Tag Archives: Microsoft

[E3 2019] Video Game Platforms And The Pre-Pre-Next-Gen E3

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I have a feeling E3 this year is gonna feel a bit cool because the console gaming industry is starting to move into next-gen transition mode. I’m interested in a lot of games that will be at E3 of course, and I imagine there will be some big surprises, but I’m not going in with any specific hopes and dreams for earth-shattering revelations. Continue reading

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Next-Gen Speculation Begins

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So we’ve had a few days to digest what Sony showed Wired when it revealed some specifications for what we all think it will call the PlayStation 5. There’s a lot that it tells us and a lot that it doesn’t. We can now begin to speculate some of the impact these specs might have on game design and even on the games we’re playing right now. Continue reading

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Google Stadia: An Alternative to Console Wars

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So Google’s recently-announced Stadia is a video game streaming service, as we all expected. There isn’t even a box involved, Google wants you to play video games over streaming through all kinds of computers and mobile devices. The obstacles previous attempts like OnLive and Gaikai faced haven’t really changed, but Google’s decidedly hardware-agnostic approach addresses issues that, really, have defined video games since the beginning.

I think the features Google touts with Stadia sound cool — basically being able to google search a game or watch it on YouTube, then immediately start playing that game on whatever device you already own. If it ever actually works, maybe it could be a way to end console wars, or at least offer people an alternate path around them. Continue reading

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Why Do The Classic Mini Console Games Have To Be Locked Up In More Pieces of Plastic?

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Sony has jumped on the classic console bandwagon with the PlayStation Classic that includes 20 games from the original PlayStation for $99. Look man, I just want to play those same games on the PlayStation 4 already sitting under my TV, I’d happily pay the same price. Or better yet let me transfer the ones I already bought to play on my PlayStation 3 and PSP.

Microsoft is absolutely right to jab Sony with that “Play 500+ classic Xbox games on Xbox One today” tweet, even if it they didn’t perfectly word it. The point is you don’t have to put another plastic box under your TV to play a handful of games exclusive to it. That’s the whole problem with console gaming. At the same time though I see why console manufactures are making these nostalgia consoles and why Microsoft probably won’t, I’m just asking for some more options here, which SEGA and SNK have been happy to provide. Continue reading

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Will Discord and Twitch Succeed Where Origin and UPlay Failed?

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I had a blog post about Discord and its competition with Steam (along with other PC gaming services) ready to go that I’d written on Tuesday… and then on Thursday Discord went and announced it’s actually going to sell games.

Back in 2014 I did a post comparing Origin and UPlay to Steam, primarily through why each PC game launcher was created in the first place, and how that affected the current status of each one. Steam started as a way to facilitate the installing and patching of games, Origin as EA’s personal game launcher, and UPlay as Ubisoft’s customer loyalty program. To this day, people primarily install Origin and UPlay just to boot up EA’s and Ubisoft’s games respectively. That in itself is fine. Blizzard’s Battle.net gets away with it, Fortnite gets away with it, Minecraft gets away with it. Those services juts aren’t ever going to come close to competing with Steam.

Discord found another way to get onto millions of computers: as a chat app and a universal game launcher. Continue reading

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Microsoft Ran Its E3 2018 Media Briefing Like A Streaming Service Would

Microsoft's studio acquisition announcements from E3 2018

One overarching subject came to my mind during Microsoft’s E3 2018 media briefing when the company was revealing the video game studios it had acquired for the purpose of making exclusive games. When people were cheering these acquisitions I realized you’d probably never see reactions like that in other entertainment industries, not for a platform holder or service provider locking up future content exclusively to its platform and services. E3 has almost always been a vehicle for platform wars, and that’s one of the things that’s still really peculiar about console games. Continue reading

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What’s Hiding In The Shadows Before E3 2018?

Cyberpunk 2077 at E3 2018

If Cyberpunk 2077 isn’t one of those games that gets mostly shown behind doors this year, I think it could be the main sleeping giant of E3 2018. We know almost nothing about it, but what little we do know sounds extremely ambitious, and it’s from the developer of one of the best-rated games of this console generation. To me it just feels like it has the most potential in proportion to how little people are talking about it in the run-up to E3. Other than that I guess Super Smash Bros. for the Switch is the big thing I’m looking forward to. That’s another game we know almost nothing about other than what’s obligatory in Smash Bros. games, but is gonna be a main-pillar game for some people (myself included).

Those are the two games that immediately pop into my head in terms of personal interest and potential future hype at E3 2018. In March I wrote about my anticipation for a new Splinter Cell as well, which is looking increasingly likely to be revealed at E3. Something else I hope E3 reveals is the Prey expansion pack Arkane has been teasing. Microsoft is also rumored to be bringing out the bulk of its first party lineup at E3: Halo 6Gears of War 5, and Forza Horizon 4. I guess enough time has passed since the last entry in each of those franchises for at least one of them to show up this year. Another rumor going around is Mortal Kombat 11. The last rumored reveal I can think of right now is that people are speculating Nintendo will show off the new Metroid Prime and a new Star Fox game… or whatever it is Retro Studios has been working on. Continue reading

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Are We Ready To Talk About PS5?

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Some rumblings about a “PlayStation 5” have been going around lately. I either haven’t laid out what I think might happen with the next Sony console or just haven’t done so in at least a couple years. As the current console generation drags on almost two years after the release of upgraded consoles and going on five years since the initial launch of this generation, how much longer do we have to go? Continue reading

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Xbox Game Pass, The Business of AAA Games, And Singleplayer Games

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The big news this week seems to be that Microsoft’s future first party video games will be included in its Xbox Game Pass service right when they launch. People immediately took this to mean Microsoft is going full Netflix. One long-running Austrian retailer has even gone so far as to de-list Xbox One consoles for fear of the platform eventually going completely digital. I don’t know about that last part, but everything else here makes perfect sense for Microsoft. It’s just another solution to the current problems facing AAA games. Continue reading

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The PlayStation Games I’d Re-Buy On Xbox, If They Were Added To Backwards Compatibility

On the week’s events: A lot happened this week, especially on Thursday. I got nothin’ personally, just more links you’ll see at the bottom of this blog post to articles I think you should read. Meanwhile, this post is something I’ve had in the tank for a while.

Also: I posted a review of AER: Memories of Old on Steam. http://steamcommunity.com/profiles/76561197983276232/recommended/331870

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Microsoft’s recent shifts towards a policy of backwards compatibility — emulating Xbox 360 and original Xbox games on the Xbox One, letting you use original discs, and even improving those games for free, are setting a precedent in my view against Sony’s treatment of legacy software on PlayStation. This has reached the point where there are games I bought on PlayStation which I’ve thought about re-buying for Xbox because of Microsoft’s policies if they ever become backwards compatible. Continue reading

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