As expected Microsoft spent almost all of their E3 keynote today talking about games. After making the initial debut of the Xbox One all about entertainment and television, those words were barely uttered today. Instead they kicked off their press conference by showing clips from the next Metal Gear Solid game, launching yet another newly revised Xbox 360 (the price hasn’t dropped yet, it’s still about $200), and talking about over a dozen games before wrapping up the keynote.
Perhaps the information that was craved the most was provided today, or at least it was mostly provided. We’ve been waiting for confirmation of a price and a ship date. Today they announced that the Xbox One will be priced at $499, and it will be made available in November. It will be launched initially in 21 countries. In the UK the Xbox One will be available for £429. While that price may seem high, Microsoft is most likely banking on the fact that the console includes the next-generation Kinect sensor and a Blu-ray drive. If you’re already planning to buy one [amazon_link id=”B00CMQTVK0″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]it can be pre-ordered right now[/amazon_link], and comes with a special controller (pictured) in addition to the Kinect sensor and an HDMI cable.
In addition to the refreshed Xbox 360, and a slew of new game announcements, Microsoft also discussed some of the Xbox One’s features and a cool promotion. If you’re a current Xbox Live Gold subscriber you’ll be receiving two free games per month until the launch of the Xbox One. Also, when purchasing content through the store all prices will be in local currency, instead of Microsoft Points. Finally, with regard to Xbox Live Gold, they are going to be making account sharing easier. They said that you’ll only need one Xbox Live Gold account to access most features (including multiplayer gaming) with other accounts in your household. For those of you who love to share your gaming exploits Microsoft detailed its Upload Studio feature which gives you the ability customize game videos that you create on the fly, and then upload straight to the web. They also showed off integration with Twitch.TV that looked incredibly simply and powerful, and basically decimated what Sony showed with their Ustream integration.
If you weren’t able to watch the keynote live you can still watch it on demand right here.[amazon_enhanced asin=”B00CMQTVK0″ container=”” container_class=”” show_border=”false” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /]