Now when Don Mattrick was replaced by Phil Spencer back in 2014, I was giddish. The guy who actually brought us the games... games! He was now the head of Xbox, and I honestly thought things were looking great.
E3 2014 comes, and we see Scalebound, Crackdown 3, Sunset Overdrive, Fable Legends, Ori, and plenty of great 3rd parties. Well today, 2 of those are canceled, and one of them still isn't released. But oh how little we knew...
E3 2015 comes along, and we hear of Xbox 360 B/C!!! HOLY SHIT! That probably won them the conference, but we also had Rise of the Tomb Raider, Halo 5, Rare Replay (holy shit), Cuphead, Sea of Thieves, Recore, Forza 6, and even some GOW 4 gameplay! Well Rise of the Tomb Raider today is a PS4 and PC game, Halo 5, Rare Replay and Forza 6 were decent, Cuphead and Sea of Thieves still hasn't been released, and GOW 4 wasn't out till the end of 2016. So not spectacular overall (in hindsight), but at least we had a big megaton! Probably the best conference they had.
2016 starts with shock. Fable Legends is cancelled, and Lionhead closes down. I honestly couldn't believe it. They had been there almost since the beginning, and now they were gone. I didn't know what to believe, except that MS probably thought Fable was going poorly, and decided to scrap the whole project and liquidate the studio. I was unhappy, but that was only the beginning.
E3 2016, and it is a little bit eh. Yeah, we see GOW4 (which was announced the year before) and Forza Horizon 3, but those were expected. We saw more Recore gameplay (once again, a game already announced), as well as Scalebound (which is cancelled now), so overall not that great (though Halo Wars 2 was a welcoming inclusion). Scorpio announcement was great, but overall a big step down from 2015, and honestly disappointing.
So it is 2017. We see Scalebound cancelled, and now I really start to get mad. Its been 3 years, and 2 major titles from 2014 are gone! I was mad, but I held my head and hoped for an amazing E3...
...that we never got.
E3 2017 was by far the biggest mix of disappointment you could imagine. Instead of giving us new first party IPs, we see a slew of 3rd party timed exclusives that are either already on PC or are indie titles. For the whole year, we have 3 AAA exclusive titles (and thats if you count PC). We've gone from a slew of great games to just 3. We didn't see any surprise 343 announcement (which we were told of), we didn't see the "greatest lineup of gaves", we only saw disappointment. To make things worse, the Scorpio was announced with a $500 ($600 CAD) price tag. So you have a powerful console, but with no first party titles to show it off. Terrible, just terrible. This was by far their worst E3 since 2013, and honestly I really can't defend it.
And at the heart of this is Phil Spencer. Now I use to feel a little sympathy for his positon - being in a company were higher ups can end you at any moment, it sucks. But over his 3 year tenure at the brand, we've seen a gradual DECLINE in the amount of games we see, we've seen major studios CLOSE under his direction, exclusives have been cancelled...
...it goes on and on. The terrible mistake of announcing a 2nd console at $500, even though they KNEW the Xbox One did horrible at that price point makes me wonder what MS was thinking. The reason I don't say you Phil is because of your reaction to the announcement, you knew it was too expensive, and you tried to shove it to the side.
In the end, Phil is nothing but a corporate mouthpiece. He won't stand up for the brand like Peter Moore did, and he certainly won't try to do what gamers want. But, I will give you ONE more chance Phil. One more chance to prove that you can do this brand right. E3 2018. And I will know for certain if your years at Xbox did shit.
But so help me god, if E3 2018 is as bad as this one, I will never, ever, invest in this brand, because I honestly feel like MS is treating it like it is dying. I will buy Playstation (in case you didn't know, I bought a PS3 at launch, so yes, I was into that bramd at one point), or maybe a PC, but I will not look back.