E3 2013: Microsoft Press Briefing

After its highly criticized unveiling of the Xbox One, Microsoft placed a heavy focus on games during its E3 press briefing Monday. And despite the goodwill that plan of attack probably garnered with gamers, the company revealed a November launch window and the price of the upcoming unit — $499 — a number that probably won’t sit well with consumers, especially with current-gen hardware still producing engaging titles.

But back to the games. Microsoft was wise to hit hard on the gaming front early and often during the briefing, showing off 13 exclusive titles to the platform. Microsoft kicked off show with new gameplay from Konami’s latest installment in the Metal Gear universe — “Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain”.

The series’ creator Hideo Kojima joined Microsoft studio head Don Mattrick on stage to introduce some new footage of the game. The section that was shown off took place in Afghanistan, decades before “Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots”. MGS 5 will be the series’ first foray into the open-world genre, highlighting the various modes of transportation (tanks, jeeps) and real-time weather. During another snippet of gameplay, the game’s protagonist — Big Boss — leans on one side of a horse he’s riding to avoid detection by enemies. The stunning visuals and impressive action exceeded the lofty expectations this series is known for. MGS 5 will be released on multiple platforms, but no release window was given.

Microsoft also made it very clear that it is still supporting the Xbox 360. The company released a redesign to the popular system. The new look is an homage to the Xbox One’s appearance that gives the Xbox line a more uniformed feel. On July 1, Xbox Live Gold members will receive two free games a month, starting with Assassins Creed 2 and Halo 3. Microsoft also announced that your Gold subscription will carry over to the Xbox One and that you will be able to share many of the same membership perks with other members…

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