As part of the launch activity for the forthcoming Windows Phone 8 OS, with handsets rolling out across North America and Europe over the next few weeks, Microsoft Studios has unveiled a selection of new Xbox LIVE enabled videogames coming to the mobile format. Along with the big hitters Angry Birds Star Wars and Cut the Rope, a number of smaller titles have also been revealed.
Among the new titles revealed were Gameloft’s Asphalt 7: Heat, Electronic Arts’ Connect 4, Fairway Solitaire, Ice Age Village and, perhaps most interestingly, Disney’s Where’s My Water. Confirmed to feature cross-platform functionality across all metro based devices (Windows Phone, Surface, Xbox 360 and Windows 8 PCs) Disney’s Where’s My Water could become the first Xbox LIVE enabled title to offer direct play between multiple Microsoft platforms, an honour that was originally to be reserved for SEGA’s worryingly absent Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II.
Additionally, along with the aforementioned Angry Birds Star Wars, Windows Phone will soon receive two further Angry Birds titles: Angry Birds Space and Angry Birds Roost, the latter of which does not carry Xbox branding currently suggesting that it may not benefit from the same features as the other new titles and the original Angry Birds already available for the mobile platform.
Several other titles were also confirmed for the format, though it’s not yet known whether these will feature Xbox LIVE functionality. Big names such as Temple Run, Words with Friends and Draw Something have been confirmed for release on Windows Phone, and surely Microsoft Studios will be aware that not adorning these titles with the Xbox branding will be a missed opportunity. Given the cross platform compatibility however, one has to wonder how such obstacles will be overcome if developers wish to utilise the full catalogue of benefits offered by the implementation of the Xbox LIVE service.
No release date or prices have yet been announced for any of the above titles, though the suggestion that the Xbox LIVE enabled marketplace may return to seeing multiple releases each week was met with a positive response. Electronic Theatre will keep you updated with all the latest details on the Windows Phone’s Xbox LIVE service.