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E3 Wrap Up – Xbox

After a week of facing down the relentless onslaught of the gaming industry’s marketing jackhammer, our Xbox department has emerged alive, yet forever changed by the ordeal.  What have we learned from this experience?  What wisdom can we impart?  Did Microsoft “Win” E3?  Our team of Charles Battersby, Joe Button, Alex Martinet and Curtis Bloomfield discuss.

How Did You Feel About Kinect Before E3?  What About Now?

Alex:  I currently have the Kinect but I don't use it anymore. Maybe I will in Mass Effect 3 but Kinect doesn't have the "must" have game. I knew Microsoft would make Kinect the focus of their press conference but not 90% percent of the show. I probably have less interest in the Kinect now due to how much attention  was put on Kinect.
Charles:  It always struck me as something for people who don’t like video games.  Those people who complain that “The controller has too many buttons”.  Aside from Blackwater there still doesn’t seem to be a “Real Game” that’s designed specifically for Kinect.

Curtis:  Kinect was a pretty unique and interesting concept brought to the gaming world, however I still feel like it is a bit tiring and that personally I would not be able to play kinect for very long.

Joe: Didn’t interest me at all before, but the voice control and in particular fruit ninja has me tempted to get one at the right price.


What Xbox game shown at E3 has you the most excited?

Joe: Gears of War 3 looks like an extremely polished title at this point, the multiplayer, horde and campaign; from what I've seen so far it looks like Epic have really made use of the extra dev time. It looks like the perfect way to wrap up the trilogy.

Curtis:  Most interesting to me appeared to be Gears of War 3, the campaign trailer they showed was breath-taking.

AlexHalo 4. Im ready to finish the fight ... a second time. Really there wasn't another game that wowed me that was a IP for the 360.   A far second would be Need for Speed Run. I like how it's going back to Most Wanted territory. We haven't seen much gameplay so it's hard to say what the game is going to be like when it releases but I will surely look for it in October.

CharlesHalo Anniversary Edition.  I loved the level design for (Most) of that game, and have been waiting for the re-vamped version that fans have been demanding since Halo 2 came out.

Least interesting Xbox game?

Curtis: Least interesting game is the Fruit ninja.  Seriously? Why would I want to sit there and cut fake fruit all day?

AlexDisney Adventure or whatever it's called.

Charles:  Second vote for Disney Magic Princess Vacation.  This is the sort of thing a terrible parent would buy for a kid, instead of taking them to Disneyland.  There will be many disappointed children come Christmas…

Joe: Fable: The Journey just looks weird, a guided RPG is a little daft and after the bad reception of Fable 3 it seems like a bad choice to depart completely from the series rather than make a better Fable sequel.

Did Microsoft "Win" E3?

Joe: No. I was personally impressed the most by what Sony showed, especially the PSVita.

Alex:  This year, I was interested in seeing how Microsoft would balance the core and hardcore audience. We somewhat knew that Microsoft was going to integrate the Kinect into hardcore games, which I have no problem with. But what I wanted most from Microsoft is for them to add on to their hardcore line up. Kinect Sports is nice but does it keep me coming back to my 360? ... nope not one bit.  With the Gears of War trilogy ending this September and the Mass Effect trilogy ending in 2012. Those are some big shoes to fill and I wanted to see Microsoft nail down some exclusive IP's to fill the gap. Lets remember that one of the major down falls of the Wii is it didn't attack the hardcore. Hopefully Microsoft doesn't follow in the same path.

Charles:  No.  It’s nice to have what I already suspected about Halo confirmed, and to see more about Gears, but Microsoft was too focused on Kinect.  I have to admit that Nintendo probably won E3 and that the industry will be talking about the Wii U and the new crop of 3DS games a lot more than they’ll talk about Halo HD Anniversary Edition.


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