Microsoft’s E3 press conference has come to a close and some very impressive things were mentioned, and unsurprisingly Kinect was a big feature.
Starting off the show was Halo 4 and a very impressive live action short that segued smoothly into a live action gameplay demo. Featuring a new enemy to face off against, as well as new tech to use, Halo 4 certainly looks impressive.
Next up was the announcement and confirmation of the much rumoured Splinter Cell: Blacklist. This rather action packed and gory entry from Ubisoft Toronto sees Fisher back into his stealth suit but this time with some of Convictions gameplay wisdoms. It’s violent for sure, and it features some Kinect voice functionality to get you really involved. Check out some images we’ve got too.
More Kinect based gaming came in the form of Fifa 13 and Madden 13, both of which feature Kinect voice recognition and adaptive in-game commentary to boot! And it tells you off if you swear a little bit too loudly at the TV.
Forza Horizon then took to the stage, showing off a mch more brash and crash happy racer; as suspected it’s a lot more party central and shows the joys of sportcar racing, it’ll hit on October 23rd too.
Calming the show down a fair bit came the introduction of Kinect Bing search enhancement, including voice recognition for different languages and genre specific search. Microsof also announced new video partners, Nickelodeon, Paramount, Telenovela and Machina for their new video update. The NBA will also be hitting Xbox 360 along with NHL. You’ll also be able to watch ESPN completely thought your Xbox whenever you want in complete HD.
Music will also be coming, thus confirming the rumours that hit the net about an Xbox Music service. It’ll hit Xbox 360 as well as Windows 8 and smartphones and tablets.
It seems that Kinect will also play host to “the future of fitness” with Nike getting on board with the device to help people “unleash their potential.” The Nike + Training will integrate with your smartphone and Kinect to really help you get fit the Nike way, and track your entire progress too.
Xbox Live is also getting a streaming service between devices as it was rumoured, it’s known as ‘Smart Glass’. The streaming service seems seamless between tablet and console, allowing you to watch on the go or watch comfortably after you’ve gotten in. The devices all keep up with each other too, providing you with extra features to enhance your experience. It also seems to work with games, as Halo 4 was showing Waypoint on a tablet device to help compare and enhance your gaming experience. Smart Glass also lets you control the menu like you can with Kinect.
Interestingly Microsoft have also brought Internet Explorer to Xbox 360 via the use of Smart Glass. This innovation was already rumoured, but nothing had been made concrete. it features full Kinect integration as well and Smart Glass features meaning you can make a touchscreen into a mouse making it much easier to use.
Tomb Raider also got a live gameplay demo, and it definitely looks like it’s kept to the gritty origin story it wanted to portray. It smacks of Uncharted meets lots of mud.
Capcom came to the stage and unleashed an impressive live demo of Resident Evil 6 that showed off just how the game will play. Nicely it looks like a return to the Resident Evil 4 look and feel but with a lot of Hollywood action thrown in to create a much more action packed RE title that isn’t as out of the series feel as Resi 5 was. Interestingly though the demo only showed off Leon Kennedy’s gameplay and story arc, meaning that 2 others are yet to be shown, and could have a completely different feel.
Wreckateer was also announced for Kinect and whilst it seems like a 3D version of Angry Birds, this family friendly Kinect title should cause a riot for the more casual player.
After that announcement came the rather brilliant trailer for South Park: The Stick of Truth, where you take up the role of a new kid in South Park who wants to get right into the group. Little information was really given, but it’s going to be an RPG and it’s developed by Obsidian, however we already knew all of that.
Surprisingly we then got treated to a lovely little number from dance star Usher for Harmonix’s next game Dance Central 3. Having taken to the stage and performing his new single, Usher showed off some of the moves that he’d choreographed for Harmonix’s third entry into the series. No more details about the game were actually given, but it seems unlikely that gameplay has changed too much.
Finally to wrap up this hour and a half showcase Activision’s Black Ops 2 hit the stage and showed off just what Treyarch will be bringing to the next instalment of the franchise. The live action demo that was shown was pretty impressive, and featured a lot of futuristic tech and the typical Hollywood stylings that the series has now adopted.
All in all it was a very third party heavy conference with only a couple of first party titles that really make you want to pay attention. The new Xbox dashboard features are also pretty interesting, but were they really the things people wanted to see at E3? We think not.