Now that E3 2011 has come to a close, its time to reflect upon the top 10 announcements that have been made over the past few years for the Xbox 360. Of course, it wouldn’t feel right missing out this year’s announcements, so you’ll find some of them included in this feature too.
As a Minecraft PC fan I’ve dreamed of playing this game on Xbox 360. One can imagine this game will be an Xbox Live Arcade title, but what we do know for sure is that Notch, the developer behind the PC version, will not be working on the 360 version. Instead, we see another development team taking the reins and hopefully steering the game to success. It is still unsure what players will be able to craft in this pixel world, but you will be able to build more or less anything using 1×1 blocks.
9. Alan Wake
Can you believe that Alan Wake was unveiled at E3 2005 and then wasn’t released until 2010. Sony did a similar job with Gran Turismo. Over 70,000 visitors witnessed this game for the first time and came out looking very impressed with what they had seen. No wonder the game scored highly amongst reviewers when it finally launched.
8. Games on Demand
This was a service that was first unveiled at E3 2009. It was probably one of the most underrated announcements made at the event, but since then it has caught on and many of us are buying our retail games digitally. The only thing that the service does lack currently are recent and new titles, which will probably be added once Cloud profiles are added.
7. Live Anywhere
This service was initially planned to allow multiplayer games and communication possible between Xbox 360 and Windows Vista for the PC, however it looks as though it never took off, as the only retail title to offer cross-platform multiplayer is Shadowrun. Today we can see it being used for Windows Phone 7, as it carries your gamer profile across and allows you to boost your gamescore on the move.
6. Tomb Raider
The general reports I received from this year’s E3 show was that Tomb Raider was the best game of E3 2011. After seeing the game in action, it’s hard to disagree with the award, as it showed us a new side to Lara Croft and gave us a greater sense of survival, as caves begin to collapse and Lara has to rush to try to find a way out. Then there are the acclaimed puzzles, which return and haunt us once again.
5. Halo 4
I think I can say this for everybody, “we knew this was coming.” Master Chief will be returning once more in a new Halo title not made by Bungie. Who knows what we’ll see from this title, only time will tell. As long as there’s no love story involved.
4. Big titles
This year we saw just as many big titles announced, from the likes of Brothers in Arms Furious 4, Far Cry 3 and Need For Speed: The Run. However if you compare this to E3 2006, you’ll notice a big difference in the line-up of announced games. We had Halo 3, Grand Theft Auto IV, Hitman: Blood Money, Fable II, Gears of War, and Sonic the Hedgehog. If you look at the success of these games over the years, you’ll understand why this included in the top 10.
The Xbox 360 Avatar was first announced during E3 2008, as part of the dashboard update that would add a new user interface. Avatars finally arrived during Fall 2008 and let’s be honest, they’re included in lots of titles today. There are a couple of retail titles such as Kinect Sports Joy Ride, but there are also plenty of arcade titles that implement your Avatar, with UNO and Full House Poker topping them. Of course there is still more for the world of the Avatar, after Microsoft announced the ability to create an Avatar that will match your appearance more by using Kinect.
2. Xbox Slim
In at number 2 is the Slim model of the Xbox 360 console, which came as a surprise to everyone who was tuned into the show. It came as even more of a shock to those that were sat inside the hall, as Microsoft told all attendees that they were receiving a free Xbox 360 Slim before they left. For those who were lucky enough to be there, I am so jealous of you guys. Now I was going to pick the Xbox 360 console itself as number two, but that seemed cheap of me, as that was really the starting point for all of these announcements.
Surprise, surprise, it’s Xbox 360’s Kinect motion sensor. Initially announced as “Project Natal” at E3 2009, Kinect soon become what it’s known as now at E3 2010. It still has stiff competition from PlayStation Move and Wii Remote Plus, but you can’t fault Microsoft for their innovative approach to Kinect. At this year’s E3 they finally announced the use of voice with Kinect and the power it beholds such as conducting Bing searches on your Xbox 360 and ordering your Xbox about like a slave. Xbox Bing Kinect wins!
After this year’s show it makes us wonder what Microsoft will unveil next year. Maybe we’ll see a new form of controller in the same shape and purpose of Nintendo’s WiiU or perhaps we’ll be witnessing a Halo 5 teaser.