Xbox E3 2019 - Recap
Microsoft said this year's Xbox E3 showcase would be BIG. They didn't say THIS big.
It was jam packed with games, games, games, and games. Just when you thought it was over...More games. I was impressed with the pace; I never got bored. We got Halo. We got incredible hardware info. We learned what George RR Martin has been doing instead of finishing the Game of Thrones books. We got a better more exciting Jedi Fallen Order look than even what was at EA Play.
Xbox also did something that impressed me. I think they finally made me care about Xbox Game Pass.
If you're interested in the full event you can check that out below.
cyberpunk 2077...and THAT Guest appearance
I didn't think CD Project Red could possibly one-up their reveal last year. Their last minute pysch-out interupt trailer reveal was legendary and made an instant win for the Xbox conference 2018. However, they once again achieved the impossible. They ended an otherwise average looking trailer with a big reveal that none other was Keanu Reeves was going to be playing a character in the game. The crowd lost it, and I lost it when I saw the man the legend John Wick himself crouch down in the trailer and step out onto stage. We all thought the release date was going to be the highlight of the CP2077 portion; it turned out to be Reeves! CyberPunk 2077 will be out 4/16/20!
The outer worlds
Not to be confused with one of 2019's best games so far, "Outer Wilds", The Outer Worlds, made by Obsidian Entertainment, also looks to be also really trully amazing. We now actually get a story trailer and more details about the proteagonist. The narration implies heavily player choice in the way the morality of the character will be. We also got a release date for Outer Worlds to be 10/25/19!
If you had no idea what this creepy first person horror game was until the title reveal, you would be in the same company as me. I'm not a huge horror game player, but I did think it looked impressive.
xbox one elite controller series 2
I did not expect this one at all. Yes there were rumors for a while about a second generation elite controller. However, when those rumors were circling Microsoft simply released a white version of the first generation. Then the rumors largely stopped. After all this time, many of us assumed the second generation rumors were just not true. Now, in the same conference where we learn about next gen, we also finally got word on a second generation wireless Elite controller. It improves on the original in every way. It will offer three profiles for specific games as well. It did get a 30 dollar premium over the original. While I'm exicited for the news on a series 2, especially since it was the unfilled rumors of an upcoming second gen that stopped me from buying the first one, I now have a similar conundrum. I think Microsoft erred when they didn't announce future compatibility for controllers. While the Xbox One X maintained support for previous controllers, the next generation consoles are trully next generation. What guarantee do we have this 180$ controller is going to work for the next gen console? Microsoft should have realized that the prime audience of gamers who will care about this controller are also the ones who are going to buy the next gen. They need to go on record and talk about accessories on next gen. If it will work with next gen then it may be worth it for core gamers.
dying light 2
Zombies Zombies Zombies. There was a point where I pretty much swore off ever playing another zombie game. Dissappointments abounded with recently State of Decay leaving a awful taste in my mouth. However, more recently WWZ brought back my faith in zombie games relevency and fun. Seriously if you haven't played that yet you must try it out. It is enough to make me want to take a leap of faith on Dying Light 2 as well. This trailer really does get me excited.
Elden ring (from software x george rr martin collab)
Finally we learn what George RR Martin has been up to lately...because it sure isn't writing books! You know what? I'm ok with that video games are better. We got a name and vague intriguing teaser, but that's it. It's also made by From Software. So probably will be too hard for most of us mortals anyways.
I hadn't heard about this game before but apparently it has a pretty big following on PC. Phil Spencer was pretty excited about this game coming to Xbox One. The trailer made it look like "another" vague military shooter. It would have been nice to get details on what makes it unique. It will be Free so can't complain about that.
gears 5 (& Gears Pop)
I never really got into Gears that much. The opening to this trailer looked a little weird. We also got another look at Gears Pop for mobile. I know many Gears fans are super amped for Gears 5 so if that's you definitely check out the trailer above.
This once meme-able internet joke was announced with a logo last year and since then we have heard nothing. Now we actually get a first look at the goofy cartoon action. I don't think it looks like my cup of tea, but many are very excited for this new game.
xbox game pass for pc
Xbox announced that Xbox Game Pass is making its way to PC, and during the event they announced that the Beta was live. PC players can now access GP though the Xbox App in the Microsoft Store. If your Steam backlog wasn't enough, now you will have up to a 100 new games to play; all for the low price of 9.99$ a month. Here's the real cool thing though. Microsoft is bundling XGP for PC with Game Pass Ultimate!
xbox game Pass ultimate
Xbox actually announced Game Pass Ultimate a little while back, and then I kind of scatch my head. It simply took Live and GP and bundled it together for the same price. It really didn't add much value. I really wasn't sold on GP yet. When GP first launch I tried it, but the library was entirely composed of games I either already ownerd, or didn't care to play. I didn't renew. I always kind of felt that way about GP. The Games I want I own. However, Xbox has finally done three things to make me care about Game Pass.
Xbox bundled Game Pass for PC into Ulitmate for FREE. Which means when I build my rig later this year as I hope, I'll get value there as well. However, during this conference Microsoft showed so many amazing indie titles coming to GP. GP looks to be evolving into a place to try out indie gems stress free. Already Outer Wilds is one of the best games of the year. Xbox sweetened the pot with a unique and very tempting offer at E3. Xbox was offering members to upgrade their existing paid Live Gold or GP memberships up to 36 months to Ulitmate for only a 1$. Which means if your Gold is paid up for three years, you can essentially get 3 years of Game Pass Ulitmate. I'm paid up until December, I wasn't going to pass that up.
ori and the will of the wisps
Much anticipated Ori and the Will of the Wisps finally gets a release date! February 2020 will finally get to play this beautiful game. Ori will also launch day one on Game Pass.
Rumors abounded the weeks leading up to E3 around what Microsoft was going to reveal about the next generation of Xbox. We still don't know the actual name, but the official project name is Project Scarlett. While it is still a ways away, we did get to learn some details about the machine. It is definitely going to continue to push Microsoft's 'most powerful branding". Project Scarlett is going to run a custom AMD process and be a ridiculous 4x more powerful than the Xbox One X. It will support games in 8K resolution, at 120 FPS. It will extremely lower load times, with features like GDDR6 ram and a super fast SSD. This is super exciting, and is coming Holiday 2020.
Phil Spencer ended the Project Scarlett conversation by stating that Halo Infinite will be a launch title for Project Scarlette. So now we know Halo Infinite is Holiday 2020, a sad year and a half away. We got to see a first real trailer for Halo Infinite. This is where we see the new art style for Master Chief. I have to say I'm on the fence. While a new Halo is long over due and not arriving anytime soon, making me super excited for the next halo; I had a mixed reaction. The "new art style" they've been talking about was now shown off. Master Chief looks like a high resolution version of his original look. His suit is this bright green and looks different...
My initial reaction was...Yes because THAT'S what fans had problems with. We
"hated" his modern look, not the fact that he was a small presence in Halo 5.
Did anyone actually hate the modern look of chief? I thought Halo 4 and 5 were by far the best looking Halo's. So I'll admit I'm skeptical about this "spiritual reboot". We didn't hate the art direction we just wanted more Chief and wanted couch coop. Dispite this I am still excited for Halo Infinite.
What was missing?
I will say that I do not see how anyone can possibly beat Xbox at E3. They simply brought more more announcements, and more games. They hit hard with games, services, and even teased hardware. That being said there were some things that were rumored to be at Xbox E3 that ended up not.
Xbox Game Pass for Nintendo Switch
This was rumored to be coming as Xbox's partnership with Nintendo grows, as well as part of a way of promoting Xbox's XCloud service. Speaking of Xcloud...
Project xCloud details
Many including myself were expecting full details on xCloud and possibily a xCloud powered Game Pass. This would make timely sense since we just got more details on Google Stadia. All we learned is that Xbox One will gain the ability to stream existing games from itself to your devices in someway for free (similar to Playstion Remote Share or SteamLink. This is great news, and that feature is coming later this year. However that's all we got. We didn't learn the offical non-project name for xCloud? We didn't learn about a GamePass powered xCloud service that could stream games to devices no Xbox needed. We got very little about xCloud when I predicted that to be a good chunk of the event. We heard more during the year and a half away Project Scarelett than we did Project xCloud which was surprising.
Rumors and many speculated that this would be when Xbox revealed the next Fable game. Fable is long been one of the Gears/Halo level xbox cards that they have really failed to lay down. In the battle of exclusives and consoles, keeping a unplayed card like Fable for so long has been an odd choice for Xbox. Even if its not ready yet or a 2020/21 next gen game, give us a logo only tease?
Another really old unused brand that was rumored to make an appearence was Perfect Dark and it was a no show. It would be really fun to see a next gen shooter of this series.
Call of Duty Modern Warfare?
This one is an odd one. Sony's absence from E3, and with no State of Play announced for the week, it just feels odd. They seem disconnected from players. Even with out full stage events EA and Nintendo at least bothered to show up with something. EA and Bethesda both didnt have much new ready to show, a very obvious off year, and Bethesda even had to make some self-deprecating jokes about themselves and Fallout 76. But they were at least there engaging with fans. Regaurdless, Sony's odd absence leaves me with a big question. Where is Call of Duty? Call of Duty always is at E3 with a major portion at the Playstation's event. Just becuase Sony didn't show, none of us thought that meant Activision would also ignore the largest stage in gaming. With Sony gone...Xbox is the only remaining event that makes sense for Activision to make an appearance. Last year Treyarch through an entire reveal event with details and modes for BO4. This year Xbox E3 has come and gone. No events. Only one reveal trailer. When and where are we going to learn more about COD MW 2019? Their biggest chance is over. Where next?
EA and Xbox have a pretty decent relationship. EA desperately needs a win, and with the failure of Anthem, all their cards rest currently on Apex Legends, the potential Fortnite competitor. Apex is the first game to seriously take on Fortnite in player count, twitch viewers, and revenue. EA needs Apex to destroy records during season 2. EA only devoted roughly a 30 minute stream to Apex Legends during the EAPlay stream. Yes it was amazing. Yes it had content. But the biggest new shooter of 2019, and the potential Fortnite killer needed MORE time in the spotlight. Xbox and EA needed to have Apex at least present during the E3 showcase. Releasing a new trailer during the Xbox conference would have been really smart.
That's all for Xbox E3 2019. Stay tuned for more major recaps and live tweets from the conferences. Game Infinite will be covering E3 2019 and bringing you all the latest news as it drops. Tomorrow kicks off with some updates with the Epic Games sponsored PC Gaming Show at 10AM PT / 1PM ET, followed by Ubisoft at 1PM PT / 4PM ET closing the day with what promises to be quite a sight with the Square Enix conference at 6PM PT / 9PM ET so make sure to catch the live news on twitter and here after on Game Infintie News.