The plot is thickening when it comes to the next-generation Xbox. We’ve already been hit with a few rumors pointing to potential tech specs for Microsoft's next-gen console and how it could possibly be unveiled at CES next month. It’s almost tradition in the video game industry for somewhat believable, somewhat full of crap rumors to surface about next-gen hardware and in a way it’s something gamers look forward to. But amidst all the rumors concerning Xbox 3, I refuse to call it Xbox 720 since that’s dumb, we now may know what one of the launch titles could be for the platform.
Obviously Microsoft will bring out the big guns on the 1st party side of things for the launch of the new Xbox. While seeing a new Halo or Gears of War game arrive at launch may not be a lock, it’s certainly a possibility that would subsequently send units flying off the shelves. But now it appears that Crytek is prepping a next-gen Xbox game and it’s none other than Ryse – the once lauded Xbox 360 Kinect action game.
Unveiled to a degree at Microsoft’s E3 conference this year, Ryse was a first-person melee combat game that allowed gamers to kick and swing as a warrior in ancient times – complete with copious amounts of blood. The reason I say that Ryse was shown to a degree at E3 this year was due to it being a target video of what Crytek is doing with the game, which honestly seemed odd given how the game was in development for up to a year at that point. Microsoft was molding Ryse to become one of the big releases for the Kinect and Xbox 360 but now it seems like such a thing may have been bumped to the next-gen Xbox.
The source for this Ryse updates comes from the LinkedIn profile of a former Crytek Senior Level Designer who lists Ryse as a next-gen Xbox game. Now I know that sometimes folks can get hyped up over things that only lead to utter disappointment, such as an old portion of EA’s website listing “next-gen” versions of FIFA and Battlefield, but this LinkedIn thing is as real as it gets. I also doubt that a Crytek employee would list the Xbox 360 as the next-gen Xbox so as of now it appears that Ryse will be appearing on the next-gen Xbox and totally forgoing the Xbox 360.
Given the exclusive nature of Ryse it would make a lot of sense for Microsoft to give Crytek early access to development kits of the next-gen Xbox which would give them more than enough time to get the game up and running. From what we’ve heard there are rumblings that the new Xbox could drop in late 2012 but now it’s looking like a possible 2013 release, which would make a lot of sense given the presumed development time Crytek has had with the next-gen version of Ryse.
Assuming that Microsoft will package a new version of the Kinect in the next-gen Xbox or simply build it into the console somehow, having Ryse appear on the console would be perfect. It’s still a longshot if Ryse will be nothing more than a flashy motion game, but it does have that immediate appeal that would make it a hot product at the launch of a new video game system.
Ryse has had a somewhat troubled development cycle in the past two years so maybe Microsoft just wanted to forgo anymore trouble and instead craft a next-gen launch game that could be a showcase of what Kinect 2.0 has to offer. That's unless this whole rumor is a crock