The lights are on
Sit down. Grab a paper bag. Breathe slow and deep. It's going to be ok. Yesterday's Xbox One reveal offered a lot of information about Microsoft's vision for next generation, but it also left us with a lot of questions. In less than one month, a lot of those holes are going to be filled in.
Here's what we do know. The Xbox One is designed to be a convergence device that brings together existing television service with games. Kinect 2.0 is critical to the system and will supposedly respond better to voice commands and track gestures with more precision. The idea is to create as seamless an experience across entertainment media.
Yesterday's presentation was about setting the tone for how Microsoft plans to take over the living room. It was about raw capabilities of the hardware, and from a multimedia, non-core gamer perspective, the execution can be considered a success.
We knew in advance we wouldn't be seeing a lot of games. The EA Sports presentation was only impressive in that we learned about the next generation Ignite engine. Quantum Break from Remedy evidenced new exclusive IP and was enough of a tease to garner interest for more information at E3. Call of Duty was on display for the strength of the time-limited exclusivity partnership and the contrast between current generation power and the capabilities of the new hardware. Every title we saw had a purpose for being on that stage, and that wasn't first and foremost to wow gamers.
Microsoft announced that it plans to release 15 exclusive titles in the first 12 months. That's an enormous number, especially if many strive for the core audience like Quantum Break and Ryse will. Had that been it, core gamers would have walked away underwhelmed, but interested in hearing more at E3.
But Microsoft made a significant mistake, failing to keep key personnel on message. In interviews, executives each had different answers to straightforward questions. Conflicting reports bounced back and forth among outlets on two key issues: secondhand games and the Xbox One's connectivity needs. Every time a new comment was made, PR had to sweep up.
Yesterday's tone became about Microsoft's lack of clarity instead of the potential of the hardware. It shifted from excitement about E3's pending game reveals to angst about ownership of those inevitable purchases. The "always online" controversy should have been put to bed once and for all (or at least avoided), and instead it was brought back to the surface. In short, it was a PR stumble that marred the presentation.
Thankfully for Microsoft, E3 is less than three weeks away. The Xbox One will take the stage first on Monday, June 10, and we've been promised that the presentation is heavily weighted toward games (which will mark a nice change from the past three years). Microsoft has 18 days to decide how it wants to explain software ownership, the secondary market, which functions (if any) require Xbox Live "check ins," and how frequently users need to connect.
All is not lost, and anyone who believes it is after just this first bit of information is selling Microsoft's market dominance here in the United States very short. News coming out of E3 is going to fill in the picture for all three platform holders. Let's take a deep breath and give it three weeks before we pronounce anyone dead.
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As a long time Xbox apologist, even through the past few E3's I have to say, I'm tired. I wasn't expecting much and I was still let down. Sure, we can say it was a hardware show, but with the Halo Show, announcing time based exclusive DLC, there had to h,ave been ,room to show something new. Glass, kinect, skype, ,ESPN, and all of that we've already seen at past E3's, just 2.0 versions. All that we really have to look forward to are these 15 exclusives, but with this required kinect, one must wonder how many of those will be kinect based game. I'm tired of.Microsoft trying to push kinect into core gaming, Full MSRP used games, Xbox requiring an internet connection every 24 hours. Why would this conference be so bad after they had 2 months to counter Sony's conference? Why not wait until E3? THEN have the boring gimmicky crap conference?Microsoft confuses me with their decision
I didn't exactly panic after the reveal but was worried. The writer is right we should wait to make judgement at the end of E3. Each console brand has it's strengths and weaknesses. Xbox 360 had amazing online structure while Sony didn't. While Sony had alot more exclusive titles for the Ps3.
For me I purchased both systems this last console cycle and I will probably do the same again this time. I will buy the xbox for Halo, Gears of War, and hopefully a new Fable game, plus Call of duty and battlefield 4. Hopefully the new exclusive titles for xbox will be interesting.
The whole always on or connected issue doesn't really bother me seeing as I live in new york city, and the internet service is amazing here. But I do feel for those less fortunate if indeed it does require a connection every 24 hours like they said. Used games is a big issue for me since i used gamestop exclusively to purchase and trade in games. I hope this part isn't true.
Who wants a new Xbox! Lol
For me I wasn't as upset that they didn't show any games, I expected they wouldn't show that much. I was more disappointed in the fact that they made little to no effort to get anybody excited for E3. The fact of the matter is that the reveal was more centered around the new Kinect than the actual console and that worries many gamers who were on the fence about which way to go.
I personally would relate Microsoft to a snake oil salesman, they both tout all the cool things their product can do. It really left me wondering, whats the catch?
This will probably be the last of the new consoles I get.
I don't like the idea of having to check in once a day on my account if I don't feel like playing my console, nor do I like the idea of the Kinect being REQUIRED to use. But considering Microsoft never clarified ANYTHING other than TV, TV, TV, Dog, CoD, CoD, then like I said, we're going to have to wait until E3 to understand it all.