E3 – Has Microsoft Done Enough?

With PlayStation and Nintendo holding most of the cards when it comes to popular video game exclusives, people have not only been questioning the worth of owning an Xbox, but whether there was any point in Microsoft making another one.  So, all eyes were on Microsoft’s E3 conference last night.  Some considered it a do or die moment for Xbox.  So, did they do enough?

The show opened with Xbox boss Phil Spencer announcing they had a record 52 games to showcase, including 18 console launch exclusives and 15 world premieres.  Yes, this year Microsoft definitely brought the games.  Bigger news still was the announcement that Microsoft has made a significant investment in first-party videogame development.  Microsoft now owns State of Decay’s Undead Labs, Playground Games who are famous for the sublime Forza series, We Happy Few’s Compulsion Games, Ninja Theory who developed this year’s five times Bafta award winning game Hellblade, and The Initiative, a brand new game development studio headed by Darrell Gallagher, ex Head of product Development and Studios at Square Enix.  Darrell was instrumental in the making of the Tomb Raider reboot.

There was a continued commitment to Microsoft’s Netflix-like Xbox Game Pass, with notable additions to the platform and reassurances that Microsoft’s in-house games would all be available the day they also hit shops.

Finally, Phil Spencer briefly assured us that the hardware teams were indeed hard at work designing and developing the next Xbox.

So, was it enough?  For this generation, probably not – PlayStation has such an incredible lead over the other platforms, in both user base and exclusive content – but as a commitment to the future of Xbox?  Let’s just say Microsoft definitely aren’t out of the race just yet.

James Dodd

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