It’s not far off the mark to say that May 7th’s episode of Inside Xbox was a let down for the majority. In the lead up to the event the marketing and discussion promoted that we would see a lot of new game play on the new Series X. Once the event came around, though, it was clear this was not the case. It wasn’t really what anybody was expecting, especially when it came to that crude tease of Assassins Creed: Valhalla game play.
Following the event social media platforms erupted, some in praise but mainly in disdain for the false promises we seemed to have been given. Xbox head of marketing Aaron Greenberg took to Twitter to apologize and open discussions with fans as can be seen here. In the tweet he admits that maybe the marketing for this event did give the wrong impressions but that was never meant to be idea Xbox gave off.
In the tweet Greenberg quotes that “they clearly gave off wrong expectations and that’s on us” but that was never meant to be the case, following “We appreciate all the feedback & we will take it all in and learn as a team”. So where does this leave Xbox now? We know they have more plans in the works with an event promised every month for the rest of this year with a big show being the July episode which is promising a look at first-party Xbox exclusives for Xbox Series X, and, more importantly, Halo Infinite.
Now, how can Xbox bounce back and make these future events a definite success? Time will be the true teller but we can always speculate with what we know. If the May episode of Inside Xbox was the only event we knew of there would certainly be reasons to worry, but knowing we have multiple events on the horizon and the possible showcase of game play will certainly put Xbox back in the good books for fans who were disappointed.
The June event will highlight updates to the Xbox services and platform so it will be interesting to see how this event plays out and what they mention in terms of future events. Unfortunately, it really looks like we will have to wait till July for the real bounce-back that can be expected. After the latest event and PlayStation 5’s Unreal Engine reveal it’s bound to be sure Xbox is ramping up the event behind the scenes to really steal the limelight back from Sony and make sure people know what console is going to be the most powerful.
The upcoming July event is giving us a showing of first-party games, mainly Halo, but what else could we be seeing? Hopefully, the event will give is a more in-depth look into Hellblade 2 which got shown alongside the console reveal and, should I add, looked stunning, but we could also get a glimpse of what current first-party games will look like on the Xbox Series X, Gear 5 was shown off at the beginning of this campaign running multiple upgrades like increased texture quality, ray tracing, and higher frames. But could we see other games at this event such as Sea of Thieves, State of Decay 2 and Forza Horizon 4? It would be really good to see them show off some improved features for these games such as the higher frames and quality for games like Forza or even introducing a form of ray tracing for Sea of Thieves could really make that game pop even more than it does now on the Xbox One X.
Alongside Xbox’s 20/20 events Geoff Keighley has started a ‘Summer Games Fest’ focusing on every and all form of gaming reveals for this summer period, the event started with the showcase of the Unreal Engine 5 running on a Playstation 5 (let’s not forget we first saw Hellblade 2 run this engine) and that short tease we got looked incredible. With Summer Games Fest just starting we have plenty to focus on in terms of other events and reveals such as the Cyberpunk 2077 and EA Play events happening June 11. Meanwhile though, Xbox 20/20 is sticking to their own events so there will be no exclusive reveals related to Xbox at Summer Games Fest. With the scale and range of Summer Games Fest we can only assume after the last event Xbox will be ramping up the quality of the next few reveals and making sure that there is no confusion as to what is offered.