Microsoft's E3 press conference, following on from an extensive unveiling of the Xbox 360 console after the MTV showing late last week, nonetheless provided some further information on new software and hardware details.
In particular, Microsoft revealed that Square Enix will release a graphically enhanced version of Final Fantasy XI
for Xbox 360 and Xbox Live. The two companies also revealed that Square Enix will 'work closely' with Microsoft on Xbox 360 and Xbox Live, implying more collaborations to come.
"Xbox has become a major force in video-game innovation, and we couldn't be more captivated by the Xbox 360 canvas," commented Yoichi Wada, president of Square Enix, a major step for a company that has previously stayed away from Microsoft hardware platforms.
Elsewhere, Microsoft revealed that the Xbox 360 "will be backward-compatible with top-selling Xbox games." This non-specific explanation seems to indicate that the changing processors between Xbox 360 is going to make it too difficult to ensure complete compatiblity - however, it's unclear what percentage of Xbox titles will run on Xbox 360.
Several further games were revealed for the first time, including Tecmo's Dead Or Alive 4
, and Microsoft also disclosed that Xbox 360 owners new to Xbox Live will receive a free month of the full subscription service at the enhanced Gold level, which includes play at all times, online tournaments and "exclusive, original programming." Further information on Xbox 360 will continue to become available as E3 progresses.