Weren’t there to see the opening ceremony? Don’t worry; we were! Enjoy the video.
The day has finally come. After seeing all the cool new things Microsoft was going to add to the Dashboard at E3, some of those have gone live today.
While Microsoft has not yet come through with all the features they showed off at E3, there is still much to be excited about. Also some stuff to definitely be disgusted with, such as the microtransactions for avatar clothing and accessories.
Here is what you should have access to once you Xbox 360 dashboard had been updated.
Games on Demand
Enjoy the convenience of finding and buying new games right from the comfort of your own living room. Download a wide selection of full Xbox 360 games over Xbox LIVE. Games on Demand is now available for purchase on Xbox LIVE as part of the latest Xbox LIVE Update. You will be able to browse and purchase games through the Xbox LIVE Marketplace on the Web starting August 13.
- Shop– Games on Demand are found in the Game Marketplace and include a large library of favorite titles right from the start. More titles are added every Tuesday, so check back whenever you’re in the mood for a great new game.
- Purchase – Purchase full games using Microsoft points or a credit card. Games are downloaded directly to your console (hard drive required), and your purchase history is stored by Xbox LIVE, meaning you can delete games and re-download them again if you run out of space.
- Playing and Sharing – As with other LIVE content, your game license is linked to your Xbox LIVE account. Download your purchased games to any console you are logged into with your Gamertag, and anyone else can play on the console that your game was originally downloaded to. No physical disc is required to play these games!
- Find Manuals – Game manuals can be viewed, downloaded, or printed from Xbox.com. Just locate your game in Web Marketplace and select “See Game Manual”.
Avatars have seen lots of love! Check out the new Marketplace and Avatar Props. The Avatar Marketplace is now available on Xbox LIVE as part of the latest Xbox LIVE Update. You will be able to browse and purchase Avatar apparel through the Xbox LIVE Marketplace on the Web starting August 13.
- Avatar Props – Equip your avatar with animated items they can interact with and carry around.
- Avatar Marketplace – Reflect your sense of style with the new Avatar Marketplace. Download and purchase premium items, including branded apparel from your favorite fashion labels and Xbox 360 games.
Now you can watch movies with your friends and find new movies to add to your Instant Queue without leaving your seat.
- Party Watch – Catch a show with your friends! Bring your party into Netflix and watch a movie or TV show together. (Feature available with supported titles.)
- Find Content Faster – Browse through New Releases and other genre lists based on the types of shows you’ve previously watched, all from the comfort of your couch.
- Improved Playback Experience – Improvements have been made to ensure a better experience when adapting to changing network conditions.
- Improved Presence – Richer information is now displayed in the Friends channel and in the Guide showing what you and your friends are watching.
Everyone loves to Party! Check out the new and improved party reconnections and streamlined party invites.
- Party Reconnections – If a user is disconnected from a party inadvertently, they will be automatically reconnected to the party without any user interaction.
- Streamlined Party Invites – Invites are now just a click away! Never again will you have to navigate through multiple screens to get all your friends together.
Been an Xbox LIVE member for a while? Check out some of the new features we’ve added just for you.
- Gold Member Veterans – Been here long? Show it off! Anyone looking at your gamer card will now know how long you’ve been an Xbox LIVE Gold member. And who knows, there might be other perks for you, too. Thanks for sticking around!
- Subscription Notification – If your Xbox LIVE subscription is about to run out, you will now be notified when you sign into Xbox LIVE. No more surprises the next time you hop in to frag your friends.
- Fixing Invalid WLID’s – If the Windows Live ID you provided has expired, you will now be prompted to update it the next time you sign into Xbox LIVE.
Many changes have gone into the account recovery process to speed it up and to increase reliability.
Video Display Options
Various improvements have been made to make it easier for you to see your game in the highest resolution possible when using an HDMI connection.
- Display Discovery – Override audio and/or video formats independent of the display’s capabilities.
- How It Works – By default, the console uses the information provided by the display (via its EDID) to determine the audio and video capabilities of the device. However, often the data is invalid or malformed, hence compatibility issues are encountered. When disabling display discovery, the EDID of the display is ignored, thereby enabling the audio and video settings to be overridden with the desired format regardless of display support.
- Who Should Use It? – The Display Discovery feature is available for DVI and HDMI connections in the Display settings section of System Settings in the dashboard. Please note that Display Discovery should only be disabled if audio and/or video related compatibility issues are encountered, otherwise, the output quality may be compromised.
- Monitor Support – Additional monitor resolutions are now available for HDMI connections.
User ratings help you find content that other people think is awesome!
- How It Works – Every piece of game content on Marketplace can now be rated using a 5-star system. Just open up the details on what you want to rate and choose the Rate button. Each time you press the Rate button, you add one star to your personal rating.
- Sort by Ratings – Find great games, demos, and more that you might have missed out on. Just visit Browse All in the Game Marketplace and click on “Top Rated” to see what everyone’s been talking about.
Some parts of the dashboard have been slightly re-organized to make it easier to find the things you’re looking for.
- Indie Games – We listened to our community and have decided to rename Xbox LIVE Community Games to Xbox LIVE Indie Games. This new name better represents the independent spirit of these titles. User ratings are also available for Indie Games, allowing you to share your rating for a game and use ratings from others to find great new games.
- Achievement Browser – Launch a game directly from the Achievement browser making it even easier for you to max out your Gamerscore.
- Achievement Tracking – A new All Games view inside the Profile panel includes a summary of Achievements earned across all the games played, and shows off all your completed games.
- Achievements – Check out the changes to the Achievement browser while playing a game. It’s now much easier to read through all the achievements so you can rack up that Gamerscore.
- Streamlined Navigation – New entry points in the Dashboard for Active Downloads, Redeem Code, Auto Sign-In (via Profile), Create Profile, and Recover Gamertag are included, so that these features are easier to find.
- Voice Messages – When recording a voice message, a warning is now displayed if no audio is detected so you don’t accidentally send blank messages to your friends.
We’ve reorganized the Console Settings menu with fewer, more intuitive categories.
- Memory – Time stamps now appear in the Memory Area. This is particularly handy when managing saved games.
- Friends List Sorting – It’s now much easier to find your friends! Sort your friends list by Activity, Gamertag, or Online Status (default). Just press the Y button while you’re viewing the friends list in the Guide to change the sorting order.
New Experiences Coming
And we have new experiences coming all the time. This fall, Xbox LIVE will see the addition of the following new features as well:
- Zune Video
Ever have the feeling that your zombies were not scary enough for the public? Well Japan’s Fuji-Q Highland amusement park thought their zombies were not exactly as scary as they used to be at their 900-meter-long zombie-infested labyrinth. Below is the additional training the zombies were put through to improve their brain eating skills and the such.
You can check out more zombie training videos here.
[Source Pink Tentacle]
Mega Man has been around for a very long time and has battled evil bots on many different platforms. Now you can have flashbacks and experience some nostalgia by checking out the history of Mega Man in graphical format here.
Gen Con is in ten days! If you don’t have your badge and your hotel room reserved yet, you may want to get on that right away. If you can’t make it, don’t worry: Geekspective is covering it! We will be there all four days to experience, write, photograph, and (who knows) maybe even talk about all things gaming!
In preperation for Gen Con, we will be giving out a daily dose of Gen Con-related news leading up to the con.
Atlus just posted a walkthrough of their upcoming PSP remake of the original Shin Megami Tensei: Persona. The video shows off the new and improved UI, reworked graphics, all new voice acting, anime cut scenes, and gameplay. It looks like Atlus has learned from Persona 3 and Persona 4 and tweaked the original to streamline the gameplay in this remake.
Oh, and make sure you check out the awesome new music and graphics for the opening of the game.
I’m probably not the only one that gets dry eyes due to involuntarily not blinking during a long gaming session. Soon it will be possible to avoid that situation.
Japan’s Masunaga Optical Manufacturing has developed Winking Glasses. They have a built in sensor that tracks your blinks. If you do not blink after five seconds, the right lens fogs over until you blink again.
The glasses are going to go on sale in Japan this August for $150. I guess that is the price you pay to have healthy eyes (and look like you are from the future).
Joystick had the opportunity to interview Nintendo of America’s Bill Trinen in New York during the Wii Sports Resort PR stunt. Most of the interview was about Wii Sports Resort and the Wii controllers. However, the real kicker was the last question of the interview concerning the state of the Pikmin franchise. Bill Trinen confirmed that they are making a new Pikmin game, as announced at E3. However, he refused to talk much about it due to Nintendo’s whole “better to show than tell” policy. You can check out the whole interview in the video below.
Seeing how things are made, and where they are made, is always awesome. When it pertains to new technology even better. That chance was seized by Charlie Brewer as he got a tour of Sony’s new blu-ray factory in Sydney, Australia.
Charlie goes through what looks to be the whole factory as he takes pictures of it all for our viewing pleasure. You can view the beginning of the discs as small polycarbonate granules, all the way to the end as they are packaged, and everything in-between at new.com.au.
Anyone who has played WoW knows that Blizzard likes to reference other parts of geek culture, and it seems that the WoW:TCG is no different. The cards you see above are now available for play in the TCG. I do not know how far Blizzard can push the envelope until they have a lawyer knocking at their door, but those tight looking pictures look awfully familiar. Using Skeletor's old name Keldor does not help. I find it kind of funny that these cards are “Unique.”