Microsoft’s E3 Press Conference after action report (late).
Apologies for the delay on Microsoft’s E3 press conference after action report: so Microsoft this time around went straight towards their core gaming audience and did nothing but games announcements with no mention of the Kinect motion sensor, or any television-related items during their press conference. Indeed one has to assume that they realized their attempt to grab the market share for casual entertainment was not earning them as much as their core gaming audience, and that as a console they should shift their focus back to the gaming community and seek to please their major demographic.
The conference itself was shorter than Sony’s conference in regards to time spent. Microsoft went about announcing things like Forza Motorsport 5, Halo: Master Chief collection, a new Fable game, and so on. Indeed a good portion of their games were not specifically console exclusives (titles such as Witcher 3, Tom Clancy’s The Division, and so on ) but their line up of exclusives was quite strong to say the least. Taking note from both Sony and Microsoft it appears that the two companies are attempting to make their systems more accessible to indie developers so that they can brag about how many “awesome exclusives” they have on their respective systems. Most of the footage available at the Microsoft conference was in the form of trailers rather than gameplay footage and that was a bit of a disappointment. Honestly it would have been nice to see some gameplay footage rather than some overly exaggerated footage with extra graphical details to wow the audience, but E3 is a marketing conference so this is to be expected.
Overall Microsoft did not hand Sony a complete and total victory this year: their return to core gamers marks perhaps a shift in tactics in their marketing department, and their drive to challenge Sony and recover some of their lost audience from last year’s E3 where they announced what was virtually a “prison-console:” very pretty and colourful, but as restrictive as a North Korean tour of Pyongyang. Could Microsoft take back some lost ground in the coming months and into next year? Possibly, but with Sony offering things like drop-in co-op for those who may not own a copy of a game (ie: Fary Cry 4), and indie titles lined up to be exclusives for the Playstation platform like No Man’s Sky, Microsoft needs to think of new and innovative ways for players to connect in a non-restrictive manner lest they lose out to Sony and be left to compete with Nintendo for a niche community rather than a large audience base.