June 14, 2016

Xbox Brings New Hardware And More To E3

Xbox held their E3 2016 Press Briefing early this morning and they kicked off the show by confirming that the Xbox One S is real and is coming this August. But if you don't want a white console, the current Xbox One is getting a price drop starting at $399 for a 500gb model or $499 for the 1TB model.

“Gamers have never had more choice in how and where they play,” Phil Spencer said. “We are bringing our biggest games lineup ever to Xbox One and Windows 10, uniting gamers across networks on Xbox Live and expanding the Xbox One family of devices with the addition of Xbox One S and “Project Scorpio” to give gamers more choice in how and where they play. There’s never been a better time to be an Xbox gamer.”

As shown in the video, the new machine is 40% smaller than the current Xbox One, which is made even more impressive when you find out that the massive Xbox One power brick is now packed inside of the console. Along side small, but important changes like moving the side usb port to the front, the Xbox One S will also come packed with a slightly tweaked controller.

Speaking of the controller for Xbox One, you can now get your own completely custom controller, including being able to choose the colour of the controller face, back, d-pad, thumbsticks, face buttons and more. Right now the Xbox Design Lab, the name for the custom controllers is not open to Australians, but it will be in the future, so get to planning.

For those who already have a Xbox One, there are a wealth of changes coming to the software running it, starting with the new Xbox Experience, which is set to roll out later this winter, but that is not all.

Cross play is coming to Xbox One and Windows 10, with the feature Xbox Play Anywhere. The new Xbox Play Anywhere program lets gamers buy a game once and play it on both their Windows 10 PC and Xbox One console with shared progress, game saves and achievements. Every new Microsoft Studios title shown at the Xbox E3 2016 Briefing will support Xbox Play Anywhere, with more titles on the way.

Here is the current list of games that support Xbox Play Anywhere:

  • Gears of War 4
  • Killer Instinct: Season 3
  • Forza Horizon 3
  • Recore
  • Cuphead
  • Slime Rancher
  • The Culling
  • Everspace
  • ARK: Survival Evolved
  • Sea of Thieves
  • Scalebound
  • State of Decay 2
  • Halo Wars 2
In order to know what games will support this feature at retail, you just need to look for the logo, seen below.

If you are a big Xbox Live gamer, than the next few things are for you. Mike Ybarra, head of Xbox Live development announced the following three new features coming through out the rest of the year

  • Clubs on Xbox Live. A new way to connect with gamers and create private communities with people who have similar play styles, personal interests and values.

  • Looking for Group on Xbox Live. Like a “want ad” for multiplayer, Looking for Group on Xbox Live is the easiest way to seek out players who are available — and qualified — to jump into your multiplayer match right now.

  • Arena on Xbox Live. A new online tournaments platform designed for everyone, from novice to aspiring pro, Arena on Xbox Live brings competitive gaming to Xbox One and Windows 10 devices. Sign up for tournaments directly through the Xbox UI or the Xbox app and play for prizes and bragging rights.

Of course the big final piece of hardware news from Microsoft was the announcement of Project Scorpio.

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