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Microsoft Stuns with Ori and other Spring Xbox One Games

It was only revealed that Microsoft’s Xbox One console had managed to surpass sales of Sony’s PS4 gaming console during the month of December a few days ago. Already, Microsoft is setting its sights on extending its lead into 2015. This morning the company added three new in-depth previews to games it expects to launch on the Xbox One this coming spring: ScreamRide, Ori and the Blind Forest and State of Decay.

Microsoft showed off more of ScreamRide, State of Decay and Ori and the Blind Forest this morning on its Xbox Wire news blog. Of the three it is Ori and the Blind Forest that’s attracting the most attention, surprisingly.

A scene from Ori and the Blind Forest.
A scene from Ori and the Blind Forest.

Like most other indie games, Ori and The Blind Forest is a platformer in the same vein as Mario and last year’s Max and the Curse of Brotherhood. Ori, finds an artifact early in the game that affects his ability to do things like double jump. Throughout the game users will need to use space, gravity and more to make it to the end of each level. The big thing about Ori and the Blind Forest is its design. Even at last year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo, Ori and the Blind Forest looked stunning. Microsoft says that users can expect Ori and the Blind Forest to launch exclusive on the Xbox One and PC March 11th to kick off the Spring gaming season here in the United States.

Coming days before Ori and the Blind Forest on March 3rd is ScreamRide, a new ride simulation from the same studio that managed Roller Coaster Tycoon. In ScreamRide users will take charge of their own park, but instead of adding scenery and deciding where the trash cans are users are charged with building a roller coaster, controlling that roller coaster’s speed and destroying as much as they can around them. Frontier, the game’s developer, says Engineering missions will give users a piece of roller coaster to start out with and it’ll be up to them to finish the coaster. Microsoft is billing ScreamRide’s roller coaster creation tool as the “most robust” they’ve ever used.

State of Decay: Year-One Survival isn’t technically a new game. Instead, it’s a remake of a game released for the Xbox 360 back in 2013. Like the original, State of Decay: Year-One Survival is an open-world Zombie-filled mad-house. Xbox One owners will need to scrounge for food and weapons as they take on the world’s foes. Besides a visual upgrade, State of Decay: Year One Edition will also come with an exclusive character for those who played the Xbox 360 version of the game. Both of the game’s large add-on packs are included in the game’s $29.99 purchase price. Microsoft and Undead Labs, the game’s creator, will knock off 33% of the cost for users who already purchased the Xbox 360 version too. State of Decay: Year-One Survival Edition launches on the Xbox One April 28th.

Read: 7 Xbox One Games to Get Excited for in 2015

All told, Microsoft has a pretty decent line-up of titles coming to the Xbox One this Spring. In theory, that should keep owners of the Xbox One spending cash on new games. The number of Xbox One buyers should stay steady heading into the summer gaming season too. The trouble for Microsoft is balancing these titles with games we already know are coming from the big studios around the same time. For example, Warner Brothers has already confirmed that Batman: Arkham Knight will arrive on store shelves on June 2nd. Battlefield Hardline is set for release on March 17th in North America too.

The Xbox One is available on store shelves starting at $349.99. A version with the Kinect 2 sensor for motion gaming and more is available for $449.

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