Xbox chief Phil Spencer previously promised that Microsoft’s E3 2018 showing would introduce “positive changes” to Xbox’s presence at the industry’s biggest trade show.
Xbox has finally revealed those changes, and “positive” might not be as fitting a way to describe them as “absolutely bonkers.”
That’s because Xbox will be moving its main E3 2018 presence from a booth in the Los Angeles Convention Center (where the rest of the show is located) to the Microsoft Theater a couple of blocks down the street. This means that Xbox’s E3 2018 press briefing, Xbox FanFest, and all its hands-on demo stations will be located at the Microsoft theater, which “Xbox will be taking over,” according to the announcement.
Xbox will still maintain a presence at the L.A. Convention Center in the form of “a new booth completely dedicated to Mixer,” Xbox’s streaming service, but fans will have to walk down the street to experience the rest of Xbox’s E3 2018 offerings.
This would explain Microsoft’s small booth size as spotted in a leaked E3 2018 document, which should be a relief for Xbox fans, but we’re still wondering how Xbox will be able to fill an entire theater. Sea of Thieves and State of Decay 2 will already have launched by the time E3 2018 rolls around, and Xbox hasn’t announced any other AAA exclusives besides Crackdown 3.
It sounds like the main push for the larger venue is to “include even more fans and partners in the Xbox E3 2018 Briefing than ever before,” so we’re guessing there will be a ton of “console-launch exclusives” like last year’s E3 briefing. There are a ton of more recent rumors about upcoming first-party exclusives in the works for Xbox, including new Fable and Perfect Dark titles, as well as the chance that a new Gears of War or Halo title will be announced, so maybe Xbox has some big surprises up its sleeve for E3 2018.
No matter what Xbox shows at E3 2018, the move off-site to a completely separate venue is a somewhat shocking decision from Xbox. Despite this decision being made “in collaboration with the Entertainment Software Association,” the Microsoft Theater takeover almost seems like a power move by isolating itself from the rest of the industry and dedicating an entire theater to its trade show presence. Either way, this announcement definitely did its job by getting us excited for Xbox’s E3 showing again.
Source: Major Nelson