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E3 2014: Microsoft’s Xbox Press Conference Liveblog

Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more. After months and months of wondering what’s going to happen at next year’s E3, it’s finally here and we couldn’t be more excited. Microsoft kicks off the day of never ending press conferences at 9:30 AM PT with their Xbox Media Briefing at the Galen Center in downtown Los Angeles. We’ve made our predictions as to what we might see, but now it’s time our money where our mouths are.

One year out from Microsoft’s big reveal of the Xbox One, can Microsoft escape the shadow of last year’s press conference? While I thought they had a fine showing last year, many gamers were outspoken about things like always-on DRM (a policy on which they made a prompt aboutface). Still, it’s a brand new year, the Xbox One has had a chance to find its sea legs, and hopefully this year will truly wow us with some stellar exclusives, news about long-rumored sequels, and some sweet, sweet Halo action.

To watch the press conference live, simply scroll down and tune into the livestream. To bring you up to the minute analysis, Gaming Editor Malik Forte and I will be liveblogging and livetweeting today’s press conference, so refresh this page for updates as the conference progresses. We want to hear what you think too, so give us your reactions in the comments below and use the #NerdistE3 hashtag on Twitter to let us know your thoughts!


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Liveblog (refresh to view updates)

11:00 AM: While it was a solid presser, nothing grabbed my interest in the same way Titanfall did last year. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below, guys, and stay tuned for our EA press conference live blog in a bit. (DC)

10:59 AM: Phil Spencer just made his closing statement, and it looks like we’re all done here. Fun times guys! (MF)

10:56 AM: Looks like they’re going to keep things simple, game is titled Crackdown. The original game’s team is back. (MF)

10:56 AM: This is for shigidy Crackdown, but what will the title be? (MF)

10:55 AM: A skyscraper with gatling guns? Sure, why not. All in a days work for your elite agents with their sniper rifles and mack trucks full of explosives. What is this game? (DC)

10:53 AM: Aaaand, it’s Scalebound, a monster huntin’, dragon slayin’, adrenaline packed actioner from Platinum Games. Full disclosure: I originally thought the protagonist was Carol from The Walking Dead, but he looks more like Tidus with a haircut and armor. (DC)

10:52AM: Here’s that third-party exclusive! From Platinum games it looks like. (MF)

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10:50AM: Didn’t think this game could look much better than it did the last time we saw it. All hail the Snowdrop Engine (no pun intended) (MF)

10:48 AM: Recreating the past in digital orange carbonite is both informative and super creepy. (DC)

10:47 AM: Jazzy standards play as snow falls on the heavily militarized streets of New York City. Oh, and it’s Christmas Day in case things weren’t tense enough. (DC)

10:46 AM: Massive game director Ryan Barnard is here to talk about one of the most anticipated, most delayed games, The Division. (DC)

10:45 AM: “The battle for reality begins” in Phantom Dust. Huge cheers erupt from across the way. Looks like it’d make a fun anime series. (DC)

10:44 AM: New unannounced game? What could it be? Looks like The Darkness but with more demonic energies and classical music and slow-motion. (DC)

10:42 AM: The creature design in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is phenomenal. So grotesque, but still a fresh take on old tropes. (DC)

10:39 AM: Geralt sprints through a beautifully rendered open world, following the trail of blood spewing from the wounded creature. Forget the beast; I just want to explore this forest. (DC)

10:38 AM: CD Projekt Red wastes no time jumping right in to a gameplay demo for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, which I respect. They’re a few hours into the game, hunting a griffin. (DC)

tombraiderrise10:36 AM: Tomb Raider was one of the best games of last year, and this new trailer looks equally terrific. Meet Rise of the Tomb Raider. Get stoked to die in hundreds of new ways. (DC)

10:33 AM: Indie game sizzle reel? Indie game sizzle reel! Plague Inc, White Night, Cuphead, and Mighty 9 all look fantastic. (DC)

10:33 AM: Chris Charla, head of ID@Xbox, their proprietary indie development platform, takes the stage. (DC)

10:32 AM: Game is called Inside and looks alternately thrilling and beautiful. (DC)

10:30 AM: And now a new title from Playdead coming in 2015. Thumping mechanical drums sound as we see a lithe character make her way away from all manner of totalitarian guards, dogs, and dangers. (DC)

10:28AM: Every map ever released in Halo multiplayer (over 100) included in Halo Master Chief Collection, will ship with 4000 gamer score. Yikes! That’s a major hit to my social life. Also included is the Halo 5: Guardians beta and the Halo: Nightfall digital short by Ridley Scott, which leads directly into Halo 5. Sounds like a complete packages to me! (MF)

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10:25AM: Halo 2 is getting the full anniversary treatment. The original Halo 2 multiplayer will be included. All four games will work together seamlessly, almost as if they’re the same expererience. (MF)

10:22AM: Halo Master Chief Collection confirmed. Halo: CE,2,3 and 4 included. (MF)

10:20AM: Finally, on to the Halo stuff. Looks like Guardians. Smells like Napalm. (MF)

10:19AM: B-e-a-utiful trailer for the artful platformer Ori and the Blind Forest. Don’t know much about it, but looks damn fun. (DC)

10:16 AM: Holy smoke — Conker (of Conker’s Bad Fur Day) just sawed through the Project Spark logo with a chainsaw. He’ll exclusively be in Project Spark. (DC)

10:15 AM: Project Spark gets a nifty trailer showing off its robust world-building toolkit and variety of games it can create. (DC)

10:14 AM: Multiplayer beta for Fable Legends begins this fall, so start planning out dastardly ways to murder your pals. (DC)

10:12 AM: The story and the outcome are contingent on who performs better, the heroes or the villain. Sounds like most stories, but sure, make it a talking point, Fable Legends. (DC)

10:11 AM: In Fable Legends, you can be the villain, controlling from the top down “like a malevolent god”. This is an awesome twist to the standard action-RPG mechanics, allowing for classic Dungeon Keeper style mischief. (DC)

10:09 AM: Fable Legends takes the stage, emphasizing co-op story-based gameplay. We get our first look at the hub city of Brightlodge. A group of four heroes banter back and forth before venturing into a goblin-filled forest. (DC)

10:08: There goes that Dance Central game. Dance Central Spotlight just announced, coming this fall for Xbox exclusively. (MF)

10:06: New DLC for Dead Rising 3 featuring all of your favorite DR protagonist and… Street Fighter characters. (MF)

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10:05: There’s an 8-player co-op mode coming to Susnet Overdrive. Octoboer 28th folks! (MF)

10:03 AM: Okay, we’re in a live demo of Sunset Overdrive now. The sense of mobility and scale is awesome. We’re watching the hero jump, flip, and clamber his way around the city, using an impressive array of weaponry to turn mutant beasts into sticky orange goo. (DC)

10:02 AM: “Can you save Sunset City?” the game’s hero asks before shooting a monster in the face. “Of course you can. It’s a fuckin’ video game.” Yes. Please. (DC)

10:01 AM: And Sunset Overdrive wins for best use of over-the-top violent text since James McAvoy’s keyboard smash in Wanted. (DC)

10:00: I thought we we’re getting another military shooter trailer. Instead, we got Sunset Overdrive. I’t looking very over-the-top and very fun! (MF)

9:58: A tear jerker of a Dragon Age: Inquisition trailer is being shown. Can this game be out now please? (MF)

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9:55: For some reason, I feel this is how Assassin’s Creed is meant to be played (MF)

9:53 AM: We see two player controlled assassins moving through the crowd and inciting a riot as they take out guards in tandem. Pretty cool to see in the context of a free-roaming campaign. (DC)

9:52 AM: Do you wish Les Miserables had less singing and like waaaay more murder? Then Assassin’s Creed: Unity will definitely be up your alley. (DC)

9:50 AM: Senior producer at Ubisoft Vincent Pontbriand takes the stage to introduce us to Assassin’s Creed: Unity, which stars assassin Victor Dorian. It allows for 3-player Xbox Live co-op/multiplayer too. You can form your own brotherhood (DC)

9:49 AM: Next up is Evolve, which as you may know, we’re super excited for as we’re hosting the first ever Evolve E3 tournament. Looks like we’re getting our first look at some new monsters too. Looks like Cthulu. Holy shit that’s scary. (DC)

IMG_74659:48 AM: Forza 2 Horizon tech demo looks beautiful as most tech demos do. Promises “dramatic weather”, “seamless multiplayer”, “1000 player car clubs”, “0ver 200 cars”, “open world freedom”, jets flying overhead releasing Italian flag-colored smoke. (DC)

9:46 AM: We’re getting our first details on Forza Horizon 2. Coming September 13, 2014!

9:43 AMForza Motorsport 5 is next. Pleaaaaase tell me they’re going to raise an awesome sports car out of the ground like last year. (DC)

9:42 AM: Man, alive, Call of Duty loves dramatic shots of a guy passing out on the ground and someone mysterious emerging from the ever-clearing smoke and particle effects. (DC)

9:41 AM: I don’t know where it’s written that every futuristic FPS has to have power jumping/jet packs, but I’m not complaining. Also loving that you can toggle the grenade type using a keypad on the front. (DC)

9:38 AM: So far this is looking like the Call Of Duty we know and love. Running in 60fps and not missing a beat. (MF)

9:35 AM: Our first look at Call Of Duty: Advanced Warfare, of which all the add-on content will be exclusive to Xbox owners (MF)

9:33 AM: Phil Spencer is on stage. “We’re dedicating the entire briefing to games” (MF)

9:30: Press conference starting off with a cool wristband light show accompanied by an Xbox One sizzle reel(MF)

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9:20: Here’s a first look at the main stage! Woooooo! E3 has arrived! (MF)

9:13 AM: Malik and I have braved the truest survival horror game, downtown LA traffic, and are here in the Galen Center waiting for things to start. (DC)

What do you think of the announcements thus far? Chime in in real time in the comments below or join the conversation on Twitter by using #NerdistE3.

Additional reporting by Malik Forte.

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