Xbox 360 E3 Press Conference Round Up

Microsoft kicked off the E3 conference on Monday, with a whole bunch of new games and updates for it’s Xbox 360. Some of this stuff is pretty major (and at the same time very sick- in a good way), so hit the more link for all the details!

There is a lot of stuff here so we”ll break it down for you into those two parts- Updates and Games. Now let’s get started.

Updates:

  • Entirely new 3D Dashboard– We said this info was huge, and you don’t get any bigger than updating the interface for the Dashboard. This new 3D Dashboard, drops the old “blades” interface for a new “panel” and “channel” interface that looks a little similar in my opinion to the “Flip 3D” in Vista. It looks pretty sweet and I can’t wait to update my 360 to this “mandatory” update as Microsoft puts it. O, and two other things on this- 1. The old interface won’t be going away entirely, as it will be going to the new Xbox Guide, which will give easy access to whats on your 360, and 2. This update adds….
  • Avatars!– You know those virtual you’s like Mii’s on the Wii and on the Playstation 3’s Home. Unlike those avatars though, the 360’s will not be used in their own special game, and rather will be characters in games like UNO, and other Xbox Live Arcade games.

The new Xbox 360 Dashboard with Avatars- the guy waving in the first tile- and Downloaded Game- see below in Games, the game in this case is Lego Batman- (Pic from Engadget)

  • Netlix support– Thought it would be worth mentioning, that with the new Dashboard, you will be able to use Netflix to rent and download movies straight to your 360, and thereby turning the 360 into a real media center powerhouse. Yes, Microsoft gave the Xbox Live Marketplace a video download store with loads of movies and TV shows, but even with the new addition of NBC/Universal to that marketplace, it still doesn’t compare to the offerings of Netflix. Note on this new feature: To use this, you will need both a Xbox Live Gold subscription (costs about $50 for a year), and a Netflix account and subscription.

Netflix on Xbox Live (pic from Engadget)

Look for both of these to come with the free Dashboard update in the fall.

Games:

  • Some already known games like Rock Band 2 and Guitar Hero 4, also the addition of more downloadable games from Xbox Live. These games include Geometry Wars 2, Galaga Legions, a game based on the TV show  South Park, a game based on the TV show 1 v.s. 100, Portal: Still Alive– a follow-up to the hit EA game- Orange Box, and Grand Theft Auto IV mini games (or episodes), as well as more games to take advantage of the new Avatars.
  • New game from Microsoft called Lips- This game is actually pretty interesting. It is a singing game that uses only a motion sensitive mic (Lips= singing). No guitar, or drum set, just a mic. Before you turn away thinking we have no sense of what interesting is, you may wanna listen to this- in this game not only do you get to use the included songs, but you can use ANY song from your iPod, Zune, or other Mp3 Player. That is something that hasn’t been put into the games like Guitar Hero or Rock Band yet (yes we know Guitar Hero offers the ability to make your own songs, but that is only from scratch and not from a preexisting song you own). The game will also come with two of the mics in the box so you can karaoke with friends. We don’t know much more about this game yet (i.e. price), but you can expect it to come by this holiday season. O, and after watching the trailer of it (see bottom), you’ll definitely will be interested.

Lips for the Xbox 360

  • Ability to save your games to your Hard Drive– This is also HUGE. For those of you with Arcade versions that don’t have a hard drive, we recommend that you start saving money to go and buy one, because you will definitely want this. What this new feature does, is it lets you download a game (after you buy it of course) onto your Xbox 360 for easy, quieter- I know personaly from my own 360, that thing gets loud when playing games– and overall better playback. You will still need to have the game in the system when you play– in order to prevent people from renting or borrowing games and downloading them without buying it- but the game will play off the hard drive and not the DVD. This new feature also probably explains the upgrade to 60 GB over 20 GB in the Pro (though if you ask us for which console to get, we’d still say go and spend the extra $100 if you can for the Elite which offers 120 GB, and comes with an HDMI cable in the box for better High Def gaming). Look for this to also come in the Fall with the Dashboard update.

There you have it, some info on the Xbox 360 E3 Conference. All in all, I’m now actually looking forward to the fall to get this update because it really looks pretty cool.

Keep checking back, as we got lots to tell you about, including PS3 info from Sony’s conference, more Guitar Hero 4 and Rock Band 2 info, some new Halo (yes, Halo) info, as well as other E3 info.

O, and check these sites out for more info, pix, and videos of the Lips game, and the new Dashboard.

New Dashboard on Video- Joystiq.com

Photo Gallery of New Dashboard- Engadget.com

Lips Trailer Video- Lips’ game site

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Posted on July 16, 2008, in E3, Video Games and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. very interesting………..however i do i have a concern with the avatars. i always viewed the 360 as a mature system which differed from the childish options of the Wi. However I see now that once one company comes out with something…….every other brand must follow suit

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