The Average Gamer

Xbox One: Will You Buy it?

Xbox One Console Render

We’ve had almost a day to think over the Xbox One announcement and follow-up comments. We know it’s coming this year. We know it’s not always online, but it is online. We know it has a controller but also requires Kinect. We know that gamertags and achievements will carry forward and we know of at least 12 Xbox One games that are coming in the first year.

We know that it will offer some form of live television and sports apps that respond directly to a broadcast with examples like Fantasy Football updating on the fly. We know that’s only in the US start with, and the plan is to roll it out globally.

We’ve been told that the Kinect response will be lag-free and Kinect detection is much more sophisticated. We’re almost certain that multiple gamertags can play a game on the first console that it’s installed on, but we’re still not sure about pre-owned or lending games to friends.

So is all that enough to convince anyone to buy it? Here’s what we thought:

Kevin Kissane

After last night’s reveal, I can’t see any hope of me buying into the Xbox One. The console design screams ‘keep me out of sight’ but it’s too big to do so. My biggest gripe by far is the sharing of games on multiple consoles. So now if I buy a game for the house, I can no longer lend it to another family member or friend without them having to pay a fee, or vice versa.

I suppose it depends on what the fee will be, but I’m expecting an ‘Online Pass’ type of thing, which arguably already cost too much. End of the day, it’s the cost of the console and these services that will sway many people either way. Thus far, the Xbox One is not for me I’m afraid.

Pippa Hall

As it stands I’ll probably be holding fire on buying the Xbox One this year. Whilst I’m not up in arms about the lack of backwards compatibility or the “always online” for some games, I just prefer to see how things pan out when real people are using it in their real lives.

Hopefully E3 will showcase some games that I’m actually interested in, otherwise I’ll be erring on the “not for me” side. That said, I do entirely reserve the right to impulse splurge the second I see a feature that I absolutely must have.

Colin Gallacher

Based on the showing yesterday and the news that the television features will not be available at launch in the UK, I can’t say I’m considering Microsoft’s, a surely pricey, venture into the next generation world. In an attempt to win the entertainment war in the living room the American giant appears to have alienated the very audience who have supported them for the last decade.

Then again, we’ve barely seen any of the console’s gaming capabilities and I can’t say EA showing us a pre-rendered computer generated target engine video really cuts the mustard after Sony’s Playstation Meeting with on stage demos. Oh and it looks like a Betamax/Laserdisc player.

Brett Phipps

Sony’s stock went up eight percent following Xbox One’s reveal, which pretty much sums up my views on the conference.

Microsoft showed me a lot of different ways to use things I already have. Far too much time was spent on Kinect being the new all-in-one TV remote, rather than the only thing I care about, games.

If reports are to be believed then the console will blocked used games, requires Kinect to work and games must be installed. Microsoft runs the risk of alienating a lot of gamers by locking pre-owned games, and has potentially given Sony a huge boost in the console war.

Nick Silversides

The biggest surprise that came out of the Xbox One reveal wasn’t anything shown one stage but the bungled way Microsoft told people about the pre-owned games after the presentation. There is a fee, there isn’t a fee, maybe there’s a fee was the answer depending one which Microsoft spokesperson was talking. Couple this with the corporate doubletalk that Microsoft is so good at spouting in voluminous quantities and as a gamer, I felt left out.

Sports stars, movie directors and big media companies were all paraded around as part of the Xbox One experience. What was missing? A gamer. That apparently, rare breed of person who plays games for fun and doesn’t want to multitask on 17 devices at once. Even Activision with its new Call of Duty dog, whose Twitter parody account was the highlight of the show, failed to quench my thirst for anything that resembled an actual game. It was all pre-rendered bore-fests, devoid of actual gameplay. At least Sony showed some Killzone gameplay during its PS4 announcement.

Without a strong line up of games at E3, right now, I don’t need another media hub in my living room.

Mathew Jones

If you’d gotten together a Dr.Strangelove-esque war room of people all intending to provide an hour long broadcast of shit I couldn’t begin to give a fuck about, you’d have the second episode of Hemlock Grove. Give them a little more time and probably one of them would suggest the Xbox Reveal and then tried for crimes of indecency.

The box is a replacement for a telly tuner, which is something I’ve utterly replaced because I don’t live by a pointless live broadcasting schedule and watch my Games Of Throneses and such whenever the fuck I feel like it. They say I can now play EA Sports games while using bing which is about the worst combination since toothpaste and jizz. They’ve suggested there’ll be 15 first party games in the first year, which doesn’t fill me with confidence because that instead implies 15 studios rushing whatever bullshit they can manage within a tiny work-window.

Providing the rumours about used sales incurring an extra fee are true and if you’ll still have to pay an Xbox Live subscription fee without benefits similar to PS+, I can’t even begin to see justification for owning one of the stupid things.

The dogs were cute though. Good dogs.

Nick Lynch

The Xbox ‘One’ (as it’s so horrendously called), is already looking like a shambles and not what we’ve come to expect from Microsoft based on its previous offerings. In the reveal, there was much talk about sharing and multi-tasking but little about what makes a console great…the games. All we saw was unit itself, which I might add is more than Sony gave away, and some sports titles and tie ins.

What the suits didn’t say was that games have to be pre-loaded onto the HDD and linked to the gamertag, if you want to link it to another (say, if it was pre-owned) then you have to pay a fee. Microsoft should have invested more time into innovation, instead of trying to hammer the last nail into the resale market’s coffin in favour of lining their own pockets.

Frank Wyatt

I’m not going to be buying an Xbox One this year. My scepticism makes me wait until other people have taken it for a bit of a test drive and there’s a collective wisdom about a product. Microsoft certainly have big claims for its functionality, and if it does what they say, efficiently, then it could become an invaluable part of anyone’s living room. But we’ve heard claims like this before for so many other products, many from Microsoft themselves, and sometimes their reach exceeds their technological grasp. Also the lack of backward compatibility will give me pause for thought.

Debbie Timmins

I’ve yet to see a reason to convince me that I want an Xbox One. They briefly mentioned editing and uploading gameplay clips and I’m still holding out on some streaming support but right now, nothing appeals. The games we saw were all sports, driving and soldiers. Show me a decent RPG or something entirely new and I might get excited but all we’ve seen on Quantum Break is form over function. It has TV visuals and CG soldiers? Great, but what’s the game?

The Kinect requirement might well be the biggest game-changer for developers. If it truly is lag-free, that opens up a world of possibilities, both large and small. On the Xbox 360, Kinect implementation has been crippled by the lack of processing power, the poor response rate and the need to develop parallel non-Kinect controls so you don’t limit your audience. Ghost Recon: Future Soldier’s Gunsmith control was the most interesting thing that came out and that was shit. With the knowledge that all Xbox Ones will have Kinect installed, developers could justify putting a lot more resources behind new types of control.

So out of eight writers, not one of us is seriously considering an Xbox One at this point. How do you feel about it?