Gamescom 2013 kicked off on Tuesday in Germany with some exciting information on current and next gen-consoles. Microsoft's Xbox One Gamescom Showcase event which kicked-off at 10 A.M GMT, where Microsoft gave select media "the opportunity to get hands-on with a range of Xbox One titles, speak with developers, and be the first to hear [the] Gamescom news."
Microsoft revealed a new Xbox One exclusive set at Gamescom. “We’re gonna have a really short stage presentation with some news, talking about some unique exclusive coming to the platform,” said Microsoft Studio's corporate vice-president Phil Spencer. “We’re going to talk about Europe’s biggest franchise and maybe some interesting things. We have some stuff, but most of the time will be spent with the press getting time with the developers, with their games. So you should think about this as a room with a lot of hands-on. We think that these platforms are about the games, and we want to give the press time with the games.”
Microsoft also announced independent publishing platforms, for independent developers who are considering publishing games for the Xbox One, and are afraid it might be a costly affair. Independent Developers @Xbox is aimed at making the development and publishing of indie video games more accessible than it was on Xbox 360.
Starting today, developers can apply for the program, and post-registration receive two Xbox One development kits, all without any cost. Program Director Chris Charla adds, “We want to be inclusive rather than exclusionary,” Charla says. To start, Microsoft is bringing in a smaller number of developers for approval, with more joining the fold as every Xbox One becomes development capable.
“The program is open to developers of all scales,” says Charla, whether it’s one guy in his basement coding the next miniature masterpiece, or an AAA studio. The latter seems to defy the concept and title of this idea, but like Charla says: “This isn’t meant to cut anyone out. It’s meant to bring more great games to Xbox One as possible. It’s also about experience. To begin, Microsoft wants teams who’ve shipped games before and “are reasonably well established.”
Eventually, this is great news for game developers as they will have more accessibility, especially when they're small and lack the necessary resources.
Following its Gamescom showcase yesterday, Microsoft also revealed the full list of titles that will be available with the Xbox One at launch.
- Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag (Ubisoft, Ubisoft)
- Battlefield 4 (DICE, Electronic Arts)
- Call of Duty: Ghosts (Infinity Ward, Activision)
- Crimson Dragon (Grounding/Land Ho!, Microsoft Studios)
- Dead Rising 3 (Capcom Vancouver, Microsoft)
- FIFA 14 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
- Fighter Within (AMA Ltd., Ubisoft)
- Forza Motorsport 5 (Turn 10 Studios, Microsoft Studios)
- Just Dance 2014 (Ubisoft Paris, Ubisoft)
- Killer Instinct (Double Helix, Microsoft Studios)
- LEGO Marvel Super Heroes (TT Games, Warner Bros. Interactive)
- Lococycle (Twisted Pixel, Microsoft Studios)
- Madden NFL 25 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
- NBA 2K14 (Visual Concepts, 2K Sports)
- NBA Live 14 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
- Need for Speed: Rivals (Ghost Games, Electronic Arts)
- Peggle 2 (Popcap, Electronic Arts)
- Powerstar Golf (Zoe Mode, Microsoft Studios)
- Ryse: Son of Rome (Crytek, Microsoft Studios)
- Skylanders: Swap Force (Vicarious Visions, Activision)
- Watch Dogs (Ubisoft Montreal, Ubisoft)
- Zoo Tycoon (Frontier Developments Ltd., Microsoft Studios)
- Zumba Fitness: World Party (Zoë Mode, Majesco)
An exact launch date for the next gen-console is yet to be announced, but Microsoft said at E3 that it will arrive in November. Last week, Microsoft also confirmed that Xbox One will only be launched in 13 markets.