Microsoft’s E3 press conference earlier in the day had left gamers pleased with a number of announcements, but that didn’t stop the publisher from throwing a party later that evening in Los Angeles at the Majestic, where various members of the press and fans got to go hands-on with several of the company’s forthcoming titles.

Taking precedence in the basement was Halo 5: Guardians, as the company put a heavy emphasis on 343 Studios’ forthcoming adventure with multiplayer kiosks. The game was well received, and should be a big hit when it launches this fall for the Xbox One.

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Meanwhile, the upper level had a photo booth, where users could get pictures made with Xbox motif in mind.

However, the action was really on the main floor, as several games let users play to their heart’s content, provided that they wait a few minutes for a spot to open up on the floor.

One of the main games was Forza Motorsport 6, Turn 10 Studios’ upcoming racing game, which will debut later this year. A full-blown racing simulation studio was set up, where users could sit behind a force feedback-driven wheel and feel as if they were really driving a car. Regular kiosks were available for play as well.

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Fable Legends and Gigantic, Microsoft’s forthcoming free-to-play games for Xbox One, were also featured, enabling gamers to play with (or against) one another in combat.

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The compilation Retro Replay was also featured, with 30 of the company’s best games gathered in one reasonably priced $30 package, set for release on August 4. In the photo below, a player enjoys himself as he rampages through Battletoads Arcade.

And, of course, we couldn’t resist getting a photo of a Battletoad. Just look at him!

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition was also on the show floor, with players shooting at and cutting up one another with Lancer weaponry. The game is currently in open beta on Xbox One, and will release on August 25.


Other games were on the show floor as well, including Harmonix’s music simulation game Rock Band 4 (complete with its own light-up stage), a 1930’s styled side-scrolling game called Cuphead, and various other titles from the ID@Xbox independent game label. The trailer for Cuphead can be seen below.

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Finally, Crystal Dynamics’ Rise of the Tomb Raider was front and center at the event, with players getting a good look at the latest adventures of Lara Croft. This Xbox exclusive will make its debut on November 10, and some breathtaking new footage can be found below.

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For good measure, there was also a frozen shot-pouring station featuring a pair of axes from the Tomb Raider game.

Overall, it was a great event — a bit crowded, but a key opportunity for players to check out some of their favorites before they release later this year.