This week’s Xbox & Bethesda Developer Direct didn’t just want to assuage concerns about the upcoming games for Microsoft consoles, it aimed to give you something to play right now. Redfall, Minecraft Legends, Forza Motorsport, and The Elder Scrolls Online were all known ahead of time, but those giants were joined by the joyous surprise of Hi-Fi Rush. Missed the show? Not to worry. We’ve rounded up everything covered at the Xbox & Bethesda Developer Direct below.
Minecraft Legends releases April 18
Developer Mojang studios finally confirmed the release date for their cuboid action-strategy game, Minecraft Legends. The campaign sees you taking on the Piglins in a procedurally generated world, constructing fortresses and forming alliances with various characters across the land.
The Developer Direct broadcast also revealed plenty of details about the game’s PvP mode, which sees two teams of four collecting resources to build up a base and besiege their opponents. Some of your team will need to harvest resources to set up walls, towers, and gates, while others gather mobs to assault the enemy camp. It's out on April 18 on pretty much every platform under the sun.
Forza Motorsport dives into audio, visuals, and immersion
Next up was the turn of Forza Motorsport developer Turn 10. Their segment delved into the fidelity of the game, focussing on the sounds and visuals which will immerse you in the racing sim. Forza Motorsport promises more than 500 cars at launch, all of which can be tinkered and adjusted to a driver's tastes. Audio has been given a boost, too, with this entry the first built natively for formats like Windows Sonic and Dolby Atmos.
This isn’t Gran Turismo, either. Cars here can be chipped, scraped, and damaged as they tear around the track, and will even accumulate dirt throughout a race. Motorsport is a dangerous game, and Forza knows it. Pair that with fully dynamic time-of-day and weather systems, and you’ll need to be prepared for all situations if you want to avoid skidding off track and into the boundaries. Forza Motorsport is set to release in 2023.
Hi-Fi Rush is a colorful rhythm-action game that’s available now
The only game not on the public docket for the Xbox & Bethesda Developer Direct was easily the show’s highlights. Coming from Tango Gameworks – a studio best known for The Evil Within games and more recently Ghostwire: Tokyo – Hi-Fi Rush is anything if not mould breaking. A rhythm-action game set in a vibrant cartoon sci-fi world, Hi-Fi Rush sees you as a wannabe rockstar with a very different kind of beat in his chest.
Moves and attacks create “a living soundtrack”, with every hit in a combo adding extra layers to the music. You can move and attack as you please, but keep things in time and you’ll be able to land “beat hits” which deal extra damage and knockback at the end of a sequence. As you battle towards taking on the bosses of an evil corporation, you’ll get to enjoy a soundtrack featuring music by bands including Nine Inch Nails and The Black Keys. Best of all, the game is available right now on Xbox Series X/S and PC, and comes included in Xbox Game Pass subscriptions.
The Elder Scrolls Online: Necrom arrives in June
ZeniMax online studios unveiled the next chapter of their ongoing MMO: The Elder Scrolls Online: Necrom, which launches June 2023. It takes players back into the beloved and surreal landscape of Morrowind and also introduces the Arcanist class to the game.
For those who have fallen behind, there’s a time-limited free trial for ESO Plus now available which opens up all past chapters and DLC to players with the base game, and that includes Game Pass subscribers. The Developer Direct was followed by a dedicated ESO broadcast, which we’ve included above for those who want to see more.
Redfall release date will have you hunting vampires from May 2
The Xbox & Bethesda Developer Direct ended with the night’s heavy hitter: Arkane Austin’s Redfall. The co-operative vampire-hunting FPS has had plenty of airtime already, but this broadcast broke down the main structure of the game in more detail. While wandering the open-world island, players can secure safe houses and take on missions to reclaim areas and challenge the vampire bosses. Gun your way through the blood-drinking ranks and you can face off against the vampire gods themselves, though the developers are keeping them well hidden for now.
Arkane is working hard to emphasize that Redfall can be played solo, and the Developer Direct showed off stealthy gameplay with a lone player sneaking through houses and roofbeams, taking out enemies with silenced weapons. It’ll be interesting to see if it’s actually enjoyable in practice, or if Redfall will be best saved for playing with a team of vampire-slaying allies. Redfall releases May 2 on Xbox Series X/S and PC. It’s coming day one to Game Pass.
That’s everything from the Xbox & Bethesda Developer Direct. What did you make of the games revealed?