Leading up to E3 it was no secret that Microsoft had a lot on the line this year regarding games. In recent years, E3 for Microsoft has been all about separating themselves from the original Xbox One. Well, after successfully launching the Xbox One S, then the following year releasing Xbox One X, this was the year everyone expected them to lean into the game side of the equation.
They didn’t hold back as their conference opened up with beautiful scenery, it wasn’t until we saw the chief’s helmet to close the teaser out that it confirms it was Halo. Halo: Infinite if I am being exact. (I will be writing up a more thorough reaction as to how I felt about seeing this teaser.) This teaser set the tone for the rest of the conference. In total they showed 50 games, 18 of them were exclusive, and 15 of them were world premiers.
Following Phil Spencer coming on stage Microsoft showed Ori and the Blind Forest 2. The game looked as beautiful as the first. We got to see glimpses of abilities, scenery, as well as potential companions you will interact with in the game. We got a release date of 2019 at the end of the trailer.
We then saw a slew of games including Kingdom Hearts 3, Forza Horizon 4, Metro Exodus, and a new Crackdown trailer. The trailer showcased Terry Crews being a character within the game, as well as gave us a boost of confidence that the game will come out February 2019.
We next saw Phil Spencer come out and announce five new studios that Microsoft is bring on board to bring games to the Xbox platform. The five new studios are The Initiative, Undead Labs, Ninja Theory, Compulsion Games, and Playground Games. Though this doesn’t mean anything in the short term, this is a great sign for years to come regarding exclusive games to release for Xbox.
Following this announcement, we proceeded to see the next reel of games. This montage included We Happy Few, PUBG (new map release date in summer and winter, as well as war mode), Tales of Vesperia Remastered, and Division 2. After that we learned that Game Pass will continue to be improved. Fast start implementations, improvements to the platform, as well as the announcement of Division, Elder Scrolls, and Fallout 4 coming this month.
Following this announcement we saw the longest list of games. Black Desert, Devil May Cry 5, Cuphead DLC (including a third playable character), Tunic, Jump Force, an extensive look at Dying Light 2, BattleToads, and Just Cause.
We then saw the reveal of Gears Pop, a mobile game that will be releasing in 2019. Followed by Gear Tactics, a RTS, for PC. They proceeded to show a third Gears game, that being Gears 5. This game looks to take place long after gears 4. We learn that the focus will be Kait.
Phil then closed the show discussing cloud gaming and what is to come. A surprising point of discussion was when Phil acknowledged the fact that the next Xbox is far into development. While Phil was closing the show, we got a cool shot of the screen being “hacked”. Microsoft closed the show with an extensive trailer for Cyber Punk 2077. An important note of how the show ended was another montage of games. Closing with a shot of Master Chief inserting a chip into his helmet. I am excited for the future of Xbox, however I do have questions on some of the fronts for gaming. I look forward to GamesCon where we hope to see more of what is to come.