Microsoft delivers the ultimate Halo experience on Xbox One
The 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) got off to a wonderful start, as Microsoft made announcements during the pre-show before its press conference. Killer Instinct will continue with season two, and favourite brawler TJ Combo will lead the way. Once the press conference began, Phil Spencer (head of Xbox) introduced new footage of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, which led to Turn 10 Studios announcing the Nurburgring track DLC for Forza Motorsport 5, which is available now free-of-charge. In addition, Playground Games announced the release of Forza Horizon 2 as 3rd October.
Evolve, the new title from Turtle Rock Studios, showed off more of its five-player action, pitting four bounty hunters against one giant beast. Meanwhile, Ubisoft put Assassin's Creed: Unity on display to tout the new four-player co-op mode.
The Dragon Age Inquisition trailer floored the crowd, followed by an equally impressive video for one of the most anticipated Xbox One titles, Sunset Overdrive. Capcom changed the tone of the event by showing off its entertaining DLC for Dead Rising 3, Super Ultra Dead Rising 3 Arcade Remix Hyper Edition EX Plus Alpha. The new DLC offers a four-player brawler mode with previous Dead Rising heroes cosplaying as various Capcom franchise characters.
Afterwards, Lionhead Studios added some British humour with the trailer for Fable Legends. This was followed by a look at Project Spark, which will now feature Conker. What really set things on fire, though, was the unveiling of Halo: The Master Chief Collection. For the first time in history, fans will have Halo 1-4 on a single disc, along with a Halo 5: Guardians beta.
The Witcher 3 was up next, followed by the announcement of Phantom Dust making a triumphant comeback. After quick looks at The Division and Platinum Games' new title, Scalebound, the conference came to a close with the unveiling of a new Crackdown.
EA teases Star Wars, then hits hard with Battlefield Hardline
Shortly after the Microsoft press conference, Electronic Arts held a presser of its own. The biggest highlight of the event was the early footage of Star Wars: Battlefront. We also got a lengthy look at Dragon Age: Inquisition, much longer than what was seen at the Microsoft press conference. In addition, we saw a brief look at a new Mass Effect game running on the Frostbite 3 engine, and took an in-depth look at all of the new additions to The Sims 4.
Next up was an extended look at its EA Sports lineup, and a little surprise. There was a rundown of Bruce Lee in EA Sports UFC, as well as a trailer for EA Sports NHL 15. This was followed by a trip to Criterion Games, where we saw an early glimpse of an untitled game that looks like Need for Speed meets Burnout, with helicopters and all kinds of vehicles, all from a first-person perspective.
Then came Mirror's Edge, FIFA 15, Madden NFL 15 and PGA Tour (also running on Frostbite 3). The press conference came to a close with an extended look at Battlefield: Hardline, and the announcement of the closed beta.
Assassin's Creed and Far Cry 4 headline the Ubisoft show
Ubisoft was next on the list of Monday press conferences. The company provided a lengthy look at Far Cry 4 and Just Dance 2015. Far Cry 4 was one of the best-looking titles of the show for most people, but Ubisoft was quick to move into 2015 with an extended look at Tom Clancy's The Division, as well as the ambitious racing game, The Crew.
We took another look at Assassin's Creed: Unity, ending with a tease of the four-player co-op, then shifted into workout mode with Ubisoft's new title, Shape Up. It's a Kinect game for the Xbox One that makes working out fun.
This was followed by a somber look at Valiant Hearts: The Great War, which features a highly stylised depiction of World War I. The press event came to a close with our first taste of Rainbow Six: Siege, which looks quite a bit like the old SWAT games, with four players storming a house to take on another team of four players holding a woman hostage.
Sony unveiled Uncharted 4: A Thief's End and Littlebigplanet 3 on PS4
Rounding out Monday's events was the highly anticipated Sony press conference. The event began with an extended look at Destiny, the new FPS MMO from Bungie and Activision. The exclusive PlayStation 4 beta begins on July 17, and Sony will release a white PlayStation 4 console bundled with Destiny when the game hits in September.
We finally got a really good look at The Order: 1886, then a surprise unveiling and release of Entwined, which reminded most people of Flower. In addition, Infamous: First Light, the first DLC for Infamous: Second Son, will be available for download in August.
Then came the official announcement of Little Big Planet 3, which features three new characters in addition to Sackboy. All of the characters have special abilities, and you need to work together to complete tasks. On top of this players will be able to access all of the content from the first two games, all with upgraded visuals.
Bloodborne, the new title from the Dark Souls development team made its debut. The PlayStation 4 exclusive uses the same gameplay strategies as Dark Souls, but features much faster action sequences. This was followed by a quick look at Far Cry 4 before showing off the first trailer for Dead Island 2, where zombies invade another beach location.
After a trailer for Battlefield: Hardline and Magicka 2, we saw a montage of games from independent studios. This was followed by a new game, No Man's Sky, which is an epic sci-fi adventure that starts each player on a different planet. This allows for a unique gaming experience every time you play.
PlayStation TV was a big topic of discussion, but it wasn't anywhere near as brutal as the Mortal Kombat X trailer that followed. Showing off Scorpion, Sub-Zero and two new characters, along with X-Ray moves and fatalities, it was one of the more gruesome videos of the evening.
A quick look at the Power TV show followed. It will come to PSN in the near future, with the Ratchet and Clank movie arriving in 2015. It will be accompanied by a remastered version of the original Ratchet and Clank for the PlayStation 4. Sony then closed its press event with a look at The Last of Us on PS4, the new Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain trailer, an announcement of Grand Theft Auto 5 coming to PS4 this fall, a new trailer for Batman: Arkham Knight and our first look at Uncharted 4: A Thief's End. Batman and Uncharted were the most impressive of the final trailers, although Uncharted was more of a tease than anything else. There wasn't much to show of the 2015 title aside from a next-gen Nathan Drake, but it got the crowd excited nonetheless.
All told, numerous announcements that made us eager to hit the show floor the following day.