I was so prepared to fall in love with the next Xbox console. I’ve been an Xbox die-hard ever since that first enormous, ugly black box came into my living room and took over the place with it’s state-of-the-art green menus, controller built for the giant-handed and… HALO!
But then Xbox One was revealed on Tuesday and I felt… nothing. Where’s the big leap forward? Where are the revolutionary new features? Why are you making it so hard for me to give a shit, Microsoft? These are all questions for which the answers could not be found via Google. Seriously, I tried.
It seems that Microsoft are putting all their eggs in the “all-in-one” entertainment basket and have forgotten about the gamer basket, full of ripe, fresh, free-range gamer eggs (analogy of the year). Sony won over gamers and developers with their “we love you and this is for you” approach to the PS4, but I feel like Microsoft may be spreading themselves a bit too thin trying to define their market as the entire living room. Xbox was naturally evolving to that level, but it cannot get there if they forget the device’s primary purpose – gaming. That’s the trojan horse that delivers all the other bullshit content. Gamers are the ones who will make the call as to whether the PS4 or Xbox One sits under the telly. Mums, Dads and Uncle Jims won’t be running out to buy it because they can live stream The X Factor while while waving their arms about and shouting “pause TV”.
It’s early days yet, but it’s a disappointing start for Xbox. Here’s ten of my bullet-thoughts on the event (my thoughts always come as bullet points):
- I can’t decide whether Xbox One is the stupidest name imaginable or a brilliant move in subtle, intelligent marketing. I’m leaning towards the former.
- Damn, it’s ugly looking. It’s even uglier than the first Xbox (shouldn’t that be called Xbox One?) It looks like a VHS player had sex with a PS2 and a NES and they can’t figure out whose ugly bastard child it is.
- The new controller doesn’t look very different, but the new rumble features sound interesting. I don’t think I’ve even used the word rumble since this and this.
- I don’t want to switch between TV and games by waving my arms in the air like a lunatic. Pressing the “input” button on the remote is just fine.
- However, I do like the idea of saying “Xbox On” and then… it comes on. That’s the future right there. If only my hoverboots could do the same.
- Personally, I’m not too worried about the “always online” feature, having a very reliable internet connection and living in an urban area. However, I do understand why it’s not a popular decision. Microsoft really skirted around the topic and should have made it clear what the parameters for this feature were, if it even exists.
- The Call of Duty trailer was quite good, but dear God, when will Call of Duty go away?
- Quantum Break, what a really annoying and stupid reveal trailer. But then, it is Remedy, who I trust, so I’ll reserve judgement.
- Also, having the word Quantum in the title has only ever worked for Leap.
- Where are all the other games? I hope they’re saving a lot for E3