LOS ANGELES -- Microsoft has its head in the cloud with Xbox One.
The company focused on how cloud computing will make games for its next-generation Xbox One console more immersive during its Monday presentation at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the gaming industry's annual trade show. Microsoft announced last week the successor to the Xbox 360 must be connected to the Internet every 24 hours to operate, and the system would ideally always be online.
"The platform features and capabilities exclusive to Xbox One allow developers to push the boundaries of creativity and take gaming in completely new directions," Microsoft Vice President Phil Harrison told the crowd at University of Southern California's Galen Center.
The upcoming console's cloud computing capabilities were demonstrated by fleshing out dense environments in third-person open-world games like the zombie-fighting sequel "Dead Rising 3" and cartoony shooter "Sunset Overdrive." The racing simulator "Forza MotorSport 5" introduced a feature called "drivatar," which mimics players' driving styles and allows their "drivatars" to play for them offline.
Microsoft revealed the console, which it has billed as an "all-in-one" entertainment solution for living rooms, will be released in November and cost $499. The company debuted the console earlier this year at its headquarters in Redmond, Wash. The initial reactions to the device have been mixed.
Other games coming to Xbox One include the historical third-person game "Ryse: Son of Rome," hard-knuckled brawler "Killer Instinct," a bigger edition of "Minecraft," terra-forming simulator "Project Spark" and a new installment of the sci-fi shooter series "Halo."
Monday's flashy event concluded with the debut of the mech-heavy multiplayer shooter "Titanfall," the first game from Respawn Entertainment, which was founded by "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare" creators Vince Zampella and Jason West.
Later Monday, Sony unviled its next-gen PlayStation 4 console -- and it's a rectangular black box, just like all the previous PlayStations.
With that non-surprise out of the way, the Japanese company also provided glimpses of the games it hopes will elevate the PS4 to the top of holiday wish lists.
Upcoming releases include steampunk thriller "The Order: 1866" and fantasy "The Dark Sorceror." Sony also showed new footage from previously announced games like superhero adventure "InFamous: Second Son," racing simulator "Drive Club" and shooter "Killzone: Shadow Fall."
Shu Yoshida, president of Sony Worldwide Studios, says there are more than 30 PS4 games in development.
Sony Corp. unveiled the PS4 Monday evening at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the gaming industry's annual trade show.
Meanwhile, rapper Drake and "Breaking Bad" co-star Aaron Paul brought some star power to the Electronic Arts' presentation to promote games from the video game publisher. Drake hyped the next edition of the soccer simulator "FIFA 14," while Paul teased the racing game "Need for Speed: Rivals."
Paul, who is starring in a film based on the pedal-pumping "Need for Speed" series set for release next spring, arrived on stage in the custom Ford Mustang his character drives in the film.
"Just like the game, we're looking to give you an adrenaline rush that puts you on the edge of your seat," Paul said while introducing footage from the movie.
However, the celebrity attendees didn't garner the biggest reaction at EA's event at the Shrine Auditorium in downtown Los Angeles. That was reserved for the moment when "Battlefield 4" executive producer Patrick Bach revealed that 64 players were on stage behind a screen. The mob then proceeded to engage in a multiplayer match of the upcoming military shooter.
"Rivals" and "Battlefield 4" are adding companion apps that allow players to affect online games from mobile devices.
Electronic Arts Inc. concluded Monday's presentation by revealing that it's working on a sequel to the 2008 free-running action game "Mirror's Edge." A video teased it was "coming ... when it's ready."