Microsoft E3 2017 Press Confernce

Microsoft E3 2017 Press Conference


Microsoft started their press conference with plenty to show from their future lineup of games and was concluded with hinting at the famed "Project Scorpio." Taking the stage first was Phil Spencer. He started the conference to immense applause. Once he called got quiet and got it, the conference itself began.


"Project Scorpio" was the first thing talked about. It has been given its official name of "Xbox One X." It was also given the release date of 11/7/2017. Spencer then called out one of the leads to come talk more about the Xbox One X, Kareem Choudhry. He started by stating they had 3 goals with the One X, Power, Compatibility and Craftsmanship. He would go on to address each of these elements in turn. This immediately meant the specs for the One X were getting revealed officially: 6 Teraflop GPU clocked at 1.172 Ghz, 12 GB of GDDR5 memory, 326 GB/s of memory bandwidth. Choudhry made it clear this is the most powerful console to date. It will be supporting true 4k graphics throughout the experience: textures, graphics, and assets. This does include a 4k UHD Blu-ray playback as well. This will be a console with a number of very beautiful games and movies. Next, Choudhry started talking about compatibility and it immediately looked that Microsoft had kept their word from last year about the Xbox One X. Citing the love that the 360 backwards compatibilities has brought to Xbox One, all accessories and games for Xbox One would work for the Xbox One X. All the modern games will have improvements to their fidelity, isotropic filtering and decreased load times. The system will also use the process of "Super Sampling" to bring the most quality to a 1080p output. Finally, there was the craftsmanship of this system. Choudhry was clear that the team had been very careful and paid very close attention. They had not forgotten the "Red Ring of Death" that had plagued the initial release of the Xbox 360 and they made it clear something like that was being kept in mind to avoid it. Apparently, the processor features some different technology. This processor, the Scorpio, has been engineered for maximum power in every fiber of its being. The processor has its own liquid-cooled vapor chamber that is normally reserved for Servers and high-end PC cards. They also have a completely new power management system inside as well. The Hovis Method, named for the engineer responsible for it, ensure consistent and efficient distribution of the power within the system itself. All this power and they are saying that the Xbox One X will be the smallest Xbox console to date. After that, they started a trailer to show off what the Xbox One X could do. Almost immediately the trailer was showing photo-realistic scenery. The trailer for the next Forza game looked incredibly. It allowed Microsoft to show off the rendering for the cars, outfits on the drivers, a multitude of daytimes and weather effects with rain. This literally took off running and then they started talking about the game.


From the Forza franchise, they sent out, Dan Greenawalt. He introduced the game and started talking about Super Cars, the biggest name and most anticipated models of car in the automotive industry. He then went on to say, for the first time in gaming and automotive history that a world flagship super car is making its world debut at E3. This Porsche was the 2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS. Greenawalt stated that Porsche shared many of the same dreams and ideals that the Forza franchise aspires toward, those of bringing their franchise to the grand stage of eSports. The teams have entered into a 6-year deal together to this end. This franchise has 4.8 million active players in it across the Xbox platforms and Windows 10, there is something to be said for these two elements working together. This makes Forza the largest racing club in the world. To continue with the presentation, they brought out two professional drivers, Shannon Mcintosh (who would be driving the just unveiled GT2 RS in Dubai) and Verena Mei (driving a Nissan GTR race car through the rain). Both would be playing the game on the Xbox One X. Immediately Greenawalt was talking about how Forza was running on a native 4k and a solid 60 fps. Shannon was taking the GT2 RS across the (Jabel) Hafeet Mountian Pass in this on-screen race. The scene changed after that to a first-person perspective inside the cab of a different car. Here, you could see the shaking of the various wires inside the cab of the car as well as the vibrations affecting the windshield wiper as it rested or swept back and forth across the glass. This game will have around 700 cars with the greatest collection of cars ever found inside a game.


Spencer came out next to introduce their pending line-up of presentations that will cover 42 different games. These will be covering a wide variety of genres and styles. Of those 42, 22 will be exclusive to the Xbox One family. The first game introduced was part of the Metro series, by 4A games. This series started back in 2010 and has been favorite since. This time it is Metro Exodus, set to release next year.


The trailer showed the protagonist navigating the irradiated tunnels of the metro system, scavaging their way through the dimly lit corridors. After that, they were fighting mutated rats that attacked them, breaking part of the gas mask. This lead them up and ladder and out into the ruins of a town. They took down a feral dog which seemed to later scare the pack only to reveal a different kind of bear which was coming after them. The protagonist fights the bear and gets it to drop over a ledge, but not quite fall. There was then a train coming that they used a nearby zipline to reach. From there, it was a mad dash to reach someone holding their hand out to them.


Another world premiere followed Metro Exodus, this time it was Assassin's Creed Origins. The trailer opened with a panning shot that cuts by the top of a pyramid and a gravely voice stating, "We are the first." After that, as the narrator explained what the civilization had done, to protect the soul, see the Gods and tame beasts, we saw the great Sphinx, a mortician removing the organs of a dead man for their passage to the underworld and the slaves of Egypt hauling a Pharoh statue. Then the narrator talks of a brotherhood born in the shadows to protect that are the first to call themselves "Assassins." This leads to a montage of various gameplay elements; combat with multiple weapons, underwater segments, fighting a crocodile, sailing, climbing a pyramid, exploring a tomb, fighting in the open desert. The trailer ended with the yet unnamed assassin drawing his bow against a massive snake in a dimly lit tomb as it reared and struck.


Then, Jean Guesdon from Ubisoft took the stage to talk about the most recent entry in the Assassin's Creed series. He explained that Ancient Egypt is considered the birthplace of modern civilization and that the Assassin Brotherhood was also born there. Guesdon explains that Assassin's Creed Origins is the story of one of the last Magi, Bayek. He was a protector of his community. It was his struggle against the corrupting forces within Egyptian society that would lead to the founding of the Assassin Brotherhood. Going as far back as Ancient Egypt forced the team to rethink and expand on their gameplay mechanics. The game will likely have more RPG elements added within the world itself. After that, they launched a gameplay trailer, showing Bayek coming back to his hometown Siwa to hunt down a fake oracle, Medunamun, who has taken residence there. He approaches a temple that he once knew. He then called on his Eagle to be his eyes. The camera seamlessly shifted as the player takes control of the bird. Bayek is quick to notice the differences by letting his Eagle focus on something for a few moments. Enemies were quickly marked by glancing at them as the bird flew. With the area scouted and his target found, Bayek begins his infiltration. We see him quietly scale one of the walls and enter the tell-tale restricted area. He hops through a few trees and then jumps into the air. Time slows as he draws his bow to take down a guard blocking his path. As Bayek slips deeper into the complex, we see him use a new mechanic, a Chain Assassination. While not completely new, this is a first for being outside of combat. He mutters to himself as he lets some higher level opponents lives as he slips by them after taking aim with his bow. He makes his way to the heart of the complex and once again calls on his bird to make the final scouting. The bird's controls allow the player to have it hover and search for rooftop entry points and sentries. One is found and Bayek can quickly adjust his plan to reach his target. He then deals with the sentry, slips inside and then quickly charges his target. In combat we see parrying making a return as Bayek fights with both sword and shield against the 3 opponents. He is very quick to dodge out of the way of attacks. At the end of the fight, his target flees and we are treated to a quick shot sequence where Bayek seems to control the arrow to a degree to guide it to his target.


Spencer came back on stage at this point and started talking about Mixer. This is Microsoft's own live game streaming service. He used this as a segway into "Player Unknown's Battleground" and then brought in its player-turned-developer creator, Brendan Greene where the focus would stay for a while. He described this game as a battle royale style game with you and 100 players going against each other. He explained that this would be a Xbox Exclusive and it would ship with a Xbox One X update on its release date. That release date is sometime in late 2017.


Another trailer quickly followed the Player Unknown's Battlegrounds. This one, like Player Unknown, was a Console launch exclusive and part of the Xbox Play Anywhere family of titles. This was Deep Rock Galactic. It had a squad of 4 dwarves entering into a mine to harvest minerals. Each had a different role to play with a variety of weapons and gadgets to help them reach their destination. Once there and the job was complete, they needed to fight their way out of the mine and back to their ship with their haul.


After Deep Rock Galatic was another trailer for an Exclusive to the Microsoft family. This was a trailer for State of Decay 2. it showed a group of survivors working together to against a Zombie outbreak in their area. It started with them breaking into a military compound after the army had pulled out and seized a truck. They rescue someone and then find a safe haven of sorts. The Haven is quickly built up in the trailer, going from simple things to having a garden and a few amenities inside. The narrator changes after the person narrating this sequence is killed by one of the Zombies. It changes to the woman they rescued in the beginning of the trailer. She and another drove off toward their temporary sanctum.


The trailers kept coming. State of Decay 2 was followed by Scavenger Studio's The Darwin Project. It began with an unnamed name looking at the blood on his hands and trying to wipe them clean with his shirt. A quick cutaway to a nearby trap that was triggered and this man pulls an axe from the person he likely just killed and starts off into the snow to see what set off the trap. Another person appears behind this man and attempts to ambush him with an arrow. The man generates a force field to protect himself. A feminine computer voice announces that 2 players remain and the man we saw defend himself goes rigid then falls over with an arrow in his back from an unknown assailant. The unknown person is revealed to have been caught in the trap that the man was investigating. From the trailer, we are cut back to the conference room with someone doing commentary on the final moments of the trailer. We are then treated to gameplay from the Darwin Project. It is quickly revealed to be a third person MOBA battle royal style game.


After The Darwin Project, we got a new Minecraft trailer. This time it will be featuring a community marketplace, massive servers to create even larger worlds. Naturally, the game will be featuring crossplay, allowing for the transfer of save files between Windows 10, Xbox One, Tablet, Nintendo Switch and mobile phones. More than anything it seemed to be driving home just how accessible they are making Minecraft. At this point, Lydia Winters from Mojang came out to talk about the updates to Minecraft. She opened stating this summer that Minecraft players will be able to play it freely on the device of their choice for the first time. Using Xbox Live, they will unite, Mobile, VR, PC and Console gaming. They are also welcoming in massive community run servers as well as even more player made maps, skins, and content. Minecraft, in Fall of 2017, will be receiving a 4K update to further improve its play options. She then said that a second update would be coming to Minecraft in the fall and another trailer began. This is the "Super Duper Graphics Pack", which brings some more realism to the blocky world of Minecraft.


Spencer came back on stage to introduce more games as well as state that Microsoft wants Xbox to have the best third-party game titles that it can. From there, he went on to introduce a wacky title he was able to try on a trip to Japan, "Dragonball Fighter Z." This trailer was instantly recognizable for the art style and characters. It started with numerous panning shots of Goku, Frieza, Cell, Majin Buu, Vegeta, Gohan, Goku going Super Sayian on Namek and more. It quickly cut to the 2D fighting game that it was with Goku and Final Form Frieza fighting on Namek. We see Goku battling the energy blasts away and into a hut nearby that was quickly destroyed by the blasts. A most unique feature shown was a 3v3 clash style battle in the game. The characters were shown performing combination attacks together We also see Golden Frieza and Super Saiyan 3 Goku battling it out in the closing moments of the trailer. It looks like it will provide a similar level of chaos and fun as the Marvel vs Capcom series with its hectic pacing. This title looks to release in early 2018.


That was followed by another Console Launch exclusive for the Microsoft family, "Black Desert." The trailer shows barren desert before changing to a variety of landscapes from all over the world in a variety of settings. From the serenity of the opening, the tone changes to combat quickly the middle point with various characters we were shown are engaging in a variety of battles. All of them fighting different opponents using a multitude of skills ranging from archery and melee to magic.


The next trailer was for Odd Tale Game's, "The Last Night." This looks to be a 16-bit style detective story. The trailer showed the world as it had changed from a gritty realistic portrayal to a more gamified appearance. It followed one man as he wandered the city looking for something or someone. It was fairly reminiscence of the old game, "Flashback" in its style.


What followed was the cut-out style game, "The Artful Escape" by Annapurna Interactive. It started with the protagonist, Francis Vendetti, in his normal clothing and as foreground objects passed in front of them, he changed into a high-tech explorer's suit. As he began to explore a more fantastical world, he would play his guitar to create platforms to allow him to move forward and explore it. It then took a psychedelic turn with laser lights and a dark purple glowing skull. Interestingly, it has the release date of "Coming when it's damn ready."


The trailer for "Code Vein" by Project Vein was next. It opened with a panning shot of the protagonist standing on the ruins of a highway looking into the remains of a city. He appears to be standing over the body of a demon of sorts and has some demonic attributes himself. Later in the trailer, he gets a close up of his possible companion, a woman who also has some demonic power and is frequently seen with a sniper rifle. Many melee fight scenes are shown with others who have red eyes like the first person we saw. This title is slated for a 2018 release.


Phil Spencer came back on briefly after that trailer. He talked of the search across borders and lands to find these unique games. After that, he introduced us to a new gameplay trailer from Rare's upcoming title, "Sea of Thieves", the shared world Pirate MMO game. This gameplay trailer has someone with a moderate accent talking about the crew of the pirate ship which they had anchored in the water. The player and another PC, BrawlinBecca jump into the water and find an underwater wreck they can explore and do so. This leads them to the Wreck of the Cursed Dawn. Another player is seen swimming out of the wreckage with a treasure chest. The player loots a cannon ball and begins to leave the ship after that. As they leave the ship a battle-scarred shark swims past the exit point in the wreckage. Everyone manages to make it back to the ship, though the last one on board just narrowly avoids getting bitten by the shark. After that, we are taken to an onshore mission hunting down a legendary treasure chest. The pirate crew needs to fight their way on through skeletons that are guarding the hidden chest. When the team emerges from the cliffside cave, a storm has rolled in and skeletons appear from the ground on the beach. The remaining crew-member on the deck of the ship opens fire to take down the skeletons quickly as the other crewmembers work to get the chest on board the ship. After that, they talk about making it back to a trading post to turn a handsome profit on the chest. Of course, it will not be smooth sailing, even through the storm. Another ship engages the party. While the rest of the crew fights with the cannons, the player climbs into a cannon and launches themselves over to the opposing ship to engage in melee combat. They take down the opposing crew and attempt to return to their ship. Their return is cut short by a shark rushing and eating them. This game is set for an early 2018 release at this point.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Tacoma

The next trailer was for, "Tacoma" by Fullbright. This has you exploring a space station with what appear to be virtual projections of people. This short trailer did not give a lot of information to what style or what is happening inside the game. But it did have a release date of August 2nd.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Super Lucky's Tale

The "Super Lucky's Tale" trailer by playful was next. This showed a fox running around, collecting coins and helping the various inhabitants of the world. This one could dig and attack with their tail. It ended with various happy residents cheering the fox outside a story book which turned red and looses a villain of sorts who laughed before the Fox, Lucky, jumped and performed a tailspin attack. It looks to have a November 7th, 2017 release date.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Cuphead

Next was the "Cuphead" trailer, announcing it would be a console exclusive to the Xbox One family. We got to see more gameplay of what is in store for us when this game is released. Cuphead is seen jumping around and going through a massive variety of levels. They range from places where you will be moving along the ceiling with inverted gravity to aerial mazes you will need to navigate. This game is set for a September 29th, 2017 release date.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Crackdown 3

The next exclusive trailer Microsoft Studios and Sumo Digital Production was for "Crackdown 3." Much like the games in this series, you will have many powers starting with the basics of grenades and reaching up to buildings. You will be able to run and air dash through the city and wreck the enemies in your way. It looks to continue and improve on what the series has to offer, possibly taking a bit more comical approach this time. This game is set to release on November 7th, 2017.


We got a short break from the exclusives for a Microsoft trailer, but it was still showing new games coming out for the Xbox One family. This included "Osiris: New Dawn" a space exploration game having you exploring numerous worlds, likely hunting down targets. "Raiders of the Broken Planet" were next. A third-person shooter game with you fighting against invaders on your ship or invading other ships. Then was "Unruly Heroes" with its 2D platforming with a strong "Journey to the West" influence on it. That was followed by "Path of Exile" a top-down Dungeon Explorer RPG. Then came "Battlerite" a top-down free-for-all multiplayer battle game. Then it took a turn for "Surviving Mars" a colonization simulation game where you help settle and begin a colony on the red planet. Next was a surviving fragment of the Fable series, "Fable Fortune", a Hearthstone style 1v1 card battle game. "Observer" followed that, being a first person sci-fi exploration game. "Robocraft Infinite", the robot vehicle-based fighter was next. It showed both PvE and PvP gameplay footage. "Dunk Lords" a classic cartoony basketball game was next. It features a number of over the top elements but does look like it could be at least as much fun as NBA Jam. "Minion Masters Forced to Duel" followed that up with more collectible, leveling 1v1 dueling action. "Brawlout", a multiplayer brawling game with numerous unique characters offers something in the vein of the Smash Bros series for the Xbox Family. "Ooblets" did not give much to go on, just a woman walking around with various animated mushrooms and other strange creatures. That was followed by "Dark and Light" which seems to put you in control of a dragon shapeshifters with a swords and sorcery style of game with a massive world to explore. "Strange Brigade" was next. This seems to be a 4v4 squad based competitive game either playing as monsters or soldiers. "Riverbound" was next, giving us an 8-bit hero style game with a top-down, isometric view of the action as they explore and fight through the pixel-rich area. They next showed gameplay from the upcoming indy title, "Hello Neighbor" for the Xbox One. This game has already been making a lot of waves in its early access state and many are looking for its final release. "Shift" was after that, showing off a 2d game, likely in the Castlevania style. Conan Exiles appeared after that, promising that world to Xbox players.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Ashen

Phil Spencer returned to the stage to talk about the ID@Xbox program. He told us how it had helped release over 500 games onto the Xbox and Windows platforms. From there he went on to introduce a new trailer for a game that is getting attention for is stylistic approach with cel-shading. It offers a cooperative game with the player working together with either other players or NPCs to fight against the creatures of the dark night. It showed a few people making their way through a cave-like dungeon, searching for a way to "The light" where they could live instead of just "Surviving in the Dark." Ashen does look like a slightly different style of game like Dark Souls.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Life is Strange Before the Storm

After that was a world premiere trailer from Square Enix for "Life is Strange: Before the Storm." It showed Chole in the events before what happened in the original game. It is set to be a series of 3 episodes, starting with the first episode releasing on August 31st, 2017.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Middle-Earth Shadow of War

After that brief premiere, Microsoft brought out Michael De Plater from Monolith Productions. He came to tells us about the next Lord of the Rings game, "Middle-Earth: Shadow of War." This game looks to continue the Nemesis system from the first game in the series "Shadow of Mordor." It does also offer a side where you can play on the monster's side and fight your way upwards through the ranks. They are changing up the game so you can form up a group of nemesis followers as well as fortresses. These changes make for a more tactical approach and make the series a little more unique from the original game. Before going into battle against the local fortress, it will be important to plan out your attack and select your followers that will be coming with you into this battle. Those your recruit will offer advice and point out important locations in the immediate area. They can also lead your main force while you focus on taking down the local overlord. The Nemesis system does still exist so you can have a reoccurring enemy who is hunting you down for what you did to them. It does look to be a much improved and deeper game than what it was initially. With a release date of October 10th, 2017, you will not have to wait too long before you can amass your own orc army and start taking control of Mordor.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Things changed a bit after that one, with the trailer being led into by a live piano performance by composer Gareth Coker. The trailer showed a world rich with animal life in a great variety. It had a rocky appearing toad and numerous little fox-like creatures. We also got to see a massive spider with glowing anemone tendrils all over its body. Midway through the trailer, the world we saw earlier is burning with rain and thunder pelting down on it. It ended with a blue feathered owl approaching a blue feather that drifted and landed in a nearby puddle in the same storm. From behind the approach approached a glowing, dragonlike creature walking on its rear legs. Both are looking on mournfully toward the remains of several bird-like skeletons. At the end, it was revealed to be "Ori and the Will of the Wisps".


Spencer came out after the trailer and spoke about how Ori reaffirms the art and integrity that games like offer to the world. He talked about how it is important for Microsoft to preserve the memories and games that you have enjoyed over the years. Then started talking about the new backward compatibility that is coming to Xbox One. He then announced a new expansion to the program, adding to the library of Original Xbox titles to those that will work on the Xbox One. The first title announced for this program is a fan-favorite, Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge. This program will be launching later in 2017. He followed that with the announcement of free 4k updates to Minecraft, Gear of War 4, Forza Horizon 3, Killer Instinct and Halo Wars 2. He followed this with the announcement that over 30 titles will be receiving free 4k updates as well on the Xbox One. Announced were Final Fantasy 15, Resident Evil 7, Ghost Recon: Wildlands and Rocket League, and that was him just naming a few of them.


He then boasts that this had the most diverse game lineup shown at E3 by Microsoft for the Xbox family of systems. He then announced that the Xbox One S will retail for $249.99 (US) and that the Xbox One X will be on sale later this year for $499.99.

 Microsoft E3 2017 Anthem

Then he moved toward closing the press conference. Spencer then invited Patrick Söderlund onto the stage from EA Worldwide Studios to talk about the final game of the day. He talked about a new open world game from Bioware for the gamers to enjoy. Patrick then introduced Jon Warner from Bioware to introduce their new IP, "Anthem." It showed the world through the first person persecttive for meeting one of the NPCs, Praxley, who made the mistake of hiring some workers who seem to have disappeared on him. He asks the Freelancer to go and bring them back. We see this freelancer wander through the crowded streets of a bazaar. We then see 2 players leaving the safety of the city in their exoskeleton suits to track down the workers. Every player will come to possess an array of exosuits called Javelins. Each of them are very customizable so they will look and play how each person will want them to. The world within the game will dynamic with a wide area for players to explore and numerous threats for them to fight. There will be a number of dynamic events happening all over the world of Anthem which will have seamless intergration of playes joining into your game session. This game is looking to release in 2018. After that was a recap of most of the games shown during this press conference. Plus many of the games that are expected to be making their way onto the different consoles.

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