My pre-order of the Xbox One arrived on Monday and I’ve had a little time to play with it. I mostly got the device for Forza which I love. So after a couple of days with it, here are my first impressions.
Let’s start with the Operating System. It’s gorgeous and fluid. The switching between apps is really impressive. While it’s missing some features from it’s 360 counterpart, I find it really satisfying.
Adam Kinney has created a new Silverlight 2 Application to show off your XBox Gamercard on your site. I like his design and it is not static so it shows what you're doing at any specific time. What do you think of mine:
I finally hit 10,000 XBox Live Gamer Points. How's that for a testiment to wasted time? Burnout Paradise finally put me over the top, though I thought it would be Assassin's Creed or the Mass Effect DLC.
I've been playing Halo 3 a lot this weekend and I have to say I love the "Theatre" feature. It allows you to watch a video of your last few gaming sessions (campaign and online) and take screenshots as well as make movies. The screenshot feature allows you to take pictures from anywhere in the level, not just from your perspective. This means you can float the camera anywehere in the world while pausing the game at a specific, often spectacular moment. I've spent almost as much time finding cool shots as I have playing the campaign. The screenshots are uploaded to Bungie.net automatically so you can share them with friends!
So as you may know, my XBox died again...but it ended up fine in a wierd way:
When the DVD drive died on Thursday evening, I contacted support and they said they'd send out an empty box to send back right away. Friday FedEx attempted to deliver a package from the repair center but I wasn't home. When I got the door notice from FedEx, I looked it up online to see if I could pick it up. Oddly, the package had been shipped on Wednesday, two days before my unit failed. Is Microsoft psycic? Did they send some magic code down through XBox Live to disable my console? What is going on?
This is geting pretty old. Two rings of death, a bad video card and now a blown DVD drive. Next time the whole console is going to just melt...
The really bad news is it scratched my copy of BioShock...
As some of you know, the original version of XNA studio only worked with the express versions of Visual Studio. I already usually have a beta version and a release, having more versions was making me crazy. I am so glad to announce that they have released XNA v2.0 (so I can scratch that XBox 360 dev itch) which supports all versions of Visual Studio.
It seems that thos endless days of GOW, Forza 2 and Missle Command took its toll on my 360. After struggling to get through this past week, I finally got through today and my 360 going back to the shop...
I am trying to figure out why I am being punished with a four-to-six week roundtrip time for fixing my 360. Its a harsh puninshment, but they did throw in a free game (Viva Pinata). The funny thing is they made a point of telling me that the free game would ship this week via ground so I would get it quickly...without a machine to play it on.
With my experience with my XBox 360/GoW issues, I am not surprised if this turns out to be true. The rumor is that starting tomorrow, all 360's will have their warantees extended to one year. Check it out here.
Check out this real-time in-game footage of Assassin's Creed. This has to be the best looking 360 game out yet (even better than GOW I think). Glad Sony screwed the pooch on the PS3 to allow this to become multi-platform.
Everyone else on the planet who has played World of Warcraft for more than a month or two probably has several 60th level characters. I am a tinkerer...I start characters and delete them with lots of abandon. In fact, I kept moving servers because I like new servers. I finally hunkered down and went back to my original server and finished my 60th Level Hunter (some 14 months after I started playing). Better late than never?
I played through the first section and a half of GOW without incident, but then suddenly it would just lockup unexpectedly. Not a good sign, but I've had some lockups but not many on the console. But now the box is completely dead. 3 Red-lights and lots of sadness. I called support and MS is going to fix it even though I am not sure that it is really under warranty. I am not a conspiracy theorist, but my guess would be that there is a real issue that perhaps doesn't occur until the box is pressed really hard (like GOW does).
Microsoft announced today that starting 11/14/2006 they will be providing the ability to rent movies and buy TV shows from the XBox Live Marketplace. Their lineup contains 200 hours of HD and 800 hours of near-HD quality programming. This is a *big* deal in my mind (especially since it launches when the PS3 comes out). Check out the announcement including the initial title lineup here:
I spent most of last week on the road in Alabama, and came home to a very short weekend before I left today for a week in Missouri. Saturday my copy of Dead Rising for the XBox 360 arrived and I am hooked. So I did something I haven't done before, I took my XBox 360 with me. After getting a S-Video cable and fiddling with the Hotel TV for a while, I finally got it to work!
After way too much time with Elder Scrolls: Oblivion for the XBox 360, I finally finished all the 50 achievements. 1,000 achievement points baby! I can't even imagine how much time I took, but I finished all the quest trees (but not every quest, only the quest trees).
I ran into a new site that will give your XBox 360 it's own blog based on your gamer tag! My XBox 360 now has its own blog:
In this new trailer from Valve, they hint at a new weapon in Halflife 2:Episode 2 called Portal. You have to see it to believe it!
Maybe I am late to this party, but I just played a bit of an impressive first person shooter that was written to fit into 96 kilobytes. No frills like changing keymapping or anything, but the graphics are incredibly impressive for 96 KB. Its worth a look here.
In this interesting interview of Albert Penello (of Microsoft), he is asked questions about backwards compatibility on the XBox 360, specially why some games are on the compatibilty list and others are not. In one very interesting comment, he mentions that it is not just the most popular games that are included, but games that use similar technology as popular games are included as they are low hanging fruit:
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