Microsoft will host its Xbox Games Showcase on June 11 — as confirmed before — and ahead of the event, the company has dropped timings and other details for the same. The showcase will be held live across Xbox’s official YouTube and Twitch channels, at 10:30pm IST in India/ 10am PT in the US. The event will showcase some ‘new surprises and first-looks’ from Xbox’s internal and third-party studios and will be followed by a ‘Starfield Direct’ event, immediately after. The news comes in the wake of multiple major publishers, including Xbox, opting out of the annual E3 exhibition, which led to its cancellation, in March.
It also goes without saying that since Redfall — out now on PC, Xbox Series S/X, and Xbox Game Pass — was received poorly by critics and fans alike, the company, which has been scrutinised for its lacklustre exclusive slate, needs to step up its game during the June presentation. The cartoonish rhythm game Hi-Fi Rush was the last big break for Xbox, dropping without any marketing and endearing fans, but was shrouded in industry-wide rumours that it failed to meet sales expectations. Aaron Greenberg, VP, of Xbox Games Marketing, then responded to the claims, stating that Hi-Fi Rush was a ‘break out hit’ and that the team couldn’t be happier with developer Tango Gameworks’ work.
As mentioned before, the Starfield Direct event will be streamed right after the Xbox Games Showcase on June 11, promising tons of new gameplay, developer interviews, and some behind-the-scenes content. The space-set RPG marks Bethesda’s first newly-crafted universe in 25 years, throwing players into the year 2330 as a space miner, who joins the Constellation, a group of explorers who seek rare artefacts across the galaxy. In what director Todd Howard describes as ‘Skyrim in space,’ Starfield leans heavily on character customisation and adds a Persuasion system to conversations, where you spend points on specific traits. Again, just like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, it can be played in both first and third-person perspectives, and has you fight space pirates, collect resources, and even build outposts.
Microsoft also has a follow-up stream planned for June 13 at 10:30pm IST/ 10am PT, featuring in-depth interviews focused on the titles that debut at the Xbox Games Showcase. Normally, any publisher showcases were held adjacent to E3, but the event got cancelled when major publishers like PlayStation, Nintendo, and Xbox themselves pulled out. While no official reason was given, we can assume it had to do with the large amounts publishers had to pay in order to secure a physical booth at E3. As the COVID-19 pandemic came along, industry giant Geoff Keighley took over the reins, to host his own version of the event, albeit in a digital format. Dubbed ‘Summer Game Fest,’ the festival soon grew to be the epicentre of all gaming news and announcements, proving that online-only events are a viable way to market games.
The Xbox Games Showcase is scheduled for June 11 at 10:30pm IST in India/ 10am PT in the US. The Starfield Direct event will be streamed right after.