Microsoft have just held their E3 2018 press conference, at the new Microsoft Theatre, just down the road from the LA conference centre. Head of Xbox Phil Spencer kicked off proceedings; here are the biggest takeaways from the conference.
We open with a quick look at Halo Infinite, with some rather questionable animations in the trailer - and not too many details, although we are told by Phil that this is going to be the greatest adventure for Master Chief yet.
Phil reaveals that tonight there will be a total of 50 Games showcased, of which 18 will be exclusives and 15 World Premiers.
Todd Howard from Bethesda decided to drop in on the Microsoft party to announce that Fallout 4 is now available on Xbox Game Pass. Oh, and he also dropped us a first look at Fallout 76. We do wonder if this has something to do with the butting heads Bethesda have had with Sony over mods on console. Todd confirmed only that this game is a preqel to all the other Fallout games, where you are first to emerge from a very untamed and different wasteland, and that it will be 4x the size of Fallout 4. Nothing was said about any single player, or multi-player, aspects, so we'll have to wait for the Bethesda conference later today to find out the full scoop.
Disney and Square Enix's hugely successful series Kingdom Hearts is coming to Xbox, and a new trailer was shown for Kingdom Hearts III.
More footage of Metro Exodus was shown at the event, and a release date was also announced, Feburary 22nd, 2019. This post apocolyptic first person shooter looks like it will be another solid entry in the Metro series, check out the trailer below.
Sea of Thieves
Another exclusive to Xbox and PC, Sea of Thieves will be getting two new content updates, Cursed Sails and Forsaken Shores.
Forza Horizon 4
We get a trailer and a demo of Forza Horizon 4, I'm personally super stoked for this, set in the United Kingdom, with some amazing visuals shown of Scotland's capital Edinburgh, some night shots of London, and the coastal and country roads England is known for. A gameplay demo was shown on stage with four players, and the visuals look amazing, and the entire world is a shared open world. There's a specific focus on the seasons system, which completely transforms the world from Autumn, to Winter, Spring and Summer. The game includes dynamic seasons, weather, and environments which are synchronised between all players in the open world. The winter season freezes over rivers and lakes which allows players to drive to places they couldn't during the other three seasons. This game looks pretty amazing, check out the trailer below. The game was confirmed for release in October of this year.
Microsoft Game Studios
There's five new studios being into the Microsoft fold, and the first of these announced was The Initiative a brand new game studio based out of Santa Monica which will be looking at innovative new gaming experiences. Undead Labs is also being brought into the Microsoft Studios fold, along with Playground Games, Ninja Theory and Compulsion Games. All these studios have worked closely with Microsoft in the past and are responsible for some extremely popular games, so Microsoft mean business with these new aquisitions, and it will mean so pretty serious new exclusives for the Microsoft ecosystem.
A new trailer was shown off for this extremely popular Battle Royale game, showing off upcoming new environments, game mods and features that will be coming to Xbox in fall of this year. PUBG has faced competition in the market it carved out recently, so it'll be interesting to see these updates come later this year, but will it be too little too late?
Xbox Game Pass
Ashley Speicher, head of Xbox Game Pass takes to the stage to talk about the titular service, which aims to let players have access to a wide range of games for a single monthly subscription price. She announced that the team have been working on a new Fast Start technology which will allow players to launch games twice as quickly as they are now. This seems to be leveraging Microsoft's expertise in cloud computing with their Azure platform, and the technology will be coming in the new Xbox One update later this month. There will be lots of new games, many of which have been announced today, which will come to the Xbox Pass catalogue on the same day they are released. Tom Clancey's The Division, The Elder Scrolls Online and Fallout 4, all available to play in 4K, are now available today on Xbox Game Pass.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Coming September 14th 2019, Shadow of the Tomb Raider has a new trailer shown, and this new outing by Lara Croft looks to be more of the same, but if you were a fan of Lara's most recent outings, this is looking to be another solid installment.
Devil May Cry 5
Capcom showed off a trailer for the new Devil May Cry game, with some impressive visuals, all rendered in engine. Hideaki Itsuno, the game's director, takes to the stage along with Matt Walker, the games' producers, to announce that the series is back. The team are putting a major emphasys on visuals on this new game, but without making any sacrafice to the gameplay the series is well known for.
Dying Light 2
Chris Avellone comes to the stage to announce he is working with Techland on Dying Light 2. He shows us through a brand new feature to the game, promising that players' choices will have consequences to everything that will happen in the game. Roll a demo which shows how the player can choose to settle a conflict over the cities water supply through mediation or violence, and how those actions affect the behavour of the citizens of the entire game world, but with benefits and downsides to each choice. They promise that every players' game choices will make their experiences totally unique. We've heard these promises from developers before, will it live up to the hype?
Rather inexplicably, Battletoads is back, with a brand new game with 4K hand-drawn graphics, online co-op modes, and much more awesome stuff. For fans of this franchise, last seen in 1991, this looks very faithful to the humor of the original based on the trailer shown.
Gears Pop! and Gears Tactics
So, here's a strange cross-over. Gears of War is getting a new game, but much in the veign of the popular Lego game series, this latest game is a collaboration with the popular Funko POP! figures. Slightly more down to earth though was the follow up announcement of Gears Tactics, which seems to be a top-down tacticical strategy game.
Don't worry though, of course the fifth game in the series was announced too. The story of the new game centers around heck out the trailer below.
And just when you thought the conference was about to end...
A crazy MS DOS command prompt takes over the stage and the entire event segways into one more final world premier, this time for Cyberpunk, the long awaited role playing game by CD Projekt Red. No release date was announced, but the studio recently revealed they had reached a major milestone, so this new trailer seems to confirm that they are making strides towards a release in the near future.
Some of the other notable premiers and exclusives from the event include;
- Ori and the will of the wisps
- Crackdown 3
- Sekiro Shadows Die Twice
- Tales of Vesperia - Definitive Edition
- Tom Clancy's The Devision 2
- Black Desert
- Cuphead DLC
Some pretty massive announcements in a cram packed E3 press conference here from Microsoft, with an almost exclusive focus on games. What do you guys think of these announcements, and what are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments below!
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