X06 is now officially underway with Microsofts press briefing. Some of the wild rumours have been confirmed but that is not all. The most interesting news were the converting of Halo series into a real-time strategy game Halo Wars by Ensemble Studios, Microsoft Game Studios collaborating with director/producer Peter Jackson and the announcement that Xbox 360 gamers will be provided with exclusive access to two downloadable episodes of Grand Theft Auto 4 via Xbox Live.
Halo Wars is the product of Ensemble Studios also known for the Age of Empires games. The game is made from the ground up exclusively for Xbox 360 and PC. Halo Wars is set in a time before Halo 1. For more information see the official website.
Director and producer Peter Jackson together with screenwriter Fran Walsh have come together with Microsoft Game Studios to create two new interactive entertainment series also exclusively for Xbox 360 and Xbox Live. The first will be a collaboration with Bungie Studios to create a new Halo game, which is not Halo 3, but something completely different with cinematic and interactive elements. The second will be an original title targeted to bringing new audiences into the world of interactive entertainment. For these purposes Jackson, Walsh and Microsoft Game Studios will establish Wingnut Interactive, a studio dedicated to the creation interactive entertainment.
Also released at the X06 Microsoft press briefing: