Gamescom: Microsoft conference brings new bundles, Halo 5 beta date, new indies, Quantum Break gameplay

Date Posted Author
13th August 2014 Matt Bailey

Microsoft's Gamescom conference on Tuesday brought news of exclusivity for the next Tomb Raider, but there was also plenty of other things revealed. In particular, the company took the chance to highlight games coming out ahead of Christmas, and three of them are getting new Xbox One bundles. The Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare bundle includes a themed console and controller, as well as a digital copy of the game, and more intriguingly, a 1TB hard drive, twice the size of the one shipping in Xbox Ones right now. It'll be £429.99. Sunset Overdrive and FIFA 15 only get 500GB hard drives in their bundled Xbox One consoles, although the bundles will sell for the regular £349.99. The Sunset Overdrive machine and controller will come in white rather than the usual black, while FIFA 15's pack includes an "Ultimate Team Legends Gold Pack" alongside the digital game.

ScreamRide, a Kinect-controlled theme park sandbox game from Frontier Developments, was the only new Microsoft Studios game revealed in the show, although previously announced titles got new footage. Third-party multi-platform games Assassin's Creed Unity, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, and Evolve, as well as Xbox One exclusives such as Sunset Overdrive and Fable Legends, got new footage on-stage. But the biggest spotlight was on Quantum Break, the new game from Max Payne and Alan Wake creators Remedy. They've been teasing the game in trailer form since the Xbox One reveal early last year, but finally at Gamescom in-game footage was shown off, revealing a third-person action game - the studio's staple - with interesting time-freezing mechanics that let you sneak around guards, and bring the world around you to a halt. The action was solid but lacking a bit in freshness, but visually the game is very impressive, blending the CGI and in-game action in a way only Sony's The Order 1886 is able to rival right now.

Indies played a part in the event with an ID@Xbox showcase trailer showing off Space Engineers, SuperHot, SMITE and Goat Simulator, all set to debut on the Xbox One. Space Engineers is an open-world space building game that's gaining popularity on Steam Early Access, SuperHot is a stylish FPS that was popular on Kickstarter earlier this year, we've covered HiRez's MOBA SMITE a couple of times before, while Goat Simulator is a rather silly third-person game that gained a lot of notority upon its release in April. It was part of a varied lineup, and a welcome break from the usual franchises which dominated most of the conference.

Talking of big franchises, Halo was of course a big focus for Microsoft, with the Master Chief Collection getting some stage time, along with the announcement of the "Halo Channel". It seems to be a sort of Halo Waypoint update for the Xbox One, bringing you a way to view stats and browse related content outside of the game. That wasn't the only announcement; we already knew that Halo 5: Guardians would get a public beta with the aforementioned Collection, but now it's been confirmed this will be available from the 29th December for a few days, grabbing the attention of all those who got an Xbox One for Christmas.

Halo 5 Multiplayer Concept Art

Halo 5 Multiplayer Concept Art

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