Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

The launch line-up: Xbox Games on Windows 8

5:45 PM on 02.04.2013 // Dale North

Windows 8 launch line-up listed

We had a chance to take the launch line-up of Xbox games on Windows 8 for a spin this past week. These games are available for play on any Windows 8 or Windows RT device, including laptops and tablets. I played them all on a slick Asus Vivo Windows RT tablet, which was nice as its detachable keyboard and USB port for a standard Xbox controller made for a really flexible system.

Just like with Xbox 360 games, all of these Xbox Games for Windows 8 feature achievements, and more support leaderboards, co-op, and more. It's the full Xbox experience on something other than your Xbox, which is pretty neat.

There's already a fairly broad selection for launch, and many more are in the works. We've prepared a quick rundown of the launch titles in this preview for you. 

Rocket Riot 3D
Developer: Codeglue

Before I get to anything else, if you somehow haven't heard of Rocket Riot 3D before, I have to mention the background music. It's hilarious! The song's vocals sing about the game, making the crazy bombing action that much more nuts.

This pixel-y, arena-based shooter has you blasting around freely with one thumb on the tablet, while flinging rockets and other projectiles with the other, just like you'd expect with a twin-stick shooter. Or, attach a mouse/keyboard or Xbox 360 controller if you'd like. It's an expanded, upgraded version of the Xbox 360 release, and it's a lot of fun. My memory isn't what it used to be, but I think it looks better than the original with its new visual effects. The Windows 8 version adds 24 new levels, taking the total to over 100.

Skulls of the Shogun
Developer: 17 Bit Studios

This amusing/weird strategy game just dropped for Xbox 360, so if you're playing it, this Windows 8 version would make a perfect companion version with its cross-platform saves and resumes. Speaking of cross-platform, asynchronous play is supported for this game across Xbox 360, Windows Phone and Windows 8.

As we said in our review, this is a solid SRPG where you'll play as an undead samurai, commanding an undead army for revenge's sake. This game does away with your standard tactical grid, using circle-of-movement fields instead. For the tablet version, it's nice to poke at and drag units over using a controller. I like this portable, easy controlling version a lot.

Hydro Thunder Hurricane
Developer: Vector Unit

HYDRO THUNDER! While a new version of this water racing franchise will never fully compare to the loud, crotch-vibrating original arcade cabinet, hitting the waves is always a good time. Hydro Thunder Hurricane looks respectably nice on Windows 8, but the gameplay experience feels more like a mobile game and less like the splashy, tight turning console one I loved so much.

Developer: Southend Interactive

This cute game had my face buried into the tablet most despite having played it before. The puzzle action it offers is just as cute as it was on Xbox Live, but it somehow comes off as more impressive on a tablet. The touch control scheme is sufficient, but I found myself longing for buttons and a stick after a bit. 

The "+" in the title means that the Windows 8 version adds new levels, chapters and cubes.

Pinball FX 2 
Developer: Zen Studios

The tablet version of Zen Studios' XBLA hit game looks really great on the small(er) screen. And with the tablet turned sideways, it's like carrying around a little portable pinball machine. This version also fully supports all leaderboards, and a four-player/one device multiplayer option is now available. They're working on more tables for the Windows 8 version, too. 

Developer: HitPoint Studios

The find-the-hidden-thing graphical adventure type play of Adera didn't speak to me, but it's really the perfect kind of game for a touchscreen device, and I could see fans of that type having a good time with it. It sure looked great running on this Asus Vivo. 

The game's chapters come by way of episodic releases, and cloud save/resume is available across Windows 8 and Windows Phone devices. A nifty spectator mode lets other Windows users watch in and provide hints for the game's puzzles.

The Gunstringer: Dead Man Running 
Developer: Other Ocean Interactive

This runner moves from Kinect to Windows 8, adding touchscreen and tilt controls for tablets, or mouse and keyboard for bigger rigs. I'll tip my cowboy hat the game for its presentation and use of skeleton outlaws, but gameplay is clunky and very mobile-ish, taking some of the fun out of it.

Reckless Racing Ultimate
Developer: Pixelbite

Mobile top-down racing game Reckless Racing HD gets an upgrade for Windows 8, adding leaderboards, multiplayer invite support and more. From a gameplay standpoint, this plays exactly like it would on a mobile phone, so don't go in expecting a console-like experience.

Other launch titles:

4 Elements II Special Edition -- Your tween girl is going to love this item hunt game
Tap Tiles -- Mahjongg, but in 3D space, with cubes that you can rotate
Toy Soliders Cold War -- Army men come to life in a strategy game

Windows 8 Microsoft casual launch titles:

Microsoft Mahjong -- Supports cloud saves, leaderboards and achievements
Microsoft Minesweeper -- Adds touch control and a new Adventure mode
Microsoft Solitaire Collection -- The loneliest game ever
Wordament -- Popular Windows Phone competitive word search tournament


Photo Gallery: (10 images)
Click to zoom - browse by swipe, or use arrow keys

Dale North, Former Dtoid EIC
 Follow Blog + disclosure DaleNorth Tips
I am Destructoid's Editor-In-Chief. I love corgis. I make music. more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

Dr Mel avatarDr Mel
I don't think it will happen, but if the NX is turns out to be a VR device, I will be the saddest boy in the milky way.
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
There's something so fucking delicious about a toasted Hawaiian roll, smoked ham, Swiss, some spinach and a dollop of mustard. #FatKidPosts
Still in work clothes.
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
Welp, wrote up a blog for that there bloggers wanted. Its me bitching about Bioshock Infinite! Again! Yay!!!!!!
Sr Churros avatarSr Churros
Just finished watching The Phantom Menace. Yeah, Jar Jar is as bad as people say. Baby Vader is so cute and also kicks some serious ass. One of the best lightsaber battles of the series, if not the best one. It was pretty neat!
Roxas1359 avatarRoxas1359
Can't decide where I should upload my latest project. Either on my YouTube Channel or on Game Anyone. On the one hand YouTube gets more exposure, but Game Anyone is where some of my more popular walkthroughs are. The game is 3D Land if anyone is wondering
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
Thanksgiving dinner for days!
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
Anyone know if the Bethesda games on sale on Amazon for a certain amount of time, or through Monday?
TysonOfTime avatarTysonOfTime
In light of the fact that Xenoblade Chronicles X is fast approaching, I suggest we start planning out a Destructoid Squad! NNID is TysonOfTime. From what I've heard, it doesn't appear Squads are region locked (except for Japan), so everyone's welcome!
Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
Typing of the Dead > all other typing games.
Lawman avatarLawman
Listening to this on a Tall Oaks level of RE: Revelations 2's Raid Mode is entrancing, for some reason.
EdgyDude avatarEdgyDude
Need a reason to support Indivisible? Shantae is in it!. Back it or spread the word, every bit of help counts.
KeithTheGeek avatarKeithTheGeek
Sometimes I miss how hilariously janky Brawl was, and I still have a lot of fun playing it. Not sure if I could ever take it seriously as a competitive game, but I want to enter at least one Brawl tournament in the future. You know, if I can find one.
KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
I love how on a slow news day I can always turn to Qposts for something else to read and think about. Keep up the mojo fellas!
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
I finally caved in to those sweet deals, got Shantae and The Pirate's Curse, Downwell and Super House of Dead Ninjas :)
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
I hope that Prototype runs better on my dad's old laptop than it does on my AMD gaming rig. Some badly coded games run like ass on AMD cards.
LinkSlayer64 avatarLinkSlayer64
Please spare me from issues in the process of publishing my blog! Especially since I modified CSS to unnecessarily pseudo-crop an image, and make it so some images float next to text, and make it look decent on mobile. I'm a frickin' nerd, love it.
Nathan D avatarNathan D
The night brims with defiled scum, and is permeated by their rotten stench. Just think, now you're all set to hunt and kill to your heart's content! #FashionBorne [img][/img]
MeanderBot avatarMeanderBot
Two more days to get in on the unofficial Christmas Card! [Url][/URL]
Solar Pony Django avatarSolar Pony Django has got a mystery sale on T Shirts and Tank Tops atm, $5 for each. Only catch is they're random. But I've had some good luck, got a Captain Falcon one before, Zombies ate my Neighbors and a Persona 4 X Earthbound crossover.
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -