Games Inbox: Has no Halo Infinite put you off buying an Xbox Series X?

Games Inbox: Has no Halo Infinite put you off buying an Xbox Series X?

The Wednesday Inbox is shocked by Microsoft’s delay of Halo Infinite, as one reader hopes for Crash Bandicoot in Smash Bros.

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Infinite problems
OK, so that’s Microsoft lost the first round of the next gen. What a disaster. And I immediately don’t buy the coronavirus excuse. I’m sure that didn’t help but it’s been five years since Halo 5, what on Earth has 343 Industries been doing in that time? Although you could apply that to Microsoft in general, they seem so unprepared for their own console. Like someone only told them about it last year and they’ve been in a rush ever since. Just madness.

So now they’ve got none of their exclusives out for the launch. Literally relying on other people to make their console look good. The only thing they had was Halo Infinite and I don’t believe for a second that part of the reason for the delay is the bad internet reaction to the gameplay reveal. Which, of course, meant that everyone on Microsoft thought that what we saw looked not only good but good enough to convince people to buy a new console and to think that it was the most powerful ever made.

Some people complain about piling on Microsoft but I don’t see how they don’t deserve every word of it. I don’t know what happened at the end of the Xbox 360 era but the whole company seemed to go mad as far as games were concerned. And I think it’s now obvious beyond all doubt that Phil Spencer has no clue what he’s doing. What a complete and utter disaster.

Bad omens
Halo’s delayed to 2021… that’s my next gen plans up the jacksy. The signs haven’t been good, what with the lead designer and other key personnel leaving 343 Interactive, lack of progress updates and… that demo.


Microsoft are actually launching a console with no first party games to play on it, what was the last console to do that… 3DO?
DarKerR (gamertag)/DarKerR-UK (PSN ID)

I had to do a double take when I saw that Halo Infinite news. I mean… wow. I guess it was on the cards as soon as that embarrassing gameplay demo but really, what a disaster this is proving to be for Xbox. The new generation hasn’t even begun yet and they don’t seem to be in any better position than they were with the Xbox One.

I looked up the Xbox One’s launch line-up and while none of them are great (unless Forza is, I wouldn’t know) there’s even of them, including Dead Rising 3. That’s Crimson Dragon, Forza Motorsport 5, Dead Rising 3, Killer Instinct, Lococycle, Powerstar Golf, Ryse: Son Of Rome, and Zoo Tycoon.

It’s not great but at least they were trying and I wouldn’t say it was much worse than any other console launch beyond the classics. But this? What’s their biggest name game now? Assassin’s Creed Valhalla or Watch Dogs: Legion? Maybe Ubisoft should’ve released a new console and shown Microsoft how it’s done.

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Retro preservation
I agree with Sven’s point in response to the Reader’s Feature on remaking old games – it’s important to at least re-release games on modern systems to ensure people can play them. Not sure where the line should be regarding re-release, remake, and remaster though.

Even if a classic’s gameplay feels dated now, should it be changed to fit modern styles or should you experience it as it was on first release? I lean towards the latter as an act of preservation – in film terms, the former would be like Zack Snyder re-editing Back to the Future.

Having said all that, it grinds my gears that Windows 10 won’t let me run my old Ultimate Doom CD-ROM.
FoximusPrime81 (gamertag/NN ID/Twitter)

GC: Zack Snyder? Back to The Future? We hate you for putting that concept in our head.

Xbox Vita
I have to agree with GC in reply to the reader who said Project xCloud isn’t for mobile users. I would say it’s the primary market for Microsoft. This is backed up by the revealing of all the mobile based peripherals they plan to release and is a primary factor as to why I would play xCloud games on mobile, due to these peripherals.

It’s unlikely I’ll ever play AAA games through xCloud on my mobile, I would always choose to play on TV for those but I would certainly play indie games and use it like an Xbox handheld. I can’t wait for its release because of this.
Angry_Kurt (Twitter)
Now playing: Days Gone (PS4) and Perils Of Baking (PS Vita)

The knack
The though of playing a game as long as The Last Of Us Part 2 with permadeath is almost enough to give me the shakes. Who would bring that sort of punishment onto themselves? That bit right near the end was really hard, so imagine taking 30 hours to get that far and then dying?!

Of course, I say this know that certain people are going to do it all blindfolded, with one hand behind their back, and using a Guitar Hero controller. And kudos to them because that level of ability is just incomprehensible to me.

Literally, because I don’t understand how anyone gets that good at a game. It’s not ever as if they’re always particularly young, with superfast reflexes, I guess they just have the knack? Or maybe I’m just really bad and I’m outlier? I don’t think so though, I think I’m just average and exactly who normal mode is made for. Oh well, things could be worse.

Treasure trove
In answer to your question, yes GC, I could just play all the games on the Mega Drive collection and see which ones I like but as there are over 50 on there. I thought I would seek advice from those in the know about which to play first.

Can I get in the also-rans with my thrilling retort to your diss?

GC: It wasn’t a diss, if we were you we’d play through all 50 and see what grabs you. You don’t need anyone else’s opinion for that. We’d give a lot to have a catalogue of 50 Mega Drive games we’ve never played before…

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Hype effect
The Mass Effect remaster is looking pretty definite but I wonder why EA didn’t announce it during their not-E3 event? It’s not like they had that much else to talk about. My dream announcement would be if they announced it and Mass Effect 4 at the same time. Obviously Mass Effect 4 wouldn’t be out for ages but that’s okay. Just announce it, given some indication that it’ll be good (the staff are the most important thing here, since Andromeda was basically done by BioWare’s B-team) and I’ll never ask for anything again.

Not super likely I’ll admit, but I think there’s a chance and it would explain the delay because I doubt the remasters are going to look that much different to how we remember given how much work would be involved in getting the right and because I don’t know what current tech BioWare would base it on? Can they reuse their Anthem engine and take a shortcut there?

For me BioWare is one of the most frustrating falls from grace we’ve seen in modern gaming. How they let Dragon’s Age and Mass Effect fall away and be forgotten like this I don’t know. It seems only a few years ago they were one of the most respect developers in the world and now they’re like a bad joke, lucky not to be shut down by EA. I can only hope that makes them hungry to regain their reputation and that everything after Anthem will be a success.

GC: Like most EA games, Anthem uses the Frostbite engine.

Inbox also-rans
If anyone really thinks Microsoft delayed Halo Infinite and ruined their next gen console’s launch because they didn’t want their employees to overwork then I really don’t know what to tell you.

I could see Crash Bandicoot being in Smash Bros. Ultimate, sure. That’s going to be my official guess for who’s next. The more difficult question is going to be when it’ll actually be annouced…

This week’s Hot Topic
The topic for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Grackle, who asks what franchises are you most looking forward to in the next gen?

With the next gen consoles almost upon us which long-running series are you most looking forward to getting a new sequel or reboot? What do you hope to see from the new game and how do you think the next gen hardware will help to change and improve it?

As long as it’s still an active franchise, that has had a recent new entry this gen, it doesn’t matter whether it’s been announced yet or not, so feel free to make assumptions about what will eventually be coming to the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5.

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

You can also leave your comments below and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

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