I received my Xbox One back in November. I have some observations to share after something approaching six months living with the big black box.
There are no where near enough good games available yet for the Xbox One. Titanfall is out, but yet another multiplayer shooter isn’t really all that appealing
I expect the game selection to improve vastly by this fall
the One itself is solid, quiet, and performs well. The hardware hasn’t shown any quirks at all yet
There were some pretty serious shortfalls with the Xbox One software initially. Forming up and communicating via parties was clumsy in the extreme, the friends interface was inefficient, and everything felt slower than it should because of the multiple steps through the UI that always seemed to be necessary.
Microsoft has been doing an impressive job fixing up those shortfalls with a fairly quick release schedule. The improvements since January in particular have been remarkable. I would say there is still room for improvement: adding friends to a party still feels slower than it should be, and looking up friends and their achievements is sluggish. But I’m happy with where things are heading
The Kinect is… interesting, but not exactly overwhelming. I’m probably not the “target demographic”, which seems to be people who use their Xbox One as a “home entertainment center”. I don’t hate the Kinect, though, so it could be worse
It is finally possible to hook up a third party chat / audio headset. Microsoft starting shipping the headset adapter in March
I’ve had my XBox One for a whole 16 hours, give or take. So far, my experience with it is completely positive. I’ll be updating this post a bit over the next couple of days as I experience more with this Generation Eight console.
Here are some quick observations in bulleted form:
Game developers for the personal computer are becoming scarce. More and more developers are changing their focus to develop console games- games for the XBox 360, PS3, Wii, and so on. Many of the games that make it to the PC are low-quality “ports” of games that were first release months or years earlier on the console.
From time to time I feel compelled to preface a posting here by a reminder of what sort of person I am. I’ve been playing computer and console games for over a quarter of a century, heavily biased towards the computer “role playing” game, fantasy, and first person shooter genres. I’m more prone to like something like Deus Ex or Oblivion than Doom 3, although I enjoy both types of games. And Mario Kart or Katamari Damacy are right out.
In a nutshell, I like games with a strong narrative: something that could make a decent fantasy or science fiction book. Although I enjoy some twitch/combat games, that isn’t my forte. “Childlike” games with bubblegum graphics and mostly mindless plots do not amuse me very much.
Now I’ve set the stage for my rant, the basic thesis of which is: Checkpoint saves and their cousins, single copy saves, are evil. They suck. They drain all of the joy out of otherwise good games.
This requires a bit of explaining if you aren’t a computer gamer…