What fans want from the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase

Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase
(Image credit: Xbox)

We are just a few weeks away from the big Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase. Despite the official cancellation of E3 2022, Microsoft still appears to be going all-in on its annual June gaming conference. And, as the only major platform holder with a showcase date on the table, all eyes are on Xbox and what they’ll have prepared for Sunday, June 12.  

When the 2022 Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase was initially announced, the energy and excitement from the community were palpable. Team Xbox had spent the last several years working to build momentum and shift narratives regarding the perceived shortcomings of the ecosystem. The enthusiasm surrounding this upcoming showcase seemed amplified by the positive reception of last year’s collaborative conference.  

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Unfortunately, shortly after revealing the official date, Xbox and Bethesda publicized the high-profile delays of both Starfield and Redfall, two of the year’s most anticipated games. For some fans, these first-party setbacks hit particularly hard. The conversations and expectations surrounding the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase have dramatically transformed, and the outlook for certain individuals has become notably more pessimistic.  

Following these delays and ongoing criticism, I took to Twitter to ask the community what a successful Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase would look like in 2022. We all have our get-hype wishlists of specific announcements or reveals (cough Legend of Mana on Xbox cough), but I wanted to highlight the most prominent pain points players hope Xbox addresses with its impending presentation. Based on your input, here's what fans want from the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase. 

Gameplay

Fable 2020 Fairy

(Image credit: Xbox)

Far and away, the most consistent ask from Xbox community members regarding my showcase query is more gameplay. While Xbox has done a decent job letting players know what’s in store with the future of Xbox Game Studios titles, many fans have voiced their frustrations when it comes to the lack of in-engine demonstrations. We’ve yet to see gameplay for previously announced titles like Everwild, State of Decay 3, Fable, Avowed, The Outer Worlds 2, Redfall, Contraband, Starfield, Forza Motorsport, Indiana Jones, and Elder Scrolls VI. 

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While last year’s Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase was generally considered one of Microsoft’s stronger conferences, some players still felt disappointed by the amount of CG trailers presented. In many ways, CG reveals are often effective tools for setting the tone of a video game world in a brief period. However, vocal critics feel Xbox leans too heavily into these marketing methods and would prefer to see more substantial gameplay at the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase.  

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It seems safe to expect breakdowns for Starfield and Redfall at this upcoming conference, but players are still hoping for a bit more in the gameplay department this time around. According to the community, deeper dives into Avowed, Contraband, Hellblade 2, and Forza Motorsport would hugely satiate these desires. Here’s to hoping Xbox has heard these criticisms loud and clear and plans to deliver a metric ton of gameplay at the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase.  

Game roadmap

Matt Booty at E3 2019

(Image credit: Future)

Even before the delays of Starfield and Redfall, Xbox fans shared their concerns regarding the seemingly light first-party lineup for 2022. As it stands, Xbox hasn’t officially announced any first-party titles shipping for the remainder of the year, which certainly hasn’t helped the situation. From The Quarry to Gotham Knights, there is no shortage of noteworthy games coming to Xbox in the near future. Still, many players feel frustrated by the lack of compelling exclusive content. 

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Much like the previous Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase, fans want to see Xbox prioritize announcements that rekindle excitement for the near future of the platform and provide a rough roadmap for first-party and third-party partnership releases. Community members are hopeful Xbox will be able to present a respectable lineup of titles concentrating on the next 12 months. Players know Xbox has plenty of games on the horizon; they just want to know when to expect them. 

Xbox Game Pass releases

Xbox Game Pass

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Undeniably, it seems next to impossible for Xbox to completely fill the first-party gap left by the absence of Starfield and Redfall in 2022. However, some aggressive partnerships with day-and-date Xbox Game Pass releases have the potential to soothe the wounds of injured fans. And for subscribers drawn to the service because of its emphasis on electrifying day one releases, the community wants to see Xbox Game Pass come out swinging at the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase.  

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During last year’s Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase, the team opened by setting expectations for what players would see during the 90-minute conference. Part of their promise to players was delivering one noteworthy Game Pass release per month. Fans and subscribers wish to see Xbox provide similar messaging in June. Worthwhile additions like Elden Ring, Saints Row, or Evil Dead: The Game would ensure an advantageous value proposition for the growing gaming subscription service. 

Surprise reveals 

Perfect Dark Dec 2020 Concept Art

(Image credit: Xbox)

In my thread, there were mountains of requests for more gameplay, massive Game Pass announcements, and desires for a transparent games roadmap, but the community also seems to unanimously agree on the importance of surprise reveals. While many fans were quick to drop their fantasy presentation lists, an impressive number of others simply want a little unpredictable wonder sprinkled throughout the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase.

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It's tough to beat that incredible feeling of witnessing a video game reveal for the very first time, especially when it's a project that genuinely resonates with you. Xbox has delivered plenty of memorable game announcements in its 20-year history. Fans are clearly eager to see how the impressive slate of Xbox titles looks and plays. Still, successful surprise reveals can often make or break an impactful showcase. Whether it's fan-requested titles like a Banjo-Kazooie reboot or a sequel to Lost Odyssey, or something entirely new, fans want to be excited and delighted by the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase. 

All will be known soon enough

Regardless of your hopes, wildest dreams, and most modest expectations, it’s safe to say that the upcoming Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase will feature a collection of appealing games coming to the platform. On June 12, 2022, Microsoft will be hosting a 90-minute-ish presentation designed to get players of all types excited about the future of Xbox and Xbox Game Studios.  

Despite some of the negative energy surrounding the upcoming showcase following a few unfortunate delays, Team Xbox understands the importance of delivering a headline-grabbing annual conference. In many ways, last year’s Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase set a new benchmark for the gaming brand. Hopefully, we’ll see some great Xbox games from the passionate teams at Xbox Game Studios and maybe even a handful of major third-party partners.

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Miles Dompier is a Freelance Video Producer for Windows Central, focusing on video content for Windows Central Gaming. In addition to writing or producing news, reviews, and gaming guides, Miles delivers fun, community-focused videos for the Windows Central Gaming YouTube channel. Miles also hosts Xbox Chaturdays every Saturday, which serves as the Windows Central Gaming weekly podcast.