Today, the new Xbox codenamed “Project Scarlett” is merely built on promises. Project Scarlett has the same promises you see from other new consoles. It’s going to have more memory, better graphics, and higher resolution.
However, in the E3 announcement for Project Scarlett, Microsoft did have two major promises that grabbed our attention. The first was, of course, the new Halo game – Halo Infinite:
Halo Infinite takes place after the events of Halo 5: Guardians. In the trailer, a passerby finds Master Chief floating through the vastness of space. After being revived, Master Chief learns that the humans lost everything. He is then shown what appears to be a destroyed Earth with a Halo ring around it.
Master Chief doesn’t even have a chance to mourn the loss of the Earth. The ship is attacked, and Master Chief has to lock and load.
As the trailer comes to a close, we see Master Chief walking toward a projection of a broken Halo ring. As he gets closer, we hear Cortana in the background, teasing that she will be returning.
Halo Infinite will be a launch title for Project Scarlett when it is released in later 2020.
We didn’t get to see any gameplay, which is a big let down. Last year, we got a teaser for Halo Infinite, so the fact that all Microsoft could only give us another teaser in a year gives us reason to worry. At the end of the day, it’s Halo. They’re probably not going to mess it up. However, if you want people to buy your shiny new console, you need to entice them a bit more.
Say goodbye to load screens
The second major promise from Microsoft was that Project Scarlett will have little-to-no load screens.
If Microsoft keeps their promise, this is HUGE. As soon as video games made their jump to discs, we had to deal with longer and longer load screens.
Removing load screens altogether would be a giant leap in the right direction. Nowadays, games try to masque load screens with hints, tips, and even jokes. However, when these load screens take a few minutes, they can really take us away from the experience.
Think about it, how much nicer would a game like Skyrim be if you didn’t have to worry about those pesky load screens?
Just a rumor
In the announcement, Microsoft said that Project Scarlett would feature thousands of games across four console generations. Some took this as a hint that Project Scarlett will be backward-compatible with every Xbox game. As cool as that would be, we can’t say for sure if it’s true.
Although Project Scarlett is coming out until next year, you can get a new Xbox controller in just a few months.
Microsoft unveiled a new controller with Bluetooth capabilities as well as a 40-hour battery life.
The controller is pretty high-priced at $179.99. Heck, you can get the entire Google Stadia for that.
However, the new controller does come with a bunch of cool things for that price:
- Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2
- Carrying case
- Set of six thumbsticks: Standard (two), Classic (two), Tall (one), Wide Dome (one)
- Set of four paddles: Medium (two), Mini (two)
- Set of two D-pads: Standard, Faceted
- Thumbstick-adjustment tool
- Charging dock
- USB-C cable
Is Xbox bouncing back?
Many fans argue that Microsoft hasn’t been very competitive in recent years. Nintendo has been releasing exclusive titles like Breath of the Wild and Mario Odyssey and Sony has had great titles like God of War and Marvel’s Spider-Man. Xbox simply hasn’t had the same number of great exclusive titles in recent years. Sure, the new Gears of War was fun, but it’s no The Last of Us.
We still need more info before we can recommend setting some money aside for Project Scarlett. We don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on a machine that basically just plays Halo.
Maybe next year, Microsoft should put more Keanu Reeves in your presentation.