I went into the Microsoft E3 Press Conference this year with no hype whatsoever. There was no indication whatsoever that Microsoft would focus on anything else but how powerful the Scorpio is and that was all they needed to beat Sony.
Boy was I wrong, in the best possible way. First let’s talk about Project Scorpio, now known as the Xbox One X. Honestly, I don’t mind the name, it makes sense to keep the “Xbox One” part in it since the X is an upgrade version rather than a full blown new console. And despite being so powerful, it is also the smaller Xbox system to date, which is pretty impressive. The 499$ US price is not THAT bad if you really want 4k entertainment, but in Canada where I live it will come up to about 700$ with taxes so I can’t even dream of getting it, let alone have a 4K TV to take advantage of it. Considering the power and size of the thing, at that price I’m sure Microsoft is selling it at a massive loss. While we’re on the subject of the system, it was revealed that all previous Xbox One games will play on Xbox One X, of course, with better performances and faster loading times out of the box. Other games will be patched to fully take advantage of the power of the Xbox One X. Also, OG Xbox games will soon become backward compatible with the Xbox One. Pretty cool stuff overall, but not for me.
For the games, the first reveal of the day was… a car. Yes, they actually revealed a CAR on a E3 Stage. A new Porsche. Of course it was to transition to a reveal of Forza 7. Can’t really say much about this one, really. It’s Forza and it will be playable in 4K at a rock solid 60FPS on Xbox One X. On Xbox One? Who the fuck knows.
Next up is a game I had no idea was happening; Metro Exodus. Third installment in the Metro series, based on the novels of the same name. This one is open-world, which is why some people can it the nickname of “Metro S.T.A.L.K.E.R”. Similar deal as Forza, it’s more Metro and I’m happy about that. Will release in 2018.
We got the reveal of the new Assassin’s Creed; Origins. Taking place in Egypt, it will reveal the origins of the Brotherhood. Ubisoft has taken things a step further and has added an actual eagle vision to the game to survey areas and pin objectives and objects of interest. I can only hope the one year break the series got and give it some new wings. We know naval combat is back, combat has been upgraded and now you can swim underwater and get attacked by alligators. Neat stuff.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, the latest YouTuber money maker, is coming to console, first to Xbox One. State of Decay 2 was shown again, with a trailer that greatly overstayed its welcome. Another open-world post-apocalyptic zombie game. Yawn.
Deep Rock Galactic was revealed, which looks like if someone mixed Metroid Prime: Federation Force with Drawfs and The Killing Floor? Looks interesting at the very least. We also got The Darwin Project, which looks like some janky arena brawler with multiple heroes a-la Paragon or Overwatch. We got our first cringe moment with the fake commentator, as well.
Minecraft will be getting a 4K patch with a new shadder pack to give it a bit more of a realistic look. But the biggest news for that game was the fact that all servers will become playable through any platforms where Minecraft is available (yes, even the Nintendo Switch)… except for the PlayStation 4. Sony seems very against the idea of cross-play with the competition’s platform and honestly that’s a massive bummer.
Now for what possibly is my Game of the Show so far; Dragon Ball FighterZ. A 2.5D Dragon Ball fighter made by Arc System Works, the people behind Guilty Gear, using the engine of the latest Guilty Gear, Xrd. Holy fucking shit I couldn’t be more excited about this one. I look absolutely gorgeous, as close to the original anime as you can get and it’s a 3v3 fighter! IT’S MARVEL STYLE DRAGON BALL FIGHTER! What’s not to love!
Black Desert Online is coming to Xbox One first on consoles, which is cool. I heard a lot of good things about that particular MMORPG. We got another artsy indie game with The Artful Escape, which seems to be some kind of rhythm-based platformer where you use a guitar to create platforms? A sequel to Ori and the Blind Forest was announced, called Ori and the Will of the Wisps. The original Ori remains one of the best indie games out there, so a sequel to that will always be welcomed. The game was revealed accompanied by the composer of the game playing piano live on stage, which was a neat touch. The Last Night also look absolutely gorgeous with its artstyle, but I refuse to say anymore on that game because of some stuff happening in the background.
Sea of Thieves got an extensive demo. More of the same, still no release date, we’ve seen enough of this game already. Cuphead finally, FINALLY got a solid release date. I might pick that one up on PC. Crackdown 3 was re-revealed, featuring the friendliest pile of muscle alive, Terry Crews. Game seems to have toned down the destruction however. It looked more like a less good version of Saint’s Row IV. Where the power of the cloud at?
Then Microsoft pulled ANOTHER Conker fake out with Super Lucky’s Tale. Aside from that, it looks like a pretty typical platformer with a cute animal as a playable character. Nothing special there. It used to be a demo for the Oculus Rift, so not sure what’s going on with that.
We saw more gameplay of Shadow of War and all I can say is I love the Australian Orc. Best character of E3 so far. He was hilarious. A prequel to Life is Strange was announced and being a fan of the original, I’ll be sure to keep an eye on that one as well.
Anthem got its gameplay reveal at the Microsoft Conference and let me tell you, Bioware’s new IP shows some promises. Basically take Destiny, mix it with Horizon: Zero Dawn and add Iron Man suits and that’s Anthem. An open-world game where you can fly is always a plus. And you can go underwater, too! If the gunplay is as solid as Destiny’s, this one could be a major winner for Bioware. And let’s face it, then need it.
Overall, a far more solid press conference than I expected. I hope the others can follow suit.