Oh boy, what a way to start off E3. I don't know why there are so many people out there complaining about Microsoft's show. I thought it was brilliant. It did start to wear on me towards the end with all the Kinect stuff mainly focused towards kids and families. I gotta say though, it was all pretty darn impressive. Even the stuff I wasn't interested in, I still had to give props where they were due. There was a lot of stuff announced and covered in this conference, so to keep you from getting bored I'll just go over what I am most excited for from Microsoft.
I don't understand why this game isn't getting more attention. I loved Tomb Raider, and now they have totally re-imagined Lara Croft for the new game. As you can see in the picture, she is now a more realistic and grittier version of her former self. Or rather, future self as this game takes place in the past. This is Lara's first true "adventure" after being shipwrecked on an unknown island. It seems in the E3 demo she was captured by the natives on the island. After narrowly escaping from the underground cave she was being held in, she emerges to find her wrecked ship and no signs of her crew. The graphics look absolutely stunning, and the environments are harsh and unforgiving. You really do get a sense of fear as you watch Lara tumble around on the rocks and double over in pain. As she struggles about, you start to realize something. This game could possibly give Uncharted a run for it's money. I really do think this could be the best Tomb Raider since the original way back when. Look forward to the game's release in Fall of 2012. I know I will.
Check out this trailer for the game courtesy IGN:
Mass Effect 3:
Now I'm sure (if you have read my Mass Effect 2 review) you should know that I am a huge Mass Effect fan. So it's quite obvious that I'm very excited for this game. The final installment in the trilogy (or so I would assume). It seems now that after Mass Effect 2, they wanted to focus even more on combat. From the looks of things, combat action is even more visceral and intense this time around. One main thing I noticed is the ability to turn your tech tool into a sword for stabbing and slashing enemies in close quarters. This definitely adds to the feel of combat, as well as the addition of Kinect features. I'm not a Kinect user myself, but I do very much like and support it. I think it's a great idea to integrate it into a game like Mass Effect. You can now use the Kinect to register your voice in conversations and order your team to attack and move around the map. This will immensely add to the immersion factor that Mass Effect already had. This looks like it's shaping up to be one of the best games of the year.
Forza Motorsport 4:
Personally I am a HUGE car nerd and lover of racing. So it's a no brainer that Forza is one of my absolute favorites. I've been a fan of the series since the day it came out. Man has it changed. If you can't tell by the pic, the game looks absolutely immaculate. The details are mind-boggling. From the tiniest of things, like the stitching in the seats, and the LED's in the lights, everything is perfect (or as close to it you can get). I'm super excited for this game, it's a shame they didn't talk more about it. From what I can gather, the game will feature over 80 different manufacturers, 16 cars on track, and some of the most famous tracks from around the world including the Top Gear track! This even includes fictitious tracks seen in the background. These tracks look to be incredible driving roads that weave through mountains like a ribbon of joy. Also, they are bringing back Car Clubs! I can't wait to get my hands on this game in October of this year.
Check out the E3 video here:
New Dashboard Features:
Where to start here... Wow, there are so many new features coming to the Dashboard this year, including an all new layout. First you have the announcement of YouTube coming to Xbox Live! Then Bing, which will allow you to search easily through all of the content Xbox has to offer just by entering a couple keywords. Finally, we will be receiving Live TV! You will actually be able to watch TV on your Xbox now! Soon we wont even need cable! I also caught a glimpse of a DVR button in the Live TV section. I assume you can record your favorite shows and watch them right there on your Xbox! This is some seriously revolutionary stuff. I cannot wait to check this out.
Now I don't want to bore you for too much longer, so I'll cut myself off here. I bet you're wondering why I haven't mentioned MW3 yet, or GoW3, or even Halo 4 and Halo Anniversary. Here's why. Personally, I am not a fan of the CoD series. I was at one point, I really did enjoy it. But lately the game has gotten stale. Especially after Black Ops was released, I started to realize it was just the same game over and over with a new setting. So I got tired of it, and as a result I don't have much excitement toward MW3. I do like Gears of War, and I did enjoy their presentation a lot. Gears 3 looks like a very fun game. I might rent it, and probably give a review, but I don't see myself keeping it. I have never been very fond of the multiplayer. By no means does that make it a bad game, it's all in my personal preference, and in the interest of keeping this as short as possible, I'm going to skip Gears 3. Same reason for Halo Anniversary, except that I absolutely adore Halo 1 and I cannot wait to try this game out, but we all know what Halo 1 is :). Lastly, Halo 4. Honestly, I got sick of Halo with Halo 3. I just couldn't get into it (and that's from a former MLG Halo player). Reach was better, but still boring. I don't expect much from 4, definitely provided that it's not coming from Bungie, and the trailer doesn't look "Halo" at all. The story seems to be the only thing left for Halo, and that's what we have books for.
P.S. Oh! I totally forgot Minecraft! Microsoft announced that Minecraft will be coming to the 360! Everyone knows what Minecraft is, and if you don't, I suggest you find out :).
Well that's it from me for now. Check back for more on E3 in the coming days!
Also, if you're interested, here's a link for the entire Press Conference if you missed it: http://tinyurl.com/3utrsz7