It took Microsoft a while, but they’ve finally realized the key to a successful console is having games, particularly exclusives, that people want to play on it. You could have the most powerful console ever created (and they do) but if there are no decent games to play on it, then why would anyone buy it?
So over the past couple of years, Microsoft has gobbled up studio after studio to assemble a portfolio of game developers that could deliver a lineup of mind-blowing, must-play games for the Xbox. And while it took a while to get here, Microsoft is finally turning the corner. We almost have games to play on the Xbox Series X.
I’m not going to lie, it’s been a rather disappointing launch for the Xbox Series X. The consoles flagship exclusive, Halo Infinite, was delayed and the launch lineup consisted mostly of third-party titles. It hasn’t gotten much better in 2021. But looking at the calendar, the Xbox Series X (and S) is primed for a big second half of the year.
With little competition from Sony, Microsoft had the lion’s share of the E3 spotlight. And they made the most of their opportunity, showcasing game after game after game. A total of 30 games were crammed into the 90-minute show and all of them will be coming to Xbox Game Pass. 18 of them will be available this year alone.
In July, we’re getting The Ascent and Microsoft Flight Simulator. In August, it’s the award-winning Hades. October is Turtle Rock’s Back 4 Blood from the creators of the beloved Left 4 Dead franchise. And then for the holiday season, it’s two back-to-back exclusives in Forza Horizon 5 on November 9 and Halo Infinite at some point.
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Halo Infinite is, obviously, the big one. It will be available on Xbox Game Pass and the multiplayer will be completely free-to-play.
And remember, these are only the games that will be available on Xbox Game Pass. There’s a whole slew of third-party titles slated to launch on Xbox Series X|S this holiday season, including Battlefield 2042, Madden NFL 22, Far Cry 6, Guardians of the Galaxy, Dying Light 2: Stay Human and more.
For years, Xbox has faced criticism of lackluster lineups. Well, they’ve been playing the long game and it feels like we’re finally there.