Officially revealed during Microsoft’s press conference at E3 2016, Dead Rising 4 features returning lead character Frank West as he heads back to his home town. The Dead Rising 4 announcement trailer at also highlighted the game’s holiday setting, with players set to take on zombies in a shopping mall during Christmas time. Weapons available in the game include candy cane-firing crossbows, a minigun, and a jeep that is able to launch zombies.
However, despite the game being announced for Xbox One and Windows 10, Microsoft has now revealed that Dead Rising 4 is a timed exclusive, suggesting that it may come to non-Microsoft platforms in future. In a statement, the company explained that “Dead Rising 4′ on Xbox One is developed by Capcom and will be published in partnership with Microsoft. Fans will be able to play ‘Dead Rising 4′ first on Xbox One and Windows 10 PC this December.”
Microsoft added that “it will remain a Windows 10 exclusive for the first 90 days and console exclusive on Xbox One for one year,” also saying that it is “thrilled” to partner with (Dead Rising 4 developer) Capcom to bring the company’s “ambitious vision” to life. This essentially means that the zombie slaying title could potentially come to Steam in early 2017 and it could be released on PS4 by the time the holidays roll around.
On the one hand, Microsoft may not lose much money because of Dead Rising 4‘s timed exclusivity. While a small amount of gamers may hold out for the PS4 or non-Windows 10 version of the game, as the million-selling success of Rise of the Tomb Raider showed (the new Lara Croft adventure was a timed exclusive to Xbox 360 and Xbox One), timed exclusivity does not necessarily mean that a game’s sales will suffer. Plus, with the Xbox One S launching in August, potentially increasing the Xbox One playerbase, Dead Rising 4 may have a lot more potential players come the end of this year.
But on the other hand, Microsoft has already been criticized for the timed exclusive announcement due to past comments by Xbox boss Phil Spencer. Just 10 months ago, Spencer revealed that Microsoft’s long-term strategy is to invest more in first-party titles as opposed to third-party deals. Spencer also slammed Sony for its third-party deal making, saying that the rival company doesn’t “gobble the deals up. They buy them.”
Dead Rising 4 will be available on December 6 for PC and Xbox One.