Xbox Developer_Direct coming on January 18, with studios including MachineGames, Ninja Theory, and Obsidian discussing Indiana Jones, Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2, Avowed, and more

Xbox Developer Direct January 2024
(Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft is holding another Xbox Developer_Direct later this month. 
  • Introduced back in 2023, the Developer_Direct format is a presentation style where Xbox studios have team members talk about upcoming games. 
  • For this upcoming Direct, players can expect to hear from MachineGames, Ninja Theory, Obsidian Entertainment, and others about Indiana Jones, Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2, Avowed, and more. 
  • The Xbox Developer_Direct will be held on Jan. 18, 2024 at 3:00 p.m. ET.

The year is just beginning, but we've already got our first gaming showcase of sorts to look forward to. 

Microsoft shared on Tuesday (via Xbox Wire) that an Xbox Developer_Direct presentation is coming later in the month. Players can expect updates on several games, including Indiana Jones from MachineGames, Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2 from Ninja Theory, Avowed from Obsidian Entertainment, and Ara: History Untold from Oxide. The Direct will be held on Jan. 18, 2024 at 3:00 p.m. ET, and is focused entirely on first-party games. 

Microsoft notes that while it finalized the acquisition of Activision Blizzard last year, fans shouldn't expect to hear from those teams at this event, but instead at future events later in the year. 

What can you expect from an Xbox Developer_Direct?

First introduced in 2023, the Xbox Developer_Direct is a format that is focused on allowing the developers who work on games to talk about them, interspersing gameplay footage with examinations from the people behind first-party projects at Xbox Game Studios and Bethesda Softworks. 

This means you shouldn't expect nonstop bombardments of trailers, but instead, a look at games as presented by the people who make them, with no overarching narration or presentation host.

The first-ever Xbox Developer_Direct was held on Jan. 25, 2023, with a look at some then-upcoming games like The Elder Scrolls Online: Necrom, Forza Motorsport, Redfall, and Minecraft Legends, as well as containing the surprise announcement of Tango Gameworks' shadow drop hit, Hi-Fi Rush. Another Direct came a few months later on the tail end of the Xbox Games Showcase, with Bethesda Game Studios taking time to discuss the different systems of Starfield

Analysis: An exciting tradition for kicking off the year

I'm really looking forward to this show. Xbox has a number of games that are slated to launch in 2024, but we need some release dates, so hopefully we get them here. Certainly, I'm hungry to dive into Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2, it just looks gorgeous every time we see it. We have seen it before though, whereas the inclusion of Indiana Jones from MachineGames is an exciting wrinkle. 

What will the gameplay look like? Who is Indy's performance actor? What kind of priceless cultural relics will we be "saving?" And what kind of fun things can you do with a whip when Nazis are causing problems like they always do? 

I'm also happy this is coming around the same time as the first Xbox Developer_Direct. With how large the Xbox first-party organization has grown, I certainly wouldn't mind this becoming an annual tradition, with different teams taking time to go over what's coming out that year and saving further-off announcements and reveals for the summer showcase or other venues like the Game Awards. 

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.