This week we're looking at a Halo Wars 2 art leak, Overwatch play figures, the cancellation of Allison Road, comments from Jade Raymond about EA's upcoming Star Wars games and more!
We're also giving away another Xbox One copy of DOOM to one lucky Windows Central user! Check below for more details.
Every week, I summarize some of the biggest rumors and talking points in one handy post every weekend. You can also rely on this weekly column to catch up with all the latest Xbox One game releases.
Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Xbox One News.
Halo Wars 2 artwork appears to have leaked
Lifelower, a self-proclaimed Xbox Live watcher who has a solid track record of discovering store listings and marketing materials earlier than intended, posted some artwork that appears to detail Halo Wars 2.
Halo Wars 2 is a Windows 10 and Xbox One exclusive set in the Halo universe, in the real-time strategy genre. Microsoft announced the title at Gamescom last year, and it's fair to expect the game will break cover at E3 next week.
Visceral's Star Wars game "groundbreaking", Motive Studios grows to 65 team members
In a blog post on EA's website, Jade Raymond praised both Motive Studios and Visceral Games on their upcoming projects. Motive Studios was formed in 2015 when Raymond, famed for Assassin's Creed, joined EA. Visceral Games are perhaps best known for the Dead Space series, although they also worked on the cops and robbers Battlefield offshoot, titled Hardline. Jade Raymond oversees both studios, who are hard at work on new IP and Star Wars titles under license from Disney.
"Motive Studios is now 65 industry veterans strong, adding more each week, and driven by unbridled creativity to make unforgettable action games. We are well on our way, beginning our journey with a Star Wars™ game, and exploring ideas for our original IP. It's really quite amazing to be a part of, and I can't wait to be able to share more details about Motive's projects."
"Meanwhile, the team at Visceral Games is forging ahead into an exciting phase of development. Seeing Amy Hennig lead this team through the creative process has been incredible. She is a rare breed of storyteller, and she's collaborating with the creative leaders at Lucasfilm to tell a new, authentic Star Wars story. Backed by the talented Visceral team, Amy and studio GM Scott Probst are taking this project in groundbreaking directions."
Visceral Games' Star Wars IP is widely expected to be open-world with "RPG"-like elements such as character progression and upgrades. Expect to hear more about what Motive and Visceral have in store for Star Wars at EA Play on June 12th, which is where the publisher is holding their announcements instead of E3 itself this year.
Overwatch hits 7 million players in the first week, perma-bans cheaters
Overwatch is doing incredibly well already, logging 7 million concurrent users across 119 million hours of play. In a statement released to press, Blizzard co-founder Mike Morhaime praised the game's fans, and teased future content updates in the process:
"Over the months and weeks leading up to release we saw a lot of love and support for Overwatch — from Blizzard gamers, FPS fans, and people who'd never picked up a game like this before — and we're very grateful for everyone's incredible passion and enthusiasm."
"We poured a lot of effort into creating a game — and a new universe — that anyone could enjoy. We're ecstatic to have had such a successful launch, and we're looking forward to all of the fun, competition, and new content still to come."
Overwatch is slated to receive a competitive, ranked gameplay mode in the coming months, and Blizzard has previously teased the idea of bringing a full story campaign to the multiplayer-focused title. In a discussion on Facebook Live (via WCCFTech, Blizzard's Jeff Kaplan said that while plans weren't concrete, the company is known for its storytelling and doing some form of a co-operative campaign could be on the cards in the future.
Blizzard has also been handing out permanent bans to those who attempt to hack Overwatch, blocking over 1500 players in China alone (via PCGamer).
Would-be hackers took to forums to complain that not only had their PC accounts been banned, but also their console accounts. Blizzard has hit previous cheaters with multiple bans too, even after they opened new accounts, changed HDD, MAC address, re-purchased the game and utilized IP-masking VPN in attempts to evade Overwatch's anti-cheat systems.
Hacking isn't as prevalent on console thankfully, but at least we know Blizzard isn't playing nice when it comes to cheaters.
Silent Hills spiritual successor Allison Road canceled
In news that should disappoint horror fans everywhere, planned PC and Xbox One horror game Allison Road has sadly been canceled. Fans jumped on the Kickstarter project for its similarities to the similarly scraped 'Silent Hills' concept, launched as P.T. on the PS4.
Initially, Allison Road sought $250,000 in Kickstarter funds to develop the game independently. The developers behind the game went on to cancel the Kickstarter, citing a deal with Team 17 of Worms fame over publishing rights. After a period of silence, the developers posted this tweet confirming the game's cancellation.
Hi all. Sadly Allison Road had to be cancelled. Statement to come in the next few days. Thx for all your support and very sad it came 2 this— Allison Road (@AllisonRoad_HQ) June 5, 2016
We haven't heard from Lilith Ltd or Team 17 on exactly what went wrong but expect more information in the coming days.
OneCast Ep. 19 - Xbox One Scorpio, the (SFW) beauty of Overwatch and Microsoft's VR approach
On this week's OneCast we discussed the Xbox 'Scorpio,' slim and streaming stick rumors, our Overwatch and HomeFront: The Revolution impressions in addition to our most anticipated games for the remainder of 2016.
Giveaway – DOOM
We're giving away another copy of id Software's triumphant return to the top of the FPS pile - DOOM! Bethesda and id Software have unearthed the remnants of the old school shooter and produced one of the most surprising reboots in years. DOOM is fast, fluid, free from filler and full of demon slaying fun, and here's your chance to win!
The winner will be announced both here and on our next Xbox ICYMI on June 12th. Good luck!
ICYMI - Some of Windows Central's biggest Xbox articles of the week
- Letter Quest Remastered review: Spell words to defeat foes on Xbox One and PC
- Tropico 5 Penultimate Edition Xbox One Review: Be your own island empire dictator
- DOOM review: id Software reclaims its heritage as FPS royalty
- Invites to the next Xbox One update preview are rolling out
- Fallout 4 mods on Xbox One generating more traffic than the PC version
- Elgato Game Capture HD60S review: your games, recorded and streamed
- Flaming Fowl Studios shows off more Fable Fortune gameplay
- Microsoft: Next Xbox One software update for preview members is coming 'soon'
- Mods are now available for Fallout 4 on Xbox One
- Want to see BitTorrent client Torrex on the Xbox One? You can now pledge your support
New Xbox One game releases for the week ending June 5th, 2016
APB Reloaded - Action & Adventure, Shooter - Reloaded Productions
"Anarchy. Justice. In the world of APB, it's your choice: live on the edge of the law or enforce it. Hit the streets as a licensed vigilante or hardened criminal in the crime-ravaged metropolis of San Paro where shootouts, car-chases, robbery, and vandalism are all in a day's work."
Among the Sleep - Other - Krillbite Studio
"Among the Sleep is a psychological horror game where you get to play as a two year old child. You get to experience the world through the eyes of a toddler with a livid imagination that could easily scare your pants off."
Kick & Fennick - Action & Adventure, Platformer - Abstraction Games
"Soon after waking up in a desolate but colorful world, Kick meets a small flying robot named Fennick. When Fennick saves Kick from a menacing guard robot, they find out Fennick's battery is broken."
Hard Reset Redux - Shooter - Flying Wild Hog
"Hard Reset Redux is an action-packed and hardcore single-player shooter which embraces the best qualities that the genre has it offer. It includes over-the-top destruction, loads of enemies, great weapon variety, a challenging campaign and a beautifully realized cyberpunk setting."
Dangerous Golf - Three Fields Entertainment Limited - Action & Adventure, Sports & Recreation
"An arcade style sports game with a very explosive twist. Play through a variety of Indoor Courses – make a mess in the Kitchen, wreak havoc in a Palace, or cause chaos in a Castle and set fire to a Gas Station."
Anima: Gate of Memories - Action & Adventure, Role Playing - Anima Project
"Anima: Gate of Memories is a third person action RPG that tells the story of two beings bound by an unwilling pact, a legendary monster and a girl who lost her past. Gate of Memories features a unique Dual System that allows you to control two different characters and interchange them dynamically in the middle of any action to create countless combinations."
Fragments of Him - Others - Sassybot
"In Fragments of Him you experience the lives of four people connected by love and a tragic accident. You walk alongside Will on his last morning and discover the meaning of his final thoughts. With Mary, Will's grandmother, you learn about his childhood, their conflict, and how they ultimately reconciled some of their differences."
Dead Island Definitive Collection - Action & Adventure - Techland
"Smash heads, crack skulls and slice 'em up with visceral astounding melee combat and true story-based 4 player co-op in a sprawling open world just waiting for exploration."
TurnOn - Brainy Studio LLC - Action & Adventure, Family, Platformer, Puzzle & Trivia
"The whole city has been plunged into darkness. After an accident at the power station, a living electric spark must restore electricity to the city and give citizens back their safe and carefree lives."
And that's a wrap!
The E3 hype train is settling in nicely, and I think this week will hold some pleasant surprises for Xbox One owners in the run up to the main conference on June 13th.
I've been playing HomeFront: The Revolution ahead of review, and so far I've found it to be a decent experience flawed by some nasty bugs. Thankfully, the game will be patched this week to fix the worst of them, so I'll give a proper verdict afterward on whether or not it'll be worth picking up when the hype for other recent heavy-hitters dies down.
I'll be away in Los Angeles with Paul Acevedo and Mark Guim for E3 2016 next weekend, so I might not be around to produce this column as usual. Make sure to tune in for exclusive E3 giveaways and all the latest and greatest emerging from the conference right here on Windows Central.
What have you lovely people been playing this week? What do you think of this week's Xbox One news? Let us know in the comments!