E3 2014: Microsoft Press Conference Highlights

Did Microsoft deliver this year?

After last year’s E3, Microsoft has backed down over some of it’s policies including DRM, Always Online, pre-owned games and more recently, Kinect as optional and not mandatory for Xbox One. The conference itself had little reference to Kinect other than a brief look at Dance Central: Spotlight and a quick glimpse of an Indy game.

The conference began as usual with a look at the new Call of Duty, Advanced Warfare – Trailer here:

We got a closer look at games like Sunset Overdrive and Fable Legends, but the real masterpiece was the unveiling of the much rumoured Halo: The Master Chief Collection which contains Halo 1, 2, 3 and 4 with Halo 2 getting the Anniversary treatment and the package featuring over 100 maps and 4000 Gamerscore, it sounds like a hell of a package and it’s due this November!

Project Spark was teased again and it looks like it has plenty of potential, but the real kick in the teeth was dangling Conker as being in the game somehow, he even jokes about not having a new game for a decade and that this will have to do. Seriously Microsoft, make a new Conker already!

A new Crackdown is also in the works and looks to be a return to form after the disappointing sequel of Crackdown 2.

The Rise of the Tomb Raider was also announced with a teaser trailer and is a sequel to the successful reboot.

Original Xbox classic Phantom Dust is getting the remake treatment. We also saw some 4 player co-op of Assassins Creed: Unity set during the French Revolution. It looks pretty good, but I was hoping to see the next-gen outing…which I imagine will be shown off at Ubisoft’s conference later today.

Overall there were some good moments from Microsoft this year and obviously a great recovery from last year, but there wasn’t any real surprises and the Conker tease really annoyed me. On the whole though, it’s much better from them and hopefully sets them up as contenders now.