Windows Phone Wednesday: Microsoft reveals upcoming new Games hub features

Microsoft revealed upcoming Games hub features at Gamescon that show they are serious about gaming on Mango phones. 14 new Xbox LIVE titles were also revealed.

The Gamescon event is taking place over in Germany this week and Microsoft revealed several upcoming Xbox LIVE features along with 14 upcoming games, including the new release this week.

This week we see a new Breakout style game called IonBallEX that is available now for $2.99 in the Marketplace. I installed the trial and so far am really liking the graphics and gameplay so am likely to buy it soon.

The Xbox LIVE Deal of the Week is a classic game that I always thought was priced a bit high at $4.99. This week you can pick up Tetris for $2.99, which is a bit more in line of where I think this game should be priced.

According to Microsoft, these are some of the changes coming up in Mango:

  • Avatar Awardables: Like achievements, but wearable. Once unlocked, these items will automatically appear in your avatar closet and can be worn on your avatar’s sleeve as a badge of honor. Chickens Can’t Fly, a forthcoming Xbox LIVE release, will be among the first titles to feature them.
  • Game Add-ons: In the Xbox LIVE title Beards & Beaks," players can purchase extra mushrooms and other items from within the game using Microsoft Points. In the months ahead, keep your eyes out for more titles in Marketplace that let you buy in-game add-ons and downloadable content like extra weapons or levels.
  • Parental Controls: The next release of Windows Phone gives parents more control of what content their child can access on Windows Phone, including M-rated (Mature) games. The first M-rated Windows Phone title, Splinter Cell: Conviction, is scheduled to arrive in the Marketplace later this fall.
  • Fast Async: A new Xbox LIVE service coming this fall that improves gameplay for multiplayer, turn-by-turn (or asynchronous) Windows Phone games.

In addition, these are the 14 new Xbox LIVE games coming to Windows Phone:

  • Beards & Beaks: Cave Area
  • Bug Village
  • Burn the Rope
  • Chickens Can't Fly
  • Collapse
  • Gravity Guy
  • Farm Frenzy 2
  • Fight Game Rivals
  • IonBallEX (available now)
  • Kinectimals Mobile
  • Mush
  • Orbital
  • TextTwist2
  • Toy Soldiers Boot Camp

I'll be sure to give these a try and am looking forward to trying them out.