What to do About the Xbox One?

I love the Xbox. It’s a great, powerful gaming console that’s capable of not just delivering a face-meltingly awesome gaming experience but also a solid multimedia experience. This pretty much culminated with the Xbox 360, and despite my not experiencing this for myself (I have a shitty internet connection at home) and the amount of firmware updates that it needed (not to mention the infamous Red Ring of Death episodes), I’ve heard a lot of good things about it and I’ve had great memories during its 8 or so years of existence. Unfortunately, Microsoft seems to be focusing more on the multimedia aspect of the ‘Box and shafting the device’s core fanbase: gamers.

See, one of the things that disappointed me about the Xbox One was its near-addictive dependence on an internet connection to deliver even just a decent experience. Furthermore, the console’s release party focused more on the multimedia aspect of things rather than the gaming. Okay, Microsoft, we get it. You make PCs and want to make them more widely available, even if by proxy. That’s cool and all, but what we really want in an Xbox is just the Xbox: we just want to play video games with some friends, online or offline. Not all of us have great internet connections and we really don’t care to Skype with people or watch movies on Netflix using the same device we use to play Halo or Skyrim. We have computers and Tivos for that.

What really ground my gears, though, was this: the Xbox One will be able to tell whether or not a disc is pre-owned copy just by reading it, and if such is the case, it’s very likely that the owner will have to pay a fee just to play it. That’s f*cked up, Microsoft, and you should be ashamed of yourselves. It’s completely unfair for a number of reasons, the two main ones I can think of are these: not all of us can afford to buy brand-new copies, especially with prices hiking every so often. Also, suppose a kid’s console breaks down and he buys a new one-what’s he gonna do with all the games he owned, sell them and buy them anew? What about all his hard-earned progress (the Xbox One requires you to install your games on the console’s HDD)? Alright, we get that this might be a good way to combat piracy, but you’re only stirring the hornet’s nest here. I mean, look at Game of Thrones: it’s the most pirated TV show in history so far, but George R.R. Martin and friends are still turning a profit despite that! Or, better yet, take a look at Halo 4, Microsoft’s flagship videogame series (I hate the word “franchise”): despite its being leaked, Frank O’Connor (head of 343 industries) didn’t blow a headgasket, and here’s one reason why-in its opening week alone it grossed $300 million. and has sold 4 million copies as of December 6 2012! So yeah, Microsoft. Not only will you be pissing off your (soon-to-be) once-loyal fanbase, you’re also gonna drive a wedge in your profit margins. Have fun in losing your pissing contest with Sony and Nintendo with that.

Having said all of that, there’s really only two solutions to this conundrum: either boycott the damn thing and leave it at that, or, if you truly love the Xbox in general, make enough noise and an effort to raise enough hell for Microsoft to fix these mistakes. It may push the release date back, but hey, beats the hell out of having a Tivo you can play games on instead of the next Xbox. The specs of this thing look amazing and should be used to run the latest and greatest in video games, not streaming videos of cats and other such frivolities. But before everyone takes to the streets burning tires and protesting the lack of video game in the Xbox One, just sit tight and see what happens. If nothing changes, then send all the angry emails you can until they fix that shit up and give us what we as gamers need.

Y’all take care now.

Sources: http://www.343industries.org/news/_/343-industries-news/xbox-one-fee-to-play-preowned-games-r703

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuoFNwctizg&feature=youtu.be Not the best source, but a good summary/tl;dr

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halo_4

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-spec-analysis-xbox-one

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About optimistthepessimist

Always in transit.
This entry was posted in Thoughts and Musings, Video Games and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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