I've invested a lot of time on my Xbox 360 collecting achievements and spending $50, now $60, to play Halo online. I've gone through the dreaded red ring of death 3 times and the E-74 screen once. I had high hopes that Xbox Live Gold would develop into a better service but I instead given worthless applications and annoying advertisements. Now with the next-generation of consoles coming this holiday season I feel that Microsoft has fallen victim to the hubris of their own success. I wanted to love the Xbox One, but I can't, and the PS4 has taken me away to Sony's world.
Before I begin talking about things that will have fans picking up pitchforks and torches, march to my home, and attempt to burn me alive the Xbox One is a fantastic piece of equipment. The Kinect 2.0 is absolutely amazing, an improvement in every way from the original model and the integrated voice commands are astonishing. The Xbox One itself was shown having similar power to the PS4 when they displayed amazing titles like Ryse: Son of Rome and Dead Rising 3. And of course the Xbox One controller remains the same extraordinary model that has been the most popular model among consumers since the original Xbox. But I was shown what Microsoft was offering in one hand, all these amazing games, while they kept the online requirements and used game policies hidden away in the other. Trying to hide the volcanic issues that have been circulating the internet wasn't wise and when you do something like that people on the internet will start to speculate and make up things. Sony took that chance and come out with their used game policies and online requirements, followed a massive applause and an after conference video that added salt to the wound.
Throughout their press conference I was hoping that Microsoft would address the many aggressive issues regarding their hardware throughout the conference but it never came. I honestly didn't think the requirements for the Xbox One weren't bad, I live in an area where I can be always connected and I trusted Microsoft that the Kinect 2.0 wasn't going to record everything, despite one of my colleague's worry (insert Xboxbetty's article), but an interview on Gametrailers did have me worried. Don Mattrick stated that "We have a product for people who aren't able to get some form of connectively it's called Xbox 360" and while this is a prudent statement I felt that Microsoft is looking towards the future when Mattrick went on to say "There was a point in time people would say 'Hey all I want my phone to do is make a phone call.' And now you use your phone in richer ways because of that connectivity. People are going to see the same benefit with Xbox One as they've seen with their smartphone." Like in Bill Gates and Collins Hemingway book, Business @ The Speed of Thought, Microsoft is looking towards the future and eventually the world will become a large digital nervous system. While I agree with Microsoft's view for the future, at this moment it's more of an issue than a move forward.
It's not easy to make the switch, especially if you're an achievement hunter like me. Several people I know wonder why I collect all these worthless medals within games, it's because I've been doing it before they were implemented. Whenever I purchased a game, whether it was Pokemon Red or Final Fantasy VII, I played and obtained every single thing I could until I reached that 100% point. While Xbox allowed us to play online it was when these tawdry accomplishments were introduced that console gamers were able to create a digital identity for themselves that followed them throughout Xbox Live, and created another hurdle to leap if I decide to jump ship. Without this I would have, other than Halo 5, to get an Xbox One.
I'm probably going to be called every insult that I can possibly fathom, and some I don't understand. Although I doubt that these things will come into fruition I do think Microsoft can reignite my love for Microsoft and the Xbox One with the same passion that I now have for Sony's PS4. Right now the number one issue that I've had for the last year is Xbox Live Gold, the premium service that has fallen behind PlayStation Plus in such a short amount of time. Microsoft did state that at their E3 conference that Xbox Live Gold subscribers will be getting 2 new games a month, starting with Halo 3 and Assassin's Creed 2, and while this is a start it's still way behind the content given my PlayStation Plus. If I decide to get an Xbox One I'm going to have to pay more for services that I get for free on other platforms, make it worth my money Microsoft.
My love for Xbox hasn't been shattered, but some shards still remain in place. Perhaps in the future I'll decide to get an Xbox One after a price cut for Halo 5 but as for now I'm not convinced that remaining loyal and purchasing the console on the first day will benefit me. However my 100,000 gamertag is constantly reminding me what I have to loose, similar to when I decided to quit World of Warcraft, and I haven't reserved the PS4 because of that. Perhaps leading up to the Xbox One launch Microsoft will reveal new changes that may repair my shattered love for the next Xbox, but for now I remain heartbroken.