May has got more quality games than a yard sale at Shigeru Miyamoto’s house. The Up Next that details the most exciting games for the next month becomes increasingly difficult to make sense of. Which of the fifty-odd new Xbox games due for release should we include? It’s a nice problem to have.
By rights, December should have no new Xbox games of note. It’s the end of the year: who has any disposable cash? We’re grateful that a few studios have said pooh-pooh and released games anyway. Absolute mad lads.
For the second month running, we’ve utterly failed to keep the Up Next for September 2022 to ten games. In fact, there’s so many new Xbox games that we’re hyped about, that we’re stretching all the way to thirteen for September 2022. Positively gushing, the games are.
August must be good if we’re having to cram thirteen new Xbox games into our Up Next. Yep, rather than edit the Up Next down by trimming out some of the fabulous games coming in August, we decided to include every single one of the Xbox games that got us excited. And there is a lot to get excited about.
We’re in an unusual timeline when the headline of the month is a LEGO game. But that’s the one we’re in, as LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga wipes the floor with pretty much every game that’s coming out in April 2022. We can already hear the clattering of plastic studs.
We were wrong to dismiss the best Xbox games releasing in March 2022. There’s Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, which is unusual in the sense that it’s a full game inspired by some DLC. And that’s without mentioning a new Final Fantasy game, Elex II and some tasty indie games and sequels. Maybe Elden Ring has some competition after all.
If there’s a theme this February, it’s Xbox games that got shunted out of 2021. Elden Ring, Dying Light 2: Stay Human and Life is Strange: Remastered Collection have all been kicked down the road at least twice. 2021’s loss is 2022’s gain.
We need to own up. In any other month, only a few of these would have made it onto an Up Next. It’s the nature of December: a month that’s far too late to maximise those holiday profits. We only get to include Halo Infinite because, you suspect, Microsoft wanted to make sure it had just enough time in the oven to bake. Those grunts were looking particularly doughy. But don’t reach for the remote: it means that we can give some air to fascinating indies.
We’re heading into that post-E3, pre-silly season lull. So, what will be the indie darling of July 2021? Some strong bets include Last Stop and Eldest Souls, which might sound like FromSoftware did a collaboration with, um, FromSoftware. The biggest studios are taking advantage of the AAA wasteland too. Microsoft Flight Simulator gets unceremoniously crammed onto an Xbox, while the F1 series receives its latest iteration in the form of F1 2021