Tech giant Microsoft was in attendance at the ongoing E3 2015, an annual video gaming event holding in Los Angeles, to brief gaming enthusiasts and industry watchers about what it has been up to lately as far as games are concerned. Here is a round-up of key announcements made.
Backward Compatibility for Xbox One
Microsoft caused a bit of an uproar when it announced last year that users will not be able to play Xbox 360 games on its latest-generation console, the Xbox One.
The company is seemingly trying to appease angry users by announcing at the E3 2015 that it will introduce a backward compatibility feature to the console ahead of the holidays.
Gamers on Xbox One preview can play a couple of Xbox 360 games imediately, while the rest of the crowd will be joining later this year. Microsoft targets over 100 Xbox 360 titles will be compatible with Xbox One in time for the holidays.
Elite Wireless Controller
Microsoft also unveiled a redesigned wireless controller for Xbox. The new Elite controller will not only work for the Xbox, but also for computers running the latest Windows 10 operating system.
It features a swappable directional pad and reprogrammable buttons, amongst other customisation options. The customisable wireless controller is set to be available before the holidays at a price of $150.
New and Upcoming Games
Microsoft also announced some new and upcoming games for the Xbox One. One of these is Halo 5: Guardians, which comes with improved game play, more enemies and a multiplayer mode called Warzone.
The Xbox exclusive game will be available in October. Forza Motorsport 6, Rise of the Tomb Raider, Rare Replay, Fable Legends, Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, Gigantic (beta) and The Division (Beta) are among the announced games expected this year.
Trailer was also shown at the event for the game Dark Souls III, which is scheduled to be released in 2015. Other announced games for Xbox One, which are expected next year, include ReCore, Rare’s Sea of Thieves, Gears of War 4 and Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2.
Microsoft also unveiled about four indie titles (Tacoma, Ashen, Beyond Eyes, and Cuphead) that will be coming first to the Xbox One before other consoles.
An Xbox Game Preview program was also announced. This arrangement will allow users to buy new Xbox games before their official release — while still in development phase. Game Preview will start with the pre-release version of The Long Dark and Elite: Dangerous.
Valve VR Partnership
Microsoft also took time to announce that it has entered into a partnership with virtual reality company Valve to bring better virtual reality experiences to Windows 10. This follows the company’s earlier agreement with another virtual reality company Oculus.