Microsoft E3 2017 Recap: Xbox One X and Beginning of the Enhanced Era
Microsoft is done with its annual Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) press conference for this year. As expected, the company focused a great deal on selling the “enhanced” capabilities of its upcoming new console-upgrade variant, the Xbox One X.
Here is a complete recap of every single announcement that Microsoft made during its show.
Xbox One X
Project Scorpio is officially called Xbox One X and will hit shelves worldwide on November 7 at the cost of $499.99.
The console will be accompanied by a new “enhancement” program where Microsoft will update five first-party and thirty third-party games to run in native 4K resolution.
In addition, backward compatibility for the original Xbox games was announced. Your aging digital discs will soon be functional on both the Xbox One and Xbox One X. However, not every game will work. Microsoft will detail the program in the coming months.
Forza Motorsport 7
The next entry in the long-running racing franchise will release on October 3 for Xbox One and Windows 10.
Turn 10 Studios confirmed that the latest installment will be updated soon after to run in native 4K resolution at 60 frames per second on Xbox One X. In addition, Forza Motorsport 7 will support high dynamic range (HDR) color as well as place a large focus on dynamic weather and feature the first-ever customization menu for the driver (player).
Like its predecessors, Forza Motorsport 7 will be part of the Xbox Play Anywhere program. This means that the title will support cross-buy and cross-save across both consoles and Windows 10.
The popular post-apocalyptic shooter franchise is returning with a third installment next year for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC.
Metro: Exodus borrows familiar elements from past installments and expands the experience by catering to a somewhat open-world setting. In comparison, both of the previous Metro games were linear in design.
Assassin’s Creed: Origins
The long-running franchise finally breaks its two-year hiatus and returns with a new installment on October 27 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
Assassin’s Creed: Origins is set in ancient Egypt. As the name depicts, it takes us through the events leading to the creation of the Assassin’s Brotherhood. The lead character is named Bayek, and as a new gameplay mechanic, can send out an eagle to scout the surrounding terrain from above.
Ubisoft has also hinted at gladiatorial combat and supernatural creatures.
The critically acclaimed massively multiplayer online survival game will release for Xbox One later this year. While there is confirmation of a PlayStation 4 version, it is unknown as to when that will arrive.
Bluehole Studio confirmed that the final version of the game will feature enhancements for the Xbox One X, which includes native support for 4K resolution.
It was also revealed that Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds currently has more than three million registered players on PC.
Deep Rock Galactic
The stylized space adventure will release exclusively for Xbox One later this year.
Deep Rock Galactic appeared in Steam Early Access this year, where it gained the nickname of “Minecraft in space.” The player controls an elite unit of mercenary miners, dwarves, who must work together to dig and explore tunnels and cave systems to recove valuable resources.
Ghost Ship Games confirmed that the game will be identical on both platforms, and support a four-player cooperative multiplayer mode.
State of Decay 2
The second installment in the survial horror franchise will release next spring for Xbox One. It will be updated to support native 4K resolution and other enhanced features for Xbox One X.
State of Decay 2 will bring a four-player cooperative mode, and see the return of the permanent death feature. To make things difficult, Undead Labs has placed a limitation on the use of vaccination against the plague. Players must decide between saving lives or their precious vials for use later on.
The Darwin Project
Prepare to endure a new asymmetrical multiplayer survival experience on Xbox One and PC later this year.
The Darwin Project is set in the Canadian Rockies and is described as “half science experiment and half life entertainment.” It features cartoony visuals, with players using different sets of powers to take down each other.
Microsoft confirmed that the game will benefit from the enhanced offerings of the Xbox One X, but did not clarify how. There will also be some kind of interactivity through the company’s Mixer streaming platform.
The sandbox builder is getting a “Super Duper Graphics Pack” later this year that adds several enhancements for the community’s pleasure.
Minecraft will receive improved textures, new lighting effects, realistic water particles and more across all platforms. In addition, the Xbox One X version will be updated to add support for native 4K resolution.
The game is also getting a new community marketplace where players can sell their creations, and cross-play support between different platforms. Except for PlayStation 4, players can now join others across Xbox One, Windows 10, Nintendo Switch, and even mobile devices.
Dragon Ball Fighter Z
One of the most popular anime shows takes the form of a classic-style 2D fighting game and will release next year for Xbox One. It will also be updated to support enhancements for the Xbox One X.
Dragon Ball Fighter Z is the product of the same team that brought us Guilty Gear and Arc System Works. It features three-versus-three setups, starring a number of characters from the television franchise. This includes heroes like Goku, Vegeta, and Trunks, as well as villains as such Majin Buu.
The popular sandbox-oriented massively multiplayer online role-playing game will release for Xbox One early next year. It will be exclusive to the Microsoft family, and there are no current plans for a PlayStation 4 release.
Developer Pearl Abyss will update the game to feature support for native 4K resolution on the Xbox One X, as well as other enhancements to take advantage of the beefy hardware specifications.
The Artful Escape
The indie Kickstarter project than began last year as The Artful Escape of Francis Vendretti will arrive on Xbox One and Windows 10 sometime in the future.
According to developer Beethoven and Dinosaur, a release date will be announced when the game is “damn ready.” It should be noted that the game failed to meet its original funding goal and later found a publisher in Annapurna Interactive. Now, it has attracted the attention of Microsoft as well.
The Artful Escape stars a musician that rocks his guitar to traverse through a colorful and vibrant world. The game will feature support native 4K resolution on the Xbox One X.
Sea of Thieves
The secrets that lie beneath daunting waves finally become accessible early next year on Xbox One and PC.
Similar to other announcements, Sea of Thieves will also feature enhancements to take advantage of the Xbox One X. For now, the developer is more focused on selling the game for its deep building, management, and exploration elements rather than what resolutions and frame-rates it will dish out.
Rare will be hosting live multiplayer matches of the game throughout the duration of the expo this week.
The Last Night
The contender for the best-looking indie game in the market will release next year for Xbox One and PC.
The Last Night is a side-scrolling adventure experience that appears to be heavily inspired by Blade Runner. It is set in a “post-cyberpunk” setting, where the fight for survival doesn’t mean food and water but a purpose for living.
The long-awaited space mystery and exploration game will release on August 2 for Xbox One and PC. There are currently no plans for a PlayStation 4 version.
Tacoma is the product of Fullbright, the developer of the critically acclaimed Gone Home. It shares the same values of story-telling by tasking players to discover why the crew of an abandoned space station disappeared through the uncovering of audio and video records.
The long-awaited indie game, inspired by old Disney and Max Fleischer cartoons, will finally release on September 29 for Xbox One and Windows 10.
Cuphead will release as part of the Xbox Play Anywhere program, supporting cross-buy and cross-play between both platforms. The cooperative side-scrolling title will take players through retro-styled worlds, and was originally announced by Microsoft back in 2014.
The open world action-adventure game, originally intended to be part of the Xbox One launch lineup, will release on November 7 for Xbox One and PC.
It will be part of the Xbox Play Anywhere program, featuring support for cross-buy and cross-play between both platforms. According to developer Reagent Games, the extended delay has allowed the team to finally bring everything together.
Crackdown 3 will incorporate a four-player cooperative mode, with Terry Crews staring as Commander Jaxon. Microsoft is asking players to be ready themselves with an apetitie for destruction and mayhem.
The Dark Souls-inspired action-role-playing game is still an upcoming exclusive title for the Xbox One but remains without a release date.
It was originally announced a couple of years back as a “huge” open world multiplayer game, scheduled for arrival sometime last year. However, more additional development time was required. Hence, Ashen was pushed back. Developer Aurora44 is now focusing on the game’s cooperative aspects.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm
The prequel to the original will release on August 31 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
Focus will be on two major characters from the first season, Chloe Price and her best friend, Rachel Amber. Unlike the five episodes of the original, the prequel will span across only three chapters.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm will feature enhancements for the Xbox One X, but those have yet to be clarified.
Middle-Earth: Shadow of War
The second take on Tolkien’s legendarium was a major highlight of the conference, and hailed as the best attraction by the community.
Middle-Earth: Shadow of War was first announced earlier this year as a direct sequel to the first installment. It was supposed to release in August but was delayed to October.
The game is shaping up to be a great extension of the original game, featuring a number of improvements and upgrades. While it has yet to be detailed, Middle-Earth: Shadow of War is the type of game that can take great advantage of the offerings of the Xbox One X.
Ori and the Will of the Wisps
The followup to the beautiful original from a couple of years back will release at an unannounced date for Xbox One and Windows 10.
Much like the first, the sequel will feature a hauntingly beautiful world for players to traverse. In addition, Ori and the Will of the Wisps will be accompanied by an amazing score that will surprise players.
The new science-fiction game from the creators of the original Mass Effect trilogy will release in fall of next year for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
It is set in a post-apocalyptic world full of lush forests and behemoth monsters. Players battle inside exo-suits called Javelines, that can be customized and upgraded. They offer unique “superhuman capabilities” and powers. Its multiplayer component is fairly similar to Destiny and The Division.