posted on Dec 29, 2013 | Comments (2)
The design, marketing, public relations, and executive team for the newly released Microsoft Xbox One console are the winner of The Paunch Stevenson Show Lame Idiot of 2013 Award. Granted the system has already sold quite well, but Microsoft went from being the dominant seventh generation system (everywhere but Japan) to Sony’s doormat.
Why did this happen? First there’s the price, debuting at $499, a full $100 more than the Playstation 4. That was thanks to the Kinect device, which all consumers are forced to buy whether they want it or not. Second issue was maybe the most vocal among hardcore gamers: DRM. DRM is digital rights management, and basically means that even though you physically own a game, you kind of don’t! The initial plan was that you buy a game, install it to the hard drive, but then couldn’t bring it to a friend’s house, trade it into a game store, etc., without severe restrictions. Despite highly negative reactions to rumors about this, Microsoft refused to discuss it and after the details were announced, refused to dump the policy for many months.
Hardware wise, the system (like PS4) comes with a 500 GB hard drive. However, unlike PS4, nobody has any idea how you can replace or upgrade the drive in an XBox One. Brilliant. Additional ambiguity is the need to have the system connected to the internet to function, something that isn’t possible for all users everywhere in the world. In one instance, an Xbox executive caustically admonished American military troops overseas for complaining that they couldn’t keep a system online like that in the middle of the desert. The executive told them “to shut up and keep playing the Xbox 360.” Not to mention certain privacy concerns.
Lastly, there’s the highly confusing name, Xbox One, which is what most of us have been calling the first Xbox released in 2001. Now Microsoft has relented on certain issues like DRM, and their mistreatment/draconian policies for Indie-game developers. But the damage was done. Lame!!!!!!!!