I'm sure a lot of you recall how Microsoft shot themselves repeatedly in the proverbial foot with the announcement of the XBOX One. Why? Because they didn't prioritize the gaming experience.
XBOX has since rectified a lot of its announced wrongdoings and realized that people who purchase their console aren't looking for this home entertainment system that would dazzle them with peripheral functions; they want top quality products and console-selling exclusives. Gamers want to feel like their console is a place for great titles that they couldn't find with the alternative.
Sony and Microsoft are keen on delivering just that for this year and the next. Care to see what they have in store?
For The Gamer Within: 20 Exclusives - 2 Consoles: Which To Buy?
Halo Wars 2
Halo Wars was a surprisingly decent RTS on the Xbox 360. It expanded on the larger Halo universe and gave us some intense fights to take complete control over rather than simply acting as the Master Chief on the ground. Microsoft promises to expand upon everything this little game brought us in 2009 with a new Halo story, advanced weaponry and a real-time strategy experience that Xbox One owners can be proud of.
Gears of War 4
The continuation of one of the most popular and well recognized franchises in the history of the art form, Gears of War 4 is set to propel players into the future as we take on the role of Marcus Fenix's son. There appears to be a whole new threat following the death of the Locust and we can't wait to get our hands on one of 2016's most anticipated titles.
While Crackdown 2 certainly disappointed a lot of fans of the original, developer Reagent Games are looking to win back our trust with the 3rd installment. Slated for release later this year, Crackdown 3 will boast Microsoft Azure-powered mass scale destruction that enables everything in the game to be destroyed. Will we be able to topple skyscrapers? Let's hope so!
Drawing from the cartoons of the 1930s this endearing — and brutally difficult — indie title is set to bring some couch co-op frivolities back into your life. The game features an array of complicated boss battles, great jazzy music and an art style that's sure to win over any fan of Disney. Still no release date on Cuphead, but we can't wait much longer!
Shown off at E3 last year, ReCore has gone into hiding. We expect it to resurface at this year's Microsoft conference, but this Xbox One exclusive is due to arrive at some point during this year. Produced by the great Keiji Inafune, ReCore allows players to remove the core of their robotic companion in order to bring them back to life in the form of another. The trailer showed the female lead's friend exploding to kill surrounding enemies, where upon she placed its core into an adjacent and lifeless robot. This could be a lot of fun.
Sea of Thieves
One of the most exciting developers in the history of the medium is currently developing a game that will allow us to play as pirates and take to the open sea. Wow. Rare are developing Sea of Thieves exclusively for Xbox One and it will feature user-generated content, in which players have the ability to craft their custom stories by using in-game tools. We don't know too much about this game, which is also set to release in 2016, but we're hoping E3 will open our eyes to a world of pirating possibilities.
We Happy Few
This game looks anything but happy. A horror experience unlike any other, which is due to arrive later this month, We Happy Few is set in the fictional retro-futuristic dystopia Wellington Wells, England in the year 1964 after an alternate-history World War II. In the game's version, Germany successfully commenced Operation Sealion and invaded England. But somehow the folks of this area managed to expel the German threat a few years later, but the incident which caused them to leave has apparently engulfed the town in shame. Can you uncover their dark past?
One of the best games of the year, Superhot is coming exclusively to the Xbox One in 2016. Just wait until it gets VR support and then you'll be looking at one of the most sensational gaming experiences of your life. For real.
The industry is rife with MOBAs right now and everyone is trying to capitalize on the craze. Microsoft is no exception. Meet Gigantic, a game which focuses on team-based action combat with heroes battling alongside a massive guardian. Players must protect their guardian along with their team and attempt to destroy the opposing team and their guardian. Sounds familiar, but perhaps this little indie dev team can pull off something extraordinary with Gigantic!
Sadly, Scalebound has been pushed to 2017, but it's still one of the most highly anticipated video games of this generation. Featuring a four-player co-operative multiplayer mode, Platinum's Scalebound will see you take charge of a guy called Drew, who has a strong emotional bond with his dragon companion. We won't be controlling this dragon, but we'll have various commands lined up for him and ways that he can aid us in battle. We're ridiculously excited to test out this game, but what sort of news will Microsoft have at E3?
No Man's Sky
The game EVERYONE is talking about. Hello Games' [No Man's Sky](tag:2684052) has been hyping gamers for almost two years now. Its innovative ideas have seen its name grace the New Yorker and even appear on the Colbert Show. There are so many planets in this game that Sean Murray, the creator of No Man's Sky, believes that less than 1% of the planets in the game will be seen and visited. It's hard for us to wrap our heads around such an idea, but we'll do our best once the PS4 exclusive lands in August.
Gravity Rush 2
Anyone here played Gravity Rush since it became available on the PS4? Because, even though it started out as an exclusive for the Vita, this is an absolute must-play! The gravity defying abilities of Rush's lead are confusing at first, but once you learn how to control her powers you're presented with a world of possibility. The original was also surrounded by a fantastic narrative, so here's hoping its sequel can expand on everything that's great about Gravity Rush.
The Tomorrow Children
The Tomorrow Children is set to have an open beta on PS4 this weekend and if you haven't seen much of this game it's rather impossible to explain it to you. There are a lot of islands, you'll have to find ways to power buildings, defend your towns, it's all online and you and your friends can work with one another. But for more on this bizarre adventure, we recommend you check this out!
The sequel to one of the best JRPGs of all time is finally arriving on PS4 this year. There's still no set release date, but we're hoping that a lot more of this stunning game will be unveiled in the weeks to come. Persona 5 will grant you the ability to attack demons in the shadow realm while trying to balance your social and school life. Can you ensure that your demon slaying doesn't get in the way of your studies? I couldn't.
The Last Guardian
It exists! At least we think it does...Stuck in development hell for about a decade, The Last Guardian is finally close to its release date. Originally due to arrive for the PS3, this adventure will draw from both ICO and Shadow of the Colossus, hopefully bringing us an experience worthy of the weight these two names carry. We'll be playing as the young boy you see above and will be completing various puzzles with our enormous, feathered friend by our side. We've no idea what to expect, but lord knows we're salivating!
How to explain Dreams?
We can't! Just watch the trailer above and be amazed.
What Remains of Edith Finch
From the creators of the dazzling The Unfinished Swan, Giant Sparrow is currently developing something that's set to be a worthy followup. The player takes a first-person perspective of a young girl who then morphs into a series of creatures on the hunt. Each creature offers its own unique perspective and story, and they can include anything from a hawk to a shark. I love the idea of controlling various animals in video games, hence when the next title is also on this list.
The creator of Rayman has come a long way and he's hoping to capture our hearts and minds with this fascinating open-world adventure. Here we play as a tribesman who posseses the ability to take control of the animals that aid him. Each animal presents a different method for achieving your goals. For example you could become a fish in order to sneak up on enemies close to water, or bound in as a wolf and tear them limb from limb. If Rayman and Beyond Good & Evil are anything to go by, this is going to be extraordinary.
Think the latter few sound ambitious? Well here's a game that's trying to give us the option to play as anything, I mean Everything.
“In Everything, every single thing is a playable character,” OReilly wrote in an announcement post on the PlayStation Blog. “If you can see it, you can be it.” How does that make sense? Well, take a look at the trailer above and see if you can figure it out!
Horizon: Zero Dawn
Sony have placed a lot of faith in the developer of Killzone, which was once Sony's flagship IP for the PlayStation. Perhaps the most anticipated release of the year, Horizon: Zero Dawn will propel us into a bizarre and beautiful future.
The human race has been reduced to a primitive state as the world has become dominated by a race of robotic beings of our own creation. Our cities have long since crumbled, but the animal-like robots that roam the open plains are a reminder of our lust for power and our voracious greed. Now the remnants of mankind must fight these monsters as we take control of the badass warrior above. Can. Not. Wait.
So: PS4 Or Xbox One?
Looking at all of these titles, it really is hard to pick a winner, especially with all of these new versions of the PS4 and Xbox One on the horizon. But if we're to base this discussion purely on the merit of the video games I've listed, Sony's console wins for me. There's so much innovation with ideas like Dreams and Everything, and then the perfect AAA experiences we all desire with Horizon Zero Dawn, Persona 5 and No Man's Sky. But which console has your vote?