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Letters from the Front

2018 was a big year for gaming and it was one of the better years that made up for the disaster that was 2017, a year that I truly want to forget. I think 2019 will be a year of change for gaming, especially on Microsoft’s end and this side of PC Gaming.

I will try my best to try to predict this year’s big stories. As we enter a year of new announcements and excellent failures, here are some predication for the year ahead.

Microsoft actually cares about Windows.

In my dreams, right?

Apparently not according to this statement by Phil Spencer: “I think we’ve got a ton of work to do on Windows … I’ve heard the feedback about our Store. I’m going to take a bigger leadership role on what’s going on with the Windows Store, make it really tailored to the gamers that we know want to see the best from what we have to offer.”

That statement alone signifies that Microsoft is actually giving a shit about Windows users and will hopefully redesign the store. It’s not the first time that Microsoft acknowledged that the Windows Store actually is hot trash but they often don’t care that much. However, I feel like times are changing and this statement shows that Phil actually cares and will make good on this statement.

On top of this, Xbox Game Pass is apparently coming to PC and I think as the year progress, we’ll see a new Microsoft rise from the ashes and recommit itself to PC users starting with the Windows Store redesign. I just hope it solves the issues of how UWP apps are packaged and hopefully prevents easy modding.

Anthem is actually really good

One mistake and BioWare goes away.

Anthem actually concerns me for the future of BioWare. After the disaster that was Mass Effect: Andromeda, BioWare has been in hot water with Electronic Arts and there is no telling when EA will pull the plug and end BioWare’s existence.

It’s on BioWare to make Anthem really good so EA doesn’t think twice. Although, I have a hunch that the game will actually be good and will save BioWare, however, I am prepared to eat crow.

The Tides of War Live Service actually surprises us

Battlefield V shows a quite bit of promise to be a really good World War II game that doesn’t retell the same old stories that we have came to expect from World War II era games.

At launch, Battlefield V begins in 1940 with the invasion of France and will go through the war in a sped-up timeline since the game will be only relevant until 2020 when the next installment releases. At this point in time, I am not holding too much hope for the Live Service but I am hoping that DICE will actually surprise us.

The reason for that is the proof is in the pudding with how DICE and EA handled Battlefront II. Almost two years from release, Battlefront II only has a handful of maps and just released Geonosis in November, it seems like Battlefield V’s live service is mimicking Battlefront II’s live service and that concerns me.

5 months after launch, Battlefield V will have the same amount of maps as Battlefield 1 did in December of 2016. Having 2 maps over the course of 5 months does not sound good to me and we still don’t know DICE’s intentions on the long term of the game, which fronts will be covered and how will factions be introduced into the current system? It doesn’t sound very healthy to me so I hope DICE surprises the fanbase as we get into the later months of 2019.

Microsoft has a killer E3

From studio acquisitions to announcing the brand new Elite controller, Microsoft is going to have an amazing E3 this year.

E3 2018 was the turning point for Microsoft and 2018, in general, was their year. They stepped across the invisible line and just like a phoenix, Microsoft will rise from the ashes and start anew and that begins at E3 2019.

Now, that Microsoft has the stage to themselves since Sony mysteriously exited from stage right and will not appear at E3, Microsoft has to come out and give a good show. I predict that they will announce the new Elite controller which has been leaked numerous times and they’ll continue to acquire new studios and announce them at E3 on top of giving stage presence to their already existing acquisitions like Obsidian and Ninja Theory. I predict they’ll have an awesome E3 that will build off from 2018 and continue to solidify their foothold as we continue to head into next generation.

Here are some more predictions:

  • Gearbox announces Borderlands 3 and releases this year. It is bound to happen.
  • Gearbox also announces Brothers in Arms 4. Before Borderlands, Gearbox developed Brothers in Arms in conjunction with Ubisoft. The last game that saw release was Brothers in Arms: Hell’s Highway, Hell’s Highway detailed the 101st Airborne’s attempt to breakthrough Highway 69 in Operation Market Garden. The final scene ended on a cliffhanger that hinted towards the Battle of the Bulge, the American defense of Bastogne. It’s been 11 years since the release of Hell’s Highway, I doubt there will be any interest since so much time has passed but I just want to see the ending to Matthew Baker and his squad’s story.
  • Cyberpunk 2077 will release this year.
  • Rocksteady will announce whatever game they’re working on and will release next year.
  • On the topic of Rocksteady, WB Montreal has been hinting at the next Batman game which apparently is about the Court of Owls. I predict that we will see this game announced at E3 and will release this year.
  • Anthem will review pretty well and will have low to mid 80’s on Meta but the game will save BioWare.
  • Red Dead 2 will be announced for PC and will release in Fall 2019.

There are my predictions for the year. If you have any predictions for 2019, write about them and link it to me on my Twitter.

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