Microsoft E3 2013 Conference Review

MikeJ's picture
Tue, 06/11/2013 - 05:42 -- MikeJ

Day 4 @ E3 for the Microsoft Xbox One
In a rather disappointing bit of news, Microsoft have confirmed that Xbox One will only be available in 21 countries at launch. Even importers will be restricted - because the console can only be played if you connect to the internet once every 24 hours, if the system detects that you are not in one of the 21 allotted countries then your system will cease to operate.

A list of the 21 countries:

- Australia
- Austria
- Belgium
- Brazil
- Canada
- Denmark
- Finland
- France
- Germany
- Holland
- Ireland
- Italy
- Mexico
E3 2013 Xbox One- New Zealand
- Norway
- Russia
- Spain
- Sweden
- Switzerland
- UK

Sorry Portugal, Greece, Columbia, Poland, Bulgaria and the rest of the world. You're going to have a wait a little while longer.

Day 3 @ E3 for the Microsoft Xbox One
- Microsoft have announced that there will be a limited run of 'day one' special edition consoles which come with exclusive achievements. The console also comes in an original box and the controller is branded with 'day one'.

- Microsoft has issued the following with regards to other gamers playing your games:

'Your friends and family, your guests and acquaintances get unlimited access to all of your games. Anyone can play your games on your console--regardless of whether you are logged in or their relationship to you." The company added that “Xbox One is designed so game publishers can enable you to give your disc-based games to your friends. There are no fees charged as part of these transfers. There are two requirements: you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once.'

This is something which doesn't bode well for trading, lending and gifting.

Day 2 @ E3 for the Microsoft Xbox One
- It looks like PS4 fans are set to be a little disappointed as it's been announced that both Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts 3 won't be Sony exclusives, so the Microsoft faithful will still get to play these great looking titles.

- During E3, Microsoft have confirmed a number of details regarding the Xbox One controller. The not-too-dissimilar-from-the-360 controller will use reflective and LED technology to communicate with the console, making syncing easy. Kinect can also identify which user is holding which controller (therefore determining player 1 and 2 etc.

As we know, there will also be no bulky battery pack, and the controller knows when to conserve its power when not in use (ie, bathroom breaks).

We will also have improved audio when using a headset, making it so much clearer to hear small boys insulting out mothers.

Microsoft E3 2013 Conference ReviewDay 1 @ E3 for the Microsoft Xbox One
Microsoft had a lot to answer for. Gamers were not happy following the unveiling event, where only two games were mentioned. Yes, Quantum Break and Call of Duty: Ghosts appear to be key titles that Microsoft are proud of, but it just wasn’t enough. It was all TV this, and sports that.

We wanted games. Lots and lots of games.

Luckily E3 arrived and brought the gamers interest back to Xbox One. There was not a single mention of the word TV, and thankfully Kinect took a relative back seat. Microsoft promised us games, and they certainly did deliver a lot of games.

There was a plethora of games announced during the 90 minute conference, all receiving feedback ranging from ‘yeah, not bad’ to ‘OH EM GEE that is AMAZEBALLS.’

Only a little more professional. Ish.

The conference opened with Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, which did look like the love child of Metal Gear Solid and Red Dead Redemption. The trailer lasted for almost 6 minutes and was a rather spluttering start to what later became a geyser. On saying that, the footage looked gorgeous, and no doubt gamers will be clawing at the walls to get their hands on another addition to the series.

And then Microsoft decided to talk about the 360. A(nother) new, smaller console which is on release as of today and will gift Xbox Live Gold Members with two free games each month – the first months being Halo 3 and Assassins Creed 2. A decent incentive, but most people who want an Xbox 360 will no doubt already own one.

Following this, we were introduced to the Xbox 360 version of World of Tanks, which sounds more like a museum than a video game. The game looks fun, and like Minecraft (which incidentally will be given a slight reboot for Xbox One) it will be released on Xbox Live Arcade during the summer of 2013. The game was given a rather indifferent response, but it’s something gamers will no doubt snap up during the quieter summer gaming season.

Ryse was finally given some more air time after being shown during E3 in 2011. What was originally meant to be a Kinect title, now appears to be laden with quick time events as the only gameplay mechanic. I’m sure more info will come out regarding Ryse as the month’s progress, but the title looks uninspired. I hope there is more to it, as interactive cut scenes a game do not make. The trailer was also long and drawn out, which shows that at least Microsoft are hopeful that their new IP will gain a few fans.

Speaking of new IP’s, we were then shown Sunset Overdrive, a tongue in cheek FPS/MMO whereby players must defend themselves against hordes of aliens. The game looks fun, with a stylised, cartoony feel. It features an open world and using the cloud the world can be constantly updated. What the story and premise of Sunset Overdrive is exactly is not yet known, but it looks fun in a Gotham City Imposters kind of way.

Next was the inevitable. Forza 5. Without doubt the petrol heads out there will be delighted with what was shown at E3, but the driving game hater in me just saw shiny cars going fast in pretty environments. The most impressive aspect of the presentation for me was when a car seemingly rose out from beneath the stage and then magically vanished moments later. Microsoft were very keen to talk about the games AI and how it constantly learns and changes, which should lead to a more realistic experience. The crowd welcomed Forza 5 with open arms, but I do struggle to get excited when it comes to realistic racers. Give me Sonic All Star Racing over Forza any day.

After the bizarre mish mash trailer from the unveiling event, I was keen to see more on Quantum Break, and I was grateful when a new trailer ran. Gone were the live action sections, replaced by an impressive time manipulation sequence, but what it did do is simply raise more questions. Microsoft are being very tight lipped about Quantum Break, which just makes me want to know more. Right now. Well played, Microsoft.

Next up was Spark, a Little Big Planet meets Pikmin-esque adventure game where you can manipulate the world around you using both on screen menu’s and smart glass technology. The demo was impressive, if not confusing, but the gamers appeared to be having a hoot on stage. I’m looking forward to finding out more about this game and seeing if it delivers on the varied gameplay it promises.

Dead Rising 3! That’s what won me over. I love Dead Rising, so to have a launch title be an installment in one of my favorite series is ok with me. Thankfully we got to see a lot of gameplay during the conference, and it appears to contain all the aspects which fans of the series enjoy. Some could argue that the game does in fact look a lot more ‘serious’ than its predecessors – an argument quashed the moment the main character threw his sledge hammer saw and obliterated a zombie. The game looks fun, and will no doubt be the first game I play when I turn on my Xbox One.

I must admit that I have never played any of the Witcher games, but Witcher 3: Wild Hunt looks fun, if not a little ‘oh… this again.’ It didn’t draw me in quite as much as the other featured games did – in fact, I almost forgot to include it in this article. Woops. That being said, my Twitter feed did perform a minor dance routine at the news, so the franchise obviously has a lot of fans. Who knows, maybe I will be turned yet?

The fan of Schadenfreude inside me did get a giggle out of the ‘will it, won’t it’ opening of the Battlefield 4 demo. I thought at one point David Silverman was going to just have a chat with the audience, but after some umming and ahhing, the Battlefield 4 trailer lit up the stage. And it was worth the wait. The audience didn’t need to be encouraged to cheer – there was a roar. The game looks stunning, and the EA conference which followed showed utterly beautiful footage which, for the first time in a long time, has piqued my interest in a war FPS.

Below was greeted with an unsure response, but it looks like it could make an original and engaging Xbox Live Arcade title – much like Limbo. The trailer didn’t give much away, but it looks like an interesting call back to games such as A Link to the Past and Alundra.

And then… who is this mysterious stranger beneath the cloak? He has a dog tag, but surely it couldn’t be… Master Chief! Announced as nothing more than just ‘Halo’, we at least now know that we will get a new Halo game at some point within the next 18 months. The trailer was nice, but gave nothing away, and I’m going to put this out there right now: It will be called Halo One. This is your fault, N64.

Last up was Titanfall, a Halo-esque FPS set in a future world of robots and explosions. Sure, it looks fun, but I’m not sure it’s show closing material. It may as well be a Halo game, and it would be if you stuck a few Spartans in there. Needless to say it looked pretty, but wasn’t different enough to gain my interest just yet. Perhaps, as time goes on and more information is released, the game will start to up its appeal by showing us something new.

I really should forget Killer Instinct, either. I was never a fan of the series back in its 16 bit days, and it doesn’t look as though that will change any time soon.

I sound like such a cynic don’t I?

Excitement surrounding Killer Instinct lessened after the conference, as it was announced that the game would be free to play with one character – you have to pay for the rest.

Umm, isn’t that called a demo?

Overall, the event was solid. The Battlefield 4 hiccup is taking center stage on the internet at the moment, but once that dies down and we see more footage of the announced games, I believe gamers will start to fall in love with the Xbox One. The new IP’s are certainly something to look out for, as are new installments to already established franchises. If you ask me, things went well. Very well.

Now all we have to do is wait until November. Curses!

Article by - Mike Jeavons
Insert Date: 6/11/2013

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Average: 3.5 (2 votes)


I dont know what everyone is fussing about, I think its a great system

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