Exclusive: More updates and Xbox upgrades coming to Windows Phone titles from Gameloft
Back in December, Windows Central broke the news that mobile publishing giant Gameloft would be updating Order & Chaos Online for Windows Phone to make it current with other platforms – as well as releasing a Windows 8 version. We also shared advanced word that they'd be adding Xbox Live support to World at Arms and several other games.
Since those updates hit, Gameloft has released several new Windows Phone games without Xbox Live support. As "Gameloft Ryan" explained to us during our Order & Chaos Online weekend Twitch broadcast, the publisher will be updating some of its Windows games with Xbox Live status post-release. And now we're back with the exclusive word on which titles will be getting the Xbox upgrade next, plus more Gameloft update details!
Before we talk Xbox Live upgrades, here are details on three huge updates coming to three Gameloft games for Windows Phone and Windows 8. In addition to the specific features listed, all will contain bug fixes and performance tweaks as well.
Ice Age Adventures
The second Ice Age game that Gameloft has released for Windows Phone is another free to play city builder. But this one breaks up the monotony of collecting coins from your buildings with two big side activities: exploration and minigames! Read my detailed review to learn all about it.
This big update will bring updates 4, 5, and 6 from other versions to Windows platforms at last. New features include:
- The Volcanic Environment
- Rescuing the community voted animals (Pink Troodon, Parasoaurolophus, Dimetrodon, Iguanodon)
- Sailing to Time Limited archipelagos & rescuing exclusive animals
To prepare for the big update, grab Ice Age Adventures now.
- Download Ice Age Adventures for Windows Phone (free)
- Download Ice Age Adventures for Windows 8 and RT (free)
Despicable Me: Minion Rush
Based on the Despicable Me animated films, Minion Rush is a 3D endless runner starring the Cheeto-like minions that serve their former supervillain master Gru. One day they discover Gru has implemented a Minion of the Week program, complete with shiny trophy for the star minion. Soon the minions set out to win the award – by outrunning their peers in a series of obstacle courses.
This sizable update will bring updates 14, 15, and 16 from other versions to Windows platforms at last. New features include:
- New character: Jerry, with an ability to use Power-Ups longer than other Minions
- New character: Carl, who has a faster running speed from the start
- New environments & mini-games like Eduardo's House & the BMX mini-game
- Complete sub-objectives for each Milestone to earn Perks or Tokens
To prepare for the big update, grab Despicable Me: Minion Rush now.
- Download Despicable Me: Minion Rush in the Windows Phone Store (Free)
- Download Despicable Me: Minion Rush in the Windows Store (Free)
Modern Combat 5: Blackout
The latest in Gameloft's Call of Duty-esque series of first-person shooters, Modern Combat 5 sees protagonist Cayden Phoenix desperately fighting against a rogue private military contractor with plans to unleash nerve gas against civilians.
Modern Combat 5 features both a big budget (for mobile) single-player campaign and a robust competitive multiplayer mode. Controversially, both modes require a constant online connection to work. Hopefully the big update will improve online server performance!
This single update will bring updates one and two to Windows platforms. These include some big changes, such as:
The switch to free-to-play
- The all-new Support class
- Brand new weapon class, the Light Machine Gun (LMG), for the Support class
- 6th weapon tier for all weapon classes
- New multiplayer mode: Zone Control
- Two beloved multiplayer maps from Modern Combat 3 & 4: Overtime & Scramble
- Map voting between matches
- Multiplayer leagues for solo & squad battles
- New Area of Effect skill for each soldier class
- Increased level cap for Solider classes from 100 to 120
I'd say to grab the game now, but you'll probably want to wait for it to become free to play if you haven't already purchased the premium version.
- Download Modern Combat 5: Blackout for Windows Phone
- Download Modern Combat 5: Blackout for Windows 8
More Xbox games coming
Content updates are exciting – in fact, they should be the most exciting part of this story. Gameplay is king! But some people need their Achievement fix, otherwise their hands start to shake and all that stuff. I kid. The addition of Xbox Live Achievements gives players more objectives to work towards, and should reinvigorate several of Gameloft's established titles.
The following games will soon be updated to include Xbox Live Achievements. Your existing progress and purchases should carry over once updated. Gameloft expects the updates to roll out in June or as late as July.
Modern Combat 5
Here's one more reason to anticipate the Modern Combat 5 update – Xbox Live support! The game's predecessor Modern Combat 4 launched as an Xbox Live title, so it's great to see that functionality reach Zero Hour as well.
Age of Sparta
Not to be confused with Microsoft's Halo: Spartan Strike, Age of Sparta is a competitive city building game set within Ancient Greece. Players must build up their city's defenses and construct an army with which to defend Greece from the forces of the evil Xerxes.
Whereas Gameloft's Total Conquest is a clone of Clash of Clans, Age of Sparta much more closely resembles World at Arms and Kingdoms & Lords. You don't attack other players' bases; both sides' forces just duke it out in simple RPG-like battles. But the ancient Greek setting with a dash of mythology should certainly catch Achievement hunters' eyes.
Dragon Mania Legends
Gameloft sure loves its city building games! This one involves building a city of dragons. Players collect a wide variety of the magical reptiles, breeding them and training them to fight. You'll then send them out to battle against the dragon forces of invading dragons. It works a lot like Age of Sparta, but with a focus on the younger set. Check out George Ponder's review for more details.
Dragon Mania Legends received an update back in March that made the game harder to play without spending money on in-app purchases. Hopefully this Xbox Live update will meet a warmer welcome from mobile Windows gamers.
- Download Dragon Mania Legends for Windows Phone (Free)
- Download Dragon Mania Legends for Windows 8 (Free)
Dungeon Hunter 5
Last but certainly not least, Gameloft's biggest game of the year so far will soon be graduating to Xbox Live status! Dungeon Hunter 5 is the latest in Gameloft's Diablo-like series of action-RPGs. Players select a character from several classes and then set out on an epic campaign filled with monster killing and loot collecting.
The big new feature in Dungeon Hunter 5 is its stronghold system, which basically adds Clash of Clans-style PvP raids to the game. Each player can create his or her own dungeon, placing minions and traps to defend it. Raiding other players' strongholds asynchronously works like Cloud Raiders and similar games, except you'll directly control your character and fight through it like a dungeon. The final portion of a raid ends with you battling an AI version of the player who created the stronghold.
We'll let you know as these updates roll out within the next month or two. And stay tuned for more exciting Gameloft news from E3 in June!
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Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!