- Double Fine
- Ninja Theory
- Turn 10
- Undead Labs
- World's Edge
- id Software
- Machine Games
- ZeniMax Online
- Xbox Publishing
- High Moon
- Infinity Ward
- Sledgehammer Games
- Toys for Bob
- Blizzard Entertainment
With each passing year, Microsoft continues to expand its gigantic library of Xbox games across multiple platforms. These include developing more games that take full advantage of the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, increasing its focus on PC gaming, and allowing players to stream their favorite Xbox games on mobile devices and cloud-gaming consoles via Xbox Game Pass.
To help increase the Xbox’s catalog, Microsoft has acquired legendary developers of the industry including the likes of Activision Blizzard, Obsidian Entertainment, inXile, Undead Labs, iD Software, Bethesda Softworks, Tango Gameworks, Arkane Studios, Machine Games, and more.
With tons of first-party studios at its disposal, Microsoft has a ton of upcoming Xbox games in the works scheduled to release in 2024 and beyond. So here is a list of every studio owned by Microsoft, what they’re famous for, and what games they are currently working on.
343 Industries is the studio currently in charge of developing the Halo franchise, which 343 inherited from Bungie after developing their final game for the series, Halo Reach. 343’s last major game they have made was Halo Infinite, released in 2021 for Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Since then 343 Industries has been working on updates for the game’s multiplayer and have reportedly begun development for the next installment of the Halo franchise according to the game’s art director on Linkedln.
Halo Infinite was praised for its well-done single-player campaign but its live-service multiplayer mode was criticized heavily when it first launched in 2021 for lacking content, overpriced cosmetic DLC skins, and obstructive bugs. However, 343 Industries has managed to fix all these issues over the years by implementing tons of bug fixes, adding new maps and playlists, bringing in fan-favorite modes like The Forge and Firefight, and many more features to help Halo Infinite reach the best state it’s ever been in.
Compulsion is the game studio for creating the film-noir adventure game Contrast and the cult-classic first-person dystopian thriller, We Happy Few. During the 2023 Xbox Games Showcase, Compulsion announced their next major project, South of Midnight, which is scheduled to release on Xbox Series X|S and PC at an unspecified release date.
South of Midnight is an adventure game where you play as Hazel, a young woman traveling the Deep South learning how to become a Weaver and wield mystical powers to banish a supernatural force haunting her town.
Double Fine Productions is well known for creating off-the-world and cartoony Xbox games that cater to both kids and adults such as Brutal Legend, Grim Fandango, Psychonauts, and more. Their last major project was Psychonauts 2, a 3D platformer where you play as a young Psychonaut-in-training called Raz and embark on a crazy adventure to stop a cult from reviving a psychic supervillain.
According to reports (via PureXbox), Double Fine Productions has two projects in the works that had to be paused when developing Psychonauts 2, but the exact details of what these projects could be are currently unknown.
inXile Entertainment is a studio mainly known for creating rich cRPGs like Torment: Tides of Numenera, The Bard’s Tale series, and the Wasteland series. Their last major release was Wasteland 3 in 2021, a critically-acclaimed cRPG where players form a squad of Desert Rangers and roam a post-apocalyptic wasteland to find a way to keep the decaying state of Arizona alive.
At the 2023 Xbox Games Showcase, inXile revealed that their next video game would be an original IP called Clockwork Revolution. This title will be a first-person shooter where players travel through time to explore the origins of a steampunk metropolis called Avalon while altering past events to change the future.
Mojang Studios is a Microsoft-backed studio responsible for developing and updating one of the biggest video games on the planet, Minecraft. Aside from the iconic survival crafting game, Mojang has also created Minecraft spin-off titles like the Diablo-esque Minecraft Dungeons and a real-time action strategy game called Minecraft Legends.
After releasing Minecraft Legends’ final update, Mojang has stated that they plan to bring new experiences for the Minecraft franchise by exploring new types of games but there haven’t been specific details of their plans beyond that. In the meantime, Mojang is preparing a massive 1.21 update to Minecraft, which will feature automatic crafting, new trial dungeons, new monsters to fight, and more.
Ninja Theory is a development studio known for creating action games like Heavenly Sword, Enslaved: Journey to the West, and DmC: Devil May Cry. Their most famous work is Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice, a critically acclaimed action game released in 2017 that tells the heartbreaking tale of Sensua and her journey into hell to rescue the soul of her dead lover.
In 2019, Ninja Theory announced a sequel to Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice titled Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2 which will be released for Xbox Series X|S and Windows PC on May 21, 2024. After her harrowing adventure in the previous game, Sensa returns for the sequel to embark on another quest. This time, she aims to travel to the haunting realm of Viking Iceland and battle forces of darkness from within and without to save souls suffering at the hands of tyrannical oppression.
In addition to Hellblade 2, Ninja Theory is currently working on a psychological horror game currently codenamed "Project: Mara."
Obsidian Entertainment is a studio that produces a wide variety of games that have gone on to become some of the more unique titles in the Xbox library. These acclaimed titles include Grounded, Fallout: New Vegas, The Outer Worlds, the Pillars of Eternity series, South Park: The Stick of Truth, Pentiment, and more.
Obsidian is currently working on a sequel to The Outer Worlds, which will feature a new star system to explore and recruit new characters to their crew.
In addition, they are also working on Avowed, a fantasy RPG set in the same universe as Pillars of Eternity where players embark on a mission to save The Living Lands from a deadly plague.
Playground Games is a British-based studio responsible for developing the world-famous racing game series, Forza Horizon. Their last major game released was Forza Horizon 5 in 2021 and they are currently working on a new title for the Fable franchise.
Fable was a series of action RPGs originally developed by Lionhead Studios until the developer closed its doors in 2016. These games were considered cult classics for the original Xbox and Xbox 360 for their witty humor, fun combat, and moral choices that changed the direction of each game’s story. During the 2020 Xbox Games Showcase, Playground Games announced they would be rebooting the Fable series and would be incorporating the Forza series’ ForzaTech Engine to develop the game.
However, no release date for Playground Games’ Fable reboot has been announced as of yet.
Rare is a legendary games developer that has helped to create some of the most beloved franchises for both Nintendo and Microsoft. These include the likes of the Banjo Kazooie series, the Donkey Kong Country series on Super Nintendo, the original Killer Instinct games before the 2013 reboot, Conker’s Bad Fur Day, Battletoads, Sea of Thieves, and many more.
Rare’s current projects at the moment are providing gameplay updates for Sea of Thieves and its upcoming new IP, Everwild, which was revealed during Microsoft’s X019 event in 2019. Not much is currently known about Everwild except that it will be an action-adventure game with elements of “god games”, a videogames genre that involves the player creating life as if they were a god.
The Coalition is a group of developers that helped create the Gears of War franchise for Epic Games before being bought out by Microsoft in 2014 along with the Gears of War IP. The developer’s last major entries in the Gears series were Gears 5 and a tactical spin-off called Gears Tactics. Both titles were released in 2020 but we haven’t heard of any new confirmed projects from The Coalition since then.
Our most recent information suggests that The Coalition is working on two separate projects, one of which is undoubtedly Gears 6. The studio also built an advanced demo for Unreal Engine 5, based on The Matrix.
The Initiative is a relatively young studio created by Microsoft in 2018 and is currently led by Darrel Gallagher, who once served as the head of Crystal Dynamics and worked on the Tomb Raider series. The Initiative is currently together with Crystal Dynamics to create a reboot of Perfect Dark, an FPS series originally created by Rare.
The only known details about the Perfect Dark reboot are that it will be set in a dark future where the world is suffering from an ecological crisis and that it will be made in the Unreal 5 Engine.
Turn 10 Studios is the leading developer for Microsoft’s Forza franchise, primarily known for creating the Forza Motorsport series and the ForzaTech Engine. The last game they made for Forza is Forza Motorsport (2023), a reboot that took the racing simulator series to next-gen levels of quality with a large abundance of new cars to ride in, near-flawless performance, and presentation, a focused gameplay loop and more.
Turn 10 Studios has not announced any new projects at this time and is currently working on providing post-launch updates for Forza Motorsport (2023).
Undead Labs is the developer behind the State of Decay franchise with a huge fan following that has helped the studio shape the zombie survival series into what it is today. Their last major release was State of Decay 2, which had a mixed reception when it first launched due to a myriad of gameplay and performances but is now much better state thanks to months of post-game updates and bug fixes.
Right now, Undead Labs is working on releasing the much anticipated State of Decay 3, which was revealed during 2020’s Xbox Games Showcase. All we know about the State of Decay 3 thus far from its reveal trailer is that the game will have a bigger focus on visuals and character development.
World’s Edge is another developer studio created by Microsoft and its modus operandi is creating games for Age of Empires, one of the oldest and most beloved real-time strategy franchises that helped define the genre. World’s Edge’s last major releases were the long-awaited Age of Empire IV and the Xbox port of Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition, both of which were released in 2023.
The next big project on World’s Edge’s agenda is creating a remaster of Age of Mythology called Age of Mythology: Retold (though no word has been given yet if it will come to Xbox consoles) and a mobile game spin-off called Age of Empires Mobile.
One of the biggest developers under Microsoft’s umbrella is Bethesda. Their lineup of video games includes the post-apocalyptic Fallout series, the high-fantasy Elder Scrolls series, and most recently, their new Nasapunk space RPG, Starfield. Starfield is one of Bethesda’s most polished titles to date packed to the brim with a rich universe to explore, tight gunplay, intriguing quests, and more.
Bethesda is currently at work providing updates to Starfield and Fallout 76, an online multiplayer-focused take on the Fallout series. In addition, Bethesda is developing the sixth major entry for the Elder Scrolls franchise but no release date has been announced as of yet.
Id Software is a legendary developer known for creating games that revolutionized the first-person shooter genre like Wolfenstein 3D, DOOM, and Quake. Their last major release was DOOM: Eternal released in 2020, a sequel to DOOM (2016) that had players take up the mantle of the Doom Slayer and charge headfirst into the armies of hell to rip and tear them apart.
Id Software hasn’t announced a new project since releasing DOOM: Eternal’s final DLC “Ancient Gods – Part Two” in 2021. According to a report from Gamerant, rumors are spreading that id Software is recruiting people to help develop a reboot of the Quake franchise.
Arkane Studios is known mainly for creating intense, singe-player action-adventure games like Dishonored, Prey, and its most recent title, DEATHLOOP. During the 2023 Game Awards event, Arkane revealed that their next big project would be Marvel's Blade.
All we know about Marvel’s Blade is that it will be set in Paris and that it will follow the adventures of Eric Brooks, a.k.a. Blade. Blade is a half-human/vampire hybrid dedicated to hunting vampires and other supernatural monsters of the Marvel universe.
Tango Gameworks is a studio that was once known for primarily creating horror-themed titles The Evil Within and Ghostwire Tokyo. Then in 2023, they shadow-dropped their first non-horror themed Xbox title called Hi-Fi Rush, a game that combined hack n’ slash combat with rhythm game elements which went on to become one of the best Xbox titles of 2023.
Tango Gameworks has not formally announced any new games in development at this time. However, according to Gamerant and Twistedvoxal, there are rumors that Tango Gameworks may be working on a new JRPG project or that their next game will utilize the Unreal 5 Engine.
Machine Games’ main claim to fame is successfully rebooting the Wolfenstein franchise, a series of first-person shooters created by id Software. Right now Machine Games is currently working on a sequel to Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (as confirmed by Bethesda via Variety), and a videogame based on the Indiana Jones franchise, which has been officially revealed with a trailer at the 2024 Xbox Developer Direct.
This game will have players control the titular archaeologist on a new globe-trotting adventure to recover a stolen artifact that could be the key to uncovering the mysterious 'Great Circle'. To help Indiana Jones succeed, players will need to use their wits and Indiana's iconic whip to solve devious puzzles within ancient ruins and battle evil villains plotting to use the "Great Circle's'" secrets for their own ends.
Indiana Jones and the Great Circle will be coming out on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox Game Pass, and PC via Windows and Steam in 2024.
ZeniMax Online Studios
ZeniMax Online is the studio responsible for creating Elder Scrolls Online, an MMORPG based on Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls series that remains popular to this day even a decade after its 2014 release.
Aside from continuing to provide updates to Elder Scrolls Online (the most recent being a free roguelike game mode), ZeniMax Online is currently developing its next big AAA title (as stated on their official website).
Xbox Game Studios Publishing
Xbox Game Studios Publishing is partnering with a smorgasbord of developers to create a varied line-up of future Xbox titles. The publisher is also working with several unannounced independent studios to create new indie Xbox titles and a wide range of iPhone and Android games based on popular Xbox franchises.
During the long court case battle between Xbox vs. FTC, it was revealed that Microsoft is working with IO Interactive, the creators of the Hitman series, on an Xbox-exclusive title called “Project Dragon”. IO Interactive also has another project in works called “Project Fantasy” but it’s currently unknown if this is a reworked version of Project Dragon, a separate game entirely, what it will entail, or what platforms it will be released on.
Microsoft has also announced that they’re partnering with Avalanche Studios group, the creators of the Just Cause franchise to produce Contraband. This game is looking to be a multiplayer-focused co-op shooter where teams of 4-players plan and pull off dangerous heists during the 1970s.
Another game Xbox Game Studios Publishing is working on is a game currently titled “Project Shaolin” an action game being developed by Brass Lion Entertainment that will feature the popular hip-hop group, the Wu-Tang-Clan.
Next up on their line-up is Ara: History Untold (originally codenamed Indus), a 4X strategy game developed by Oxide Games where the player is put in charge of creating a civilization and leading it to economic and technological prosperity through the ages.
Another project lined up on Microsoft's docket is "Project Maverick", a mysterious game being developed in partnership with People Can Fly. People Can Fly is known for developing fast-paced, over-the-top shooters like Painkiller, Gears of War: Judgement, Bulletstorm, and Outriders.
Microsoft has even partnered up with Kojima Productions to create a new, Xbox-exclusive horror game called "OD" (originally codenamed "Project Overdose"). Kojima Productions is a studio founded by Hideo Kojima, the creator of the legendary Metal Gear franchise after he left Konami in 2015. Kojima Productions' first game before making OD is the surreal and haunting action-adventure game, Death Stranding.
Finally, we have Towerborne (originally codenamed “Project Belfry”), an upcoming cooperative beat ‘em up/action-RPG developed by Stoic, the makers of the Banner Saga series. This game will task players (be they solo or in groups of up to 4 players) to journey through a fantasy land to save mankind’s last safe sanctuary, Belfry, from being destroyed by a horde of evil monsters.
There are many other mysterious videogame codenames we’ve discovered that we’ve yet to connect developers and projects, which hammers home that Microsoft is putting out all the stops to grow the diversity of their upcoming Xbox games.
Originally renowned for Tony Hawk ports and creating Spider-Man games on the Xbox 360, Beenox is a subsidiary of Activision that is primarily known nowadays for assisting the development of popular franchises like Skylanders, Crash Bandicoot and Call of the Duty. The last game Beenox has personally developed was Crash Team Nitro-Fueled, a remaster of the beloved racing game spin-off of Crash Bandicoot, Crash Team Racing.
Since then, Beenox hasn’t announced any new projects that they’re personally developing and are currently assisting Sledgehammer Games with providing updates for 2023’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III.
High Moon Studios Inc
High Moon Studios Inc. is a subsidiary developer of Activision known for assisting in development of Call of Duty and Destiny games and creating two of the best Transformers games ever made – Transformers: War for Cybertron and Transformers: Fall of Cybertron. Sadly, we have not seen any activity from High Moon Studios Inc. since it finished assisting Treyarch and Raven Software in releasing Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War in 2020,
Now that Microsoft has finished acquiring Activision-Blizzard, there is a possibility that we could see High Moon’s Transformers games come back as either remasters or new additions to Xbox Game Pass.
Infinity Ward is the studio responsible for creating Activision’s monolith Call of Duty franchise. Their last major contributions to the series were Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and a free-to-play battle royale title called Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0, which has been played by over 25 million players as of November 2022.
Infinity Ward has not announced any games in the works at this time.
Treyarch is another one of Activision’s subsidiary developers which are primarily known for developing the Call of Duty Black Ops series. Treyarch’s last major work was 2018's Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, and assisting Sledgehammer Games in developing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 in 2023.
We have recently discovered that Treyarch is now preparing to create a new entry in the Black Ops series.
Sledgehammer Games is a developer that has helped Activision in the past to create various Call of Duty. Sledgehammer Games was eventually chosen to be the lead developer of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, which released in 2023 and brought a wave of nostalgia for old-school fans while refining the gunplay formula.
Sledgehammer Games hasn’t got announced any new titles as of yet but it is hard work providing post-launch updates to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, the most recent of which introduced a wealth of accessibility options.
Toys for Bob
Toys for Bob is most famous for creating the Skylanders franchise and pioneering the “toys-to-life” genre, a sub-genre of games that allowed compatible toys to interact with the gameplay. In recent years, Toys for Bob has remastered the classic Spyro the Dragon games with the Spyro Reignited Trilogy, produced the long-awaited Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time, and aided the development of several Call of Duty games.
Toys for Bob's last major game released was Crash Team Rumble in 2023, a platform-fighter where you play as various heroes and villains from the Crash Bandicoot franchise, and duke it out in chaotic 4v4 brawls. Aside from implementing post-launch updates for Crash Team Rumble, Toys for Bob has not announced a new game in the works at this time.
Blizzard Entertainment is one of gaming’s biggest developers, creating some of the most popular franchises in the world that revolutionizing genres. Blizzard Entertainment’s stellar catalog includes the likes of the long-running fantasy MMORPG World of Warcraft, the tactical sci-fi RTS Starcraft, the competitive hero-shooter Overwatch, the dark action-RPG series Diablo, the addictive card game Hearthstone, and many more.
Blizzard Entertainment is always busy developing new titles or providing updates to existing and 2024’s looking to be a pretty big one for the company. World of Warcraft will be celebrating its 20th anniversary this year with its tenth expansion, World of Warcraft: The War Within, which is set to release during the summer.
Overwatch 2 just received its 39th Hero character, Mauga, on December 5th, 2023, and will be receiving new content in 2024 including more heroes, new maps, new game mods, and more.
On Hearthstone's end, Blizzard Entertainment will continue to provide it with new updates, new cards for players to collect, and more expansions like the "Showdown in the Badlands" which was released recently in November 2023.
After releasing the long-awaited Diablo 4 on June 5th, 2023, and adding post-launch Seasonal updates, Blizzard Entertainment is planning to release its first expansion, Diablo 4: Vessel of Hatred, in late 2024. All we know about this expansion is that it will feature new classes, classic locales from Diablo 2, and the return of an iconic Diablo villain, Mephisto.
Blizzard Entertainment was also working on a survival game code-named "Project Odyssey" but it has been canceled by Microsoft due to layoffs across its entire gaming division.
A colossal backlog of games
Xbox has been criticized in the past for having a limited number of first-party titles compared to its competitors like Sony and Nintendo. However, Microsoft has soundly laid that critique to rest with the monumental tidal wave of first-person Xbox games we’ve received over the past year.
2023 has been a very fruitful year for Xbox in particular as it produced some of the best Xbox games from a wide range of first-party studios. Halo Infinite made a huge comeback in 2023 thanks to its ongoing updates, the long-awaited Diablo IV breathed next-gen life into Blizzard Entertainment’s long-running Diablo franchise, and Tango Gameworks’ new IP, Hi-Fi Rush, came out of nowhere and stole the award for our personal Best game of 2023.
2024 and beyond is going to be even more insane for Xbox platforms with tons of upcoming Xbox games to look forward to. In 2024, we’ll be seeing the release of highly anticipated titles like Senua's Saga: Hellblade II, Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024, Avowed, and more. Then in the far future, we’ll be seeing Playground’s reimagining of the Fable franchise, Arkane Studio’s videogame interpretation of Marvel’s vampire hunter, Blade, and the sixth major entry in Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls series with Elder Scrolls VI to name a few.
Xbox Game Pass will also be getting a significant increase to its game library as now that Microsoft owns Activision Blizzard, we can expect to see franchises like Overwatch, Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, Diablo 4, and Call of Duty added in the future. On top of that, the Xbox platform will be receiving just as important third-party titles on the horizon including Grand Theft Audio 6, Monster Hunter Wilds, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl, the Xbox version of Final Fantasy XIV, and more.
With all these games to look forward to (and potentially more announced at the upcoming Xbox Developer Direct on January 18, 2024), the future is looking brighter than ever for Xbox fans.
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Alexander Cope is a gaming veteran of 30-plus years, primarily covering PC and Xbox games here on Windows Central. Gaming since the 8-bit era, Alexander's expertise revolves around gaming guides and news, with a particular focus on Japanese titles from the likes of Elden Ring to Final Fantasy. Alexander is always on deck to help our readers conquer the industry's most difficult games — when he can pry himself away from Monster Hunter that is!