Welcome back to Koop Calls It, where our ever-confident staffers duke it out by predicting what we’ll see at gaming’s most anticipated press releases and scheduled news events to see who has the superior sense of foresight.
With Microsoft being the first of the “big three” to kick off E3 this year, Joe and Jack take each other on this time around to see who can better predict Microsoft’s moves at the biggest gaming event of the year. Without further adieu, here are Joe’s five predictions for Microsoft at E3 2014.
UPDATE: It’s over! As it turns out, neither Jack or Joe had a very good grasp on what we’d see at Microsoft’s fast-paced, game-centric E3 conference this year. However, Joe knew a little bit more and wins this round of Koop Calls It with a score of 2-1. Congratulations, King Koop!
Check out Jack’s Microsoft E3 predictions here.
1) All kinds of Halo Correct!
With the pre-E3 announcement of Halo 5: Guardians, I don’t anticipate too much more on that front. We may get an official release date in 2015 to keep up the momentum, and maybe some insight into the story, but that’s it. Instead, I suspect Microsoft will attempt to feed the hunger of old school Halo fans by finally confirming an HD anniversary remake of Halo 2, whether it be a standalone game or in the form of the rumored Halo: Master Chief Collection.
I also think Microsoft will build upon the Halo TV buzz a bit. Ever since Bungie split from Microsoft, we’ve seen more Halo novels, comics and animated films than we, as gamers, care to see. Alongside the big push for exclusive Xbox Video content, it’s safe to say they will continue to expand the Halo universe outside of video games, and E3 is a good time and place to do so.
Let’s stay on this point, and discuss my next prediction…
2) Games, games, games…and multimedia False!
Regardless of what head of Xbox division, Phil Spencer, has been tweeting about how this year’s Microsoft conference will focus heavily on games, I think gamers need to prepare for mentions of non-game related content as well. E3 is the biggest video game event of the year and draws the attention of many mainstream news outlets; CBS, NBC, Fox, ABC, etc. It would be silly to assume Microsoft won’t feed the press with “exciting” Xbox Video exclusives and apps such as Internet Explorer, SmartGlass, HBO Go, ESPN, NFL and so on.
I also find it hard to believe that Microsoft is ready to abandon the idea behind Xbox One as an “all-in-one device” for your living room. Heck, the console’s name is built on that premise. It’s also Xbox One’s primary differentiator from PS4, especially with the new $399 price tag being on par with Sony’s device; which leads to my next assumption…
3) Xbox 360 price cut False!
With the recent hardware update to Xbox One, dropping Kinect and price to $399, it doesn’t make much sense to keep the Xbox 360 Kinect bundle at its current retail price of $299. A $249 or $199 console with a backlog of incredible games and an existing install base should be easier to sell than a $399 device with very much left to prove. However, Microsoft practically abandoned the original Xbox once Xbox 360 was pushed into the mass market, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they completely focus on Xbox One content this time around as well.
4) Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare features Correct!
Microsoft will continue the tradition and have an entire section of their conference dedicated to the newest COD iteration, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. All footage from the game we’ve seen thus far has been from Microsoft’s platform. Therefore, I don’t think I need to say much more on this; it’s coming, we all know it, so there you go. Let’s move on to my final, and boldest, prediction…
5) Kevin Spacey! False!
This one’s a stretch…but, how cool would it be to see Kevin Spacey on stage during Microsoft’s E3 conference announcing the newest features of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare?! Even if Sledgehammer Games attempts to pull off dog physics as the coolest feature in the game (ha), I think COD would steal the show with Frank Underwood…I mean, Kevin Spacey sharing the news. Don’t think this is possible? Microsoft is known for its share of celebrity E3 appearances incorporated into conferences. Still don’t expect it? Well…
There’s no better way to overpower a trickle of doubt than with a flood of naked truth.”
-Frank Underwood, House of Cards
Microsoft’s E3 presentation will take place at 9:30 AM pacific time Monday, June 9, and can be watched directly from here (among other places.) Be sure to check back after the event to see which of our staffers came out on top!
Have any predictions of your own? Let us know in the comments below!