E3: Microsoft Stuff
E3 started today with a heaping helping of press conference after press conference. I, unfortunately, was not able to watch any of the live streams because I was writing up the Konami Pre-E3 thing. So, here is a second-hand account of what was announced at the Microsoft press conference.
Mass Effect 3 Will Be Kinect-Enabled
Instead of using the analog stick for the dialogue, Ray just spoke the line he wanted to Sheppard to say and he spoke it. On top of the dialogue options, players will be able to use the Kinect voice stuff to issue commands in battle. So now when you scream at your AI companions to do shit, they might actually do it.
This sounds like it could be pretty interesting. I have not really seen a lot of practical uses for the Kinect aside from making yourself look retarded, but this could be kinda cool. Too bad I don’t own a Kinect.
Crytek Announces Ryse
Crytek, developers of Far Cry and Crysis, announced that they will be working on a Kinect action title called Ryse. Set in the age of the Roman empire, players will take control of the soldier fighting during an uprising. Players will swing, block and headbutt to fight against the rebels. Here’s a trailer:
Man, Kinect has some pretty cool looking stuff this year. It may just be me, but the gameplay in the trailer kind of reminds me of the Condemned games. I am really starting to want a Kinect.
Fable: The Journey
Peter Molyneux, founder of Lionhead Studios and creator of the Fable series, announced that Lionhead will be releasing Fable: The Journey, an on-rails title for Kinect. Set at some point in the Albion universe, players will encounter enemies at set points then wave their arms around like a lunatic to cast spells and attack the enemies in different ways.
You lost me, Kinect.
Dance Central 2
Kasson Crooker, the project lead for Dance Central, came out and announced that Harmonix will be releasing a sequel to their Kinect smash-hit. On top of all the tracks that come with the game, all the tracks from the original Dance Central will export over to the new game. With this export option, Crooker says that this game will have “the most music available for any dance game, anywhere.”
Coming back around, Kinect.
Yupp, they’re making another one. Even after the end of Halo 3, Master Chief is alive and kicking. Kicking off a new trilogy, that is. Halo 4 is set to be the first game in a new Halo trilogy developed entirely by 343 Industries.
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition
After ten years of racist 12-year olds yelling about how they are gonna skullfuck you mom, 343 Industries has announced that they will be re-releasing the original Halo: Combat Evolved. With updated HD graphics, players will be able to relive the game that started it all. Along with the update campaign, there will also be updated multiplayer maps.
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition will be released November 15, 2011. Here is the trailer:
I really couldn’t care less about this. I played the original Halo and I played the multiplayer. That gave me my fill. Plus, Halo is on Games on Demand and it is backwards compatible. How many copies of this game do you need?
Summer of Arcade
Since summer is right around the corner, so is Summer of Arcade. Here are the games we can expect in the coming months:
– Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet, looks like a cross between Lunar Lander and Patapon (at least the visuals from Patapon, anyway)
– From Dust, a god game from the guy who made Out of this World
– Toy Soldiers: Cold War, a war between child’s playthings
– Fruit Ninja Kinect, it’s Fruit Ninja for Kinect
– Bastion, an action-adventure game with Ron Perlman
(No trailer, sorry)
New New NXE
Over the past 4 years, Microsoft has updated the 360 dashboard 3 times.
First we had the blades. Then we got rid of the blades. Then we updated the bladeless. Last year they updated things to help support Kinect. This time around, they are expanding on the Kinect’s voice stuff.
Using Bing, Microsoft’s search engine, users will be able to search through games, videos, music and other content just by talking. You will also be able to use the voice command stuff to open applications from the dashboard.
Microsoft will also be bringing live TV to the Xbox. Xbox owners in the UK and Australia have had this functionality for a while, but now it is being brought over here. I really couldn’t care less.
These new features will be coming this fall.
Cloud and Beacons
After the press conference, an update showed up on Major Nelson’s blog about two cool new features.
First, cloud saves. Already featured in some other consoles, Xbox owners have been wanting this for a while now. With cloud saves, you will be able to recover your gamertag and save files from any Xbox as long as you are signed in to Xbox Live.
Second, beacons. Have you ever tried to invite a large amount people into a game? Having to go through your friends list and invite each one individually is a hassle, isn’t it? Well no more. With beacons, your Xbox Live friends list is signaled that you are online and that you want to play something with whoever is currently online. Then, anyone who wants to play just joins and away you go.
I think both of these new features are pretty cool. When I have Donny over and we want to play something and we both want the achievements, it sucks having to recover his profile every time. The beacons thing sounds pretty cool, too. At some point in the future we might start running multiplayer things and that would really help us there.
Wow, that was a lot. I have more stuff to post, but I need a break. Also, anyone want to write for us? Email me, firstname.lastname@example.org. I need help. Come back when we have more E3 stuff.