Xbox Game Studios |OT5| The Cult of Phil in the Age of Booty: A Case Study

TheRulingRing

Member
Apr 6, 2018
2,902
So I was in central today and we were near Oxford Circus, so I decided to go to the MS Store and we were able to go round some of the experiences they had set up.

I have to admit, as a big car lover, the main reason I wanted to go was to sit in the McLaren Senna. Unfortunately, at the time I got there, there were already 20+ people in the queue, and I was told it would take an hour to get in, so we had to settle for just taking pics and went to try out the other stuff. You'll have to forgive some of the portrait phone pics.







The store itself is pretty open and the walls covered in screens. There were tonnes of staff present just wandering around and a couple stationed at each "experience". I'm not sure if this is how it'll continue to be or if there were just extra staff for the opening week, cos there really were loads of them.

The store was sectioned off into about 10 or so "experiences" over the 3 floors to showcase the different things Microsoft was working on. Most of the floor was given over to the Surface stuff, Apple style.







The most interesting of all the experiences was the Hololens one. Apparently all the headsets were "charging" when I arrived, so I didn't get to try them on as it would take 30 mins. Instead the guy at the stall showed off their AR app to demonstrate what Hololens was like, using a phone rather than the glasses themselves.

It was kinda like the tabletop Minecraft thing they showed a couple of years ago, just with a past and present rendering of Oxford Circus set atop the table. You could press on certain things and it would pull up an info bubble giving you little facts about them, or pull up a post box or London bus or something that you could rotate around.

It was fun to zoom right in to the streets, but the tracking was a bit finicky and if you pushed the boundaries too much it would lose the image and it would have to be reset again. Still, it was the most interesting thing they had there.







Upstairs they had more Surface space, and then a large segment dedicated to Xbox.







In the corner they had this little section for streaming, and a lounge through the doors in front. We obviously weren't allowed in since they had some celebs streaming from the room, and we just had the TVs on the side to watch them. Apparently Raheem Sterling and Peter Crouch were going to be on later if anyone wants to watch lol





At the top it was mostly just open space, except for the main Xbox thing I was interested in: Xcloud







Supposedly it was a booking only thing, but I asked someone and they said if the station is free they'll let you have a go. To start off, there was a sign saying no close up pictures here, and this was the closest they were willing to let me take pics. I don't know why they bothered, since the phone screen is too small to do any rigorous image quality analysis with, especially off someone's mobile camera. I gotta say I don't think I would be interested in playing graphically intensive console level games on such a small screen anyway.

I was told by the attending staff member that it was the true Xcloud experience running from a data centre just outside London, and I got to try Forza Horizon 4 on the phone.

Now, I've read some reviewers saying they found the input lag to be imperceptible or insignificant, and I have to wonder how much they play games or what type of games they play, because the input lag was very noticeable and significant imo. If anyone's tried remote play on PS4 it's almost at that level of input lag (though not quite as significant).

I mostly play online games, so this level of lag would be really off putting for me, and even for gameplay focused SP games I think I would find it quite a sub-par experience. I didn't really pay attention to the actual image quality etc because of this.

The staff member said they would have a public event in October where they would reveal more details on the service.



As a reward for trying out these experiences they gave us a MS T-shirt.



Overall the whole thing was a nice experience, and they succeeded in making the store a nice place to hang out for half an hour or so.
 

Theorry

Member
Oct 27, 2017
18,830
Dont think FH4 is a good way to show xcloud imo. Because the game itself has quite a decent input delay already. On purpose i read a while ago. The same for the other Horizon games.
It has to do with smoothness while driving with a controller. As Horizon is less about being precise but more about go everywhere and making jumps, drive on different surfaces and otherwise. Its making transitions smoother as just mostly drive fast and race all over the place. Kinda hard to explain but at the end its done to make the racing easier.
 

Raide

Member
Oct 31, 2017
7,221
Thanks for the right up Ruling. I think I am heading there tomorrow afternoon to check it out.
 
Jun 4, 2019
841
Yes, Halo infinite will be a monster.

And i think this halo will separate into 3 part :

-Campaign
-classic online (forge,arena etc...)
-live service mode powered by Playfab Azure (mix of spartan ops and warzone 2.0)

Look this : https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-backus-2860b51/

All have experience in MMO / MMOlite and are in important positions.
It's all fine and dandy with the MP, I trust that will be great, although I do hope we get better maps than Halo 5 did. Personally I was more fond of the Halo 4 maps. But just give me a dope fucking campaign, let it be lengthy and full of epic moments. Bring back true Halo greatness please. 5 didn't do it at all for me. Especially because of the cursed Wardens.
 

Mack

Member
May 30, 2019
304
So I was in central today and we were near Oxford Circus, so I decided to go to the MS Store and we were able to go round some of the experiences they had set up.

I have to admit, as a big car lover, the main reason I wanted to go was to sit in the McLaren Senna. Unfortunately, at the time I got there, there were already 20+ people in the queue, and I was told it would take an hour to get in, so we had to settle for just taking pics and went to try out the other stuff. You'll have to forgive some of the portrait phone pics.







The store itself is pretty open and the walls covered in screens. There were tonnes of staff present just wandering around and a couple stationed at each "experience". I'm not sure if this is how it'll continue to be or if there were just extra staff for the opening week, cos there really were loads of them.

The store was sectioned off into about 10 or so "experiences" over the 3 floors to showcase the different things Microsoft was working on. Most of the floor was given over to the Surface stuff, Apple style.







The most interesting of all the experiences was the Hololens one. Apparently all the headsets were "charging" when I arrived, so I didn't get to try them on as it would take 30 mins. Instead the guy at the stall showed off their AR app to demonstrate what Hololens was like, using a phone rather than the glasses themselves.

It was kinda like the tabletop Minecraft thing they showed a couple of years ago, just with a past and present rendering of Oxford Circus set atop the table. You could press on certain things and it would pull up an info bubble giving you little facts about them, or pull up a post box or London bus or something that you could rotate around.

It was fun to zoom right in to the streets, but the tracking was a bit finicky and if you pushed the boundaries too much it would lose the image and it would have to be reset again. Still, it was the most interesting thing they had there.







Upstairs they had more Surface space, and then a large segment dedicated to Xbox.







In the corner they had this little section for streaming, and a lounge through the doors in front. We obviously weren't allowed in since they had some celebs streaming from the room, and we just had the TVs on the side to watch them. Apparently Raheem Sterling and Peter Crouch were going to be on later if anyone wants to watch lol





At the top it was mostly just open space, except for the main Xbox thing I was interested in: Xcloud







Supposedly it was a booking only thing, but I asked someone and they said if the station is free they'll let you have a go. To start off, there was a sign saying no close up pictures here, and this was the closest they were willing to let me take pics. I don't know why they bothered, since the phone screen is too small to do any rigorous image quality analysis with, especially off someone's mobile camera. I gotta say I don't think I would be interested in playing graphically intensive console level games on such a small screen anyway.

I was told by the attending staff member that it was the true Xcloud experience running from a data centre just outside London, and I got to try Forza Horizon 4 on the phone.

Now, I've read some reviewers saying they found the input lag to be imperceptible or insignificant, and I have to wonder how much they play games or what type of games they play, because the input lag was very noticeable and significant imo. If anyone's tried remote play on PS4 it's almost at that level of input lag (though not quite as significant).

I mostly play online games, so this level of lag would be really off putting for me, and even for gameplay focused SP games I think I would find it quite a sub-par experience. I didn't really pay attention to the actual image quality etc because of this.

The staff member said they would have a public event in October where they would reveal more details on the service.



As a reward for trying out these experiences they gave us a MS T-shirt.



Overall the whole thing was a nice experience, and they succeeded in making the store a nice place to hang out for half an hour or so.
What phones did they use to showcase xCloud? Judging from the picture I'd say Samsung Galaxy S10(+). Correct me if I'm wrong.
 

GING-SAMA

Member
Jul 10, 2019
54
It's all fine and dandy with the MP, I trust that will be great, although I do hope we get better maps than Halo 5 did. Personally I was more fond of the Halo 4 maps. But just give me a dope fucking campaign, let it be lengthy and full of epic moments. Bring back true Halo greatness please. 5 didn't do it at all for me. Especially because of the cursed Wardens.
YES!

Halo 5 MP Art style is boring.

100% Trust in 343i and Chris Lee. Halo infinite need to be GOTY 2020.

I hope the campaign will last 15-20h (sorry Google trad )

5 years time of development
New engine with most powerful tools
clear vision

Need to be MONSTER like Halo CE in his time.
 

Firenoh

Member
Mar 7, 2019
771
Awesome write-up, Ruling. Wouldn't be an Xbox Showcase without a sports car on display! Shame to hear about the latency issues and your missing out on the Hololens demo.
 

Ushay

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,230
That looks really damn good. Imagine if Fallout actually had NPCs looking like that with that kind of facial animation. This clip here really makes me want to see a third/first person RPG from inXile. It's a shame Wasteland 3 won't be for me. Combat wise it's exactly like the one that is on Xbox now, right? Turn based?
I've always said InXile will be a sleeper hit studio. Can't wait to see what these guys do in the RPG space next gen. Wasteland 3 is already looking massively improved since they were acquired.

Game Pass need big MMO lite like Bordelands 3,Destiny, The division etc... The coalition can do big AAA Action/aventure live service because for now, no games has taken a monopoly on this market and the coalition is really talented, if they mix storytelling/action/adventure/competition and big live service content it can attract a very large audience.

Rare does a big job with Sea of thieves, one of my favorite games of the generation so far.
Halo 3rd person, squad based MMO. Team of Spartans on various worlds, Division style. Would be my GOAT for shooter-looters.
 

12Danny123

Member
Jan 31, 2018
493
A little off topic, but with Game Pass there needs to be an MMO for the service. I think the MMO should be a completely different game and genre.

This MMORPG Wizard101 is a perfect game to fit Game Pass, it's a wizard game where you have multiple schools and you can defeat enemies via card spells. The mechanics are very fun and the graphics are quite good for an MMO.

 
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christocolus

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,854
A little off topic, but with Game Pass there needs to be an MMO for the service. I think the MMO should be a completely different game and genre.

This MMORPG Wizard101 is a perfect game to fit Game Pass, it's a wizard game where you have multiple schools and you can defeat enemies via card spells. The mechanics are very fun and the graphics are quite good for an MMO.
I totally agree with this.
 

Firenoh

Member
Mar 7, 2019
771
A little off topic, but with Game Pass there needs to be an MMO for the service. I think the MMO should be a completely different game and genre.

This MMORPG Wizard101 is a perfect game to fit Game Pass, it's a wizard game where you have multiple schools and you can defeat enemies via card spells. The mechanics are very fun and the graphics are quite good for an MMO.
I mean, Phantasy Star Online 2 could be on Game Pass. And ESO is already on Game Pass right?
 

Terror-Billy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,302
A little off topic, but with Game Pass there needs to be an MMO for the service. I think the MMO should be a completely different game and genre.

This MMORPG Wizard101 is a perfect game to fit Game Pass, it's a wizard game where you have multiple schools and you can defeat enemies via card spells. The mechanics are very fun and the graphics are quite good for an MMO.
Elder Scrolls Online and Black Desert are available on Gamepass. Every other notable MMO (Tera, Skyforge?, PSO2 once its available) is F2P.
 
Jun 4, 2019
841
I think you have to try Wasteland 2, really great game.

I think the second team going to the Third/First person Dark Fantasy Action RPG. Inxile have grow a lot since the acquisition.

it would be nice if Wasteland turns into third/first person rpg but I hope the tactical aspect of combat and squad will always be important.
I've tried Wasteland 2 and it's not really my thing. I can appreciate isometric games but the combat system I just can't really enjoy at all. That's always been a thing of mine, turn based isn't my jam. So let's say for now team 2 is indeed going the third/first person route, that will be my team. :)

These people could do something great for a fake like that , I just know it.

YES!

Halo 5 MP Art style is boring.

100% Trust in 343i and Chris Lee. Halo infinite need to be GOTY 2020.

I hope the campaign will last 15-20h (sorry Google trad )

5 years time of development
New engine with most powerful tools
clear vision

Need to be MONSTER like Halo CE in his time.
Oh wow, it will have been in development for five years then? Yeah I'm hoping it will be like the first Halo as well as in that it's a fantastic launch game, hell it has been since the first Halo that a Halo game launched with the console, right? Crazy. This has to be special.

Boy I hope 343 will have raytracing for the game on Scarlett. The very first game on Scarlett and already making use of it, please do it. As for the campaign, yeah that length sounds great to me. For me it's all gonna be about that campaign first and all the other stuff is just extra. I want a bad ass Halo SP again.

I've always said InXile will be a sleeper hit studio. Can't wait to see what these guys do in the RPG space next gen. Wasteland 3 is already looking massively improved since they were acquired.



Halo 3rd person, squad based MMO. Team of Spartans on various worlds, Division style. Would be my GOAT for shooter-looters.
It would be great if they can take on a non isometric game with real-time combat too. Maybe they could make Xbox's own Fallout with actual great visuals and (facial) animations.
 
Jun 4, 2019
841
Tempted to buy Psychonauts for ten bucks in the Xbox store. Never played it and 2 looks great. It could end up on Game Pass, I know, but still.
 

Bede-x

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,218
Want to emphasize how great Indies on Game Pass are right now.
It's fantastic. Microsoft's first parties combined with some older third party games would be enough to subscribe, but getting all these indies - many day one - is almost too much. It feels a little unreal how they're just giving us all those games. Guess that's just how it is now :)
 

Ushay

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,230
It's fantastic. Microsoft's first parties combined with some older third party games would be enough to subscribe, but getting all these indies - many day one - is almost too much. It feels a little unreal how they're just giving us all those games. Guess that's just how it is now :)
The value proposition is insane, and its only going to get better.

One misconception is some people have the impression they will be bringing only smaller bite-size titles, or mediocre quality to the service. That simply isn't the case, these are world class studios operating with the full backing of MS. I'm saying this as a realist, the best is yet to come for Xbox imo.
 

Bede-x

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,218
The value proposition is insane, and its only going to get better.

One misconception is some people have the impression they will be bringing only smaller bite-size titles, or mediocre quality to the service. That simply isn't the case, these are world class studios operating with the full backing of MS. I'm saying this as a realist, the best is yet to come for Xbox imo.
Through the roof insane and Xbox is my most used console now because of it. I actually value the smaller titles, first party or otherwise. Something like Blazing Chrome I would have bought day one, now it's just another part of my Game Pass subscription.

As for their own studios, they're quite varied and with a good mixture of AA-AAA (though I still think it would be for the best, if the latter took breaks from their franchises from time to time). There's no reason it should be mediocre titles or they wouldn't be doing their best, but the good news is, even if some of them should end up not reviewing well, they might still have some appeal. Compulsion is probably the weakest link right now and their worlds are still interesting, beyond what a mediocre score would tell us about their games.
 
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NippleViking

Member
May 2, 2018
1,183
A little off topic, but with Game Pass there needs to be an MMO for the service. I think the MMO should be a completely different game and genre.

This MMORPG Wizard101 is a perfect game to fit Game Pass, it's a wizard game where you have multiple schools and you can defeat enemies via card spells. The mechanics are very fun and the graphics are quite good for an MMO.
An MMO would be good, but I don't really think it's feasible. They require an enormous (and continuous) investment of finances, time, and resources, and will be compared against their contemporaries like FFXIV and WoW, which have several years head-start. It's a very very hard market to penetrate, which is partly why we've seen the rise of 'shared-world' or MMO-lite games this gen.
 

OneBadMutha

Member
Nov 2, 2017
3,422
It's fantastic. Microsoft's first parties combined with some older third party games would be enough to subscribe, but getting all these indies - many day one - is almost too much. It feels a little unreal how they're just giving us all those games. Guess that's just how it is now :)
The day 1 Indies alone would be worth the subscription for me. So would the Microsoft studio games. Since E3 the best value in gaming just exploded. We haven’t even got to Gears or Halo yet.
 

gremlinz1982

Member
Aug 11, 2018
1,302
The day 1 Indies alone would be worth the subscription for me. So would the Microsoft studio games. Since E3 the best value in gaming just exploded. We haven’t even got to Gears or Halo yet.
That value proposition goes up from 25th October with The Outer Worlds.

Not long after there is Gears 5. That is one heck of a way to round off the year considering what the program costs the consumer. It is going to be a madness once internal studio production starts ramping up. They do what they are doing with indies, the occasional big game like Shadow of the Tomb Raider or Metro and people will have more choice than they ever had on content that is not that old on the third party space, alongside day one content.
 

Granjinha

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,597
That value proposition goes up from 25th October with The Outer Worlds.

Not long after there is Gears 5. That is one heck of a way to round off the year considering what the program costs the consumer. It is going to be a madness once internal studio production starts ramping up. They do what they are doing with indies, the occasional big game like Shadow of the Tomb Raider or Metro and people will have more choice than they ever had on content that is not that old on the third party space, alongside day one content.
Gears 5 is before The Outer Worlds.
 

Jawmuncher

Crisis Dino
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
11,507
Ibis Island
I didn't even realize Outer Worlds was a gamepass title until yesterday lol.
that's a nice title to launch on the service though, saves me from having to get it as a gift actually.
 

OneBadMutha

Member
Nov 2, 2017
3,422
Game Pass is a service for the hardcore gamer. I’d say it is must have for any gaming enthusiast without a bottomless gaming budget.

For those wondering if Xbox was going to gear itself to the hardcore gamer next gen...it’s happening now.
 

12Danny123

Member
Jan 31, 2018
493
An MMO would be good, but I don't really think it's feasible. They require an enormous (and continuous) investment of finances, time, and resources, and will be compared against their contemporaries like FFXIV and WoW, which have several years head-start. It's a very very hard market to penetrate, which is partly why we've seen the rise of 'shared-world' or MMO-lite games this gen.
I think with Game Pass and linking MMO Subscriptions to Game Pass will guarantee a large audience. E.g in order to play an MMO, users will have to subscribe to Game Pass.


For this game Wizard101 specifically, I think its game mechanics is unique enough to stand out of the crowd, If Microsoft bought the developer of the game, I think Wizard101 will be popular.
 

pswii60

Member
Oct 27, 2017
9,367
UK
Game Pass is a service for the hardcore gamer. I’d say it is must have for any gaming enthusiast without a bottomless gaming budget.

For those wondering if Xbox was going to gear itself to the hardcore gamer next gen...it’s happening now.
It's not just for hardcore gamers at all. It's an ideal and cheap way for parents to keep their kids/adolescents happy with a constant flow of new games.

What even is a hardcore gamer anyway? There's really no singular definition.