Throughout the 8th console generation, we saw the return of many beloved franchise. Whether it was in the form of a reboot like the recent Tomb Raider trilogy, a remake like Final Fantasy VII or even a continuation of a series like Half-Life: Alyx. Many of these franchises were met with critical acclaim. Unfortunately many of these game didn’t make it to Xbox consoles. Today, we break down the top franchises returning this generation to Xbox consoles.
Finally, after years of waiting and rumours, fans of EA’s Skate series finally got the confirmation they were hoping for. A new Skate game is in development. During EA Play 2020, Cuz Parry and Deran Chung announced the new game, thanking fans for their patience. Its worth noting that the game is in early development, so it will be some time before we hear more news. Fans of the series will be pleased to know that many of those who worked on the original skate game are returning. It’s not known if the game will be a sequel or a reboot that looks to change up the formula, but skate fans should still be exited for more news. The game doesn’t have any release window but we are sure Skate will make its return to Xbox this generation.
Its back! During the 2020 Game Awards, Xbox studio The Initiative finally showed the world their upcoming project. Perfect Dark, the long dormant series, is getting a reboot. The last game in the series released in 2005 as a launch title for the Xbox 360. The game will be the first from Microsoft’s new Santa Monica based studio lead by industry veteran Darrell Gallagher. The trailer reveals an eco sci-fi take on the Perfect Dark series, set in a near future Egypt. Many questions remain unanswered but it is unlikely we will get any answers soon as the game is still in early development. It may be some time before the game releases but this is definitely one to look out for. The Initiative development team is full of talent and expectations for this game are high.
The Bioshock trilogy is one of the most critically acclaimed video game franchises to date. The trilogy nails both atmosphere and story and has gone on to inspire many titles since. Its been eight years since the release of Bioshock Infinite, but in December 2019 Take 2 finally broke the silence. President of 2K games David Ismaler made the following statement. “‘BioShock’ is one of the most beloved, critically praised and highest-rated franchises of the last console generation, we can’t wait to see where its powerful narrative and iconic, first-person shooter gameplay head in the future with our new studio team at Cloud Chamber leading the charge.”
Job listings suggest that previous locations such as Rapture won’t return. Critics applauded the Bioshock series for it’s world-building. A new setting for BioShock with modern day development technology may help to bring the game to new heights visually. It’s unknown how far the new BioShock is in development, but its safe to assume we wont be seeing it any time soon.
James Bond (Project 007)
In November 2020, IO Interactive, the developers of the Hitman series, announced their new project. Project 007 is an original Bond origin story which will use the Glacier Engine to build a unique experience. James Bond Golden Eye 64 is loved by many, so IO have a lot to live up to. The Hitman series follows Agent 47, a professional hitman, through a series of sandbox levels in which the player must take out a target, often without being noticed. To see a renowned developer of a stealth series get their hands on the Bond IP is great and we cant wait to see what they pull off.
For fans of Golden Eye its worth noting that multiplayer is currently unconfirmed. Hopefully we hear more news on this game in the near future, especially seeing as IO recently increased the size of their development team drastically. The game is confirmed to be releasing on all modern platforms including Series X. You can view the reveal trailer here.
The July Xbox Games Showcase revealed that Playground Games is currently working on a new entry in the Fable Series. Fable’s return is cautiously awaited by fans let down by the franchises latest instalment. Fable Anniversary released to a metactric score of 68. The new trailer reveals a stunning landscape which we hope will be fully imagined using the power of the Series X. Playground have excellent pedigree and having the studio work on the series should bring confidence to Fable fans. The Forza Horizon games are renowned for the beautiful landscapes and the hope is that Fable will be no different. Interestingly though, Playground has never previously worked on an RPG, leading some fans to worry.
Whilst we don’t have a release date for the game, it is reasonable to expect news soon. Playground’s last game released in 2018 and standard developments cycles are around 4 years. That means we could see Fable as early as next year! In the meantime you can watch the reveal trailer here.
Well there you have it! The top 5 franchises returning to Xbox Series X|S this generation. Admittedly, Xbox have lacked great single player titles, but it looks like the future could be very different. With Microsoft acquiring new studios and many franchises returning, the future line up of the Xbox looks strong. It’s encouraging to see such a line-up of games at the start of the generation, even if we may have to wait ta while for some of them. We’ve had some fantastic announcements for Xbox Series already, but remember there is always more to come.
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