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Are you going to buy an Xbox One X This Holiday Season?

Yes
No
Maybe
Hope to Receive it as a Gift


Game Profile
 Written by Matt Swider  on July 12, 2007

Special: Soylent Green is Xbox!


Microsoft kicked off E3 2007 at an appropriately green-lit 1500-seat Santa Monica High School Amphitheater. Here, Peter Moore and fellow gaming industry heads announced that the Xbox 360 is leading the system war and that the console and Games for Windows platform would tout several previously unannounced games before the end of the year.

The price of an Xbox 360 remains the same tonight as Microsoft didn't feel the need to answer Sony's $100 price cut of the PS3 with a mark down of its own. However, the company did announce that the more expensive, high-capacity and HDMI-enabled Xbox 360 Elite would be sold in Europe beginning August 24. Moore's keynote also unveiled a special edition Halo unit, which is olive green in color and to be limited.

To answer the growing popularity of Wii and Nintendo's casual games lineup, Microsoft unveiled its own special controller to take advantage of the non-hardcore market. The controllers are similar to trivia games seen in bars and restaurants and come in a set of four with Scene It!

For the first time, Microsoft demoed EA, MTV and Harmonix's highly-anticipated Rock Band instruments to a large audience. Moore took to the bass while members of the development team played lead guitar, banged on the drumset and sang with the microphone peripheral. No touring dates were announced for the Moore-led rock band, and, more disappointingly, no price was announced for the game and instruments.

Another first was the announcement of Capcom's survival horror series coming to the Xbox family in the form of Resident Evil 5. A brief clip of the game looked like a scene out of a zombie-filled Mogadishu (think Black Hawk Down's African Village, only with the undead), but little is known about the game's premise. We're sure to get some clarity (or maybe more questions than answers) when the trailer hits July 26 for download on Xbox Live Marketplace.



Microsoft may have grabbed Resident Evil to boast better Japanese support for Xbox 360, but the game is not exclusive to the system. However, the company did reveal that a Call of Duty 4 beta would only take place via Xbox Live and then proceeded to show off how CoD2 developer Infinity Ward was making their 360 launch game better. Sign ups for Activision's forthcoming multiplayer beta are at http://www.charlieoscardelta.com if the server didn't crash again (clearly a good sign? sort of).

Backing up its strong third-party software support, Microsoft made time for non-exclusive demonstrations, too. Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed was demoed by Jade Raymond who showed everyone that in addition to last year's sneaking through a crowd ability, players will be able to distract the masses by throwing a body off of a building. As other NPC gather to inspect the fallen victim, you can sneak by lax guards. New Orleans Saints' Reggie Bush was on stage to play Madden NFL 08, which, along with the rest of the EA Sports lineup, is supposed to be twice and fast and twice as smooth as previous years.

Moore claimed that in 2004 the gaming industry was propelled by the big three: Halo 2, Madden NFL 05 and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. In 2007, he proposed that these franchises would do the same for the Xbox 360 since Halo 3, Madden NFL 08 and Grand Theft Auto IV are all going to be found on Microsoft's system. Additionally, he emphasized that only the 360 version of GTA4 will have downloadable episodic content via Xbox Live the game launches this fall.

Not to forget about first-party software, the press conference gave us a first look at a party game spinoff to Viva Pinata for Xbox 360 (Viva Pinata: Party Animals) and a port of the first Viva Pinata to the PC. Cliffy B. demoed Gears of War as a Games for Windows translation with a couple of extras. Project Gotham Racing 4 and Mass Effect were also shown off with motorcycles and a new storyline-focused trailer, respectively. However, there was no sign of Too Human, Silicon Knight's original PlayStation to GameCube to 360 title that's beginning to rival the delay of Duke Nukem Forever.

A lot of what was seen at the Microsoft press conference was either not very surprising or just never happened. No price cut and no more newly acquired exclusives stolen from the clutches of Sony. Still, from the look of the market, Microsoft is just playing it safe, which will work for now.

Stay tuned for more Microsoft games coverage from E3.



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