Microsoft's E3 Brings Halo 4, Xbox Updates

Microsoft's E3 Brings Halo 4, Xbox Updates

Microsoft's E3 conference has been and gone, showing off a host of future game releases, as well as updates to the Xbox Live platform that continue to make the 360 console more of an entertainment centre than a gaming machine.

The biggest game announcement of the showing was Halo 4, where the original Xbox launch protagonist will make his triumphant return. Set for release on November 6th, the new title sees Master Chief battling across the Fore Runner planet, familiar faces like Cortana in tow. His arsenal will be expanded, with the debut trailer showing off some of its capabilities.

Other games Microsoft has planned for the Xbox later this year, include new titles in the Forza and Fable series, as well as Gears of War, Call of Duty and Madden. Kinect focused games will also get a look in, with South Park's RPG and a new Dance Central game drawing the most attention.

In terms of the console itself, Microsoft showed off Xbox Music, set to arrive this fall, making it possible for Xbox live users to buy and store music via the platform.

Perhaps the biggest development though is to do with live viewing. Microsoft is planning to integrate much more social action with its media options. Sports events like UFC and Baseball will see friends link up and talk to each other before, during and after, including integrated favouriting where users can choose who they think will win.

The software giant was also keen to show how it planned to bring Internet Explorer to the the Xbox platform. What's the best way to use it though? Apparently it's something called SmartGlass.

This is a new Microsoft app that can be used across tablets and smartphones and allows touchscreen interaction on the console. This is incredibly smart since it easily combats Nintendo's Wii U Touchpad controller, without people needing to buy an extra accessory.