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Microsoft Xbox One at E3 2013

Xbox One News

Microsoft talked a lot of games; no shock there. This is E3, after all, and some people were pretty scared by the first announcement less than a month ago, which really didn’t focus on games at all. The big news though was that Xbox One is coming November 2013, for $499, US, 499 Euros, and 429 pounds in the UK.

Xbox Live & SmartGlass
They showed some features of the next generation SmartGlass, with features like starting a singleplayer game, setting up multiplayer, purchasing in-game add-ons and more from SmartGlass devices connected to the system. Ryse was used as an example, with in-game info populating in real-time on a tethered Surface tablet.

Some welcome news about Xbox Live changes came out, too.

  • Upload Studio for sharing gameplay videos via Twitch.tv, built into Xbox One.
  • No more 100 friends limit.
  • No more Microsoft Points, all real dollars.
  • Xbox Live Gold can be shared among family members.

Games

People disappointed that Microsoft failed to talk games at their keynote a few weeks back can rest assured that there are indeed a lot of games in the works, including a number of exclusives.

Indie Games

According to Microsoft’s Phil Harrison, “Nobody has been more committed to supporting independent game development than Xbox. We have helped more than 200 indie developers launch more than 400 games.” They showed a new Minecraft for Xbox One with bigger worlds and expanded multiplayer. Maybe an odd choice for a highlight as far as graphics go, but Minecraft is undeniably a BIG DEAL in the gaming scene.

Other games they brought up:

Ryse Son of Rome, reexperience the Roman Empire through the eyes of a soldier.

Killer Instinct, exclusive for Xbox One.

Sunset Overdrive from Insomniac, “a stylized open-world shooter where the experience can change every day.” “It’s not just an open world game, it’s a living world game.” Ironic since it seems to be a zombie parkour shooter.

forza_motorsport_5Forza Motorsport 5. “The new generation is more about poly count and texture resolution. We’ve transcended.”
They’ve introduced a horrible new word, “Drivatar.” It learns how you drive and drives like you against other people while you’re doing other things, earning you points. It’s the “end of AI.” Looks like a cool feature, but please, let’s make sure that terminology never catches on.

Below is a Rogue-like game from the creators of Superbrothers Sword and Sworcery. Top-down & 2D sidescrolling views of character exploring dungeons.

Remedy Entertainment’s Quantum Break. Exclusive to Xbox One.

Project Spark, which seems like a game development tool, though they talked about it as if it were a game too.  It features world-building using Project Glass from a touch tablet and by voice. Their demo involved building up a little rock to a giant rock creature thingie. (That’s a technical term, people.) Apparently Project Spark will be available for Windows 8 too.

Metal Gear Solid made a brief appearance at the start of the event. They showed Snake on a horse, but there was no sign of a box over the two of them. It’s an open-world game, which looks like a bit of a big deal.

Dead Rising 3 with another new hero and set in Los Perdidos, California. A bit less campy-seeming, though combat is still funny, and you can dynamically combine weapons. No load times in the game.
Dead Rising 3 employs SmartGlass to give players “unique ways to deal with the zombie outbreak.” Artillery support shown off. Xbox One exclusive this holiday season.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt features optional Kinect voice controls, and some SmartGlass functionality mirroring in-game functionality. They describe it as a multi-region open world game.

Battlefield 4 runs on the Frostbite 3 engine and will recieve the Second Assault multiplayer map-pack DLC for Xbox One, exclusive at launch.

New Halo in 2014 from 343 Industries. Supports Xbox One’s cloud processing, runs at 60fps.

Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall, another Xbox One exclusive. It’s a first person multiplayer shooter, and also supports Xbox One cloud computing.

New 360 News

Interestingly, there was a bit of 360 news before they moved on to the Xbox One today.

They’re introducing a new 360, a slimmer model with better power consumption, available today, with or without Kinect. The 360 will be updated with the modern look and feel of Xbox One, and there are apparently hundreds of new games being developed for the 360 that will be coming out over the next few years. Microsoft will be giving away two free games per month for XBox gold members. First two are Assassin’s Creed 2 and Halo 3. They also announced an upcoming Xbox 360 version of World of Tanks and Max: The Curse of Brotherhood, a Pixar-esque platformer, and Dark Souls II.

So what are your thoughts on Microsoft’s announcements? Were you upset a few weeks ago? Have you seen anything now that makes you feel better about the One? Let us know in the comments!

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About The Author

Avatar of Gord McLeod
Blogger & Editor at Large
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I'm a writer and game designer with a background covering everything from IT work to programming to the graphic arts. I'm intensely interested in everything game, gadget and science related. Find me at Fiction Improbable, my fiction writing website, at @gordmcleod on Twitter, and at my too.

2 Responses

  1. Carlos Lee

    “Xbox Live Gold can be shared among family members.” only on xbox one or included X360?