Microsoft keeps their promise by revealing a ton of upcoming titles at their recent E3 2013 press conference laying to rest doubts that the Xbox One is just a secondary gaming device. In an effort to clear the air for the better, the Big ‘M’ came out swinging for the fence starting things off in eye-popping fashion as Kojima Productions and Konami unveiled what was in this writers opinion the best reveal of the conference. Metal Gear Solid V: Phantom Pain is truly a next-generation title. Revealing the games new open world experience and realistic weather elements, Phantom Pain seemed to be a hybrid of Red Redemption meets Metal Gear Solid 4 infused with the power of next-gen hardware. Now offering various modes of transport and a realistic passage of time, Microsoft could not have started off their press conference any better.
From there Microsoft made some intriguing announcements surrounding the new redesigned Xbox 360 which is currently available taking a visual cue from the Xbox One as well as announcing the new Xbox Live currency, changing from Microsoft Points (MSP) to real money. Not wasting too much time on none game related updates, Microsoft dove back into the game reveals announcing exclusive after exclusive, from Killer Instinct, FORZA 5, Quantum Break, RYSE: Sons of Rome, to the amazing Titan Fall from Respawn Entertaiment, Crimson Dragon, Below, Halo 5 teaser, Dead Rising 3, D4 and the ambitious new title taking a page from Sony and Media Molecule with the introduction of SPARK. CEO of Insomniac Games, Ted Price also made an appearance on the Microsoft stage unveiling a new Xbox One exclusive title named Sunset Overdrive. While other games where announced like the free-to-play update of World of Tanks making its way to the Xbox 360 in addition to Minecraft also making the next-gen leap to the Xbox One, Microsoft seemed to have played their cards right in the direction of their press conference. Other attractive updates came in the form of the new addition of Twitch on Xbox Live with voice commentary via Kinect as well as the cool recording feature via Upload Studio.
With concerns that Microsoft would drown gamers in a pool of Kinect only titles, Microsoft did quite the opposite. Now with a list of must -have titles announced for the Xbox One, the next order of business was the price point and release date. Launching this November for $499, regardless of the games shown, it is hard not to scratch your head with concern. Sure Microsoft has stated that they are still ironing out their new used game initiative with publishers and retailers, which at the moment is a heavy blow to consumers. This lofty price tag does not include a headset with the system leading us to believe gamers will be expected to talk to their TV’s and Kinect devices during their multiplayer sessions. With rumors prior to the official announcement pointing at an additional SKU valued at $399 or offering a form of subscription fee, it seems this will not be the case. However, with Gamescom on the horizon we could see more revealed of a new Xbox One SKU.
Ultimately, Microsoft came to this press conference and did exactly what they were supposed to do and that’s convince gamers that they have not forgot what this industry is all about, the games. However, with a $499 price tag, users now without the ability to rent used games for the Xbox One or share games with your their friends in a traditional sense, will this be enough to convince consumers the Xbox One is the better value over the competition. Now only time will tell.