Looking back over the past two years it’s pretty clear to see the about face that Microsoft has done with the Xbox One. While the console got off to a slow start due to a famously poor reveal of the hardware, which was then followed up with numerous PR blunders. When Phil Spencer was named head of the division, things began to change course. Spencer declared a focus on games. The console itself has changed immensely in that time. The user interface has been made more friendly. It’s pricing has shifted dramatically. Almost every issue that consumers might have taken with the console have been rectified.
The Xbox One is undoubtedly a games machine, that has multimedia functionality, instead of the other way around.
2015 was a banner year for the Xbox One. They might not have outsold Sony’s PlayStation 4, but they’ve given people good reasons to own an Xbox One. Numerous exclusive games have arrived in 2015, the biggest probably being Halo 5, but there have been quite a few others along the way.
This year might not just be an anomaly. While Microsoft’s first party titles were trickling in at the tail end of the Xbox 360 generation, the company is apparently preparing to continue this trend. If Yusuf Mehdi’s recent comments at a recent investor conference for Credit Suisse are any indication.
“Next year will also be the best lineup,” says Microsoft
“Gaming you think about in two pieces. There’s a traditional Xbox console business, where we compete with Sony. And there we’ve had probably the best year we’ve ever had for Xbox. And it’s on the back of the greatest lineup in Xbox history. We have Halo 5 launching. We have Minecraft on Xbox. We have Gears of War, Tomb Raider. The best lineup; next year will also be the best lineup. That’s led to really a great success on it.”
To be fair, Microsoft is going to have some increased competition in 2016 compared to this year. If E3 showed us anything, it’s that some of Sony’s biggest exclusive titles are set to arrive in the coming year. They’ll have to do battle with the likes of Uncharted 4, Horizon, The Last Guardian, Street Fighter V, and others that may have not been announced yet. The good news is this doesn’t seem like a last gasp for Microsoft, and more of a revival story. They’ve got an equally impressive slate that should arrive next year with titles like Gears of War 4, Quantum Break, Crack Down, ReCore, Sea of Thieves, and others.
At the end of the day 2016 sounds like its going to be another wallet busting year, with not only a slew of exclusives from both Sony and Microsoft, but the standard wealth of third party content as well.