The One Behind the Veil: Microsoft’s Next-Gen Console Revealed

The One Behind the Veil: Microsoft’s Next-Gen Console Revealed

After months of speculation over the official name of Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox, Don Mattrick—Microsoft’s President of Interactive Business—finally christened the console as Xbox One.

The revelation event took place today at the Xbox Campus in Richmond, WA. It was an event practically everyone—videogame industry workers, gamers, and even non-gamers—was anticipating. As the countdown neared its end, viewers the world over was welcomed to Xbox One’s revelation event by Larry “Major Nelson” Hyrb and Tina from the Xbox Team.

A promotional video—with special appearances from Hideo Kojima, Bill Gates, JJ Abrams and Stephen Spielberg, amongst others—opened the event, communicating to the world the Xbox One will usher a new generation of television experience. To quote: the Xbox One is all about “Me”.

Not only did Mattrick finally laid to claim Xbox’s official title, but he also lifted the veil to show attendees and viewers alike Xbox One’s true form: a square, sleek, half-metallic black and half-grey console. The new Kinect and controller had the same metallic black sleekness.

Senior Vice-President of Interactive Business Yusuf Mehdi was next to present, dedicating his section to highlighting Xbox One’s “all-in-one experience”. Xbox One is now endowed with ability to identify human sensory. “No more login, no system updates,” Mehdi says.

Mehdi proceeded to demonstrate Xbox One’s new sensory features. Thanks to voice recognition, Mehdi was able to start up the Xbox One by simply saying, “Xbox on”. Though his voice was he able switch between gameplay, watching TV and listening to music. He was also able to control screen dimensions through hand gestures. A Trending feature was introduced on Xbox One, aiming to bring Xbox Live communities together through popular trends in television, games and music.

The Xbox One’s specs are as follows: 8 core CPU; 8 GB System Memory; 500 GB HDD; Blu-Ray drive; 802.11n Wireless with Wi-Fi direct; HDMI in/out; and USB 3.0.

Midway through Xbox One’s revelation event, EA Sports head Andrew Wilson made an appearance. Four new games, Wilson says, are launching on Xbox One in the next 12 months: FIFA, Madden, UFC and NBA Live. Wilson also revealed EA Sports Ignite; its capabilities were manifested through next-gen game footage.

Other games that were showcased for Xbox One were Turn 10 Studio’s Forza Motorsport 5 and Remedy Interactive’s Quantum Break.

Nancy Tellem, head of Xbox Entertainment Studio was next. She said Microsoft envisioned a recreation of the television experience, henceforth the integration of television shows and movies within the Xbox One. How Tellem described it, however, was quite peculiar: “Xbox is about to become the next water cooler”.

Tellem then introduced 343 Industries head Bonnie Ross. Ross announced the production of a live-action Halo television series in which Steven Spielberg will be executive producer, as now confirmed by Microsoft.

Mattrick announced the Xbox One would launch later this year. Neither a specific date nor price tag has been released.

To close off the event, Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg presented Call of Duty: Ghosts. The promotional video for the next installment in the Call of Duty franchise included appearances from Mark Rubin—Executive Producer of Infinity Ward—and award-winning writer, Stephen Gaghan. Gaghan will serve as writer for Ghosts. Highlights for Ghosts’ promotional video features a new engine, an addition of a combat dog, various character customizations and an all-new multiplayer feature.

More information on the Xbox One will be revealed at this year’s E3 in June.

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