E3 2013 @ Microsoft

When you’re done skimming through the many games Microsoft featured in their press conference today, then perhaps you’ll be interested in the few other items they tossed into their show that didn’t come with any shiny visuals. For an overview of everything Microsoft showed, you can check the summary pulled from Internal Robots twitter feed. Here’s the rest of the stuff from the Microsoft E3 Press Conference in more detail.

  • New Xbox 360 model will be available from today (US). It will be “smaller, sleeker and quieter than ever” and be more in line with the design of the Xbox One (see above image). This comes with the promise of “hundreds” of games coming to the Xbox 360 in the coming months.
  • Xbox Live will adopt a PS+ idea and begin offering two free games a month to Xbox Live Gold subscribers. The first two free games will be Assassin’s Creed 2 and Halo 3, and will start “immediately”. Region availability was not mentioned.
  • Microsoft will be doing away with it’s Microsoft Points currency system and will instead be implementing local currency costs with the new generation.
  • Microsoft announced that their streaming partner will be the popular twitch.tv service, much as Sony is making use of UStream, users will be able to livestream directly from their Xbox One consoles to their Twitch channel.
  • The Xbox One got a slightly more specific release date: November 2013. No surprises there. Date still to come.
  • Surprisingly, Microsoft also announced pricing for the Xbox One. The console will cost $499 US / €499 Europe / £429 UK / $599 AU. Alternate payment schemes (e.g. subsidised with XBL subscriptions) or different model SKUs were not mentioned. Potential buyers are able to reserve a Day One Edition of the console that gets them a limited edition Day One wireless controller, an achievement and various digital bonuses for games.

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