating the German and broader European markets is damning for a console released at the same time as Sony’s console, even if PlayStation always has had the leg-up in the region.
That said, it’s early days, and Microsoft still has the potential to outshine its closest competitor with a strong lineup. The promise to delve deeper into its exclusives lineup is integral in its effort to propel Xbox One up the charts, and it starts with the likes of Quantum Break and Sunset Overdrive.
Interestingly, Sunset Overdrive didn’t quite blow away the press at E3 back in June. Hands-on previews showcased a restrictive, tight co-op horde mode that failed to demonstrate the game’s proposed open-world extravagance. Developer Insomniac Games is trying to reestablish itself after last year’s disappointing multi-platform release, Fuse, and a similarly shallow co-op adventure won’t bode well in helping Microsoft shift consoles. Gamescom is key to getting people back on the bandwagon of this colourful and intriguing action game.
Microsoft will be showing Quantum Break behind closed doors at Gamescom. Remedy, who made the acclaimed Alan Wake for Xbox 360, can reignite its story-driven reputation with this sci-fi challenge. Will this be the first AAA exclusive to hit Xbox One?
Gamescom will be one of the first opportunities for press to delve deeper into 343 Industries rejuvenating return to Halo classics. Returning to all four games in one compilation is an exciting proposition, and despite being a collection of older games from previous generations, The Master Chief Collection could be the system seller Microsoft needs for the Christmas period. Gamescom is its time to shine ahead of release.
We shouldn’t expect too much from 343 regarding Halo 5, especially with Microsoft certain to go into marketing overdrive with The Master Chief Collection. What we should see, however, is something regarding the beta, which kicks off on December 27. Anyone who buys The Master Chief Collection will get into the beta, so there’s a great tie-in there, and an explosive reveal of some gameplay -- even information -- could certainly help Xbox One.
Microsoft will announce a new IP at Gamescom, and it will be interesting to see which route it goes down to improve Xbox One’s exclusives portfolio. We’ve seen the likes of Ryse add a bit of originality to the lineup, for better or worse, so something that isn’t like Gears of War or Call of Duty would add an element of surprise that’s been lacking from the Xbox name for a while.
Crackdown has prominence on the official Xbox site as of late, despite being quite far off for a 2015 release, and only having just been announced at E3. The series isn’t as popular as the Halo or Gears of War games of the world, but it’s certainly an under-utilised franchise that has plenty of potential. Will it be at Gamescom? It seems unlikely at this stage, but we’re keen to see what The Agency’s been up to.
What are you hoping to see from Microsoft at Gamescom?