Microsoft revealed the Xbox One's launch lineup at the Gamescom conference in Germany today (Aug. 20) and it looks like there will be something for everyone — although some genre fans will be better off than others.
Picking up a game console at launch is usually a risky proposition. If the launch lineup is no good, you could be sitting on an expensive paperweight for months. In this respect, the Xbox One launch lineup should be strong.
Most of the games coming out alongside the Xbox One are highly anticipated and look promising. On the other hand, most of the 23 games announced will be available on other systems. Xbox One may well present a more polished "Assassin's Creed IV," but you'll be able to play "Assassin's Creed IV" just fine on current-gen systems.
Let's take a look at the Xbox One launch titles and see if the system is worth a day-one purchase:
Third-person action fans are going to have the widest selection at the Xbox One launch. "Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag," "Crimson Dragon," "Dead Rising 3," "LEGO Marvel Super Heroes," "Ryse: Son of Rome," "Skylanders: Swap Force" and "Watch Dogs" will all release alongside the console itself.
The third-person action games represent a wide swath of gamer interests, from open-world pirate quests to cooperative kids' games to on-rails shooters with dragons. Furthermore, "Crimson Dragon," "Dead Rising 3" and "Ryse" are all Xbox One exclusives. If you like action games, you'll be covered.
Only two first-person shooters will debut alongside the Xbox One: "Battlefield 4" and "Call of Duty: Ghosts." While both will have some exclusive content and features on the Xbox One, they will also be available on current-gen consoles and PCs. Given that both games thrive on online multiplayer, players will be best off choosing whatever system their friends are using.
Sports games are well-represented, too: "FIFA 14," "Madden NFL 25," "NBA 2K14," "NBA Live 14" and "Powerstar Golf." Aside from the fact that there may not be much difference between the basketball titles "NBA 2K14" and "NBA Live 14," these games will also be available on current-gen systems, with the exception of "Powerstar Golf." Sports fans can probably hold off on the Xbox One for now.
The three Kinect-focused games available at launch will be "Fighter Within," a fighting game where your punches and kicks are real, "Zumba Fitness: World Party," an exercise game using the Zumba dance fitness program, and "Just Dance 2014," which is exactly what it sounds like.
Microsoft has spent a lot of time hyping up (and occasionally apologizing for) its next-generation Kinect peripheral, and every Xbox One will ship with one. Only "Fighter Within" is exclusive to the Xbox One, though, and there's no indication that the updated Kinect will provide a significantly better "Zumba" or "Just Dance" experience than the current one.