Microsoft

07.31.12

LONDON -- After settling for silver for his 18th Olympic record-tying medal, Michael Phelps, 27, was golden again winning his record-breaking 19th medal anchoring the U.S. men's 4x200-meter freestyle team, which also included Ryan Lochte, Conor Dwyer and Ricky Berens. With the gold medal, Phelps broke Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina's 48-year record of 18 total Olympic medals which she won between 1956 to 1964. Phelp's medal count now stands at 15 gold, two silver, two bronze. He also won silver in the 4x100 freestyle relay at the London 2012 Games. We sat down with Phelps in this exclusive video interview where he talks about what drives him and of course, his favorite video games.

06.29.12

During our time at the Electronic Entertainment Expo a few weeks ago, one game that distinctly stood out from the crowd was Halo 4, Microsoft’s upcoming sequel to the series that will also introduce a new trilogy, with Master Chief facing  a devastating new evil force in the universe.  The game is taking a much different direction than before, with 343 Industries taking over development for the now-departed Bungie.  But fans needn’t worry, as the series is in good hands.

06.27.12

Over the years, we’ve gotten used to understanding what a Fable game is supposed to be like.  Under the guise of Peter Molyneux and his team at Lionhead Studios, we’ve played through three games, all of which featured memorable quests, with different decisions to make and the ability to control your fate however you chose.  By Fable III, however, the formula was getting a little dry, so Microsoft began looking for ideas on how to expand it.  And one of those ideas was the previously announced Fable: The Journey, an exclusive project for Xbox 360’s Kinect device.

06.27.12

Last fall, Epic’s Gears Of War franchise came to a close. It has helped form the third person shooter genre as various publishers have adapted the Unreal Engine. The series launched in 2006 with Kevin Riepl designing the score for the game. The signature Gears Of War echo came from him and has been echoed through out the series. The thunderous bass, drums and orchestral clashing together are what fans come to expect. Riepi also showed his full repertoire by creating the somber and depressing times in Gears Of War, but do fans notice? Do people look at soundtracks as a whole or as background noise?

06.23.12

I am so glad I’m finished with Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor.  Everything that could go wrong in that game does, and does so quite valiantly.  Even operating something as simple as a window visor is impossible thanks to the crappy Kinect controls.  But, honestly, this isn’t the first time a developer has gotten a motion experience wrong with Microsoft’s device – and it certainly won’t be the last.

06.18.12

Sometimes a project is so big that it just can’t be kept secret.  Call of Duty: Black Ops II leaked out weeks before its official TV ad hit the airwaves; Assassins Creed III was rumored long before its official unveiling; and so on.  The same could be said for Microsoft’s mystery press event, which happened earlier today, as several people thought that it would be all about a tablet.  And indeed it was, as Steve Ballmer and company officially unveiled the Surface.  However, despite the lack of surprise in announcement, there was still plenty to be shocked – and enthused – about.

06.18.12

Early this year, Bioware’s Mass Effect saga came to five year run. Rest aside the ending; the series is one of the most complete trilogies in video game history. There are two aspects that Mass Effect nails perfectly. The series was first to interweave choices all the way through the third and final installment captivating fans from start to finish. However, you can’t tell a great story if you forget to create the atmosphere for your game to breath in. The music in the game really doses shape Commander Shepard with it having one of the best scores in gaming, but do people notice? Do people look at soundtracks as a whole or as background noise?

06.13.12

Gears of War Judgment is still a far ways off from release, and while Microsoft didn’t exactly reveal some breaking news about the game this past week at E3 (it was probably more concerned about hyping the forthcoming Halo 4), it did have a private booth on the show floor that let players try out a new multiplayer mode being offered in the People Can Fly-produced prequel.  Say hello to Overrun mode.

06.11.12

The idea behind E3 was to showcase the latest and brightest games of 2012, but there are always a few games that disappoint us. Some games on our list made serious changes to their formula, and not for the better. Other games took center stage at E3 when they shouldn’t have. There were many games at E3, but here is our top five list of disappointments.

06.10.12

The free-to-play market had a huge showing at E3 and was showcased at Sony’s Online Entertainment booth. Recently SOE converted all of its most popular MMOs into the model, giving new life to D.C Universe while reintroducing fans to the PlanetSide series.

06.04.12

So what do you get when you add Dubstep to one of the most recognized car simulators on the market? Well apparently, that's Forza Horizon resulting in making the Forza series a year round property. This addition to the franchise is taking the franchise into a bold new direction.

06.02.12

When Microsoft and Epic Games released Gears of War 3 last year, it brought one of the most thrilling third-person action game series to a thunderous close, with plenty of surprises and no shortage of action.  But seeing as how the game was a rousing success, you just can't keep a good series down.  This past week, Game Informer did a cover reveal for its July issue that indicated a new game in the series was coming...and now we know what it is.  If you wish to be spoiled before Microsoft's big reveal Monday, read on.