So by now most people – gamers – know about the upcoming Project Scorpio, Microsoft’s next product in the Xbox family. It’s packed to the top with amazing specs, like 12GB of DDR5 RAM, a 1TB HDD, 8 cores of power and can produce 6 Teraflops of processing power. That sounds great, right? But what good is all that horsepower if you have nothing of quality to play it on it. Better yet, what if your competitors have the same games, but better exclusives? It’s like owning a Ferrari but having no gas. Meanwhile your friends all own a Subaru WRX STi and have plenty of gas and miles of twisting roads.
We are talking of course, about console exclusives. The PS4, which is the console leader right now, with close to 60 million PS4s sold, while Microsoft has sold less than 30 million Xbox Ones. Sony is also more comfortable with Japanese developers, who’ve provided them with great console exclusives, like the excellently reviewed Persona 5 and Sega’s well received Yakuza 0. But those are just some of Sony’s exclusives. They also have games like Last of Us 2, Horizon Zero Dawn, Days Gone, Nioh, Nier: Automata, Uncharted Lost Legacy, Gravity Rush 2, God of War, Gran Turismo Sport, Death Stranding, Detroit Become Human, Bloodborne, and let’s not forget the upcoming Spider-Man game that looks amazing. Those are just a few, I could name more, but I think you get the point. Not only does Sony have a shit ton of exclusives, but they are also really good exclusives. Those games don’t even count the games that are third-party, that Sony has locked up exclusives content for, like Call of Duty, which gives Playstation owners all the DLC a month sooner than on Xbox. Games like Destiny will have exclusive content for a year at least AND to top it off, the upcoming Red Dead Redemption 2, will also have Sony exclusive content. So while the Scorpio sounds impressive, the PS4 Pro isn’t a slouch either, and with all those exclusive tames and content on PS4 Pro, why would anyone buy an Xbox One X, Scorpio or whatever it is going to be called?
Here are Microsoft’s exclusive games for 2017, courtesy of the folks at GameSpot, I hope you’re sitting down.
Pit People (haven’t heard of it, neither has anyone else) – But it’s made by the people who did Castle Crashers and Alien Hominid, it’s an indy game with little fanfare.
Rise & Shine – Another side-scrolling indy title, that doesn’t mean it’s not good, just not a system selling that will show off the Scorpio.
Halo Wars 2 – Another RTS game on a console, pass.
Voodoo Vince (Remastered) – Yup, the same game from the Original XBox from back in 2003. A 14 year old remaster of a mediocre game that shouldn’t even be remastered. If MS is going to remaster anything, it should have been Crimson Skies.
Tacoma – A game by the guys who did Gone Home, while the game was a well-received game, it wasn’t a system seller and it’s not software that shows off power. Could be good, just not something that will convince people to buy a $500 console.
CupHead – This game LOOKS great, but we have yet to see anyone playing it, other than video. The game has been delayed repeatedly and some expect the game to very short. It’s the game I’m most excited about, but I can play that on my Xbox One already.
Crackdown 3 – This the first game on the list that I think will show off the Scorpio power and Microsoft will sure “try” to make this the system seller. Personally, I haven’t been a fan of any of the games in the series. I’ve always found them to be big on ideas, but lacking on content and implementation. The first game has an 83 on MetaCritic while Crackdown 2 has a 70. I just don’t see this game as being good, as much as it will be a glorified tech demo.
Phantom Dust – Again, another reboot of an Original Xbox game from 2004. This is a game that flew under radars, it wasn’t a particularly great game, but not bad either. Again, just not sure why Microsoft is remaking games that nobody asked for or games that weren’t big sellers. In comparison, Crimson Skies was an 89 percent, a fan favorite on Xbox Live and is begging to be remade for the One and Scorpio, yet we get Phantom Dust and Voodoo Vince.
Sea of Thieves – This is an ambitious title from RARE and to me has me concerned. This could put Rare back on the map or force Microsoft to dump the studio. They have a great pedigree and made some classics, but they just haven’t made anything that’s really landed or sold well. While some folks still love Viva Pinata, it’s never really become mainstream. While I hope Sea of Thieves is great, I’m just concerned, it’s been delayed over a year.
State of Decay 2 – This game should have been released two years ago. State of Decay 1 should have been 2, it should have had multiplayer from the get-go. They should have capitalized on the Walking Dead’s popularity, but that show is fading faster than a half inch candle. While this game could be a blast, it’s also a title that people can play on the One S with HDR and skip the Scorpio. So far, Crackdown 3 is the only game (with it’s massive destruction) that has merited the Scorpio’s power.
So with all that being said, that’s all they have. Unless we get some MAJOR surprise at E3 for Scorpio, this is it. Even if we do get surprises, they will be games that will drop in November/December. That’s a dry year for Xbox owners.