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This year Microsoft’s media briefing did not disappoint as Phil Spencer promised to devote the “entire briefing to games!”  Immediately, you could hear the applause around the theatre.  Last year, there was a lot of disappointment as Microsoft spent a lot of time talking about other features on the Xbox One like the Kinect and the TV features.  They seemed to learn from this mistake as they enthralled us all with game after game!

Further excitement came when Spencer stated that all the games shown during their media briefing would first get add-on content on the Xbox One!

The briefing began with Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. We saw new footage that included gameplay.  I’m not a huge fan of the Call of Duty franchise, but I may just check this one out.  It also helps that Kevin Spacey is in the game. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare will be out on November 4, 2014.  Here is the gameplay that was showed:

Dan Greenwalt, Creative Director, came onto the stage to talk about Forza Motorsport 5 and unveiled the “nuburgring” which is available TODAY for free to those that own the game. Ralph Fulton, Creative Director, presented Forza Horizon 2 which will be available September 30, 2014.  The game will be in 1080p, have 200+ cars, include various weather conditions, and drivatars.

I’ve been highly anticipating with glee, Dragon Age: Inquisition.  Microsoft and BioWare unveiled a new trailer for the game, which will be available October 7, 2014.

Another game that garnered a lot of excitement from the masses is Sunset Overdrive. We saw a bit about this game last year, but this year we got to see a lot more of this game!  Ted Price, the Founder and CEO of Insomniac Games, came on stage to talk more about the game.  Sunset Overdrive will be available October 28, 2014 and  is exclusive to Xbox One.

Ori and the Blind Forest is a new IP from Moon Studios that looks absolutely stunning.  I’d love to see more of this game before it comes out this fall, but so far I like what I see.  Ori and the Blind Forest will be available Fall 2014.

A Microsoft briefing wouldn’t be the same without some Halo for us all! Bonnie Ross, Studio Head at 343 Industries, presented a spotlight on the much anticipated Halo 5:

Then we were presented with the Halo: The Master Chief Collection.  The collection will include Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, Halo 2: Anniversary, Halo 3, and Halo 4, Halo: Nightfall, and access to the Halo 5: Guardians Beta.  Halo: The Master Chief Collection will be out on November 11, 2014.

A very nice surprise to the mix was the Rise of the Tomb Raider world premiere! We will get to follow Lara Croft after the last installment to see how she rises from what she went through to become the character we know and love.  Rise of the Tomb Raider is expected to be available Holiday 2015.

Ken Lobb, Creative Director at Microsoft Studios, expressed his passion for reviving games that garner cult audiences as classic games.  He then presented Phantom Dust, an absolutely beautiful game.

Scalebound is a new IP that shows a lot of promise from Platinum Games.  This game is one of my favorites so far from what I’ve seen at E3. It is absolutely beautiful and I would love to see more

Microsoft wrapped up the media briefing with Crackdown.

Other games that were shown included Evolve, Assassin’s Creed: Unity, Dance Central, Fantasia Music Evolved, Fable Legends, Project Spark, Inside from Playdead, The Witcher 3, and The Division.

I’m VERY impressed with Microsoft’s E3 Media Briefing. They brought it with the games and I even got a look at new games that definitely interest me.

To look at the rest of the trailers that were shown at Microsoft’s media briefing, check out their YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjBp_7RuDBUYbd1LegWEJ8g.

What did you think? Let us know in the comments!

By ericyo On 19 Oct, 2012 At 03:48 AM | Categorized As News, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

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Microsoft Corp. has decided to offer special bundles with new games and Kinect motion sensors as well as new pricing on their consoles in some areas. This is a smart move on their behalf, it keeps thing interesting with Nintendo’s Wii U release right around the corner.

Starting this week many retailers including  GameStop, Best Buy, Toys ‘R Us, Amazon, Target, and Walmart, will carry Xbox 360 holiday console bundles.

The bundle will include the following:

  • Xbox 360 4GB + Kinect with Kinect Disneyland AdventuresKinect Adventures and one month of Xbox Live Gold for $299.99.
  • Xbox 360 250 GB with Skyrim and Forza 4 Essentials Edition and one month of Xbox Live Gold for $299.99.
  • Xbox 360 250GB + Kinect with Dance Central 2, Kinect Sports, Kinect Adventures and one month of Xbox LIVE Gold for $399.99.

Also for a limited time, Microsoft will offer $50 discounts on original consoles and bundles like Xbox 360 4GB + Kinect, Xbox 360 250GB and Xbox 360 250GB + Kinect.


The limited time $50-off price promotion will also be offered on the Xbox 360 Limited Edition “Halo 4” console bundle. This limited edition Xbox is available for pre-order on November 6, 2012.

This sounds like a miniature console war again at this point. Let’s see if Playstation comes up with any small discounts, bundles or promotion before the years end.

Sources:  GameStop, Best Buy, Toys ‘R Us, Amazon, Target, and Walmart

By SarahTheRebel On 15 Jun, 2011 At 10:50 PM | Categorized As Conventions, PC Games, PlayStation, Previews, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 2 Comments

No GravatarAlthough many of us first found out details about Mass Effect 3 from Game Informer, the announcement at E3 was no less anticipated, especially with the release of information just prior hinting that the Kinect would have some role to play in ME3

Before E3 2011.

Prior to the E3 Press Conference, we learned that

  • Combat has been tightened up
  • Spoilers about who is in the squad etc.
  • The basic plot
  • Changes from ME and ME2

Combat

The new combat, as we eventually got to witness during E3, is all about fluidity. Shepard now has more efficient melee attacks, an easier method of running and shooting, more bang for her bullets and cover will make more sense instead of being so haphazard.

I will talk more about the demo in a bit, but basically the new changes to combat look and act great if the demo is any indication.

Here is an article from someone who got their hands on the demo.

SPOILERS

  • Tali is confirmed as a squad-mate
  • No new romance options (so only the ones from ME1 and ME2)
  • They have hinted that Wrex is probably not a squad-mate
  • Powers will combine (possibly like in Dragon Age 2?)
  • Cerberus is working with the Reapers
  • Confirmed squad-mates: Garrus, Liara, either Ashley or Kaiden (depending on who lived) and Jason Sanders (who’s this guy? lol).
  • Wrex, Anderson, Legion and Mordin will return, but are not confirmed as recruit-able.
  • Decision from the Rachni Queen will have an effect on the story

END SPOILERS

Plot

The basic plot is that Earth has been invaded by the Reapers and Shepard is forced to retreat. In order to save Earth and the universe, Shepard must convince different planets and species to align with him against the Reaper invasion. But of course, since this is Bioware, that will not be as simple as asking politely.

Changes

  • Enemies sound REALLY annoying to kill (for example they draw strength from other dead creatures around them)
  • People who didn’t play the first 2 games will again have the option of doing the prequel comic to make the key decisions (wish they would have done this with Dragon Age 2 instead of having presets).
  • New system will be similar to ME2 but with more choices.
  • Each skill line will have multiple upgrades so more specialization is possible.
  • Now fighting husks of every species, not just humans.
  • The method of mining planets is undergoing yet another change
  • Shepard now has combat rolls and can “run-and-gun”

Shepard and his tool. 0_0

Overall, Bioware has hinted that ME3 will have some features from ME and some from ME2, but overall will run smoother and be more responsive to the choices the character makes (example: who shows up in a scene).

Microsoft’s E3 Press Conference

During Microsoft’s E3 Press Conference, they announced that ME3 will include Kinect voice support.

The idea is pretty original and definitely not what I expected. Players will use the Kinect voice support to pick a command on the dialogue wheel and also to tell the squad where to go and which moves to use. As they mentioned in the conference, these changes will increase the immersion in the ME world.

After watching the conference, I must admit I’m very impressed.

Dialogue Wheel

Utilizing voice commands for the dialog wheel seemed a strange choice to me at first, and then I started playing ME2 again and the memories came back to me. With the way the wheel is formatted, I know that I personally picked the wrong option plenty of times from accidentally hitting the buttons too fast. In a game like Mass Effect, the dialogue can have serious consequences on the outcome of the story, so this often ended up being a big, frustrating deal.

Saying an option, if done properly, would leave a little less to chance… unless you happen to have an accent, and then this could go horribly wrong.

Squad Control

The ability to tell your squad-mates where to go and what to do with voice instead of pausing to pick the choice on a wheel will add fluidity and intensity to battles. It will also add to the feeling of immersion that is already handled pretty well in ME2.

I personally think it will really add to the sense of “command” that Shepard has (see what I did there?).  Not only do you lead a ship and make decisions for the group, but you will actually be able to “give orders” to your squad in the heat of battle. If they pull this off correctly, my inner dork will probably spaz out from sheer joy.

Watching the conference, this part worked exactly as I imagined, with the producer saying things like “Garrus, move up!” in his little commanding voice.

Demo

This demo… looks very polished and not at all like a demo. Compared to the demo released for Dragon Age 2, I must say Bioware has stepped their game up. This demo played like a movie and I can say with certainty that I’m no longer looking forward to Christmas…. it’s all about March 6 baby!

Mass Effect 3 will come out for PS3, Xbox 360 and the PC on March 6, 2012

 

 

By otakuman5000 On 6 Jun, 2011 At 08:50 PM | Categorized As Conventions, Editorials, Featured, News, Uncategorized, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

No GravatarThe Microsoft Press Conference kicked off with a bang this year. Starting things off was some new footage of Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3. What was shown was new footage of an underwater submarine, where the main objective was to plant charges to surface the sub. Once that was done, we got a taste of a war torn New York City. Complete with sinking war ships, chopters, and drivable speedboats.

 

 

But that wasn’t all we got to see. There was also the new Tomb Raider reboot that made it’s debut to the public for the first time. We got to see a new Lara Croft try to find her way out of a mysterious cave after her plane crashed landed. The main focus was to show everyone how Lara this time around would be primarily about survival and exploration.

 

 

EPIC Games also showed some more footage of Gears of War 3. A scene where Marcus and Cole are aboard a ship in the ocean fighting a giant squid like locust monster. Alongside this, Mass Effect 3 showed off some new features that involved Kinect voice recognition, allowing players to use voice command to make choices during dialogue.

 

 

Most of the conference was dominated by a heavy push for Kinect intergrated software. Microsoft promised everyone that more Kinect hardcore and sophisticated games would be present this year, and they delivered. We got a glimpse of new titles like DisneyLand Adventures, Dance Central 2, Sesame Street Once Upon a Monster, Kinect Star Wars, and Kinect Sports Season 2. All of the games used the Kinect’s features in different ways, some including the new voice command introduced during the conference. What was interesting was how different the lineup was for Kinect, and just how much support the Kinect has received from most of the bigger titles shown during the conference.

 

 

During the conference, other new surprises were shown, including BING on Xbox Live, UFC coming to Live, and how Kinect Voice Command would change the way we interact with our games and console. Most of the games featured during the press event were confirmed to have Kinect support and features, the only one to not be confirmed for this was Modern Warfare 3.

 

 

Finally, the conference ended off on a nice teaser of the earlier leaked HALO 4. The teaser was brief, showing Master Chief awakening from his slumber from the end of Halo 3 (after the credits if you beat the game on legendary). He awakes to Cortanna screaming for his help and after grabbing her, he flings himself down a corridor of the ship he is in toward the outside of space. There we see a giant machine of some sort, and his ship is heading towards it.

 

 

Prior to the trailer earlier in the conference, the Halo remake called HALO COMBAT EVOLVED ANNIVERSARY. It is the same game we played for the first time years ago, only this time it comes with an updated graphics filter, Campaign Co-Op over Xbox Live, Classic Halo maps with Halo Reach looks, and Fire Fight mode for the masses. It was a great way to get everyone excited for Microsoft’s Exclusive.

 

 

Overall, Microsoft’s Press Conference was much better this year then last year’s E3 2010. While much of what was shown was either expected or much of the same from past E3s, this year felt like a much better presentation. The line-up of games got more people excited about this coming year for Microsoft. With a bunch of great third party games, an awesome exclusive over the horizon, and a ton of new features coming to their online network, Microsoft is looking forward to a good year for their Xbox 360.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By otakuman5000 On 5 Dec, 2010 At 05:59 AM | Categorized As Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 1 Comment

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Located in Quebec, Canada, Sarbakan Game Studio has finally launched it’s own web site and has signed an agreement with a multinational company to release two Kinect titles. This independent game developer has worked on several online projects as well as working with Microsoft to create the XBLA title, “Lazy Raiders”. With over twelve years of experience in creating cross platform games, it’s exciting to see what the company has in store.

Sarbakan was founded in 1988 and has since worked on well over 600 titles for platforms ranging from handhelds and mobile to console and online apps. Some popular works are Tron Legacy: Digital DJ, Wedding Dash, and Disney Online’s Pirates of the Caribbean series. Starting off with Kinect for 2011, Sarbakan has announced that its Kinect titles will be released and sold in both the U.S and Europe.

“We are truly poised as a forward-developing studio… As we broadened our services to include iOS and Kinect platforms, our existing and potential partners have really ramped up their creative development with Sarbakan to provide their titles and brands across multiple platforms. -Guy Boucher, President of Sarbakan

Although Serbakan is a company with over 80 employees, they are looking for more people to join their ranks. While their new website still seems fairly empty, it does symbolize what the team is all about. You can keep track of the team and it’s news at Sarbakan.com