Microsoft has revealed the Xbox One and Xbox 360 'Games With Gold' titles that will be free to Xbox Live Gold subscribers in July. Starting Tuesday, July 1, Xbox One players will be able to download Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition, replacing June's Halo: Spartan Assault. Max: The Curse of Brotherhood will remain free for another month for Xbox One users.
Xbox 360 owners will get Gotham City Imposters will be available from July 1 until July 15. On July 16 it will be replaced with BattleBlock Theater, which will be free until July 31.
Microsoft says that it will still introduce the Family Sharing feature it detailed when it initially announced the Xbox One and the new feature-set for Xbox Live on the platform. When it was announced Microsoft said that Family Share gives users the ability to share a game library among up to 10 family members. In June of last year Microsoft removed the feature alongside some of its more controversial requirements for the console like internet connection requirements and region-locked software.
Microsoft revealed that the Xbox One will finally be released in Japan this September with right around 29 games available for purchase at launch. The Xbox One's Japanese launch lineup will include a number of North American titles like Call of Duty: Ghosts, Dead Rising 3, and Crimson Dragon, along with Strider, Titanfall, and Murdered: Soul Suspect.
Forget about retail sales - which current console from Microsoft, Sony, or Nintendo is the most popular on social media state-by-state? According to real estate blog Movoto, Microsoft's Xbox One is the most popular based on data culled from Facebook "likes" by state.
Around 22 states had a larger fan count for the Xbox One, compared to the PS4’s 19 states. Not one state went for the Wii U.
Sony claims that nearly a third of current PlayStation 4 owners owned a Wii or an Xbox 360. Around 31 percent of consumers who bought a PlayStation 4 had an Xbox 360 or Wii but not a PS3 in the last hardware generation, PlayStation's American VP of marketing John Koller told Kotaku in an interview conducted at E3.
The data Koller was citing comes from a new research study - the origins of which are not revealed. Koller also said that as nearly 17 percent of people who have bought a PS4 didn't own a console at all in the previous generation.
Last night at Sony's E3 press conference the company announced that Grand Theft Auto V would be coming to the PS4 in the fall. What the company did not mention (and why on earth would they?) is that Rockstar's latest title in the hit series would also be coming to the Xbox One and - yes, finally - the PC.
"Grand Theft Auto V for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC will take full advantage of the power of new generation systems to deliver the ultimate open-world experience," said the studio in an announcement last night.
Head of Xbox Phil Spencer opened Microsoft's E3 Xbox briefing to talk about nothing but games. Microsoft avoided talking about sales numbers, upcoming Xbox Live features, and entertainment; focusing exclusively on all the games coming out by year's end and 2015 and beyond. The company spent its 90 minutes talking about and showing games through sizzle reels and live action demos. The company also focused on many of its core franchises coming out this year.
Reminder: You can watch the biggest E3 press conferences on Twitch, starting at 9:30 am PST (that's 12:30 pm EST) with Microsoft's big E3 event.
Later today Electronic Arts will host its press conference, followed by Ubisoft, and then way later in the evening Sony will host its event for the show.
Microsoft announced that a handful of new entertainment apps will be making their way to Xbox One very soon. The company said that it will bring, HBO Go and other on-demand content services from Comedy Central, Encore, FX, MTV, Starz, Syfy, USA Network, VH1, ABC, Showtime Anytime, and the Disney Channel. Other entertainment apps on the way include Crunchyroll, MLG, Vine, Vevo, and Epix.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says he has no intention of selling the Xbox business.
"I have no intent to do anything different with Xbox than we are doing today," Nadella told reporters at the Code Conference in California this week, according to The Verge.
Microsoft has announced the pricing and SKUs that it will offer when it launches the Xbox One in Japan on September 4. Two bundles will be available to Japanese gamers on September 4: one with the Kinect bundled in for 49,980 yen ($490) and one without the motion sensor device for 39,980 yen ($392).
Xbox One controller compatibility for Windows PC is nearing public release, according to a reply from Microsoft's Larry Hryb on a NeoGAF thread about the topic.
"Soon. Very soon," Hryb (AKA Mjr. Nelson) said, replying on a NeoGAF thread about when the necessary drivers would be made available via Windows.
Microsoft said back in August of 2013 that Windows support for Xbox One's peripheral would arrive sometime in 2014.
During a conference call last night to discuss the latest quarter's results, games retailer GameStop said that it is seeing a greater interest in Xbox One since announcing the new Kinect-free SKU. Microsoft announced last week that it would roll out an Xbox One SKU that did not include the motion sensing camera technology and that it would be $100 cheaper at $399.
During the call last night, GameStop president Tony Bartel said the company is seeing "stronger demand" for the Xbox One since last week.
According to the industrial designer who helped build the prototype for the Xbox One, the Kinect motion sensing camera was built into the device at one point. In an interview with Develop, Xbox industrial designer Carl Ledbetter said that the Kinect was once built into the Xbox One unit, but Microsoft ultimately rejected the idea because the system was too large.
Last week we asked our readers, "Will the Removal of the Kinect Help Xbox One Sales?" Half of voters said that the new Kinect-free version of Xbox One will in fact help the company close the sales gap between the Xbox One and the PS4, but that Microsoft will not be able to surpass Sony by the year's end.
On this week's show, hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight discuss whether the unbundling of the Kinect will help Xbox One sales, the NPD Group's latest report on core gamer trends, and ISPs threatening to take their ball and go home if net neutrality passes. Download Episode 99 now: SuperPAC Episode 99 (1 hour, 5 minutes) 75 MB.
A new report from the Natural Resource Defense Council concludes that the newest generation of game consoles consumer way too much power. The report notes that these new systems are on track to consume as much power nationwide as all the homes in Houston this year. That equates to about $1 billion to operate these systems annually.
Much of this energy is consumed in "the middle of the night, when the console is in standby mode but still listening for voice commands or using higher power than necessary to keep USB ports active."
The Xbox 360 version of Saints Row: The Third is now available for free to Xbox Live Gold subscribers until the end of May. Weighing in at 6.86 GB, the title is normally sells for right around $20 on Microsoft's digital marketplace, but you can get it for nothing if you are an Xbox Live Gold subscriber. Earlier this month the action RPG Dust was available for free.
Retail sales numbers for the month of April show that the PS4 edged out the Xbox One in sales, according to data from NPD Group. Sony's PlayStation 4 was the top-selling game console in the United States in April, making it the fourth month in a row the PS4 has outsold Microsoft's Xbox One, according to the NPD Group.
Starting June 9th, gamers will be able to purchase the Xbox One without the Kinect for $399.99, the same price the PS4 currently retails for.
That should level the playing field a bit, no?
As of early April, Sony announced that it had sold more than 7 million units. Microsoft says Xbox One has sold more than 5 million. Will unbundling the Kinect help the Xbox One sell more consoles? Enough to catch the PS4 by the year's end?
Microsoft will offer refunds to Xbox Live Gold subscribers who want to cancel their membership when new service policies go into effect in June. The company said yesterday that Xbox Live users will no longer require a Gold subscription to access Netflix and other entertainment apps beginning next month. Gold will still be needed for online gaming and to benefit from promotions like Games with Gold on Xbox One and Xbox 360.
Following a June system update for Xbox One and Xbox 360, users will be able to request a refund on their Gold subscription, according to Microsoft:
Microsoft doesn't plan on providing any compensation to those who have already bought an Xbox One, according to Eurogamer, though one has to ask the question - why would they? After yesterday's announcement that it would start offering the Xbox One without a Kinect for $399, GameSpot decided to ask Microsoft if it planned to offer any freebies to early adopters of the system.
Naturally the answer is an emphatic "no."