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Xbox Press Conference

Microsoft held the final of the three big E3 press conferences earlier today, and they put on an exciting show. Right off the bat some fantastic Gears of War footage was shown, displaying some breathtaking lighting effects. Following this was a barrage of information regarding the plethora of Xbox 360 and Live Arcade titles that are in the works. Here's a quick list of the new titles you can expect in the future:

New Arcade Games:

  • Pacman
  • Contra
  • Frogger
  • Galaga
  • Sonic
  • Defender
  • Street Fighter II Hyper Fighting
  • Time Pilot
  • Ultra Mortal Kombat 3
  • Scramble
  • Dig-dug
  • New rally-x
  • Ms. Pac-man
  • Paperboy
  • Lumines Live (including music videos to play in the background)

Xbox 360 Games:

  • Lost Planet
  • Table Tennis
  • Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway
  • Mass Effect
  • NHL 2k7
  • F.E.A.R.
  • Too Human
  • Viva Pinata
  • Moto GP '06
  • LOTR: Battle for Middle Earth II
  • Sonic The Hedgehog
  • Madden 07
  • World Series of Poker
  • Saint's Row
  • WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2007
  • Stranglehold
  • Enchanted Arms
  • Test Drive Unlimited
  • NCAA Football 07
  • Dead Rising
  • DDR Universe
  • Prey
  • Superman Returns
  • NBA 2k7
  • Crackdown
  • 99 Nights
  • Gears of War
  • Fable 2
  • Forza 2
  • Lost Odyssey
  • Blue Dragon
  • Dead or Alive Xtreme 2
  • Splinter Cell: Double Agent
  • Lego Star Wars II
  • Grand Theft Auto IV
  • Shadowrun
  • Alan Wake
  • Halo 3

To start off, Micorsoft mentioned some sales figures—the most interesting of which was the fact that there will be approximately 5 million Xbox 360’s sold by the 8 month mark. This is more than any other game console—and more than the iPod—following their respective debuts. Microsoft anticipates that there will be six million users on Xbox Live as of next year’s E3 (although they didn’t specify if this referred to Xbox Live Gold accounts, but it can be assumed this includes original Xbox Live, Xbox Live Silver and Gold users). The last sales statistic brought up was the 57% Xbox Live attach rate (as of last week). This is astoundingly high, and proves how large the Xbox Live community is becoming.

You can expect roughly 160 Xbox 360 titles by year’s end, in addition to a few exciting peripherals. This fall, Microsoft will release a wireless headset, wireless racing wheel (featuring force feedback) and the Xbox Live Vision Camera. No prices or release dates are yet available.

Microsoft’s external HD-DVD drive was on show; it looked somewhat like a smaller version of the 360 console. There will be around 50 HD-DVD movies by Christmas time, which is also the estimated release for the drive itself. Again, no price was revealed for this accessory.

The first big announcement came in the way of new games revealed, although they were, in retrospect, inevitable releases. Forza Motorsport 2 is in development, and will be available in time for this year’s holidays. Fable 2 is also in development by Lionhead Studios, although no estimated release was stated.

The biggest game announcement came in the way of yet another Peter Moore tattoo. Grand Theft Auto IV is headed to the Xbox 360, and will be released on October 16, 2007. Not only that, but Microsoft has come to an agreement with Rockstar for exclusive episodic content for the Xbox 360.

Thanks in part to the success of the joint release of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (it was released simultaneously on the PC and Xbox 360), more joint releases are in the works. Two such releases which were announced were Shadowrun—to be released next January—and Alan Wake. Shadowrun was used to lead into the next major announcement.

Bill Gates brought to the light the massive market that includes game-capable phones and computer gamers. With that, he announced the development of Live Anywhere. Live Anywhere is, in essence, an Xbox Live-like service that will span the Xbox 360, Windows Vista and cell phones. The tagline “One interface, one identity, one friends list, one message center, one marketplace” was used to express the foundation of Live Anywhere. A presenter used Shadowrun to display some of the capabilities of this system. He began by accessing his friends list—which showed’s Major Nelson online—on Windows. He sent Major a game invite (keep in mind this is from an Xbox 360 console), which was accepted. The gap that has always existed between cross-platform titles could become relatively non-existent, thanks to Live Anywhere.

Another, more intricate example showed the use of the three different platforms (the 360, Windows Vista and cell phones). Major Nelson sent a car to the presenter’s cell phone, and the presenter was able to tweak the car. It could—from the cell phone—then be uploaded onto Xbox Live. As it was put: “Racing on Xbox 360, editing on Windows Vista and tweaking on the mobile phone.”

Finally, the long-awaited and highly-anticipated Halo 3 trailer was displayed. It showed a barren Earth, with the Master Chief overlooking a massive canyon as Covenant ships flew overhead, and some Forerunner-esque contraption being activated. The trailer finished with the following: “Finish the Fight—2007”.

Overall, it looks like Microsoft put together a brilliant showing—and we didn’t even get into the Windows Vista stuff. But only time will tell who comes out the strongest from E3. As always, stay tuned to Xbox Core for the latest on E3, Xbox and the Xbox 360.

Article By: VGcore Staff

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