So I woke up to the internet today to discover that Microsoft has unveiled the Xbox One - the new revolutionary console that is supposed to rival the upcoming PS4. Am i the only one who's not really all that impressed with what I've read so far? I mean...yes, I will give it a fair shot (in the store). I was a die-hard Xbox fan for a very very long time. But the fact remains that it just hasn't shown me anything yet that I actually find *useful* as a gamer - and nothing new that I can't already do in some way. There are some features - like the multiplayer matchmaking system based on reputation and ability that sound really cool but I'm extremely skeptical about. There are a ton of other features (like increased graphic rendering power etc) that I'm not even going to address - but these are the ones that everyone's been screaming about that I'm just all...meh...
"But you can get on Skype with it!" i don't need my gaming console to Skype. I can Skype on my phone, laptop, and iPad. I don't even need to be near wifi to Skype on my phone. And when I do Skype, I don't need it to be on my TV and with full everyone-can-hear-my-entire-conversation sound. I can see how it might be useful if you do a lot of conference calling or if you want to Skype with your family and have your whole family talking to whomever's on the other side - but it seems like much more of a novelty than practical application.
"Motion control!! Every single Xbox One will come with a Kinect!" Okay, here's the thing about motion control. It sounds awesome. But in practice, it sort of sucks. You end up flailing around with exaggerated movements trying to get the sensor to recognize you and track you properly, and they rarely function the way they're supposed to. I hear the new Kinect has really fine-tuned its tracking though - supposedly it can track facial expressions and fingers now - but it would have had to improve a thousandfold for me to even consider it as a viable game-play option.
"Voice control! I can walk in the room and say 'Xbox On' and it'll turn on my Xbox AND my TV!" Cool. Seriously, that is kind of cool. But there are two possibilities for this: the first is that it means that your buddy can run in the room, scream "XBOX OFF!" or some other voice-command-of-dickery and fuck your shit up. the second is that it will be tailored specifically to your voice, which means that voice-recognition software MUST have come lightyears from where it was, because let's be honest, voice-recognition software sucks. How many times have you ended up screaming "CUSTOMER SERVICE" or "ONE. ONE, YOU PIECE OF SHIT!" into your phone while trying to talk your way through a voice-automated system. Now imagine all that frustration while you're just trying to play your damn video games. Not to mention...how good is that on-board mic? Will you have to use a headset or an external microphone? Just curious.
"You can DVR your gameplay, edit the clips, and share them directly from your Xbox." Okay, think about this. Yes, I'm sure that YOU are really proud of the 50-headshots-in-a-row you just achieved with your pistol, but really think about it. Do we really think that everyone will care? Are you really going care about everyone else's video clips? I mean, to the point where you'll WANT to sift through thousands of video clips of noobs celebrating that they attacked with a real melee weapon instead of a spoon, people thinking they did awesome things when really, um, everyone can do that, and sex scenes in which the player teabagged the stripper after killing her to get their money back? I guarantee you for every awesome clip in which some guy pulled some insane killing spree or sneak attack or move, there will be a thousand crappy clips that no one wants to see.
"It's being hailed as the 'most exciting social entertaining network in the world'!" ...Yeah, that's what we need. Another social network.
"You can multitask using side-by-side apps - I can Skype while playing or watching TV!"Okay. That's kind of cool, yes. But I already get that exact same effect using Skype on my laptop while watching something. And I don't have to pay $400 - $500 more to buy a device to do to that. Not to mention, if you're really that much of a casual gamer that you want to multitask and do other things while playing - why would you buy an Xbox One to begin with?
"The AI can learn how you play - your friends could play with a shadow of you." That is really cool. And if it works as it says it works, with an intelligent AI that learns your gaming style and adapts in real-time to your actions on the level of detail they're claiming, then it really is a breakthrough in technology. The processing speed and AI algorithms would basically have to be God-level in order to accomplish this the way they're saying, so...yeah. This is why I want to test it out for a while first.
Bottom line - yes, the Xbox One has some really cool proposed features. If they all work the way they say it works, it'll be a miracle and also pretty kickass. But the thing is - I don't care if it's a "hub" through which i can do EVERYTHING. I don't care. Because I still have to have my cable box there, I still have to have my laptop here, I still need all those other things - this just gives me a sort of receiver to mush them all together and add gaming on top of it. People who wanted this multimedia approach are already using PS3s or PCs. Sure, they added Blu-Ray, but Playstation already got the head start on that. I'm excited for the release because I want to see what it can do. But I'm not holding my breath, thinking it'll be the crowning glory of all the gaming industry.
Think I'm biased, stupid or deluded? Discuss.