What's the next chapter for Xbox and Halo?

What’s the next chapter for Xbox and Halo?

The past six months have been nothing short of tumultuous for Xbox and its parent company, Microsoft. Kicking off the year with a significant layoff of 1,900 employees from Activision Blizzard and Xbox itself, the tech giant then dropped a bombshell by announcing that four of its in-house games would shed their exclusivity and launch on rival platforms like the PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch. As if that wasn’t enough, Microsoft recently shuttered three game studios, including Tango Gameworks, the acclaimed developer behind the widely praised Hi-Fi Rush.

These moves have sent shockwaves through the Xbox fanbase, with hardcore enthusiasts expressing dismay over the erosion of exclusivity and questioning the value proposition of the Xbox ecosystem. With studios being shuttered and games appearing on competing consoles, many are left wondering why they should continue investing in Microsoft’s gaming endeavors.

Amidst this turmoil, Sunday’s Xbox Games Showcase presents an opportunity for Microsoft to reignite excitement and reaffirm its commitment to the platform. Expectations are high, with anticipation for two major game reveals, numerous release date announcements, and a few surprises sprinkled throughout.

At the crux of this upheaval lie strategic shifts in Microsoft’s approach to both hardware and first-party game development. While the company has promised a significant technological leap for its next-generation Xbox console and is rumored to be working on an Xbox handheld device, there is an ongoing initiative codenamed “Project Latitude” that could potentially undermine these hardware efforts.

Project Latitude, according to sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans, involves bringing more games to rival consoles like the PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch. While the initial wave includes titles like Hi-Fi Rush, Pentiment, Sea of Thieves, and Grounded, the project’s scope extends beyond these four games and could encompass surprises that may leave Xbox fans reeling.