Showing posts with label series x. Show all posts
Showing posts with label series x. Show all posts

Monday, 28 September 2020

Doom Eternal raises hell on Game Pass this week

No sooner has the gaming world picked itself up following Microsoft's shock purchase of ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion dollars. id Software and Bethesda Softworks' Doom Eternal is coming to Game Pass this Thursday.

The first sequel to the 2016 reboot of a classic first-person shooter (FPS) franchise is on many Game of the Year (GotY) lists for 2020. This move is a mission statement from the Redmond-based company.

Despite Doom being the first multiplayer game I played with friends at university, Quake and Wolfenstein were far more memorable. The latter boasting compelling narratives until the co-op abomination Wolfenstein: Youngblood. Way back when this blog began, I religiously played Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory on my LCD iMac G4 AKA Luxo Jr.

In the wake of last week's news I've cancelled my PlayStation 5 (PS5) and Xbox Series X day-one pre-orders. There's life left in my PS4 and Xbox One X. However, I will be getting an all-digital Series S for the bedroom.

Matt Charlton, our resident gaming and gadget guru, messaged me regarding the upcoming redesigned Xbox app for iOS (currently in beta on TestFlight). So, that's an additional way to access my Xbox game collection a la the official Remote Play app for PS4.

I've been a Game Pass advocate since launch and Xbox is my daily goto since lockdown. So much so, I've decided to partition my built-to-order iMac with 5K Retina display 2TB SSD, when it arrives in late October (COVID-19 permitting), to run both macOS and Windows 10 (using Boot Camp). Game Pass for PC is bundled with Game Pass Ultimate for Xbox and I'll pickup a new Shock Blue (affiliate link) wireless controller for use with the iMac, iPad Pro and iPhone SE.

Doom Eternal is available on Game Pass on 1st October. The first campaign expansion, The Ancient Gods: Part One, announced at QuakeCon 2020 is available 20th October. Expect more Doom titles to appear including Doom 64.

Have you held off subscribing to Game Pass? If so, are you now tempted? Let me know in the comments below.

Tuesday, 22 September 2020

Microsoft buys Bethesda, begins next-gen pre-orders

It's the autumn equinox, heralding my favourite season of all, in the northern hemisphere and Microsoft began pre-orders for Series X and S (affiliate link) with selected retailers this morning.

Having successfully pre-ordered a PlayStation 5 (PS5), I was ambivalent about a Series X on day-one (currently own an Xbox One X) until yesterday's surprise announcement Microsoft had bought Bethesda's parent company ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion dollars, eclipsing Disney's purchase of Lucasfilm. The latest acquisition brings Xbox Game Studios first-party total to 23 developers working on current and next-gen titles.

"As a proven game developer and publisher, Bethesda has seen success across every category of games, and together, we will further our ambition to empower the more than three billion gamers worldwide,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement.

Bethesda has a storied history with Xbox beginning with The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. This will further bolster Game Pass, which was already a great value with the addition of EA Play later this year - I can't wait to play The Sims 4 Star Wars: Journey to Batuu expansion. Doom, Wolfenstein, The Elder Scrolls and Fallout will now become Xbox Game Studios franchises.

“This is a thrilling day for this company, our employees, and our fans," said Robert Altman, chairman and CEO of ZeniMax, in a statement. "We have enjoyed a close partnership with Microsoft for decades, and this deal is a natural progression of those years working together."

What impact (if any) this has on the future of multi-platform releases and PS5 timed-exclusives remains to be seen. Microsoft was previously linked with buying Warner Bros. Interactive from AT&T and there were fervent denials regarding approaching Bungie. In related news. From today Destiny 2 joins Game Pass and major expansion Beyond Light will be playable from launch on 10th November.

Unlike the chaos of PS5 pre-orders, Series X and S was a relatively leisurely experience in comparison. The Redmond-based company had announced global pre-orders would begin at 8:00AM local time.

My Alexa alarm woke me early and, as I drank my first cup of tea of the day serenaded by a robin in the garden, I was able to order a Series X via the Amazon app with ease. However, some sites crashed including Xbox All Access partners Game and Smyths Toys. Both retailers stopped taking online orders and urged customers to order in-store. This may not be an option for everyone due to coronavirus and the threat of a second wave this winter.

The Verge and IGN have reported a surge in Xbox One X sales. Microsoft's confusing nomenclature may mean some gamers could be left disappointed when they realise it's not a Series X under the Christmas tree this holiday season.

Microsoft's purchase of ZeniMax Media doesn't mark the end of the company's acquisition trail. Rumours suggest Sega, the Japanese publisher famous for ending Nintendo's dominance during the 16-bit console era, is next. Only a few months ago there were suggestions of a Sega-branded Series X and S being released in the territory. The stunning Shock Blue wireless controller has only added to the speculation ahead of Xbox at Tokyo Game Show 2020.

Did you try pre-ordering an Xbox Series X or S? Let me know in the comments below.