The gaming division of Microsoft released titles like Forza Horizon 5, Halo Infinite, Age of Empires 4, and Psychonauts 2 in 2021. Its games received an average Metascore of 87.4, leading Metacritic to name it the year’s publisher of the year(opens in new tab). Besides that, the Microsoft Flight Simulator release for the Xbox Series X helped boost that score. Microsoft backed several critically acclaimed indie games in 2022, including Grounded, Pentiment, and As Dusk Falls. However, the company’s two most anticipated games, Starfield and Redfall, faced a pushback to 2023. Xbox fans weren’t happy, but I think we’d all be better off with fewer video games that come out too quickly.
It would appear that Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, is hinting at more Halo titles. For as long as the Xbox console has been around, Halo has been an essential part of the brand’s identity. It’s safe to say that Halo played a significant role in the success of Microsoft’s original Xbox, Xbox Live, and the Xbox 360. Although the brand is well-known and respected, it has lost some of its lusters over the past decade. Having moved on to work on Destiny in 2010, 343 Industries began the development of Halo 4 after Bungie abandoned the franchise. Aside from some minor issues, Halo 5 and Halo Infinite were both solid entries in the series. The games were fun, but they had a lot of problems that made many people not want to play them.
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Despite recent layoffs and the departure of the company’s creative director, 343 Industries has promised to keep developing Halo games. Xbox CEO Phil Spencer agreed that 343 is critical to Halo’s success. Here he implied that they would continue to play a pioneering role in the series. In a recent interview with IGN, Phil Spencer alluded to some of the future’s possible courses of action. He said that the team is working on some “rumored” and “announced” new projects. This could mean that a new Halo game or the long-awaited battle royale mode is among them. There’s still a lot of time left in the Halo series, it seems. Spencer added that he expects Halo to remain available for as long as Xbox does.
Last year, there weren’t many first-party Xbox games because Bethesda’s long-awaited Starfield and Redfall did not get a release date. Xbox Game Studios released only five games last year. On top of that, only one is an entirely new game developed internally (Obsidian’s Pentiment).
The other four were an independently developed game called As Dusk Falls, an expansion for Forza 5, a re-release of Age of Empires, and Obsidian’s Grounded.
Xbox boss Phil Spencer recently spoke with IGN, where he admitted responsibility for 2017’s sparse release schedule. However, he expressed optimism about 2018’s lineup, which will include major exclusives for Xbox Game Pass on consoles and PC.