We’re just a few days away from Microsoft revealing what’s next for its Xbox One and Windows 10 line-up, but that didn’t stop the new head of first-party games for Microsoft from talking about what lies beyond that in the near future.
Booty recently sat down with MCVUK about potentially expanding its current franchises into new directions. The company has been known to do so in the past, such as Halo with its Halo Wars strategic series and Forza with the less serious Forza Horizon games. But more work is needed, according to him.
“We’re very lucky to have a number of established franchises,” Booty explained. “When you think about Minecraft, Halo and Forza, each has over a decade or almost a decade of foundation underneath them. We need to use those franchises as a home base from which we can expand. That strength lets us branch out and take risks with them.
“With games being as large as they are, with the move to games as an ongoing service…it is difficult to pivot quickly and try to chase after trends that might happen even on the scale of a year. In business terms a year can be a long time, but development time being three to four years these days, that’s the span we need to think about. We’ve got to get our strategic long-term bets, our game development cycles and the things our players like to do in sync. And that will set us up for success.”
But the question is if these risks will pay off. There’s a good chance that the company will test out this theory in a few days by announcing three new Gears of War games including a traditional sequel; a strategy-based game like Wars; and a potential Battle Royale title to cash in on the current success of the genre. These haven’t been confirmed just yet but they could be part of Booty’s gameplan, just to see what audiences are hungry for these days.
Let’s just hope that Microsoft doesn’t forget the core fundamentals of each franchise. Sure, some Halo offshoots might be fun but we can’t forget that at the end of the day, there’s still Halo 6 to consider.
We’ll let you know what Microsoft announces when its E3 press conference kicks off this Sunday at 1 PM PDT.
(Hat tip to GamingBolt for the scoop!)