E3 Day 2 Report

E3 Day 2 Report
by Bea

E3 Day 2 Battle of the Titans! Ready…Set!
Microsoft
Microsoft’s announcements seemed like a desperate grab for relevancy and it may have worked. Keywords “may have”.  This was Day 2 and the bar was already slightly raised after Bethesda announcements day prior, but not high enough that a steed from the shire couldn’t jump over. Microsoft had to do something….ANYTHING. This was E3 after all.  Maybe it was mainly due to lower volumes of Xbox 360 consoles sold. Maybe it was poor sales and a 17% decreased revenue. Microsoft took a harder pivot than something that pivots really hard. PS4’s market dominance hasn’t reached PS2 levels but it feels as close as it’s ever been. 
In reaction to that, Microsoft:
  • completely abandoned the Hololens like the ring abandoned Gollum. Somewhere in the broom closet at Microsoft headquarters the head designers are screaming out “My precious”.  
  • threw their weight behind a console that they then immediately announced would be irrelevant in a year. Honestly they should’ve Beyonce this and dropped the “s” system overnight to be discovered by the ever twitching gamers that haunt game stop and other viable locations.
  • announced Project Scorpio (more information as it comes out, but it’s going to be sexy. Like all you can eat taco night tacos sexy.)  and it is to be released in order to be able to accommodate VR
  • did a soft removal from the console market entirely by marrying the Windows 10 ecosystem into the Xbox console space.

Microsoft is breaking down the barriers between console and PC by having a single ecosystem for both Xbox and Windows 10. It’s a pivot toward an apple-style single ecosystem which could have impacts beyond just gaming. This could be a signal toward comprehensive PC functionality intended for your living room. Honestly at this point it’s not new, if you have an Xbox system it’s already the central point in your living room but now they are opening it to have all your gadgets, gizmos and electronic devices all talk to each other. For example Little sally wants to finish her temple of pink and purple wool on her yet millionith minecraft world but on your tablet while waiting for your grand slam at Denny’s? BOOM! DONE! Your little princess can do that for her army of kittens, wolves and zombie pig men with a side of bacon. Microsoft has paid lip service to this idea before but they now seem to be taking concrete steps toward that goal.

It’s a bold move, Cotton, and we’ll see how it plays out. Microsoft needed to do something because they were falling further and further behind Sony in the current iteration of the console wars. Not every company would drop a product with as much investment in it as Hololens as Microsoft seemingly has but people concerned with the executive direction should be heartened by the pivot as opposed to disappointed by the inconsistency. Microsoft doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon.
Microsoft showed some games, Sea of Thieves in particular looks nice, but nothing that overwhelmed.
It’s unclear if Microsoft will support HTC Vive, Occulus Rift, their own VR accessories. The fact that Microsoft is two steps behind Sony in terms of software, hardware, and accessories really puts them behind the 8-ball. Leveraging their only advantage, Microsoft itself, seems like the smartest way forward.
Software
Games of note:
Titanfall 2
Sea of Thieves. Heres your chance to be a pirate! Play one, Be one, act like one and go down with your ship like one.
Gwent (The card game from Witcher 3 I think? Is it weird that I haven’t played any Witcher games? How does witching get bastardized so?)
Forza (but like Madden for EA, it’s a given there’s a new one every year.)
Halo Wars 2– Which is more about strategy than first person shoot’em up versions in the past. 
Dead Rising 4. Coming out sometime in the holiday just in time for the fourth day of christmas with weird hyper powerful weapons all nestled into someones stocking. 
State of Decay 2. YAY ZOMBIES. YAY ZOMBIE SEQUEL GAME. yeah i’m not even going to go there. You get the point. 
Hardware
No Hololens
New Controller/ controller design lab (seriously, it’s uber cool.)
Xbox/Win 10 barriers broken (cross platform gaming) (Play Anywhere..like anywhere..yup there as well)
Xbox One S 
And finally, Project Scorpio.
Project Scorpio. Whilst sounding like some new James Bond movie, it is not. It’s just as sexy, and oh so dangerous…to your wallet. Now why would they announce something so soon that won’t be coming out for another year? I don’t know,  I have no reasonable answer for their preejuculation. This announcement makes the S a total cock tease all the while teasing us with Project Scorpio. Total serious dick move.  But I digress. 
Project Scorpio will have an 8 core CPU, 4k capable, have a graphics card with 6TFLOPs of all the power of the known universe. It will also have 320GB/s of memory space. This is THEE console made for VR, run games meant for that system, Xbox One, and Xbox One S (waits for the spontaneous sounds of zippers being zipped down due to that sexy word “backward compatible” and glees from all over the world) yes…it’s going to be that awesome for about $600. Time to hold those bake sales kids! And maybe sell a kidney.
Ubisoft…More like UBI Whom?
First off, Ubisoft sucks. They always downgrade their games from what they show at E3. Please take any game they show with GTX 1080 sized graphical salt lick. Think 50 demo shades of what it used to be. This is why I can’t buy into Wildlands, Watch Dogs 2, or Steep until I see the released product. DON’T PRE-ORDER, KIDS!
The Fractured But Whole.  Heh.
Star Trek Bridge Crew looked really interesting. I don’t know anyone with 4 VR headsets or 4 friends with 1 VR headset each so I don’t know how great of an idea this is at this time. Might have been a better product to introduce once VR has become more ubiquitous. 
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands
South Park The Fractured But Whole
Watch Dogs 2
Steep
Star Trek Bridge Crew
*uses hand sanitizer before moving on*


Sony *picks up mic*
Props to these guys. They had a live symphony to start off with! WHO DOES THAT!?!  Oh they were ready and like a power house cheer squad, they friggin brought it.
Unfazed by Microsoft’s Project Scorpio announcement, Sony kept mum on the rumored Project Neo, the supposed next-gen Sony console. Sony smugly emphasized that the PS4’s hardware can currently handle VR and left unsaid that the XB1 currently cannot. They then unveiled in grand fashion the kinds of games that make people excited. Each of these games has an interesting and unique angle.
Software
Dad of War (Ol’ Pal Kratos vs. Norse Mythology. Bearded Norse WAR GODS. *sighs happily*)
Days Gone (Zombies done in a unique way whaaaaaat?) Bike Gang Zombie Apocalypse. That is all. Watch the demo. ARRRGHHH!! 
Horizon: Zero Dawn (Primitive/Futuristic Robot/Dinosaurs whaaaaaat?)
Detroit: Become Human (Heavy Rain meets Choose-Your-Own-Adventure)
Resident Evil VII: VR (Oooo this was super creepy, like waking up in abandoned houses with cockroaches on your hand creepy)
Lego Force Awakens (I’m a sucker for Lego Games. I’m a sucker for Star Wars. I was transfixed for more than One. Quarter. Portion. Of this trailer) *squees internally forever*
Death Stranding  (Kojima’s new venture. This was THE news of the gaming industry. It was also 7 kinds of weird and NORMAN REEDUS NAKED BUTT. yeah ok i’m ok with this.)
Spider-Man exclusive (I didn’t know I wanted this game and shut-up and take my money)
The Last Guardian. Gorgeous Graphics.
Call of Duty Infinite War. It’s unlike anything you’ve seen before from this franchise. Dog fighting in space, Launch tubes, and first person skywalking in Space. 
Crash Bandicoot. Remastered and ready. PS4 and Skylanders (a system that could have shown the Disney Infinity how to survive, but I will bitterly digress.)
Hardware
Playstation VR – $300 10/13
Battlefront X-Wing Mission, Farpoint, Rocksteady’s Batman game, and the promise of 50 games to be available at launch.
FINISH THEM! 
And Sony did just that all before bedtime. Amazing.
 *drops mic* 

Day 3. Suit up Nintendo…You’re up.

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