E3 2011 News Flashes: Xbox Live Cloud Support, Big Name Titles Slated for Release

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Xbox Live LogoAmid the Kinect-heavy news coming out of Microsoft’s pre-E3 press conference — including Kinect-based dashboards, the reveal of Dance Central 2, and Kinect support for Ghost Recon, Mass Effect 3, and a slew of EA sports titles — a rather underrated but equally important update may have gotten lost in the shuffle: Xbox Live cloud storage.

As gamers, we’ve all had to go through the hassle of recovering our gamertags when playing games at a friend’s house or otherwise on a different machine than we normally play. Prior to this announcement, the only other option we had was to manually transfer save data via USB keys. This massive inconvenience is no more according to Microsoft, as it announced today that cloud storage is coming to Xbox Live, allowing users to save their Live profiles and game saves to a cloud server.

Details about the cloud service are still vague, however, as it is unknown if this service will branch out to Microsoft’s Windows Live games and whether or not this is a privilege that will be restricted to Gold members. It is also currently unknown whether or not there will be a cap on file sizes or number of activated machines.

Halo 4 Logo

Big Name Games Get Big Game Dates
Between the Microsoft press conference and the EA and Ubisoft press conferences, which were also held today, a number of high-profile games were given release dates or, in the case of some, release time frames.

Halo 4 and a remake of the original Halo: Combat Evolved were both revealed at Microsoft’s presser, though it is worth noting that Bungie, the developer of all previous Halo iterations, will not be on board for either of the projects. Instead, 343 Industries will be developing Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary (as the remake is called) and Halo 4 (which apparently marks the start of a new trilogy), which are due out on November 15 and the 2012 holiday season, respectively.

Battlefield 3Meanwhile, release information for a number of third-game installments was revealed, with Far Cry 3 coming in 2012, Mass Effect 3 due on March 6, 2012, and Battlefield 3 scheduled to drop on October 25 (with a beta coming in September).

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