Welcome to our weekly ICYMI for Xbox news!
We'll still be posting major Xbox announcements in the main feed, but I'll be collecting some of the more nuanced news, rumours and talking points into one handy post every weekend!
So without further ado, here's our latest edition of This Week in Xbox One News.
Bungie will sell Destiny CE's digital content separately following fan outrage
Bungie has had a bit of a rough week. It began with an interview with Eurogamer which appeared to show Destiny's creative director mocking the interviewer for being 'anxious' about Destiny's upcoming collector's edition. The expansion, The Taken King, will add a whole ton of new content to the quasi-MMO shooter, and Bungie put together a collector's edition featuring a swath of in-game content. To get that exclusive content though, you'd have to purchase the base game and all that DLC again as part of the collector's edition.
Following creative director Luke Smith's assertions that gamers would "throw money at the screen" to get the exclusive class-based emotes in the CE, some of Destiny's biggest fans took to reddit to complain about Bungie's apparent attitude. Luke Smith issued an apology for his remarks and announced that the digital content in the CE would be available as a separate $20 bundle.
Some fans were pleased, but others turned their attention to Destiny's Red Bull promotion, which offers consumers 6 months of early access to a quest chain for taking codes from specially marked cans of Red Bull. Dying Light's developer, Techland, offered a mocking counter campaign, suggesting that players can win free Dying Light DLC for posting selfies of them drinking water.
The issue has re-opened discussions about the way publishers treat their fans with all these weird promotions and DLC tie-ins. How do you guys feel? Here's my take.
Destiny's PS4 exclusive content is finally heading to Xbox One with fresh tweaks
Destiny on PS4 enjoys several exclusive operations and various other bits of content, in one of the furthest reaching exclusivity deals for a multi-platform game in recent memory. That period of exclusivity is coming to an end though and Bungie is refreshing it ahead of its autumn release on Xbox.
..."The previously Sony-exclusive strikes will be available this autumn on Xbox. But we're not just re-issuing them. We're refreshing them completely with the Taken. We want you to experience The Undying Mind completely as it was with the Vex, and also in a Taken-ified version. We wanted to make it feel like more than last year's model."...
For many Xbox fans who felt Bungie had treated them as 'second-rate,', this peace-offering may ring hollow. Third-party exclusivity deals happen though, and despite fans on both platforms decrying the practice, it doesn't look as though it'll be stopping any time soon.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella solidifies Xbox's importance in a letter to employees
There are a few Microsoft investors who'd like to see the Redmond giant spin-off the Xbox brand. The appointment of Satya Nadella led to some initial anxiety among the Xbox fan camp, but the charismatic CEO made comments in an email last week that should put everyone's minds at ease.
..."We will bring together Xbox Live and our first-party gaming efforts across PC, console, mobile and new categories like HoloLens into one integrated play. [...] We will build the best instantiation of this vision through our Windows device platform and our devices, which will serve to delight our customers, increase distribution of our services, drive gross margin, enable fundamentally new product categories, and generate opportunity for the Windows ecosystem more broadly."...
It sounds as though Satya is considering how Microsoft can position the subscription based Xbox Live service to PC gamers, who are typically accustomed to being able to play online for free. Being able to play games like Killer Instinct and Fable Legends on PC with gamers who are on Xbox One could help drive interest in those games - buying an Xbox One and paying for Live is often simpler than finding the right gaming PC and sinking £1000+ in one go. What is certain however, is that Satya sees Xbox as a core to Microsoft's efforts to 'delight' their customers.
Xbox won E3 in terms of mind share, according to Sythesio's social media analytics
Speaking of Microsoft love, the internet awarded the biggest E3 2015 buzz to Xbox One, according to social media analytics firm Synthesio (via VentureBeat). It used a number of criteria to determine which gaming systems generated the most interest at E3, and according to their metrics, seen here, Xbox One vastly outdid Sony and Nintendo combined.
While Sony's first party offering will be strong through 2016, the company relied heavily on nostalgia bombs in the form of Shenmue and Final Fantasy 7 to keep gamers talking. The real news story was Xbox One's backwards compatibility, which rode high on social media as news filtered through that Shenmue would be Kickstarter funded, and Final Fantasy 7 was only a timed exclusive. The message Microsoft is giving is that they will spend a ton of money to give fans what they want. The inclusion of completely unrestricted backwards compatibility shocked even Sony, who noted that the announcement was surprising.
Xbox fans have been asked to vote on what game' they'd like to see make the backwards compatibility list first. Games like Red Dead Redemption, Mass Effect 2, 3 and various incarnations of Call of Duty seem to be the games of choice so far. What do you think?
ICYMI - Some of Windows Central's biggest Xbox articles of the week
- Poll: Would you have bought an Xbox Phone?
- Top 3 reasons Rise of the Tomb Raider will be the best Tomb Raider yet
- Former Xbox head thinks Microsoft should have released an 'Xphone'
- Review: The Turtle Beach Elite 800X is a good mic shy of a perfect Xbox One headset
- Xbox One will get two new free games a month starting with July's Games with Gold
- Everything you need to know about Gears of War: Ultimate Edition
- People Can Fly is now independent from Epic Games, acquires Bulletstorm rights
- We check out Mighty No. 9 (from the creator of Mega Man and Recore) at E3
New Xbox One game releases for the week ending June 28th, 2015
Devil May Cry 4 Special Edition - Slash 'Em Up - Capcom
"The smash-hit stylish action game DMC4 is back and better than ever, boasting new playable characters and game modes!."
Quantum Rush: Champions - Futuristic Racer - GameArt Studio GmbH
"Quantum Rush: Champions is an action-packed, futuristic racing game for the Xbox One. This special genre had been neglected for far too long."
Batman™: Arkham Knight - Action Adventure - RockSteady
"In the explosive finale to the Arkham series, The Scarecrow returns to unite an impressive roster of super villains, including Penguin, Two-Face and Harley Quinn."
Q - Puzzle / Trivia - liica,inc.
"Are you capable of getting a ball out of a cup? If you are confident that you can, we challenge you. It may sound simple, but the truth couldn't be further."
And that's a wrap!
I have been roaming Gotham City in Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham Knight throughout most of last week. I spent the odd day playing Mass Effect on 'insanity' difficulty thanks to Xbox One's backwards compatibility preview as well. I still can't believe they actually did it. What have you guys been playing?
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