With Sony now on record with their next generation console offering, we’re not all waiting on the other heavy hitter: Microsoft. With all eyes now focused on Microsoft and what they’re planning what better time to create a prediction list. The Sony Event got me thinking at what Microsoft needs to do to have a successful showing. Anyone think that Microsoft took some notes during Sony’s event? They’d be stupid not to. So here are my top things that I’ll be looking for when the time comes to reveal the next generation Xbox.
My list lays in wait for you after the jump…
Hit A Home Run With First Party
It’s common knowledge that Sony has a huge stable of first party developers to pull from and that’s easily one of their biggest strengths. While Microsoft may not have that large pool to tap into, they do have strong studios and they really need to show that off to counteract the last couple of years where it seemed like first party offerings were beginning to fall off. I think it’s a bit too early to see what 343 is up to since Halo 4 dropped late last year, but expect to see offerings from Turn 10, Rare, Lionhead and the newly formed Black Tusk Studios up in Vancouver.
Getting A Little Help From Friends – Third Party Support
Sony not only showed off great first party offerings but also wowed the crowd with some great third-party titles like Watch_Dogs, Deep Down, and Destiny. Frankly, I can’t see companies or Microsoft wanting to rehash any previously announced games at the Sony event so I’d be surprised to see the games mentioned above again. We need some wow factors here though so here are some games that I believe may be featured:
The Next Assassin’s Creed Game – Rumored to be called “Black Flags”, the game is due out later this year and it’s a safe guess to assume Ubisoft will be present at this event. If it’s not Watch_Dogs then my money is on this.
Rainbow 6: Patriots – Ok, here’s the only other Ubisoft title that would accomplish that ‘wow’ factor and surprise the audience as it’s been on hiatus for a while. What better way to re-introduce it to the world?
Next Gears of War – With People Can Fly leading the development charge on Judgment, you’d have to think that freed up Epic to work on the next Unreal Engine 4 powered Gears of War game. Just makes sense right?
Star Wars 1313 – Again, another way to cause a major splash would be to show off this promising action game which was only really tease last year at E3.
Respawn Entertainment – Yes, they’ve confirmed they’ll be at E3 this year, but why not tease the game with Microsoft?
Call of Duty – We all know that Activision and Microsoft are BFFs in regards to Call of Duty so why not show off what a next-gen Call of Duty will look like running on the next Xbox?
Also, where’s EA in all of this? I have a hard time believing that they’re willing to sit on the sidelines and watch other big publishers in Ubisoft and Activision take all the spotlight with their upcoming next-gen games. With all of the Battlefield 4 news recently hitting, what better time to really shock the world at the Microsoft Event? I’d love to see what Frostbite can do on next generation technology. I have a strong feeling that we’ll be seeing something from EA at the Xbox Event.
Showing The Hardware
Oddly enough, Sony chose not to show off the PS4 itself. I’m guessing that the final look isn’t quite ready yet (along with the price) and while Microsoft won’t have to reveal a price, it’d be nice to actually see the thing. Not a huge priority if you ask me, but it’ll be appreciated by the watching public.
Obviously, this is the one most people will be watching for. Sony had a few surprises up their sleeves when they showed off the hardware specs for the PS4 (such as the DDR5 RAM) and now Microsoft needs to show that it’s at the very least on par. Gamers and industry people alike will be comparing the stats the next day, you can bet on that. If the new Xbox comes off less powerful than the PS4, you can bet people will be talking about that the next day. That’s probably not the position they want to find themselves in going into E3.
Xbox Live and Connectivity
Sony seemed to prioritize their online service adding in more social activities, entertainment options, and even Gaikai services in an effort to take some of the market share away from Microsoft. We know what we get with Xbox Live so the big question will be how it’s improved over it’s current form. I expect this to be a big topic for Microsoft during their event and in an effort to strike back at Sony.
Well, that’s my list but what’s on yours? Agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments below.