Happy New Year Xbox community! With Xbox teasing a great 2019, let’s look back at what a fantastic year 2018 was for the brand. Below are some highlights taken from the Xbox Wire post.
Xbox Game Pass
2018 marked a significant year for Xbox Game Pass. Touted as the best way for gamers to discover their new games, something which we couldn’t agree more with, Xbox Game Pass had over 116 new titles added to its catalogue across a variety of genres in 2018.
53 of these titles were from developers in the ID@Xbox programme and 24 of these titles were launched on Xbox Game Pass at the same time of their global release including Sea of Thieves, Laser League, State of Decay 2, Warhammer 2: Vermintide, Graveyard Keeper, Forza Horizon 4, Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, Ashen, and Below.
Xbox’s partnership also expanded to 65 partners, up from 25 at their launch in June 2017.
Not only that but 2018 saw more Xbox Game Pass members increasing their total gaming time on Xbox by almost 20% more as well as increasing their total number of games played by approximately 40%, which includes titles that aren’t in the Xbox Game Pass catalogue.
A Stellar Year of Games on Xbox One
Xbox maintains a commitment to delivering more first-party content and 2018 saw the team acquire seven new first-party studios including Playground Games, Ninja Theory, Undead Labs, Compulsion Games, InXile Entertainment and Obsidian Entertainment, along with the creation of The Initiative.
2018 saw the launch of the award-winning title, Forza Horizon 4, which, according to Metacritic, was the highest rated Xbox One exclusive of this generation with more than 2 million players driving around Britain in its first week of availability.
The highly anticipated title by Rare Ltd, Sea of Thieves, became the first game to launch into Xbox Game Pass on the same day as its global release and was the fasted selling new Xbox IP.
On the Backwards Compatibility front, 2018 brought over 100 new titles to the catalogue, with there now being over 550 games playable in the catalogue, 57 of which are Xbox One X enhanced.
The year also marked the 5th anniversary for the ID@Xbox programme, which also reached a milestone of having released its 1000th game since the commencement of the programme.
2018: A Significant Year for Cross-Play
Microsoft and Epic Games partnered in 2017 to enable cross-play for Fortnite on Xbox One to help unite over 78 million Fortnite players.
In 2018, Microsoft and Nintendo teamed up to enable cross-play between Minecraft players on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Windows, and mobile devices, bringing the community of 91 million monthly players even closer together.
Explosive Growth For Mixer
According to Microsoft, there were 10 million monthly active Mixer users in January 2018, with that number doubling to over 20 million monthly active users in June 2018.
X018, a global celebration of all things Xbox, was hosted at the fourth-annual Xbox FanFest in Mexico and garnered more than 9,000 local fans and over 20 million viewers around the world.
Xbox Adaptive Controller
The Xbox Adaptive Controller, released worldwide in 2018, is a game-changing device that was created to remove the barriers to gaming for those with limited mobility, allowing more accessibility and the ability for more people to enjoy playing games.
The ease of use and capabilities of the Adaptive Controller has been received positively, and showcases Xbox’s continued commitment to ‘Gaming For Everyone’.
Looking Forward To 2019
Xbox has declared that 2019 will be a heck of a good year and we’re inclined to agree. With a slew of first-party titles slated to release this year, including Crackdown 3, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, Gears 5, Gears Pop! and Minecraft: Dungeons, this year is certainly shaping up to be a good one for gamers.
First-party titles will continue to launch on Xbox Game Pass on the same day as their global release, which means members will be able to access the major Sea of Thieves update ‘The Arena’, which introduces a competitive game mode, as soon as its made available, along with a number of ID@Xbox titles like The Artful Escape of Francis Vendetti, Tunic and ATLAS, among others.
In addition to Microsoft first-party titles, some of the biggest and best games from Xbox’s partners will arrive on Xbox One, including Xbox One X, this year, including the highly anticipated Anthem, Devil May Cry 5, Jump Force, Kingdom Hearts 3, Metro Exodus, Mortal Kombat XI, Resident Evil 2, Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 and more.
The team’s focus in 2019 is to implement new Microsoft technologies, to allow delivery of content for new platforms and services like Xbox Game Pass, and create exclusive games that turn players into loyal Xbox fans. Furthermore, the team are committed to expanding the Microsoft Studios franchises that gamers already love as well as invest in new, exclusive content for every type of gamer.
As loyal Xbox fans, we’re beyond excited to see what Xbox has in store for us in 2019.