Microsoft’s E3 press briefing just wrapped up. Here’s all the details.

Microsoft’s press event just wrapped up in Los Angeles. We saw a few well-anticipated announcements, but a few surprises. Also, the cognitive dissonance of rainbow pins paired with kinetic shootdeath, but well, let’s just get to the details, shall we?

Xbox One S

We opened the show with official confirmation for the rumored Xbox One S, a new slimmer version of the console which dispenses with the heretofore mandatory Kinect 2.0. It’s out this August and will retail for a modest $299 (for the 500GB version), making it a competitive alternative to the PlayStation 4.

The Xbox One S controller also saw a design tweak, and later in the presentation we learned Microsoft is rolling out a “design lab” for custom controllers.

Play Anywhere

A recurring theme for this year’s presser, Microsoft revealed that its new Xbox Play Anywhere program would allow players to install and run the same copies of their games on both Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs.

Gears of War 4

One of the first games under this Xbox Play Anywhere program, Gears of War 4 enjoyed a bombastic new gameplay demo from voice actress Laura Bailey, as well as the announcement that it would support cross-platform play for multiplayer.

Oh, and we got a release date: October 11th.


This action-adventure with color-coded charming robots fighting across deserts is coming in September. We saw a very nice trailer blending some strong 2D animation, which for whatever reason the livestream kept cutting away from. Keiji Inafune, best known as the creator of Megaman and the ongoing trainwreck known as Mighty No. 9, is directing this title.

Final Fantasy XV

We saw new live gameplay footage with Noctis versus a skyscraper-sized rock titan. I want to be positive here, but even director Hajime Tabata couldn’t resist sounding immensely sarcastic after this disaster live demo.

New Xbox Live features

Cortana and background music functionality. New features coming in the fall: clubs, “Looking for Group” matchmaking service, and “Arena,” “a new tournament platform” which centralizes game-specific tournaments and competitions.

Minecraft crossplay

Mojang reps announced Realms, dedicated servers enabling players from certain platforms including Xbox One and iOS to play together. Also, texture pack add-ons and new villager AI coming in the fall. Also also, a(n incredibly surreal) guest appearance by John Carmack.


At last, the new game from Playdead, the studio behind LIMBO. Inside is an atmospheric, uh… well, I’m not sure of the genre, but it’s very atmospheric!

Chris Charla also appeared on stage to announce the rest of ID@Xbox’s upcoming lineup, which we blitzed through at such speed I can’t guarantee this is even a comprehensive list. 

  • Cuphead
  • Outlast
  • Deliver Us the Moon
  • Flinthook
  • FAR
  • Slime Rancher
  • Shadow Tactics
  • Figment
  • The Culling
  • For the King
  • Beacon
  • Stardew Valley
  • Hand of Fate 2
  • Below
  • Raiders
  • Bloodstained
  • Yooka-laylee
  • Everspace

We expect to have an in-depth look at a few of these later in the week!

We Happy Few

This charmingly stylized, horrifying dystopia looks to be part Clockwork Orange, part Brazil. It’s been in development for a while now, but as far as I know this is its console debut. And while the trailer is gorgeous to look at, I’m dropping a gameplay Let’s Play in here because gameplay was the one thing sorely missing from the Xbox showcase.

Tekken 7

We got a quick story mode match with Akuma versus Heihachi, and the announcement that Tekken Tag Tournament is free to Xbox players this week. But nevermind that, just look at how stylish Katsuhiro Harada is.


Microsoft Studios’s upcoming roster including Scalebound, a new action (RPG?) full of headphones and dragon punching, geared for 2017 and showcased by none other than Platinum’s Hideki Kamiya. Unbelievably, Kamiya was not as stylish as Harada, so much so that I don’t even feel it’s fair to put his picture up here for comparison.

Anyway the best part of this demo was definitely our beachbro protagonist punching a giant dragon heart yelling “WHY WON’T YOU DIE?!” as if speaking directly to the demo itself.

Sea of Thieves

This upcoming multiplayer adventure game brought us a genuinely funny gameplay trailer, showing off the most realistic pirate simulator yet (give or take the syphillis).

Halo Wars 2

The key takeaway here is that this upcoming sequel to the 2009 Halo real-time strategy game is being co-developed by 343 Studios and Creative Assembly, the latter best known for its Total War series. Halo Wars 2 is launching an open beta right now.

Project Scorpio

Just as the beginning of the press conference introduced us to a revision of the Xbox One, Microsoft closed its press event with an enthusiastic teaser for its next hardware, Project Scorpio. “We see exciting opportunities on the horizon.. for both gamers and devs alike,” said Xbox chief’s Phil Spencer, revealing the new device would support 4K resolutions, on par with Sony’s recently announced PlayStation ‘4.5.’ “It will be the most powerful console ever built.”

Looking to, perhaps, avoid the mistakes of its Xbox One reveal, Spencer also made a particular point of emphasizing Scorpio’s backwards compatibility with the Xbox One family. “No one gets left behind,” he stressed.

But the real big takeaway here is the new, absurd quote that’s already become a meme on Twitter, via an unnamed Microsoft hardware developer:

“These are the highest quality pixels that anybody has seen.”


And the smaller stuff…

These got a few mentions or quick trailers but the information is a little brief, so, in summary:

  • Killer Instinct
    • New character: General Raam
  • Forza Horizon 3
    • Cars
  • The Division
    • New DLC, Underground
  • Battlefield 1
    • Nothing new here, same trailer as yesterday’s EA presser
  • Gwent
    • Card game spinoff from The Witcher, beta starts in September.
  • Dead Rising 4
    • Campy as hell trailer and a holiday release window.
  • State of Decay 2
    • Another zombie game.

And that’s Microsoft’s E3 presser! Stay tuned for our in-depth analyses and the Sony presser this evening.