Arrived at Microsoft's presser. Took five minutes just to walk three blocks to the back of the line. Welcome to E3!
I'm seated, have a strong Wi-Fi signal, and ready to deliver play-by-play of Microsoft's E3 press conference. Show starting soon...
It's on! Looks like we're starting with a live-action Halo 4 trailer...
Now into gameplay. Master Chief is investigating a jungle/mountain planet, heading to a crash site...
Classic Halo shooting, but with some pretty groovy visual effects (monster just disintegrated into floaty particles of light).
Aliens are mysterious, but Cortana just identified a cool looking rifle as Forerunner design.
Kudoes to 343 Industries. Halo 4 retains classic vibe, introduces loads of new and mysterious elements.
And now Don Mattrick's on stage. Yes, we know Xbox 360 is now the number one console worldwide.
Splinter Cell Blacklist trailer up now. Some really violent slow-motion headshots happening here.
Looks pretty action-packed. Sam's already killed a dozen dudes. Still pretty sneaky, though. Sam seems more agile than ever.
It looks fun. Great climbing sequences, lots of gunplay. Alas, it sounds like Michael Ironside may have been replaced. :(
Spy vs. Mercs returns! Splinter Cell Blacklist shipping in 2013.
On to EA, talking Kinect. FIFA 13 and next Tiger Woods will deliver new Kinect features.
FIFA 13 is all about Kinect voice recognition, apparently.
Joe Montana is in the house, talking Kinect voice command for Madden NFL.
Fable: The Journey. This should be interesting. Maybe we'll finally learn how this thing works with now controller...
Phil Spencer, head of MS Studios, on stage. Talking about how this will year will be the biggest ever for Xbox games.
New Gears of War game. Whoddathunk?
Gears of War Judgement. Big guns, bigger guys, and even bigger monsters.
Forza Horizon trailer. Loads of off-road and country racing. Releasing October 23rd, this year.
(That was Joe Montana on stage playing Madden NFL 13 with his voice.)
We've moved on to Kinect voice search features. Multiple language support for different regions.
Lots of chatter about video and sports features, including NHL Game Center.
We'll have to wait to talk to an Xbox Canada rep to find out Canadian availability.
Xbox Music, coming to Xbox 360, tablets, and phones. More than 30M songs, apparently. Music service MS "has always dreamt of building."
Ah. Just the future of fitness. Sneak peak at a Xbox Fit (or whatever it might be called.)
Nike dude on stage talking Nike+ Kinect Training. It will be an "advanced personal digital training experience," apparently.
Marc Whitten on stage talking Xbox Live, and a new product called Xbox SmartGlass. Connects all of your devices, including phone and tablet.
Send a movie from your tablet to your Xbox and pick up where you left off watching.
We're now well into the traditional mid-conference hump. Fellow journos, let's start a chant: More games! More games!
SmartGlass has some neat interactive features for games, but they're too complex to get into here. I'll dig into it later..
Internet Explorer finally coming to Xbox 360. About darned time, if you ask me.
IE for Xbox will feature voice search via Kinect/Bing.
If you can use SmartGlass to interact with IE on Xbox via a touch screen. Neat trick.
Crystal Dynamics guys are on stage. Tomb Raider time, methinks.
This isn't your dad's Tomb Raider. Looks like Uncharted, starring a young Lara Croft. Sign me up.
Lara trips a guy up with an arrow to the knee, then finishes him up with a bolt to the head. Sweet.
From gunfight to river rapids to parachute to second parachute. Check Tomb Raider out on YouTube once Crystal Dynamics puts it up. Worth it.