A strong library of exclusives is one of the best reasons to invest in a platform. However, it appears that Microsoft might be willing to share some of the best Xbox Series X games with its rivals. That’s because a new rumor has surfaced suggesting that a major first-party Xbox game could be heading to PS5 and Nintendo Switch.
In a recent episode of his podcast, Nate the Hate, an industry insider with a solid track record of accurate scoops, stated “In the calendar year of 2024, Microsoft will bring one of their more acclaimed first-party releases to a competitor’s system.”
Nate didn’t confirm any specifics but further teased that “the title I’m referring to was met with high critical acclaim. Fans loved it, it was in the game of the year conversation the year that it was released.” The insider also name-dropped Nintendo Switch and PlayStation as potential platforms that Microsoft may explore bringing more games to in the future.
Adding even more credibility to this claim was a Resetera account by the name of lolilolailo. As spotted by our friends over at Windows Central, the forum user suggested that if you were to bet on the current Xbox console exclusive Hi-Fi Rush launching on Nintendo Switch “you’ll win.”
The user in question has a similarly solid track record having previously leaked early details of Microsoft’s agreement with ATLUS, the publisher of the Persona franchise.
(FYI) Resetera user lolilolailo a trusted leaker in the past has seemingly confirmed Hi-Fi Rush is coming to SwitchHe replies to a comment from a user "Hi-Fi Rush available on Switch, I'll bet." with "And you'll win."Source:https://t.co/TcOaqVBevd pic.twitter.com/zP0WbPk8bIJanuary 6, 2024
Xbox games have gone multiplatform before
Microsoft has a track record of launching Xbox exclusives on Nintendo’s best-selling handheld/home console hybrid. Charming platformer Ori and the Blind Forest was released on Switch in 2019, four years after its debut on Xbox One and Windows in the spring of 2015. Its acclaimed sequel, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, also came to Switch, this time just six months after its launch in March 2020 on Xbox and PC.
In recent years, Xbox first-party games have seldom made their way over to PlayStation, but Microsoft has continued to launch games in the Minecraft franchise on the hardware of its biggest rival. Most recently action-strategy spin-off Minecraft Legends launched on PS5 and PS4 in April 2023, and the flagship base Minecraft game is still supported on PlayStation platforms with content updates and patches.
Furthermore, Bethesda-published games Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo launched as timed exclusives on PS5 in 2021 and 2022 respectively, even though Microsoft purchased Bethesda’s parent company, ZeniMax Media, in 2020. However, these 12-month exclusivity agreements were inked before the acquisition, so these releases were likely a case of Microsoft not reneging on Bethesda’s pre-existing agreements.
Which Xbox game could go multiplatform?
Nate the Hate has yet to confirm which Xbox exclusive he is specifically referring to, but internet sleuths are convinced the game in question is Hi-Fi Rush.
A surprise release in January 2023, Hi-Fi Rush was announced and made available to buy the very same day. Developed by Tango Gamework, it’s a colorful rhythm-action game that casts you as a wise-cracking protagonist named Chai who is on a mission to destroy an evil megacorporation.
Battles are set to the beat of the game’s soundtrack with extra damage dished out if you perform combos that sync up to the music, and there are platforming challenges and puzzles thrown into the mix to add some variety in between combat encounters.
Hi-Fi Rush was met with strong reviews at launch. Critics praised the vibrant visuals, quirky sense of humor and stylish gameplay. It was also nominated for several awards over the past few months including Ultimate Game of the Year at the Golden Joystick Awards and Best Action Game at The Game Awards.
Hi-Fi Rush would certainly meet the criteria set out by Nate the Hate. But it’s not the only possibility. The medieval adventure game Pentiment or oddball platformer Psychonauts 2 could also fit the bill quite nicely. The Psychonauts sequel is already available on PS4 (but there’s currently no native PS5 version) so a release on Nintendo Switch feels fairly plausible as it’s already a multiplatform game anyway.
However, the odds of the mystery game being a flagship AAA Xbox game like Starfield or Forza Motorsport seem fairly remote. For starters, these games are system-sellers for Xbox consoles, so porting either to PS5 would make little sense from Microsoft’s perspective. Furthermore, the current Switch is almost certainly not capable of running either to an acceptable standard, whereas Nintendo’s hardware could presumably handle less demanding games like Hi-Fi Rush or Pentiment.
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Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.