Microsoft’s Xbox One E3 Event is almost underway and I’ll be taking you through it, blow-by-blow. This will be Microsoft’s first chance to show the world that they have the ability to take Xbox One and the Xbox brand as a whole into the next year and how they approach consumers this time round will be very crucial to their public profile. Lets see how Phil Spencer handles this one.
8:01 And that’s it! Next up is EA.
8:00 And Dance Central. Which I didn’t note down because it’s kind of obvious by now that there is a new DC every year.
7:59 Holy damn, I just realised that they’ve been punting the Xbox One WITHOUT Kinect this whole time. Only the indie games and Disney Fantasia had Kinect integration anywhere.
7:59 Spencer – Today we showed you 90 minutes of just games.
7:58 Aaaaaand it is a new Crackdown. Awesome.
7:55 Now there’s a new game on screen. Matt’s trying to guess the name.
7:54 Its called Scalebound and there was no gameplay, just trailer. Too quick for my fingers.
7:53 Hideki Kamaya of Platinum Games – “Prepare to see action on a whole other scale.”
7:52 Absolutely no-one will finish this game because they’ll be far too busy looking at the scenery.
7:50 Predictably, when playing in a MP game and trying to work out a plan with your teammates, it all fails miserably.
7:50 The only HUD is the one that floats next to your character. Pretty cool.
7:47 Now there’s some “gameplay” of The Division.
7:46 A new Phantom Dust, apparently. Will someone Google that?
7:45 Lobb’s new game is on-screen now.
7:44 Don’t try to beat this guy at any fighting game ever. You won’t win.
7:44 Ken Lobb of Killer Instinct takes to the stage.
7:43 Yes, that silver sword reveal wasn’t phallic at all.
7:43 Matt – Its like Assassin’s Creed Dragon’s Dogma Skyrim.
7:42 Don’t lie. If you’ve played The Witcher, you were definitely thinking about it.
7:41 Wanna go to the mill, baby?
7:40 CD Projekt Red is easily my most respected developer. All the things they said this year made them better than Valve for me.
7:39 And now it’s straight into a gameplay of Witcher 3.
7:38 Matt – No, you guys don’t get to see anything really about Tomb Raider, we’re just going to show you a minute of CGI and hype it up in the smallest way possible. Yeah!
7:37 Yes, it’s a new Tomb Raider!
7:37 Another world premiere.
7:36 Two Silicon Valley actors talk about their first games as well.
7:35 Microsoft is finally punting that indie connection properly. Only took you guys a year, really.
7:35 Too many indie games to name. Wow. Good work, guys.
7:33 “All the games we have lined up will ship first for console for Xbox One.” Dat exclusivity clause.
7:33 Now some guy whose name I didn’t catch is talking about the ID@Xbox program.
7:32 The game is called Inside.
7:32 My SSD makes saving and uploading these photos so much faster. Aaaaaaah.
7:31 PlayDead’s game is up first. Very Limbo-like.
7:30 Spencer is now talking about games coming in 2015. Okay.
7:30 See? I wasn’t lying.
7:30 Spencer up again, wearing a Limbo shirt.
7:28 Buyers of the Master Chief collection will also get into the Halo 5 beta.
7:28 4000 gamerscore, 1080p 60fps, dedicated servers and 100 multiplayer maps on day one. Interesting.
7:27 Matt – Sightlines? That just means you can camp.
7:26 A live demo of the Halo 2 MP still working. “Its got some great sight-lines.”
7:25 You can even turn back time and play Halo 2 exactly the way it was shipped on day one. Sans bugs and crashes.
7:24 Everything is unlocked on day one, so you can play through the series however you want.
7:24 All the Halo games on the Xbox One, remastered in HD.
7:23 Bonnie Ross – Its all about Master Chief’s past, present and future.
7:22 Its Halo, but what kind of Halo is still up in the air.
7:20 Halo 2 in HD, pretty much.
7:20 And now it’s Halo.
7:19 Ori and the Blind Forest. Coming soon. I got vibes from Secret of Nimh and Okami.
7:18 And now we’re on an indie title.
7:17 Matt – All the games in the past few minutes have a wackiness overload.
7:16 I will link to Matt’s review of Spark later, but it should definitely pique your interest if you’re at all interested in game development. Its like a high-def, 3D version of RPG maker.
7:16 Project effing Spark. This will be a game-changer. Literally.
7:15 Matt – Yay, nerd filler.
7:14 What game will they bombard us with next? None of the other people on stage were playing that “live” demo.
7:13 Matt – Almost like Dungeon Keeper.
7:12 You can be the villian in some of the mini-games. Sort of like that Nintendo Wii U game that nobody plays where you are the ghost.
7:11 Matt – Its like what Fable Legends without Molyneux would be – a MMO. On a console.
7:10 Another live demo of a Xbox One game with multi-player storylines.
7:09 Now there’s Fable Legends!
7:08 Disney Fantasia will come to the console in Fall. Also, Dance Central. Now with Spotlights!
7:07 Capcom will have a special set of content for Dead Rising 3 for the company’s 31st birthday.
7:06 28 October 2014.
7:05 Its like Ratchet and Clank made with real people.
7:05 A hurker, one of the “boss-like” enemies.
7:03 Going through a playthrough of the first mission now. Apologies for the blurry Twitch captures, I only have a 2MB line shared with six people.
7:01 It tries so hard to be wacky. And colourful.
7:01 Sunset Overdrive!
7:00 And now it’s …
6:58 My favourite words: Premiere content first on Xbox.
6:58 Moving very swiftly into Dragon Age: Inquisition.
6:57 Now its a collection of devs talking about their first games they played.
6:56 Someone lost a head. Not like BF4.
6:56 Co-op in an Asscreed game, guys. Gawddamn!
6:55 The protagonist has a hidden crossbow. More agile and younger. Wall-climbing is a lot more natural too.
6:53 Matt – A nice crowd of people… with English accents.
6:52 Four-player co-op.
6:52 Asscreed Unity? Damn, there’s too many games in this segment now.
6:52 Really short trailer, didn’t get much in.
6:51 First beta and DLC will be available on Xbox One before PS4 players.
6:50 Evolve is next.
6:49 Rally races as well.
6:49 Getting some hype with the mountain drifts. Players are limited to 1000 per club.
6:48 Coming 30 September 2014. Awesome music.
6:48 Its socially connected and allows people to form clubs and race against friends online. Okaaaaay…
6:47 1080p 30fps, full weather and day-night cycles. Hey, Driveclub.
6:46 So this is all about Forza Horizon 2.
6:46 Oh, it’s free. Nevermind.
6:45 The Nurburgring will make an appearance soon, but definitely not for free.
6:45 Greenawalt talking about how Turn 10 has been supporting Forza 5.
6:44 Turn 10 is up next.
6:44 11.11.14 is the launch date.
6:43 Oh, someone lost an arm. So just like BF4 then.
6:42 Those early pictures with the high-def faces? Prolly not real, but it looks very nice in this trailer.
6:41 Very, VERY un-COD-like. Colour me interested.
6:40 There seems to be some swarm of drone-like machines being used by the enemy. Like metal killer bees.
6:39 Matt – Hey, no HUD! That’s a first for a COD game.
6:38 A lot of mechanised infantry and war going on. There are some Killzone vibes as well.
6:37 This time it’s a live demo done by a man in a grey t-shirt on stage.
6:36 So COD: AW opens up in the exact same way as BF4. Hello?!
6:35 Xbox owners will be the first to play all of the add-on content for COD: Advanced Warfare.
6:34 Sledgehammer Games will be up first.
6:33 “We’ve been humbled by the messages and feedback from our fans. And today we’re dedicating our entire briefing to games.” So, like E3 2013 then?
6:33 So far, no sports or TV. All about gaming, Spencer promises.
6:32 Welcome to the fans, says Phil Spencer.
6:31 IGN’s Youtube Livestream definitely works.
6:30 Damnit Twitch, not again!
6:26 See? MOAR ALIENWARE!
6:24 We’re almost there and it looks like Alienware is trying to cement their presence into the streams. There’s a M14X in brilliant maroon red on the table. Sweet!
5:58 Testing… WordPress has an “Update” button in the full-screen view now, which will make life a lot easier with less things to click on that might crap out my workflow.
5:57 I’m going to grab something to eat before the start! This is going to be interesting.
05:49 This time last year, Microsoft was weathering a tremendous storm of backlashes and public disdain for the Xbox brand after the company very clearly announced the real intentions behind the Xbox One – it was a Trojan horse into the living room, no longer something catered to the core gamers. Even the features that were included in Kinect were in favour of this – the voice navigation and IR blaster that would consume all your entertainment center’s man functions as well as stream your TV and do Skype calls showed that it was clearly a product that Microsoft’s executives cobbled together using the visions for the markets that Microsoft wanted to get in.
The reality was very different once it was patently clear what gamers wanted. NeoGAF forumites launched Twitter offensives against the company and sided with Sony. The gaming media lambasted the idea of always-online connectivity for a home console and Microsoft’s own executives weren’t innocent in the game either – comments made by Don Mattrick and others who didn’t know the whole story only served to break down the brand loyalty bit by bit.
From the outside, it looked like Sony had caught Microsoft with their pants down and all they could do was scramble their plan together as quickly as possible.
It got so bad that at E3 2013 it was Phil Spencer helping the proceedings along, not Marc Whitten or Don Mattrick. The message that the Microsoft heads wanted to convey got lost in the sea of misinformation and bad timing. It took Microsoft until Gamescom 2013 to right many of the wrongs they had made and work to build up excitement in the brand again. With Phil Spencer taking the helm of all things Xbox just last month, things are rapidly changing within Microsoft and it remains to be seen if this is going to work out for them or not.
I hope, for the gamer’s sake, that they deliver in this expo and in the next four days. No misinformation, no sports, no TV, just games.