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E3 2013 Day 0 Impressions

e3-logoDay one of E3 2013 is done. Time for some impressions, some cheers and some jeers. I’ll collect some trailers and other media tomorrow but for now it’s just text!

Microsoft’s Press Conference

Microsoft promised games and delivered on that promise. They started with Metal Gear Solid 5 and ended with an incredible in-game demonstration of TitanFall. In-between the two were a flurry of exclusives.

Microsoft confirmed a gameplay recording and streaming feature for the Xbox One along with Xbox Live! Gold features such as Gold membership sharing on one console and a PS Plus-esque free game offer. All of these features sound great, if I were to pay for Xbox Live! Gold. I refuse to pay for online multiplayer.

As expected, the Xbox One will debut this November for $499.99. I’m surprised there wasn’t a different lower priced SKU or a subsidized offering but there’s still lots of time to announce the latter.

If we’re strictly looking at the games being offered, I am in for an Xbox One. Three exclusives including Forza MotorSport 5, TitanFall (PC as well but I rather play with controller) and the next Halo game in 2014 are enough to push me towards an early purchase.

I mentioned the highlights but there were many announced Xbox One titles that just didn’t show well. However, when I consider it was a 90 minute presentation, it was decently paced. In the end, I was able to grab a trio or so of games that I would purchase an Xbox One for.

Overall Grade: B

Sony’s Press Conference

Microsoft kept to their word and focused on games. Sony, on the other hand, had a lot more to show including the console itself and its media services. Many of the titles shown at Sony’s press conference were not exclusives — most were actually shown at third party publisher conferences.

I was pleased by the independent game developer showcase that they held. Giving indies the limelight is always a good move. Unfortunately for Sony, I was in it for the exclusives and not just console exclusives. I have a PC and will probably play many of those indie titles on that platform.

For true blue Sony PlayStation 4 exclusives, Sony managed to woo me with The Order 1886, Infamous: Second Son and that’s about it? They didn’t show as many first party exclusives as I would like but I’m not worried.

The final moments of Sony’s presentation were the highlights. The PlayStation 4 will debut at $399.99 which is $100 less than what I thought it would be. I was hoping for this price but I didn’t think they would be able to hit it. Sony also confirmed that lending games will work as simple as this:

Unfortunately, it looks like online multiplayer will no longer be free on the PlayStation 4. A PlayStation Plus membership will be required to enjoy “immersive multiplayer”. Will that mean I can enjoy barebones multiplayer for free? I have my doubts.

In the end though, Sony killed it with their price point and used games policy and for that they get top marks.

Overall Grade: A+

Other Notable Items

More 60 FPS shooters –  Battlefield 4, TitanFall and the next Halo will be running at 60 FPS. I hope this trend continues across all shooters throughout the generation.

Forza Motorsport 5 runs at 1080p @ 60FPS

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