It’s now less than a month until Gamescom 2023 starts in Cologne, Germany on August 23. The huge live public gaming event had over 235,000 attendees in 2022. Microsoft’s Xbox team has already stated it will be setting up “our biggest ever booth to show off the incredible games we have coming to you.”

Now a new report claims that it knows at least some of the playable demos that Microsoft will be showing at the Gamescom booth. Inside Gaming stated, via unnamed sources, that one of those games will be S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl, the long-awaited sequel to the post-apocalypse first-person game from developer GSC Game World.

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 has been in development at the Ukraine-based developer for some time, and it got paused in 2022 due to the Russian invasion of that country. The team has also been dealing with hacker attacks on its systems that have leaked information and images from the game.

If this new report is indeed accurate, the development of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 might be far enough along so that both GSC GameWorld and Microsoft feel confident to let the people visiting their Gamescom 2023 booth get their hands on a playable demo.

The same report also claims the Xbox Gamescom booth will have playable demos of Microsoft’s racing sim revamp Forza Motorsport, which is due for release in October. Another game that was mentioned in the article as being playable is Towerborne.

First announced during the Xbox Game Showcase in June, this fantasy-themed action-adventure game from developer Stoic. It’s due for release in 2024.

Since we are less than a month away from the start of Gamescom, we can also expect to hear some more teases and rumors, both from Microsoft and also from other gaming companies, about what could be revealed at the event. Stay tuned as we will offer continuing coverage of the event in the weeks ahead.


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