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Microsoft’s E3 Game Reveals Impressed, But Xbox One Price Was a Big Letdown: Can Sony Dominate?

June 10, 2013 Written by Sebastian Moss

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Microsoft’s E3 conference has finally wrapped up and it was far, far better than their abysmal reveal event. But will it be better than what Sony has up their sleeves?

Sections like the Metal Gear Solid V and Witcher gameplay were certainly enjoyable, but as they’re multiplatform, they don’t really count when considering which conference will be seen as the best. Equally, timed exclusive deals like the Battlefield 4 DLC announcement can be important to sales and give a console an advantage, but aren’t as important as real exclusives. Luckily for Xbox fans, however, exclusives were in abundance.

Grabbing Insomniac Games as an exclusive developer will not only add another title to their roster, but it will attract fans of Resistance and Ratchet & Clank over to the Xbox, when they were previously PlayStation gamers. Of course, considering the abysmal sales of Fuse, the amount of fans Insomniac can command is very debatable…

Meanwhile, Crimson Dragoon and Killer Instinct are cult hits, so the announcement of new entries only on Xbox One will win over tons of support and make this E3 a winner for many. The impact of fan favorite titles like these cannot be overstated.

Smaller titles like D4 and Below showed that Microsoft haven’t forgotten about the indies, but what people will probably remember most are the big AAA games – Ryse looked absolutely fantastic, Black Tusk titillated, Titanfall impressed, Dead Rising 3 will draw in PlayStation gamers and Halo for 2014 surprised everybody. Even though Halo has arguably passed its peak, it’s still a humungous franchise, so a new entry releasing this early in a new console generation will make it hard for Sony to compete – especially when their biggest franchise, Gran Turismo, still has another entry coming to this gen.

But then things took a turn for the worse – it was revealed that the Xbox One will cost a whopping $499/€499/£429. That’s a significant ask, especially for a console that doesn’t seem to push the envelope when it comes to power.

Back when Sony launched the PS3 for an astronomical price, they were coming off of a gen when they had far more brand recognition and fans than the 360 ever managed, and it was still a hugely tough sell. The massive price significantly contributed to the PS3′s launch struggles, meaning that the console conceded considerable market share to the Xbox. Microsoft is once again showing Sony 2006-style arrogance if they think they can push this price on people without them complaining.

So price is an area Sony can certainly be victorious, with analysts suggesting that the console could cost $349 or $399, despite being more powerful. However, price aside, Sony will have a tough fight on their hands if they want to best Microsoft at E3. While the Xbox One reveal was terrible, it got all of the boring entertainment, UI and media information out of the way. Sony still has a lot to show, so they may end up spending too long displaying it. Equally, while Microsoft didn’t need to show Kinect as it’s already a success (among casuals), Sony may be tempted to waste time demoing the PS4Eye as they still have to prove it has a use.

Next, there’s the issue of DRM – this could be where Sony completely wins the show, simply by saying the DRM is the same as the PS3′s, but it could also be where they lose it, if it turns out they’ve gone the Microsoft route.

Finally, as always, it’ll come down to the games. We’ve discussed what we think will be there, but their big reveals are likely to be Sony Santa Monica’s next big IP, LittleBigPlanet 3 and Ready At Dawn’s new IP, among many others. It’s also worth noting that there are currently 44 confirmed PS4 games, and only 40 Xbox One ones.

Microsoft brought out their big guns at E3, but they didn’t completely blow everyone away. Sony has their work cut out for them, but they can still win E3.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.