Microsoft has signed a landmark deal to bundle a "major third-party title" free with every Xbox One launch system across Europe, CVG understands.
Each new Xbox One console sold in Europe (and perhaps the US) will come free with the title that alone will retail at £40 or higher, in an attempt to kick away at the £80 premium Xbox One has over Sony's PS4.
A source with knowledge of the deal, who wished to remain anonymous, said the developments were part of Microsoft's goal of adding value to its system without lowering its £429 release day price.
The specific game set to be bundled with Xbox One launch systems was not named, although it's understood to be a "major" Christmas release.
Striking a deal of this magnitude is thought to have cost Microsoft further millions in budget as it prepares to launch its next-generation Xbox around the world.
This major game, the source said, is the "unique Xbox One exclusive" that Microsoft executive Phil Spencer said was being saved for a Gamescom announcement.
Just to clarify, "unique exclusive" as in exclusive bundle, or exclusive deal, or exclusively free. Not an outright exclusive game, as far as I know.
Apologies if I hadn't made that clear enough in the article. Am traveling but will tweak text when possible
This GAFfer has been visiting the Gamescom building the last couple of days, and this is what he reported in one of his posts:
No, all major publishers are constructing since several days/last week. (except of nintendo which started yesterday). Hanging stuff from the ceiling will be done first because you can hardly reach the suspension points later on. Playstation, EA and Acitivision are most advanced but also seem to have the most ambitious constructions.
And i do not know where to put it because not related to playstation but there is for sure something going on with EA/MS and FIFA. They are not only located directly beside of each other but EA(!) has a huge XBONE banner on their booth and are showing FIFA banner only with XBONE on it. And the text on them is hidden with black fabric.
Edit 1: MCV seems to go against the "unique Xbox One exclusive" as stated by CVG and says it is FIFA 14:
Microsoft has turned to Electronic Arts in a bid to spark interest in Xbox One, MCV has been told.
At Gamescom tomorrow, an Xbox One/FIFA 14 tie-up will be announced in a bid to win over European gamers, according to two senior games industry sources. The bundle will still retail for £429.99, the same price as the Xbox One base unit.
The move is designed to make Xbox One appear better value for money as it currently retails for £80 more than PS4. FIFA 14 has an RRP of £54.99.
We checked with EA and Microsoft, who both said: 'no comment'. But we should know all the details tomorrow morning.