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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Xbox done

Here's the Xbox One...

Xbox One, Microsoft, Xbox, video games, consoles,
There is no backward compatibility: you can't play anything from your already-existing library of Xbox 360 games on it.  You can't play your original Xbox games on it either.  Ditto for any games from Xbox Live Arcade.  It has no power button (it stays on all the time) and it needs an Internet connection to really function optimally.  It has a hard drive, but it's non-removable.  To play your games you must install from the disc.  If there is no more room on the hard drive you'll have to wipe some games off (then re-install if you want to play them again later on).  It won't work at all without the Kinect sensor (something which unless you have ample enough space, could be a problem).  Once you play a new game it's tied into that Xbox One unit and you can't easily take it anywhere else or let a friend borrow it or be allowed to sell it... okay well you can but the next player using it will have to pay a fee to Microsoft.

But at least it will tie all your incoming cable TV, satellite TV, Internet, Blu-ray and whatever else into it so that you only need one remote control.  I guess that's something worth five hundred bucks, huh?

The big "reveal" yesterday spent way more time raving about the Xbox One's television and home entertainment capabilities than it did about actual video gaming.  Seems to kinda defeat the point of pouring the entire budget of a typical developing country into the design of something for... you know... playing video games.

The lack of backward compatibility alone turns me off completely from wanting an Xbox One.  But then Microsoft had to add insult to injury more ways than I care to count...

I'm gonna be way, way content with my Xbox 360 for a long time to come.  Based on commentary I've seen since yesterday's reveal, I won't be the only one apparently.  Heck, lots of people and private businesses are still using Windows XP nearly twelve years after it was released.  I'm expecting the Xbox 360 to enjoy similar longevity.  Along with anticipating Microsoft's entry into the next-gen console wars to slip to a hard second after the PlayStation 4, and perhaps even lagging significantly behind the Wii U.

And one last thing about the Xbox One: it's ugly too.  It's like the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey as envisioned by George Orwell: a big black solid slab of freedom is slavery.