Microsoft’s unveiling of the brand new Xbox One a few weeks ago was met with a divisive response. Although the hardware wowed audiences, shockingly little footage of video games was shown.Microsoft brought their A-game to this year’s E3 conference.In contrast, Microsoft brought their A-game to this year’s E3 conference. The annual videogame showcase invites developers and publishers to show off their new games and hardware, and Microsoft showed no less than 20 titles, many of which will be exclusive to their brand new box.
Debuting this November for $500, the Xbox One finally divulged that it is, in fact, a gaming system above all else. Extensive demos were shown of the new Metal Gear Solid, which now brings its distinctive Japanese take on espionage to an open world setting. Killer Instinct—a previously exclusive Nintendo franchise—was demoed along with a new video sharing function not too dissimilar to Sony’s Playstation 4 video sharing ability.Microsoft stole a little more steam from its competitors.Microsoft stole a little more steam from its competitors, as long-time Playstation developer Insomniac showed a strikingly colorful, terrifically imaginative new franchise where zany action meets open world traversal. Capcom, too, was on hand to show off the Xbox One exclusive Dead Rising 3. The next iteration of Capcom’s open-world zombie action game brings a darker tone and an expansive city. A new emphasis on climbing and mantling was demonstrated to avoid the teeming hordes of undead. The scale of the demo was impressive and featured a staggering number of on-screen zombies.
Crimson Dragon, previously announced as an Xbox 360 exclusive, has ditched the current Xbox 360 version and is now a dazzling, dragon-riding exclusive for Xbox One.
Developer Capybara showed off their indie-adventure game Below, which looks to draw inspiration from Sony’s standout 2012 adventure, Journey.A stunning technical gaffe did dampen the excitement for a moment. A stunning technical gaffe did dampen the excitement for a moment. The reveal of Crimson Dragon was curiously lacking audio, and left viewers confused. Additionally, the world-premiere gameplay footage from Battlefield 4 failed to start up at all and left a very bewildered developer on stage to awkwardly shuffle around, wondering if his demo would start at all. The demo did start, though only after the presenter almost left the stage in shame. Poor guy.
Oddly, a new model of the Xbox 360 was revealed, and will appear at retailers soon. With a new generation of video game hardware just a few months away, who is the target audience for the soon-to-be extinct Xbox 360?Glimpses of the future of Xbox One were shown.Glimpses of the future of Xbox One were shown. An ambiguous figure, revealed to be Halo’s Master Chief, faces off against a titanic robot in a barren desert. Project Spark brings ambitious world and game creation tools (think Sony’s Little Big Planet series) to the Xbox One platform. Additionally, German developers Crytek showed their demo of Ryse, a gladiatorial action game, which has also switched hardware and is now a Xbox One game.
The long awaited debut of Titanfall from Respawn Entertainment looked radical and fun. Respawn is a new developer formed from ex-Infinity Ward members, the original creators of Call of Duty, and, obviously, expectations for their new title are sky-high. Titanfall, which comes exclusively to Xbox One and Xbox 360, brings sci-fi shooting and giant mechanical robots to your living room. (Note: The 360 version is not developed by Respawn, unlike the Xbox One version).
Noticeably, the titles displayed shared some interesting gameplay mechanics. Like the current generation’s ubiquitous “cover” mechanic that can be found in most action games, a new emphasis on mantling and wall running seems like the new gameplay mechanic de jure. Environmental interaction looks to be a new focus for this upcoming generation.
If any critique could be leveled at Microsoft, it could be that their tried-and-true focus on first person shooters caters to a very specific Western market. In addition to the already announced Call of Duty exclusive content, Battlefield 4 will also have timed-exclusivity for multiplayer content on Xbox One. Certainly, Microsoft is cementing their reign in a niche they already dominate. It will be interesting to see Sony and Nintendo’s rebuttals in the upcoming days.