LEAKED court documents related to Microsoft’s ongoing acquisition of Activision Blizzard have revealed more than a dozen unannounced video games.
The list of games is coming from an internal document produced by Microsoft in relation to its prior acquisition of game developer and publisher Bethesda, and is dated July 2020.
Dishonored 3, a sequel in Arkane Studios’ celebrated stealth action series, is among the unannounced leaked games.[/caption]
Ghostwire: Tokyo might be getting a sequel, which apparently was planned back in 2020.[/caption]
A number of documents and chat logs have been revealed as part of a recent court case with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
This ongoing leak has also revealed when Microsoft was planning to release its next-generation Xbox console.
The leaked game release schedule lists planned games for every year from 2020 through 2024.
These include many games that have already been released, as well as announced titles that are yet to launch, and games that are yet to be revealed publicly.
Among the listed titles are Doom Eternal, Deathloop, Fallout 76, Starfield, Redfall, and Ghostwire: Tokyo, which are already out.
Most of the games above were released later than the target years shown in the document, due to delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and other reasons.
The release schedule also shows upcoming games and expansions that have been announced, but haven’t launched yet.
These include annual Elder Scrolls Online expansions, a new Elder Scrolls 6 game, and a yet-untitled upcoming Indiana Jones game.
What’s even more interesting is that the list includes some games that have not been announced at all.
Among them are a new Doom game, as well as Dishonored 3, and a Ghostwire: Tokyo sequel.
The listed target release window for a new Doom game is before the end of fiscal year 2023 (FY23E).
Dishonored 3 and the sequel to Ghostwire: Tokyo were planned for an FY2024 release at the time the document was created.
A fiscal or financial year refers to the 12-month period that a company uses to report its results, which may or may not be the same as the regular calendar year.
In the case of ZeniMax Media, the company behind these games that Microsoft acquired in late 2020, the end of a fiscal year aligns with the calendar year, so it ends on December 31.
The document also reveals that unannounced remasters of games like The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3 were also planned at some point.
The Oblivion remaster is listed as coming in 2022, so it has been either canceled or delayed, while the Fallout 3 remaster is slated for a 2024 release, according to the document.
The release schedule also includes cryptic mentions of upcoming games, referenced only by their project codenames, like Project Hibiki, Project Kestrel, and Project Platinum.
What these codenames mean and whether they are still in production is anyone’s guess,
The three projects may refer to games that are out already, as they are slated for a 2021 or 2023 release, or they may have been delayed or canceled.
Project Kestrel was also due to receive an expansion in 2024, at the time the document was drafted.
Another secret project is mentioned only as ‘Licensed IP Game’, which can refer to any game based on existing characters and stories licensed to ZeniMax Media by another company.
This licensed game project was planned to release before 2024’s end.
There are also free-to-play and mobile projects on the list, but they are also referred to just by codenames, or a planned number of titles per year.
Given that the leaked document is now more than three years old, the release schedule for upcoming games shouldn’t be taken at face value, as plans have inevitably changed.
For example, the same document lists Starfield as coming by the end of fiscal year 2021, when the actual release date of the game was just a couple of weeks ago, on September 6, 2023.
Nevertheless, if authentic, the leaked list confirms that the unannounced sequels and remasters of these games were planned or in development at some point.
Some of the games mentioned in the document may still be coming to Microsoft’s consoles, PCs, and other platforms, even if the exact release window is now different.
Of course, due to the document’s age and the fact that it was drafted before Microsoft acquired Bethesda’s parent company, many of these projects may have been canceled.
Written by Stoyan Ovcharov on behalf of GLHF.
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