As Microsoft traditionally has its E3 press conference first thing on the Monday prior to the show, it is generally the one that leads the way with announcements. However, this year was different in that Bethesda had its first E3 press conference ever, and held it on the Sunday night.

That didn't prevent the Xbox crew having a cracking media event. Many suggested that it was a little lacking in inspiration last year but more than made for it with a stellar line-up this time out; and many of them are exclusive to Xbox One.

The company also made the quite staggering announcement that rather than offer a cloud gaming platform that players will have to pay extra for, it is making the Xbox One system backwards compatible with Xbox 360 games - both digital and disc based. Plus, if you've ever bought a game for the older console before, it will be playable on the new console for free.

You enter your existing disc and the system downloads the digital version for you to play at no extra cost. That also applies to any digital titles you already have associated with your Xbox Live account.

But other than Xbox 360 games, what other lovely treats will you be able to play on your Xbox One in the next few months or beyond. Read on...

READ: Best E3 2015 game trailers: Star Fox Zero, Uncharted 4, Halo 5, Forza 6, Fallout 4 and more


It was revealed during the show that Halo 5 with have a campaign that will always feature four characters fighting co-operatively, either controlled by individual players online or with three of them operated by the AI. And missions and chapters will alternate between Master Chief's Blue Team and Fireteam Osiris, with the lead in TV show Halo: Nightfall Jameson Locke acting as head.

There is also a massive leap in multiplayer gameplay, with the new mode Warzone playable on the E3 show floor. It is quite insane, with just about every element of a good multiplayer game thrown at players at once. Enemy bosses appear that can be dispatched for extra points, map points can be captured for larger scores and new spawn locations, and even spacecraft can be piloted and turned into evil killing machines. It's great fun and will undoubtedly become the major skirmish mode of the new game.


Although little is actually known about ReCore's gameplay, the Xbox One exclusive will undoubtedly a major title for Microsoft for one reason at least; it comes from Keiji Inafune and much of the team behind the hugely popular Metroid Prime series of Nintendo titles.

The trailer unveiled during the Xbox Media Event on the eve of E3 also drew a lot of praise thanks to stunning graphics and character design. It also fitted the theme of this year's show of featuring a strong female lead - the opposite of which was heavily criticised exactly one year ago. Our favourite character in the teaser video was the robotic dog companion, however.


It might have been rejigged a touch thanks to the BBC ditching Jeremy Clarkson as the lead presenter of Top Gear, prompting developer Turn 10 to do the same, but if the rain effects witnessed during Forza 6's E3 unveiling have anything to do with it, the game will not suffer one jot.

READ: Jeremy Clarkson's Top Gear sacking made Forza 6 a better game, says Dan Greenawalt

The game looks stunning and, more importantly, has more cars and tracks than its predecessor from the off. Drivatars have also been improved dramatically, with the ability to alter their professionalism so you don't have to race a bunch of stock car opponents any more if you don't want to.

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Not much is known about Dark Souls 3 at present, only that it is on its way and looks suitably dark and broody. It won't be an Xbox One exclusive, but its unveiling during the Xbox Media Event caused possibly the biggest "whoops and hollas" of the show.


Coming to Xbox One and Windows 10, Gigantic is a third-person multiplayer title with distinct, colourful graphics and looked fun when we watched others play it during the Xbox Showcase event on the evening of press conference day. Indeed, it looks similar to a MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) title but with third-person action for each player.

To be honest, we didn't find it compelling enough ourselves to queue up to have a go, but it's one of those games that could be an unexpected massive hit for Microsoft, much like Sunset Overdrive was last year.


The indie game Cuphead was one of our favourite games of this year's E3, even though it had actually been revealed previously. A true old scoll platform game at heart, with incredibly tough gameplay and learning curve, it probably stands out most thanks to its 1930s cartoon-inspired graphics.

Thanks to the aesthetics, it is easily the most uniquely-styled game we've seen in years and a vast improvement on the standard 8-bit or 16-bit graphics 2D platformers have sported in the last year or so. We cannot wait for Cuphead to be released. Sadly, that's looking more 2016 than this year.

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Finally, we got to see some gameplay of Lara Croft's latest outing, an Xbox exclusive for at least a year, and it was well worth waiting for. The mountaineering section shown gave us a glimpse of the incredible work Crystal Dynamics has put into the title this year in both scope and graphical flair.

As the game has a free-run as the only huge scale action adventure title coming before Christmas - thanks to Uncharted 4 being delayed until next year - it could even be the major pull towards the Xbox One for new console buyers.

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As well as announce a collection of 30 of Rare's most well-known and best-loved games, it was revealed during the Xbox Media Event that the developer is also working on a persistently online pirate game, Sea of Thieves.

The massively multiplayer open world game will band players together to crew ships to travel the map and engage in enormous sea battles. Plus, terrain can be explored and booty plundered. Typically of Rare, there are cartoon style graphics although little else is known about the title yet and we don't expect to see much more until 2016 anyway.


Having tried HoloLens during Microsoft's Build developers conference and then at E3 as a briefing tool for our Halo 5: Guardians hands-on, we can see the potential in the augmented reality headset for a number of applications - both within professional and gaming uses.

READ: Halo 5 on HoloLens hands-on: A gaming match made in Heaven?

But our experiences aside, perhaps the most exciting use demonstrated so far was shown on stage at the Microsoft press conference, where it showed how its holographic heads-up display could enhance Minecraft. The building game is being adapted to work with HoloLens and if the on-stage demo is anything to go by, having the ability to walk around your creations and site them on a nearby table takes the concept in a whole new direction.


Gears of War: Ultimate Edition is no mere upscaled rerelease for Xbox One, it has been rebuilt from the ground up. Rather than just add new textures to existing graphic models, the entire animation and motion capture has been redone for one of the most well-loved games of the last generation.

In addition, new content has been added, the soundtrack has been remastered for a 7.1 surround system, there are dedicated servers for multiplayer play and so much more. The graphical style has even had a prettier, colourful facelift to make the game look less black and white. We are very excited to be able to play through this again, it must be said - especially with so many enhancements.


Our final highlight was also the final game shown during the Xbox Media Event and for good reason. We will get the remade version of the first Gears of War this year as a taster for the third sequel, simply titled Gears 4, to come in 2016.

It was great to see some actual gameplay on stage too, with the focus on two new characters for the franchise and a much cleaner, sharper graphical style. Needless to say, even at this early stage, the next chapter in the series and the first from Microsoft's in-house Coalition development team, has already become one of the games to watch for next year.

Sections Microsoft Xbox Games