E3 announces new Xbox console, Halo Infinite, plus Gears 5 and Star Wars trailers

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      Microsoft will release a new Xbox video-game console in the fall of 2020. The company made the announcement on Sunday at its annual pre-E3 media event in Los Angeles.

      Codenamed Project Scarlett, the new console will have a custom-designed processor, a solid-state drive, and deliver 8K resolution and graphics with ray tracing. It will also be backwards-compatible.

      More importantly, Halo Infinite, the latest game in the storied franchise, will be a launch title for Project Scarlett. A story trailer seemed to suggest a return to the themes and settings of the first game, which was a launch title for the very first Xbox, back in 2001. 

      We didn't learn much more about Gears of War 5, in development at Vancouver game studio the Coalition, but there is an amazing new trailer for the game that perfectly sets the tone.

      Other big news at the event included the revelation that Double Fine Productions, which is led by Tim Shafer and is working on Psychonauts 2, has been acquired by Xbox Game Studios. The Psychonauts sequel will still be published for PlayStation consoles, Shafer insisted. 

      One of the highlights of the Xbox event was an appearance by Keanu Reeves, who is playing a character in Cyberpunk 2077, an action game being developed by CD Project Red in which you play as a cybernetically enhanced mercenary. After he referred to the game as being "breathtaking", someone in the audience yelled: "You're breathtaking," which not only got a laugh from the actor but a thrown back: "No, you're breathtaking."

      Other games detailed at the Xbox E3 2019 event included Elden Ring, a new game being developed by FromSoftware and Hidetaka Miyazaki (Dark Souls) that has been cocreated by Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin. 

      We also got a first look at gameplay for the new Star Wars video game, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, being developed by Respawn and published by Electronic Arts. It looks positively astounding.