I have been really anti-Xbox One and this runs contrary to my usual console-neutral policy on video games. I really - up until this week - just haven’t cared what platform you play games on. They’re all just boxes filled with electronics that, aside from some first-party titles, pretty much do the same thing.
I am not console-neutral anymore because there is now One console (see what I did there?) that does everything wrong. And no, it’s not the hardware inside. It’s about the same as the PS4 inside (to be entirely accurate, a bit less powerful, but honestly I really can’t tell the difference between 360 and PS3 titles and while 360 is less powerful and that never mattered to me). Once graphics get to a certain point, it’s up to developers to develop stylistic enhancements (BioShock Infinite and Skyward Sword are perfect examples, neither technically the best but IMO the most visually pleasing games of the last few years).
It’s Microsoft. They’ve decided that they want Xbox to be Google TV. Which, I suppose would be kind of cool if I had said “want Xbox to also be Google TV.” As in, as a secondary feature, it could do a lot of things Google TV does. But this is really what Microsoft wants Xbox One to be.
They want it to be a powerful set-top-box that can game. If you don’t see why that is annoying to someone who cares about video games, then you are either ignorant or so far up Microsoft’s ass you can’t see all the people who took this week as an opportunity to completely dislodge themselves from Microsoft’s ass. It’s lonely up in Microsoft’s ass this week.
And it’s not even JUST that. It is a hugely restrictive version of Google TV that involves you not owning things you buy. Xbox One is the absolute premier Market Socialism (elaborate rentals) product out there.
Here’s a quick list of reasons Xbox One is crap:
- Daily DRM checks
- Used Game Fees
- Extremely Unfriendly to Indie Devs
- The focus isn’t on gaming, it’s TV SPORTS TV SPORTS TV SPORTS
- Kinect is literally always watching and listening to you and this sets a disturbing precedent. Also, it’s ugly and I don’t want it in my living room
I probably could keep going, but these are my main issues. I have never been a “MICROSOFT SUCKS! SONY RULES!” guy. I’ve always found that argument vapid. That was before buying a game console meant giving up your rights as a consumer, though.
Xbox One takes strides forward toward a less-consumer friendly market. It is restrictive, it devalues your money (if you are paying $60 to not actually own something, that money is worth less and the market will respond - and not just the gaming market). If people do not predict economic tremors alongside such a business model should it prove successful, then people are not thinking.
Another issue: If it were to prove successful, do you realize Xbox is your source of entertainment? You turn the TV on and poof, there it all is. All the stuff that companies paid to be the most visible. There’s only one place to go, and we all know how good the government is at attempting to regulate something like this for some kind of fairness. This kind of device could be so utterly crippling in your discovery of new, interesting things.
I am “PS4 and Wii U“-neutral now. I regard those consoles as prudent to own. I can pick out too many scary ramifications from purchasing an Xbox One and I will not be owning it.