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E3: Xbox One chief teases Halo Infinite video game

The first look at a new Halo game has kicked off Microsoft’s E3 Xbox press conference.

Xbox chief Phil Spencer described it as Master Chief’s “greatest adventure yet”.

But he has still confirm whether Halo Infinite marks the completion of the second trilogy in the sci-fi franchise.

Mr Spencer has promised the Los Angeles games expo press event will include 50 games, 18 exclusives and 15 world premieres.

Its rivals Sony and Nintendo will preview their own titles later in the week.

Sales of the Xbox One lag far behind those of Sony’s console, making it a greater challenge for Microsoft to secure third-party exclusives.

At the end of March, 39.1 million Xbox Ones had been purchased worldwide – encompassing all versions of the games machine – according to market research firm IHS Markit. By contrast, 76.6 million units of the various PlayStation 4 consoles had been bought.

But Microsoft does have two advantages in its favour.

The Xbox One X – released last November – boasts more powerful graphics hardware than the PlayStation 4 Pro.

And Microsoft offers Xbox Game Pass – a Netflix-like subscription service that offers access to more than 100 titles including new first-party releases.

However, many games industry experts believe Sony has announced the stronger line-up of exclusive content at recent E3 conferences.

“Xbox chief, Phil Spencer has acknowledged the need to build its first-party output, but also noted it will take time,” commented Piers Harding-Rolls, an analyst at IHS, ahead of the press show.

Microsoft also showed off new footage from its highly-anticipated action-adventure sequel Crackdown 3.

The British-developed title had originally been scheduled for release in 2016 but has suffered multiple delays. It was confirmed that, as rumoured, the launch has been set back again, with the new sale date set as February 2019.

But another exclusive, Forza Horizon 4, is due for release this year.

This time round, the multiplayer driving game game is being set on the UK’s roads.

A demo shown on stage featured a hovercraft, in addition to the racing cars normally associated with the series.

It is set for a 2 October launch.

New content was also announced for the Xbox and Windows exclusive Sea of Thieves. The pirate-themed title has previously been described by Microsoft as its “fastest-selling first-party new intellectual property” of the current generation of hardware.

The DLC (downloadable content) pack Cursed Sails is due in July, and Forsaken Shores in September.

More to follow

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BBC News – Technology

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