Microsoft was rumored to be mentioning a lot of different things for E3 2019. The question every gamer had going in completely revolved around their new console – codenamed Project Scarlett – on top of some brand new Xbox exclusives. While no one was expecting the Xbox E3 Conference to blow everyone out of the water, it did make some waves.
That said, what did the Xbox E3 2019 conference tell us and what did Nerd Much? take away from it all? Here are the 10 biggest Xbox E3 2019 takeaways:
Xbox Adding Studios To Make Exclusive Games Is Finally Paying Off
For some time, Sony had been KILLING Microsoft when it came to exclusive titles. However, Xbox seemed to always find a way to keep people interested in a few of their main titles. They’d also make deals with studios to get exclusive material for console wide releases.
They would even get some to appear with them at E3 in a partnership. In the end, the story was still the same. Sony killed Xbox with exclusives. This year, however, that may change.
At the Xbox E3 Conference, it was announced that Xbox Studios made some impressive deals with studios like Double Fine Productions. They will be releasing the anticipated PsychoNauts 2 video game on Xbox relatively soon.
They also made a deal with 7 new game development studios. This includes Ninja Theory Studios, who is behind the anticipated Bleeding Edge game. This game will open its Alpha to play at the end of this month!
Microsoft managed to sign on the PC legend known as SmileGate to get first console access to their new game Crossfire X, set to launch in 2020.
They will also be working with the impressive SEGA Games as well. A new game known as Phantasy Star Online 2 will be coming to the Xbox Store in 2020. Though it seems to be available for all consoles, we won’t be surprised to see it pop up elsewhere.
Another big name they are working with is Bandai Namco Entertainment. These guys have made some huge titles like Soul Caliber, Dark Souls, Tekken, and they’re making all the Dragon Ball Z games. However, they are mostly known for their work with Nintendo, it seems.
That said, when we saw that they were working on a game that will be exclusive to Xbox & Windows PC, we were interested. It’s called Elden Ring and the genius behind Game of Thrones, George R.R. Martin, is behind the story and world itself in the game. I mean, holy crap!
Overall, 14 new games are coming from Xbox Game Studio in 2019 & 2020.
The Xbox Game Pass Is Brilliant
The Xbox E3 Conference was sure to mention the new Xbox Game Pass. Most of the new Xbox Exclusives will launch on the Game Pass. This is being done to counter that of Google’s Stadia. The concept of the Game Pass is to be a Netflix of gaming. The cost will be just $9.99 a month too!
You’ll have access to just about every new title that comes from the Xbox Game Studio via the Game Pass on the day those games launch. This is huge news! Around 30 games will launch with this Game Pass, including a big one we’ll mention in a moment.
Some of the games you’ll be able to get on this Game Pass are from all-new studios. Many of which have made insanely beautiful games. Whether it’s about art or story, perhaps both, these studios are quite impressive. As mentioned, there are still some big hitting studios under the Xbox banner, however.
Games available via the Game Pass at launch are as follows: Ori & The Will of The Whisps, Tabs, The Good Life, Blair Witch, SpiritFarer, Wasteland 3, Flight Simulator, Minecraft: Dungeons, and Age of Empires 2.
As of today, the Game Pass will also include major hits like Metra Exodus, Borderlands: Hanson Collection, and Batman: Arkham Knight.
They did not end things with just the Game Pass at the Xbox E3 Conference, oh no.
Xbox Game Pass for PC Is An Unexpected Surprise
That’s right, these crazy killers at Microsoft are pushing more PC involvement and content here will work exactly like that of the Game Pass for their consoles.
100 Games are expected to be part of this new Game Pass for the Windows PC. Several of these games were hits on the console generation. Most did migrate to the PC by now, but it can be quite costly to buy them up when they come out. Plus, you may not like a game.
The Xbox Game Pass for the PC will allow you to try them out. Launching with this Game Pass are:
Football Manager 2019, Imperator: Rome, entire Halo: Master Chief Collection, Ark, Prey, Wolfenstein 2, and the Rise of Tomb Raider.
You cannot ask for much better than this. Well, perhaps you can. Microsoft announced at the Xbox E3 Conference that they will be launching something they are calling the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. This will include The Xbox Game Pass & Xbox Live Gold Edition, with PC thrown in for no extra charge!
If you were not considering being a PC gamer before, you now have an excuse to be one. It’ll cost you absolutely nothing to do so!
Oh, and if this deal didn’t sweeten the pot enough, Gears 5: Bound by Blood will be coming to the Game Pass Ultimate Edition a few days before its set to launch everywhere else!
Gears 5: Bound by Blood Sounds Incredible
One of the most common things you’ll hear from hardcore Xbox Gamers is that the Gears Franchise is one of the best in video game history. However, you either love the series or you don’t. There are very few who are in-between on them.
We did not hear much about Gears 5 during the Xbox E3 Conference. However, we did find out about some brand new modes coming to the game. First, we know they will be bringing an Arcade Mode of sorts into the series, which will include a terrific multi-player online mode.
You can do co-op material with friends, which could be amazing in a Gears of War game. The big one is called Escape, a mode designed for 3 players in an effort to survive a hoard coming right for you. You’re a dead man or woman in this mode if you don’t play as a team. So be aware!
The game will launch on September 10th of this year. If you pre-order now, you’ll get an awesome bonus called the Terminator Dark Fate pack. It is exactly as it sounds.
Come on, we just added the Terminator to a Gears of War game. Are you trying to give Nerd Much a heart attack, Microsoft?!?
CyberPunk 2077 Can Have All Of Our Money, All Of It, Every Penny
We all heard that the Xbox E3 Conference was going to be doing something cool with the new CyberPunk game, but we didn’t expect this. Not only did we get an amazing trailer (view above), but we also learned more about the game.
It takes place in a dystopian future, in the year 2077. The name of the game these days are cyber-enhancements. You play as an outlaw and you’re not well-liked by those like you. To stay alive will take skill and timing but it’s possible to do.
The game also allows for progression to mean something. Your character is crafted by your experiences in the game. Every single shot you take, break you get, and much more will be factored in.
Just in case you weren’t thrilled enough, they added freaking John Wick. Seriously, Keanu Reeves himself is a character in the CyberPunk 2077 video game. He showed up at the Xbox E3 Conference to tell us about the game and he looked more excited than the people in the audience.
Business just picked up, ladies and gentlemen. CyberPunk can pretty much put any number on this game and we’ll pay it. The game comes out on April 16, 2020. We have another year to wait and it is physically painful!
New Console-Wide Game Launches
We saw a little bit about the new Star Wars game, due out this November, at EA Play yesterday. However, the Xbox E3 conference also showed us a bit more about it. One thing seems clear, they are trying to not give away a dang thing, so this could be an epic title.
Obviously, Cyberpunk 2077 has all of us buzzing too. They also hyped up Dying Light 2 a bit and pushed some smaller titles. One of them is called 12 Minutes. The game is quite impressive. It is a thriller-based game about a man who is trapped in a time loop.
It seems each day, his wife tells him she is pregnant and then someone comes knocking at the door to try and kill the two of them. Being killed matters not, as he’ll wake up in the same loop. You have to find out what is causing it, how to fix it, and how to keep your family safe. Talk about interesting, eh?
Borderlands 3 was also announced. It looks quite impressive and will be one to check out when it launches on September 3rd of this year.
Xbox Is Really Pushing That LEGO Partnership
The LEGO game material seems to be pretty popular these days. They were Minecraft well before those guys were even thought about. That said, it seems the LEGO world will be used quite a lot in 2019 and 2020.
During the Xbox E3 Conference, it was announced that Microsoft will be adding an expansion pack to the Forza Horizon 4 game called the LEGO Speed Champions. It will have a lot of content from the LEGO movie and use several cars made from LEGOs in the game too.
This looks interesting for big Forza gamers. However, it’s also a cool thing for the LEGO fan as well.
While this does not seem to be an Xbox exclusive, we also found out about a new LEGO game inspired by Star Wars. It is called Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga. This game will cover events in all 9 Star Wars movies, meaning we’ll get to play with both Luke Skywalker as well as his father, Anakin.
It is due out sometime in 2020.
Finally, Microsoft Gets It Right With The Xbox Elite 2 Controller
It seems that Microsoft knew they needed to sweeten the deal for gamers this holiday season. We expected a lot from them, and it seems like they delivered. The console we’ll address soon, but this means nothing if a controller sucks.
While the new console will launch with a sweet controller, you can buy one now that will work on the current Xbox One consoles as well as the upcoming one.
It has been a running gag that Xbox controllers are terrible and just eat batteries for gamers. This is factual, so they decided to redo things with the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2. We found out a good bit about it during the Xbox E3 Conference too.
This sucker has been completely re-imagined by the people at Xbox. New adjustable tension thumbsticks have been added in an effort to improve precision. The trigger grips were also updated, allowing you to use them easier and comfortably use for long play-throughs.
The bumpers were redesigned and shorter hair locks were also added to help you fire faster in shooter games. The paddles and thumbsticks were given a complete redesign as well. They managed to not only fix them up on the normal setting but also allow you to customize how you use the controller.
This allows you to quite literally adjust to how you play best.
The best part is that Microsoft included a USB-C support system and BlueTooth technology to the system. If that wasn’t enough, they gave us a rechargable battery that will last 40 hours of playtime on a full charge.
Oh yeah, and the controller will be compatible with Windows PC games as well.
This is all quite cool to the average player but every bit of these updates were must-haves for hardcore Xbox gamers. While they did not hype up the price of the controller at the Xbox E3 conference, we found it out for you. You’ll be able to buy one for around $180.
The controller launches on November 4th of this year in 24 different countries around the world!
Project xCloud Seems Cool But We’ll Need More Information
I loved the concept of Project xCloud, just as many gamers did when we heard rumors about what it was months ago. However, there were several questions we all had about it. For their part, Microsoft did address a lot of things during the Xbox E3 Conference.
We were told that ALL Xbox games can be backed up on this new Cloud system that Microsoft formed up for people. This basically means you can play your games with your save points and downloads all around the world, anywhere you happen to be.
One would assume that you’d need an Xbox to play on and internet access, however.
The best part about this is that Microsoft claimed that they will not charge for any of this really. Console streaming will be completely free, according to them. This is an important thing to know, as many wondered if it would be looped into something.
Some even assumed it would be forced into the Xbox Live Gold or Game Pass models. However, thankfully it seems to be separate.
Yet there are still unanswered questions. How do we use the xCloud? How deep can this cloud go with our console’s content? For example, if we have an external hard drive in use on our system, will gamers be able to track this down and use content from it when not on their own Xbox?
How about an even easier question here, what of the Game Share material? Will service with console streaming be fast or put us into forced online networks separate or with others? Clearly, we’ll need to wait a bit to know more.
At least we know we’ll be able to play on other devices using our controller. Essentially, you could use your tablet or smartphone with this too. If nothing else, the mobility involved as well as the multiple device use is awesome.
Officially, the xCloud launches this October.
Project Scarlett: You Had Our Curiosity, Now You Have Our Attention
Project Scarlett, better known by many to be the new Xbox console, was all the talk at E3 going in. Heck, even Sony stayed behind from coming to E3 in an effort to let things breathe a bit. Their PS5 system is set to be announced soon, so material on Project Scarlett only made that announcement harder.
That said, what did we find out at the Xbox E3 Conference?
Microsoft decided to allow the team working on the system to let us know. They used a lot of tech jargon that most people don’t have a freaking clue about. So we decided to break down what they said to make it at least somewhat understandable for the Lay-Gamer.
They mentioned a smarter and more efficient processor was a major concern that they wanted to address for the system. The team worked with the incredible PC boys at AMD to make this processor. It’s supposed to be using Zen2 and Navy technology, which is state of the art basically.
The framerates for the system are set to be near or right at 120 frames per second. This basically means the images will be sharper & clearer. Essentially, on the right television, you should not be able to notice you’re playing a video game. It should look like real-life that you happen to be in control over.
Basically, you’ll get to play God a bit on the Scarlett System.
The bandwidth is heavily improved, using what they claim to be GDDR6 tech. Currently, the most common use is GDDR5 and its various versions. This stands for “Graphics Double Data Rate.” The current 5 model uses Synchronous Graphics Random-Access Memory (SDRAM) at the fifth generation rate.
Essentially, the bandwidth will be insane.
A big point for the crew was a much faster load time, so it looks like they will get just that with this bandwidth material. It’ll be speed on steroids.
The SSD enhancement is a big deal for them too and they claim it’ll be used as a form of Virtual RAM, so that’s cool. This means it’ll have a lot of space. Next-Gen Retracing will be involved too, which will make both new and older games look impressive.
To top it off, Halo Infinite will be launching with the console when it comes out in the Holiday season of 2020.