E3: Microsoft Announces Xbox One X, Original Xbox Backwards Compatibility, Much MorePhoto via Microsoft Games News E3 2017
Microsoft’s E3 2017 press conference came out swinging by officially announcing their powerful new console, the $499 Xbox One X. It’s a stupid name for a company that can’t seem to dig itself out of the hole of pointless names they’ve dug themselves into, but don’t let the name distract from a genuinely exciting console. After that huge reveal, the company went on to show game after game in a very software-heavy show. Read on for a full recap of the conference.
Xbox One X
After months of wondering what exactly Microsoft’s new console, “Project Scorpio,” would actually be named, fans no longer have to wait. The Xbox One X will hit shelves on Nov. 7 of this year for a hefty $499. The announcement was made in a beautifully rendered 4K trailer that spent a lot of time on a young, female gamer getting her hair blasted around by the power of 4K. We’ve already talked about the new console’s specs, but it’s nice to know we’ll soon be able to try the system out for ourselves.
On this note, several current Xbox One games will be getting updates for the forthcoming console. Gears of War 4, Forza Horizon 3, Killer Instinct, Halo Wars 2, Final Fantasy XV, Resident Evil 7, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, Rocket League and Minecraft will all receive 4K updates, alongside 30 other titles—all for free.
Original Xbox Backwards Compatibility
One of the more surprising announcements came when Xbox head Phil Spencer announced that the Xbox One would now play original Xbox games. That’s right, boys and girls, time to dust off that old copy of Super Shrek Party and reignite the magic. Spencer went on to claim that over half of Xbox One users have played a backwards-compatible game, which is a good thing, apparently.
The trailer for Bioware’s new game actually ran at the end of the show, but it’s too notable to bury. The game is narrated by one of the game’s creators, who sets up each section of the trailer. The clip starts by claiming everything we see is in-game footage. After walking around and talking to people, the main character dons a slick exosuit and flies away to battle monsters. The game looks like it could be a return to relevance for Bioware after this year’s underwhelming Mass Effect: Andromeda.
It seems like we’ve been writing about Tacoma for years, and that’s because we have. The second game from the team behind Gone Home, this sci-fi mystery thriller will finally be out on August 2.
“What the hell is a Cuphead?” you may ask. Well, it’s almost exactly what you’d expect: a creature who has a cup for a head. And this is another game we’ve been covering for years at this point. (Games people should really consider tightening up the promotional cycle on these things.) The game itself is a 2D sidescroller shooter with the aesthetic of a 1930s cartoon. Try and make sense of it all on Sept. 29.
Shadow of War
2014’s Shadow of Mordor was a refreshingly unique game set in the Lord of the Rings universe. It revolved a novel mechanic called a “Nemesis System” whereby certain enemies that defeated you would remember you next time you encountered them. Additionally, every time you killed an orc, it would create a power imbalance in the ranks that would cause a shuffling of lesser orcs and their ranks. It was a fluid and dynamic system that created exciting and unscripted narrative moments. The trailer for the game’s sequel wisely focuses on how this system will be updated and provides a glimpse at some of the orcs you’ll be slaughtering by the hundreds.
For many long-time Xbox owners, the official trailer for Crackdown 3 was a long time coming. Not only has it been seven years since Crackdown 2, but it’s already been three years since the latest sequel was announced, and we haven’t seen much of the actual game, until now.
The trailer starts out like a typical Old Spice commercial, even down to including a screaming Terry Crews as “Commander Jaxon.” After a minute of Crews yelling and sporadically firing his laser gun, the trailer transitions to actual in-game action. It mostly consists of about 200 shots of exploding cars, but there do appear to be hints of increased environmental destruction and previously promised cooperative play. The game will release on Nov. 7 alongside the Xbox One X.
Forza Motorsport 7
The new Forza Motorsport 7 game was actually the first announced, and it looks beautiful. Ostensibly, it’s still just a racing game so presumably your enjoyment will largely revolve around your love of that genre. But at 4K resolution and 60 fps, the game will most likely be gorgeous to look at regardless. It comes out Oct. 3 for Xbox One and “Holiday 2017” for PC and Xbox One X.
The bleak Metro is one of Paste’s favorite series over the last decade, so obviously we’re going to be interested in a new installment. The third game in the series releases next year and the trailer hints at an open-world setting, which, if we’re honest, is the best way to experience the post-apocalypse.
Assassin’s Creed Origins
For almost a decade, Ubisoft consistently cranked out Assassin’s Creed releases year after year. Maybe unsurprisingly, they slowly grew tired. So last year, Ubisoft took a little break to refresh the whole thing. And now they return with Assassin’s Creed Origins, which is set in Ancient Egypt and will hopefully revolve around assassinations carried out by cats, a la Stephen King’s Sleepwalkers. Either way, the trailer looks suitably intense and entertaining. It releases on Xbox One, PS4 and PC on Oct. 17.
State of Decay 2
The original State of Decay was sort of like an old go-kart. There’s a lot of potential excitement to be had, but every time you really open the throttle, the engine stalls and you’re left sitting in the open to be subsequently devoured by zombies. State of Decay was stuffed with great ideas and concepts, but bugs and poor execution kept the game from being a true classic.
That’s why it’s so exciting that State of Decay 2 looks like somebody actually spent some time making the game playable. Time will tell if it’s actually any fun, but the trailer is a good start. The game is expected to drop in spring of 2018.
Sea of Thieves
The trailer for Rare’s forthcoming open-world online pirate game Sea of Thieves is impressively slow. The game itself looks pretty fun, and your enjoyment of the nine-minute trailer will largely depend on how interesting you find goofy Irish pirate narration. The seas will be available for pillaging in early 2018.
Super Lucky’s Tale
This is probably the cutest game trailer of the conference. Super Lucky’s Tale’s trailer conjure up nostalgic memories of old 3D platforms like Mario 64. The cuteness begins Nov. 7.
Ori and the Will of the Wisps
Ori and the Blind Forest was one of 2015’s best games, and it’s sequel looks absolutely gorgeous. It’s like Metroid, but you’ll cry tears of genuine sadness instead of frustration.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds basically throws 100 people into a server and tasks them with being the last person alive. Do you team up with players you’ll have to betray later, or do you go it alone and hide in a dumpster with a flamethrower? Find out for yourself when the PC smash hits the Xbox later this year.
Deep Rock Galactic
If you’ve ever been interested in both rock mining and shooting creepy spiders, Deep Rock Galactic appears to have you covered. It doesn’t have a release date, but the trailer does show a lot of rocks getting smashed.
The Darwin Project
Another Hunger Games-like title, The Darwin Project tasks players with surviving at the expense of all other competitors. The game’s cartoony graphics are somewhat at odds with the brutal premise, but, hey, aren’t all games basically just large-scale murder sprees anyway?
Minecraft in 4K
This one is pretty self-explanatory.
DRAGON BALL FighterZ
Shit gets punched, people yell. That should be DRAGON BALL FighterZ’s tagline. You can punch shit and yell for yourself in early 2018.
The MMO Black Desert Online will debut on Xbox One for anybody that wants to play that game—yet another game where every action is paired with some sort of Link-esque “Hiyah!” Hard to imagine that being very intimidating for all these stone golems and evil birds.
The Last Night
The Last Night is the closest we’ll ever get to a high-definition version of an 8-bit Blade Runner. So it’s got that going on. You’ll definitely need your cyberpunk pants for this bad boy.
The Artful Escape
The Artful Escape looks like a gorgeous rendering of South Park’s “cutout” style. It also includes epic guitar solos. Yes, that makes no sense. Just watch the trailer. Also, this game has the courage to say what every other game is thinking, which is that it’ll come out “When it’s damn ready.” So that’s … honest.
The trailer for this game looks like a cel-shaded Dark Souls experience. It definitely looks like a game where you’ll die a whole lot.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm
2015’s Life is Strange is getting a three-part prequel that starts with Before the Storm.
Sporting one of the most forgettable names in recent memory, Code Vein looks like a pretty straightforward hack ‘n’ slash bolstered by gorgeous graphics and anime quirk. Look to stab some vampires in 2018.
ID@Xbox Games Montage
The title sums this up nicely.
4K Gaming Trailer
It’s games, but in super-high definition.
Here’s a list of all the announced games and whether they’re Xbox exclusives or not, per Kotaku.
-The Artful Escape of Francis Vendetti (Console launch exclusive)
-Ashen (Console launch exclusive)
-Assassin’s Creed: Origins (Non-exclusive)
-Black Desert (Console launch exclusive)
-Code Vein (Non-exclusive)
-Crackdown 3 (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-Cuphead (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-The Darwin Experiment (Console launch exclusive)
-Deep Rock Galactic (Console launch exclusive)
-Dragon Ball Fighter Z (Non-exclusive)
-Forza Motorsport 7 (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-The Last Night (Console launch exclusive)
-Life Is Strange (Non-exclusive)
-Metro Exodus (Non-exclusive)
-Middle-Earth: Shadow of War (Non-exclusive)
-Ori and the Will of the Wisps (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (Console launch exclusive)
-Sea of Thieves (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-State of Decay 2 (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-Super Lucky’s Tale (Xbox One and Windows 10 exclusive)
-Tacoma (Console exclusive)