Microsoft announced earlier today at its GamesCom conference that the Xbox One will officially launch with 23 titles, almost all of which are continuations of long-running franchises from the current console generation, with many more titles set to be released early in the lifecycle.
Most of the games will also appear on the competing Sony's Playstation 4. Both consoles are set to debut in November, with the Xbox One carrying a roughly $100 surcharge for the included Kinect hardware.
The full list is as follows:
Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag (Ubisoft, Ubisoft)
Battlefield 4 (DICE, Electronic Arts)
Call of Duty: Ghosts (Infinity Ward, Activision)
Crimson Dragon (Grounding/Land Ho!, Microsoft Studios)
Dead Rising 3 (Capcom Vancouver, Microsoft)
FIFA 14 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
Fighter Within (AMA Ltd., Ubisoft)
Forza Motorsport 5 (Turn 10 Studios, Microsoft Studios)
Just Dance 2014 (Ubisoft Paris, Ubisoft)
Killer Instinct (Double Helix, Microsoft Studios)
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes (TT Games, Warner Bros. Interactive)
Lococycle (Twisted Pixel, Microsoft Studios)
Madden NFL 25 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
NBA 2K14 (Visual Concepts, 2K Sports)
NBA LIVE 14 (EA Sports, Electronic Arts)
Need for Speed: Rivals (Ghost Games, Electronic Arts)
Peggle 2 (Popcap, Electronic Arts)
Powerstar Golf (Zoe Mode, Microsoft Studios)
Ryse: Son of Rome (Crytek, Microsoft Studios)
Skylanders: Swap Force (Vicarious Visions, Activision)
Watch Dogs (Ubisoft Montreal, Ubisoft)
Zoo Tycoon (Frontier Developments Ltd., Microsoft Studios)
Zumba Fitness: World Party (Zoë Mode, Majesco)
Of the list, by far the most promising are Watch Dogs, an entirely new franchise designed to take full advantage of the next-gen platform, Assassin's Creed IV featuring a compelling new pirate focus, and the perennial Call of Duty franchise, sure to push the limits on graphical fidelity, gameplay, and motion-captured dog performances. Meanwhile Ryse, Zumba Fitness, and Just Dance are sure to fully utilize the newly improved Kinect. Intriguing sequels to Dead Rising, Battlefield, the LEGO superhero franchise, and Need for Speed could also turn out to be worthwhile hits for the fledgling new console, as well as the reemergence of Microsoft's own photorealistic Forza racing series. A spattering of Sports games rounds off the list.
All told, it is a very health list for the launch window, particularly compared to disastrous previous Xbox and 360 line-ups. Provided they can further incentivize their own console versus the competition, while further developing new and original content, Microsoft should be set for a successful launch.