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A Picture Recap Of Microsoft's E3 Conference

by on 06/17/2015
 
Now that all the major studios have run their E3 conferences, the general consensus is that Sony won the show. But Microsoft put up a decent fight and showed some cool tech in the meantime. Here’s a brief recap, garnished with photos taken during the event itself.
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Phil Spencer, head of Microsoft’s XBox division and XBox studios, took the stage first to introduce new footage of Halo 5, its finalized name (Halo 5: Guardians) and its release date (October 27, 2015). There were many cheers from the crowd. Phil then revealed XBox One would soon gain backwards compatibility with Xbox 360 discs, accepting around 100 titles as soon as this holiday season. “If you’ve been waiting to move away from xBox 360, now’s the time,” Spencer said, adding that he felt XBox now has “one of the greatest games lineups in history.”
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EA took the stage next to introduce Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare II, but their presentation was a bit boring and the audience frenzy from Halo 5 soon dulled to a whimper.
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Next, Microsoft introduced Forza Motorsport 6. The big news was the expansion of multiplayer to include as many as 24 cars racing simultaneously. Henry Ford the Third made an appearance onstage to reveal an exclusive deal to license several of its sports cars in the game, and on that note, a bright blue Ford GT was lowered from the ceiling to the floor. Forza 6 has a release date of September 15, 2015.
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Ubisoft debuted their trailer for Tom Clancy’s The Division. Some pretty cool footage appeared and the company revealed that a beta for the game would be available this December. Those who purchase The Division will get Rainbow Six Vegas 1 and 2 for free. If you already have the discs for those games, you’ll get them for free anyway in a sense; they are on the list of backwards-compatible 360 games.
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Square-Enix debuted the trailer for Rise of the Tomb Raider, the same trailer they would repeat in their own conference. It will be released on November 10, 2015….which is the same day as Fallout 4. Combine that with the exclusivity deal and Square has just lost all right to complain about the initial sales of this game.
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A representative from Rare took the stage to reveal the big secret game they’ve been hinting at over the past few months: Sea of Thieves, a pirate-themed adventure. Rare also revealed every game they’ve created to date — 30 in all — will be sold in a special physical collection for the XBox One, at a price of $30 (one dollar a game).
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Microsoft came back and introduced Fable Legends (zzzzzz), then spoke briefly about gaming with Windows 10. They mentioned a new relationship with Valve and Steam, and that Valve’s upcoming VR visor would be compatible with Windows 10 (well, it better be). “we will be working closely with Valve to make Windows 10 the best platform for VR gaming,” they said.
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And on the subject of 3D glasses, the coolest demonstration of the show was next: Minecraft on Hololens. Lydia Winters from Mojang demonstrated how Hololens could use augmented reality technology to project the Minecraft game onto a table and make it seem like it was really there. You can really move and manipulate objects in 3D space with your fingers, and the game also responds to voice commands. It’s even possible to point at objects with your eyes and manipulate them just by looking at them.
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Gears of War material was revealed toward the end: the rumored remastered version of the original game was confirmed, and Gears of War 4 was shown off with five minutes of footage. Gears 4 is still early and won’t be out in 2015.
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Phil Spencer returned to the stage, recapped the morning’s announcements, and assured the press that XBox had an exciting year ahead of it.
 

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