June 24, 2013
Microsoft: WE TAKE IT BACK!!!
For months now, Microsoft has been leading a first class pissing train of negativity in regards to their newest policies for the Xbox One. Although most gamers find these policies to be faux, Microsoft didn’t change the direction of their sails for any reason whatsoever. That all changed last week when Don Mattrick announced in an update on the Xbox One page that all previously mentioned Xbox policies (including a 24-hour online check-in, restrictions on used games, family used game plans, open region for different countries) were changed. Although, if you’re like me, this change in the direction only left half of your face frowning in disappointment.
That other half giggled and teemed with excitement.
The problem with the Xbox One for a majority of gamers was rooted din the console’s used games policies. Not only this, but Microsoft’s vaguely described user interface spells confusion and trouble for gamers who don’t care much for splitting the operating system amongst three. Microsoft cleared up that confusion at E3 2013 last Monday when they revealed the used game policies and, of course, the games. Their exclusive line up surprised many Xbox and Sony fans, but it was Sony themselves who should’ve been shivering.
Despite their solid conference talk, Microsoft made it clear that they had a specific game plan to the innovation and building of the Xbox One. The console wasn’t just a box to compete with another gaming rival; it was a new era of entertainment that might have put them on my list of most impressive technical innovators. Instead, the online community took to bashing Microsoft for what they condemned as an attack on their ‘rights as a gamer’, as if such a thing is in jeopardy. We might be a vocal minority in a multi-billion dollar industry, but the ethics of the Call of Duty vs. Battlefield debate don’t spark a revolutionary movement for gamers. Likewise, Microsoft wasn’t threatening anyone with their Xbox One.
What they did do however was make a bone headed decision that might have gotten their company sunk, aptly bringing the online community to dub the Xbox One the ‘Xbone”. As it turns out, their bitching actually did something. Microsoft has abandoned their original plans, also trashing the family share plan, as well as their OS opportunities. Without the original online policies of the Xbox One, the console is simply a PS4 clone with a different game lineup now.
In essence, this has ruined Microsoft’s chances for a truly innovating console. The Xbox One already gave us a reason that it was next gen with visual fidelity in games, as well as TV and cable integration. What did the PS4 offer besides a share video editing snap feature? Sony has made it clear that their focus is on the modern gamer, but what does that mean now that Microsoft’s console is as generic and strong as theirs?
We’re back to square one with the next gen console war.
More will be covered on this in the next blog post. Until then, please let me know what you think of these developments in the comments below!
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