Microsoft’s plate of exclusive titles has been somewhat lacking in recent months, with only a handful of gems coming to Xbox One, Xbox One X and Windows 10 in recent months. But those that do, are often outstanding, such as the spectacular Forza Horizon 4, which is arguably the best racing experience of 2018.
Whether it’s exclusive juggernauts (all of which launch as part of Xbox Game Pass and Play Anywhere), third party juggernauts or indie darlings, there is plenty to look forward to on Microsoft’s platforms. Trusted Reviews has compiled all of the best games coming to Xbox One and Windows 10 in the coming weeks, months and years.
Release Date: November 14, 2018
Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
Fallout 76 is Bethesda’s beloved post-apocalyptic RPG series like you’ve never seen it before. For starters, it’s an online experience where you explore and complete quests in a world occupied by other players trying their best to survive.
However, you can still treat it as a solo experience if you opt to explore the plains of West Virginia on your lonesome in search of shelter and resources. No matter how you slice it, this is a brave, unique departure for the franchise.
Release Date: 2019
Developer: Crea-ture Studios
No, it’s not Skate 4, but Session, successfully funded on Kickstarter in 2017, promises to be the next best thing. Marc-Andre Houde of developer creā-ture Studios is a skater himself and served as a reference throughout.
Session is interesting both for the team’s obvious love for skate culture and their desire to keep it simple. The control scheme, using the left stick for the left foot and the right stick for the right foot promises to be intuitive enough to lead to cool tricks quickly, even for newcomers to the skateboarding genre.
Related: Best Xbox One Games
The Artful Escape
Release Date: 2019
Developer: Beethoven and Dinosaur
A colourful platformer with great music, The Artful Escape, previously known as The Artful Escape of Francis Vendetti, will have fans of games with a strong visual identity and unique story perk up immediately.
The story focuses on Francis Vendetti, cousin to a beloved folk musician. As Francis’ very first stage performance grows near, he decides to go on a journey to find out what music really means to him.
Music is also a gameplay element in The Artful Escape. Using Francis’ guitar, you will be able to create platforms and fight enemies. Not many non-rhythm games focus in music in this way, and it will be interesting to see how The Artful Escape delivers on its vision.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Release Date: 2019
With Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, FromSoftware is set to release its first samurai game since Tenchu. While we’re sure a lot of people immediately want to break out the Dark Souls comparisons thanks to the different weapon types and the fighting style observed in the trailer, several completely different elements make an appearance: the grappling hook and some stealth action play prominent roles in the footage, both befitting the protagonist, a ninja.
Game director Hidetaka Miyazaki has already promised a more straight-forward plot for the game, focusing more on a single-player experience, but combat will, hopefully, require you to be as strategically-minded and careful as previous FromSoftware titles.
Best Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Pre-order Deals
Dark Souls meets 16th century Japan? Sign me up. Sekiro could be one of the Xbox's killer titles going forward, making this £10 saving through Base even better.
Ori and the Will of the Wisps
Release Date: 2019
Developer: Moon Studios
Ori and the Will of the Wisps is one of those games people are unanimously looking forward to, since it likely means more of the same good stuff that made Ori and the Blind Forest so popular.
This year’s E3 trailer showed off Ori’s many different platforming abilities as well as some terrifying monsters. Ori’s home, the Forest of Nibel, seems to be in great danger, making The Will of the Wisps appear quite a bit darker than its predecessor.
Related: Best PS4 Games
Release Date: TBA
Rare is tight-lipped about Battletoads, a new game, rather than a reboot, following in the footsteps of the notoriously difficult NES platformer.
The teaser trailer suggests Rare have no intention of making things any easier for players. Apart from that, all we know is that it’ll feature couch co-op for up to three players and mix of side-scrolling, fighting and platforming, as suggested by the phrase “body morphing genre mashups”.
Best Battletoads Pre-order Deals
Base wins by default here (good luck finding a pre-order page anywhere else) but with a saving £10 to be had, there's still plenty to be happy about.
Just Cause 4
Release Date: December 4, 2018
Developer: Avalanche Studios
Just Cause 3 was an ambitious game not without its problems, due to the sheer scope of the open world and more gadgets than ever to wreak havoc with.
Thanks to a completely new engine, Just Cause 4 doesn’t only look better, it opens up even more avenues for destruction. As always, Just Cause wears its mission statement proudly on its sleeve.
Rico is no agent who makes politely threatening conversation and sips martinis, he grapples from roof to roof and blows structures sky high.
With the added weather comes another element of destruction, judging by the giant tornado seen in recent footage. Just Cause 4 will also move back to South America with its biggest map yet, a clear bid to make missions less repetitive.
Best Just Cause 4 Pre-order Deals
As with the Gold Edition, 365Games has the competition beat on good old Just Cause 4.
If you're after the steelbook edition of Just Cause 4, then GAME is the only place to get it. As an added incentive however, GAME is also throwing in the Neon Racer DLC pack which adds a neon supercar, a neon parachute and a neon wingsuit. Not too shabby.
Most retailers have the Gold Edition of Just Cause 4 listed at £84.99, meaning that there's a staggering £17 saving to be had when buying through 365Games.
Release Date: 2018/2019
Since 2016, developers Rebecca Cordingley and Ben Wasser have documented every step of their journey to create Ooblets, a game that’s like a hug in these often trying times.
Cordingley’s colourful design already gives you a very good idea of the tone of Obblets, but it’s the many different elements that come together which make it truly intriguing.
You will be able to manage your own farm and become a member of a small community, not unlike Stardew Valley. Additionally, you’ll collect the eponymous ooblets, small magical creatures found all across the land of Oob. You can raise and train your ooblets to use in…dance battles against their own kind.
If Ooblets manages to balance its diverse influences we expect it to be our go-to retreat from the world at large and are fully prepared for it to be very addictive.
Related: Best Nintendo Switch Games
Release Date: 2018
Developer Capybara Studios has been working on Below for over 5 years, but the latest reports have finally shed some light on what kind of game you might expect.
Below uses a striking perspective, between zooming in and pulling out make everything seem either oppressing or tiny – very fitting for a game that takes place in the depths below a mountain. You need to ensure your survival in a number of different ways, by fighting enemies, avoiding traps and simply staying fed.
As the setting suggests and the battle design suggests, Below is a roguelike, complete with randomly generated dungeons and a permadeath mechanic. The concept is still very popular, and the depths rarely come looking as gorgeous as this.
Best Below Pre-order Deals
Time to go below the average price point (I couldn't help myself) and nab a saving of nearly £10 through 365Games.
Release Date: 2019
Developer: The Coalition
Details on Gears 5, the latest instalment in the Gears of War franchise, are scarce. At E3 2018, Microsoft showed off a lengthy cinematic which revealed the narrative would focus on Kait Diaz this time around with a greater focus on its characters and a wider, more detailed world to explore.
Since then, small teasers for new enemy types and characters have appeared on the official Gears of War twitter. So far we know of flying Swarm Leeches and wardens wielding axes, as well as anew addition to the team called Fahz Chutani.
Best Gears 5 Pre-order Deals
When was the last time you saw a triple-A game with a discount of nearly £20 before release? Exactly – what better time to cash in?
Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition
Release Date: January 11, 2019
Developer: Bandai Namco
The definitive edition is a remake of what many fans outside Japan consider the best part of the Tales series. A decade after its initial Xbox 360 release, it may serve as a great introduction to an RPG series just as big in scope as Final Fantasy – which Xbox players got to experience similarly late.
Anime RPGs are rare on Xbox One, so it’s nice to see that this one made it back.
Related: Upcoming Nintendo Switch Games
Best Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition Pre-order Deals
It may be a decade old now but Tales of Vesperia is still a modern classic of JRPG gaming – revamped for a new generation. Not bad for under £40.
Release Date: November 20, 2018
Previously expected to launch in October 2018, Electronic Arts and DICE made a decision to push back the latest entry in its blockbuster shooter series to dedicate time to additional polish and improvements.
We’re certain this decision will be worth the wait as Battlefield 5 is shaping up to be its most ambitious entry yet. Set in World War 2, players can partake in a series of War Stories across the solo campaign before diving into sprawling multiplayer modes with up to 64 players. All the classics return, so veterans don’t need to worry.
The biggest addition to Battlefield 5 is Firestorm, the series’ answer to the battle royale craze. We haven’t seen much of it in action yet, but the combination of battle royale and Battlefield sounds like a winning one.
Release Date: February 2019
Developer: Sumo Digital
The future of Crackdown 3 seemed uncertain for a long time. From the loss of the series’ original creator Dave Jones to multiple delays, development on the game halted often.
Now Crackdown 3 has been described as “pretty much done”. Your job is once again to clean up the city of New Providence by taking out members of different criminal factions. For creative approaches to dispatching bad guys you earn orbs used to enhance your skills.
As a new feature, destroying enemy facilities will draw attention to you, eventually resulting in retaliation. The co-op multiplayer is also set to return.
With the original Crackdown having been released more than a decade ago and mixed reactions to the sequel, this is a good moment for players to enter the universe or to rediscover what made the original fun.
Best Crackdown 3 Pre-order Deals
It may have been in development hell for what seems like an eternity, but Crackdown 3's release date is finally in sight. Don't miss out and secure your copy with this fantastic deal.