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Bethesda's Indiana Jones Is Both First-Person And Third-Person

First announced in 2021, Bethesda’s big Indiana Jones game has been mostly off the radar since its initial teaser. But during Xbox’s January 18th Developer Direct, Xbox showed off the next digital Indy adventure—Indiana Jones and The Great Circle—via a new gameplay video while confirming it will launch later this year.

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MachineGames, the studio behind the award-winning and fantastic modern Wolfenstein games, is developing this latest Indy game. When first announced, Disney-owned Lucasfilm and publisher Bethesda confirmed that it will feature an original story and that Todd Howard will serve as executive producer on the project. “I’ve wanted to make an Indiana Jones game forever,” explained Todd Howard during the Xbox Direct. And according to him, MachineGames is the best studio to create Indiana Jones And The Great Circle.

Bethesda / Lucasfilm / Xbox

In the gameplay video, we see Indiana Jones buried in dirt, surrounded by Nazis, before somehow escaping and head-butting the lead baddie. Other clips show first-person and third-person gameplay of Indy exploring ancient tombs, solving mysterious puzzles, and even using his whip to cause a Nazi to do the classic Wilhelm scream. We also see Indy jumping from one plane to another during a massive aerial fight.

The game is set between Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Last Crusade. A strange man steals an artifact from a museum at night and leads Indy down a complex mystery that will take him around the world. During the course of the game, he teams up with an investigative reporter.

“Our game is about putting you in the shoes of an iconic hero,” said MachineGames design director Jens Andersson, “Since we are doing this mostly in first-person, you have the chance to truly become Indy.”

“First-person makes you part of this world – allowing you to explore and experience things more intimately. What will you do when you’re dropped into this adventure with your wits and your whip? The world of Indiana Jones is a world with mysteries around every corner, where you’re racing against the clock and outsmarting your enemies as you hunt down artifacts.”

However, as shown during the Direct, MachineGames will pull the camera out during certain moments, like when climbing around the outside of a building or during certain cutscenes, letting players see the iconic character in action.

The history of Xbox’s Indiana Jones game

Interestingly, when the game was first revealed in January 2021, Bethesda wasn’t owned by Microsoft, so it was going to be a multiplatform release. However, after Xbox bought up the Elder Scrolls publisher in March of that same year, the Indy game became an Xbox console exclusive, as explained by Howard in 2023 during the FTC v. Microsoft/Activision merger court case. Apparently, Disney had planned on the upcoming game being released on PlayStation, too. But the deal was amended after Xbox purchased Bethesda and all its developers and contracts.

A leaked Bethesda road map indicated that this new Indiana Jones game was originally scheduled to launch in 2022 alongside Starfield DLC. It’s 2024, so I probably don’t have to explain to you that, yeah, none of that happened. Chalk it up to games becoming harder and harder to make.

As with all other Xbox and Bethesda first-party games—like Starfield and Forza Motorsport—the new Indiana Jones game from MachineGames will be available on day one on Game Pass for both Xbox Series X/S and PC. For PlayStation owners, it is unlikely Indiana Jones And The Great Circle will appear on Sony’s PS5 anytime soon.

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