E3 2014 – Microsoft
Microsoft definitely had a game focused conference, not that they didn’t say that from the beginning, but everything was games, and that was awesome. There were a few gems, like Sunset Overdrive from Insomniac Games, Crackdown and Project Spark, which all look amazing. Seeing Insomniac games back up there with Sunset Overdrive after their long running Ratchet and Clank series was pretty awesome, and if this game is as popular as the little Lombaxs’ series, then I could see this one being turned into another long-running game series.
There was a smattering of shooters as well, with the game play footage of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare or Call of Titanfall…, Evolve, which looks like TF2 mashed together with Natural Selection 2 and finally, Tom Clancy’s: The Division (there was also some Halo, but I’ll get to that in a sec). The Division looks to be a pretty cool gaming experience, where you play as an activated agent who is called in to help deal with the civil unrest of a city after it’s been devastated by an uncontrollable biological attack. This game was also shown in more detail in the Ubisoft press conference.
What Microsoft event would be complete without something from Halo. We not only saw a little bit of Halo 5: Guardians, but they also announced the Halo Master Chief Collection, which slams Halo 1-4 into a single disc. Each game in the collection will run on their own engines and include their original multiplayer maps, and in the case of Halo 2, six of it’s maps will be rebuilt using current gen graphics to bring them into them modern era. Releasing this bundle is a pretty smart idea on Microsoft’s part, since not only does this let people play the older games with a current console, it also tells the dev’s which parts of each game are the most popular, be it multiplayer maps or single player levels.
A few more games were shown at the event, such as Assassins Creed Unity, which featured the new four-player co-op game play, Rise of the Tomb Raider, which was shown in a pre-rendered cinematic, and an odd game called Scale Bound. This one looks like they combined Monster Hunter, which I love, and Lair. So the potential for this game is there, as long as I’m not stuck playing as a douchy looking skater punk wearing over-priced headphones.
Microsoft had a pretty strong showing this year, with a pretty extensive game library that wasn’t limited to Halo and other big shooters. With Project Spark and Sunset Overdrive being exclusive to the console make a pretty strong case for me to drop my several year long grudge against the Xbox platform and consider picking one up sometime in the future.
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