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News: Microsoft’s E3 conference roundup

In case you’ve been living under a rock these past few days, this week played host to E3 2013; the biggest event of the gaming year. Microsoft kicked things off on Monday with their annual press conference, so I thought it appropriate to start with them. Roundups of the other press conferences (there were five in total) will follow this one, hopefully quite soon! Anyway, let’s crack on!

With what seemed like the world and it’s mother hunting for their blood following the Xbox One’s reveal back in May, Microsoft were under a lot of pressure to deliver at their conference. So, did they? Here’s a brief summary of what was shown:

-Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain shown

Microsoft kicked off the conference with a short section of gameplay and then a (good, if not slightly odd) trailer for MGSV. The game looked great and it was a nice, and unexpected, way to open the show.

Here’s a link to the reveal.

-New Xbox 360 revealed

MS then took everyone by surprise (well I assume everyone, I certainly was) by revealing a new model of the Xbox 360. It looks a bit more like the Xbox One now; I can see some parents buying this instead of the XBone by mistake. Poor kids.

 

-Xbox Live Gold Members to  receive free games

In what appears to be a response to Sony’s PlayStation Plus scheme, MS announced that Gold Members will now receive two free games each month up to the XBone’s release in November. They then announced that the two games this month will be Halo 3 and Assassin’s Creed 2, but compare that with PS Plus’ offerings this month (which includes Deus Ex and Saints Row: The Third) and it doesn’t seem like that great a deal. I mean, how many people own a 360 and don’t have/did have those games already? I’m gonna guess not that many.

-World Of Tanks for Xbox 360 announced

MS then announced that the popular PC MMO World Of Tanks will be available to download for free this summer. Here’s a link to the reveal.

-Ryse gameplay shown

Crytek took to the stage to show a section of gameplay from their new XBone title, Ryse: Son Of Rome. The game was initially announced during MS’s E3 conference back in 2011 as a Kinect title, it now appears to be an ancient Rome themed hack and slash. The game looked great visually but the combat appeared rather QTE-heavy, although after getting hands-on with the game, Videogamer claim this may not be the case.

Here’s the demo.

-Killer Instinct revealed

A free-to-play remake of the 90′s fighting game Killer Instinct was revealed as a XBone exclusive. It has since been clarified that the game will be free to download but only one fighter will be available, players can then purchase additional characters if they wish. An interesting model, similar to that of free-to-play MOBA League Of Legends (which I am addict of incidently), but I’m unsure how successful it will be on the Xbox. We shall see.

Here’s some gamplay.

-Sunset Overdrive revealed

An open-world shooter called Sunset Overdrive was the next of the XBone’s exclusives to be shown off. It comes, surprisingly, from Insomniac, creators of the Rachet and Clank and Resistance series, who before now have been a PlayStation only developer.

Here’s the reveal.

-Forza 5 shown

A trailer followed by a short section of gameplay was shown. Forza looks as good as ever and will now feature a system called Drivatar, which races for you while you’re away. ‘We can race together, even when we’re not together’.

Here’s the trailer.

-More of Quantum Break shown

Sam Lake took to MS’s stage for the second time within a matter of weeks to show off a new scene from Remedy’s new game Quantum Break, which was first revealed at the XBone reveal.

Here’s the demo.

-D4 revealed

A new game from Swery65, creator of Deadly Premonition, D4 was revealed. It will be an episodic title exclusive to the XBone.

Here’s the trailer

-Project Spark revealed

Porject Spark was the next exclusive to be revealed. Following in the footsteps of Media Molecule’s Little Big Planet games, Project Spark will allow the player to create and share their own games. Use of the Kinect voice sensor to develop your game was shown.

Here’s the demo.

-Twitch Deal announced

A deal between MS and Twitch was announced. Using the XBone’s video editing features players will be able to upload/stream their videos to Twitch.

-Dead Rising 3 announced

The next installment in the crazy, zombie smacking series was shown off and will be exclusive to XBone. Some people expressed concerns that the demo suggested that the wackiness of the previous games has been put aside. Again, after having hands on time with the game, Videogamer think that while the game is taking a more serious tone, it still retains a lot of the silliness that fans of the series are so fond of.

Another change to the series is the lack of a time limit and save restrictions which have featured so heavily in the previous Dead Rising games. Capcom have confirmed that this is the case, stating that they wanted to make a more approachable game, but that a ‘Nightmare Mode’ has been included which will have these and will be available from the get go.

Here’s the trailer.

-New Halo revealed

A stunning, mysterious trailer was shown which then turned out to be a new Halo game. Is this Halo 5?

Here’s the trailer.

-TitanFall shown

Titanfall, the first game from ex-Infinity Ward developers Respawn entertainment was shown off in an extended section of gameplay  towards the end of the trailer. The demo showed multiplayer gameplay and involved jetpacks, wall-climbing and mechs. Think Call Of Duty in space and you won’t be too far off.

Here’s the demo.

-The Witcher 3 shown

An impressive trailer for the third game in the Witcher series, and the first to appear on consoles, was shown. This will also be the first time the series makes the transition from linear to open world gameplay. It looks great.

Here’s the trailer

-Xbox One Priced and Dated

The XBone will be released across 21 countries this November at the princely sum of £429. While this comes with a 500GB hard drive  and a Kinect 2, it seems a bit pricey. Particularly after Sony revealed at their conference that the PS4 will lauch at just £349.

 

So hopefully that’s just about everything that happened at the conference, but how did Microsoft do? Personally, I think it was a very good conference. After the TV-filled XBone reveal,  it needed to be all about the games and it certainly was. They dove straight in with the MGSV reveal and from there on it was pretty much game after game after game, with barely a mention of TV. Yes, some further clarification of the issues surrounding the XBone concerning DRM and always online would have been good; but perhaps they were wise not mention it.

Some roundups of the other conferences will hopefully go up over the next few days, so please check back soon if you found this helpful.

 

Source: Videogamer, IGN

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20. Studying Physics with Philosophy at the University Of York. Lover of League Of Legends, lasagne and skinny jeans. Not necessarily in that order.

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