Live Blogging Xbox 360

Since I’ve got nothing better to do, I’ll be live blogging MTV’s Xbox Next Generation infomercial special. Looks like Kyle, Kotaku, and Joystiq will be doing so as well.

I’m not really sold on the Xbox 360 just yet. The whole MTV special just stinks of piles of Microsoft money being thrown around trying to get the ever popular 18-39 audience. I’m the list of “stars” that will be there don’t do it for me, either. The fact that Maurice Clarett is there almost prevents me from watching it all together (I’m an Ohio State fan, what can I say?). I’ll reserve judgement until after the show, but I can’t shake this feeling of deja vu.

On a side note, I’d like to see Xbox Live numbers between 9:30 – 10:00 pm EST.

Update: Okay, here we are, 9:30 and it’s go time:
Lets get the hype and hyperbole going right away! The Next Xbox will “Literally change the face of entertainment”. Phew, they start piling it on thick right way.

(Kotaku has some nice high-res images up already. Again, I’m not feeling the new design. I keep getting this nagging feeling that Microsoft is making a big mistake releasing this so early. More on that later.)

9:31 pm – Alright, so unrecognizable girl brought it out and yep, it looks just like we’ve known for a while now – ugly white and standing upright. Blech.

9:35 pm – “What do you think of the new Xbox 360?” (Elijah Wood)
“I’m looking forward to getting a free one. Hah ha!” (Li’l John? Some dude with a chalice)

9:39 pm – Alrighty then, they’ve shown the Xbox 360/Samsung commercial during the same break. The first time I saw that I thought it said “Microsoft and Samus” Heh. Madden, NFSU:MW and TW 2006 clips – are they real or simply “possible” gameplay. We’ll see. Need for Speed looked hot but Madden and Tiger Woods looked wierd.

Now we’re gonna pimp the Xbox. I thought this was about the new one.

Wireless was just confirmed – and a RING OF LIGHT. Whoa. That is hawt. Those face plates are embarassing.

The Live Marketplace – another bad idea. After watching that demonstration I had the image of MS taking money out of my pocket without me even knowing it was happening.

9:50 – Some more games – Gears of War looked good as did Qauke 4. The other brief games didn’t look interesting. So now it’s Perfect Dark time. But first let’s listen to some Gaming Pros. Zyos just called it the “Xbox 2”. I guess he didn’t get that memo. Now they’re talking about Perfect Dark Zero. 50 players at once sounds very, very tasty. Fully destructible environments. We’ll see about that. It’s been promised before. Ms. PMSgamer likes to swear a lot. That’s so gamer.

Watching the deathmatch, the controllers look small. Too small?

“Xbox 360 is gonna be amazing.” – Elijah Wood.

10:03 pm – That was over sooner than I thought it would be. A couple observations –
1.) Xbox 360 is supposed to usher in the HD era. But as Bill at DQ points out, why not broadcast the show in HD? There wouldn’t be a better way to convince us that it is, indeed, the HD era. I’m not convinced yet. I also noted that they really didn’t play up the HD aspect of the 360. Not sure why, but I didn’t notice any mentions.

2.) Even though it was still MTV, the production value was well done. While I asked Spike TV for two hours they stole from me last year, MTV kept it short and relatively sweet. Spike TV could take some advice from MTV how to host a Video Game show. I didn’t notice any gratuitous cleavage shots (except during the deathmatch which was too bad) or any celebrities trying to act like gamers. Well played, MTV.

Well, that was actually anti-climactic. I’m still interested in the next generation of consoles, including the Xbox. Things looked great. But like I said earlier, there’s still that nagging feeling that I can’t shake. With the marketplace, the ugly design (with a ring of light!), and the “HD era” things feel gimmicky. I know Microsoft knows what they’re doing, so I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

Update #2: Here are some of the other bloggers talking about the Xbox 360 – Damned Machines, SmashBOT, Video Games Ombudsman, Dubious Quality, Joystiq, Nomad Gamer, Listen Up, Sports Gamer, Arena of Ideas, Also Coin Operated, and others, I’m sure. The consesus seems to be MTV sucks, the Xbox 360 didn’t impress, and everyone will still be buying one. Mission Accomplished.

Comments

  1. You seem to be disappointed about the new hardware even before the full specs are released.

    I do agree that the premise of “literally changing the face of entertainment forever” is quite a mouthfull. Will the new Xbox actually do this? Who knows? The now debunked fusion of web TV in the console was a step in the right direction, though.

    As far as Mtv goes… Yes, Mtv sucks but as I said somewhere else, it was a perfectly planned, smart marketing decision to host a perfectly stupid, superficial, vague hype-fest on their network. It wasn’t designed to appeal to the average hardcore gamer simply because the Mtv crowd is mildly retarded and doesn’t have a whole lot of understanding about hardware specs.

    I think that Microsoft’s marketplace decision is an interesting proposition but I’d hope that you’d realize if Microsoft (or any business for that matter) is taking money out of your pocket. That’s a whole different story. I can definitely see the idea taking off with hardcore RPG fans or racing fanatics. Hell, if they offered me a custom uniform to differentiate my character in Ghost Recon 3, i’d buy it.

    As far as the design goes, it’s a matter of personal opinion. I think it looks slick; the added opportunity to snap on a customized faceplate makes it interesting for guys like me, which like components to appear subdued. I’d make the system blend in my entertainment center.

    What I think is funny about you guys live-blogging this is that you are all disappointed about the 30 minute show. Granted, it was over-hyped but what exactly did you expect? It’s Mtv; Short attention spans and nothing more.

    As you said, at least we didn’t get to see any second rate “celebrities” trying to look like gamers.

  2. I was personally dissapointed by 95% of the games they showed. Hardly anything looked “next-gen,” aside from Ghost Recon 3 and Need for Speed. Perfect Dark Zero was also a dissapointment to me as the graphics were weak and the gameplay looks to be standard FPS stuff. Sure everyone will jump on the PD Zero bandwagon for the 50-person multiplayer, but once Unreal does it everyone will forget that PD ever existed. Personally, I would have preferred a 10-minute segment devoted to Ghost Recon, with a little Splinter Cell 4 on the side.

    Overall, it was OK for a 30-minute commercial. I’m not sure if they did enough to distinguish between the 360 and the X-Box 1 for the average Joe though. As I said, most of the games graphically looked like X-Box 1 titles, and the games that DID look next-gen had very little air-time dedicated to them. I don’t think the average person could disntinguish between most of the games shown on the special and the current games out for the X-Box. I think that more attention should have been given to Ghost Recon 3.

  3. Huh. Wonder if this might actually backfire a bit for Microsoft. Most of the gameblogosphere seems more ticked than impressed. At the very lest it seems the MTV production completely missed the demographic of the hardcore gamer, which was what MS always seemed to want to reel in. And if it comes off as just boastful grandstanding without showing off the goods, Sony and Nintendo will just have to quietly leak a few rumors about how wunderbar their non-released stuff is.

    I didn’t see it and don’t feel bad about that having read the writeups. Hopefully for E3 Microsoft will focus on the games and the gamers instead of paying the celebrity 411 machine off. The worst thing they could do is establish a “XBox…the console so cool it’s too cool for geeks” motif.

  4. I’ve spoken to people who are not hardcore gamers and asked what their thoughts were on the Xbox 360 unveiling. The message is mixed, some say it was cool as for others didn’t care about it cause they really don’t like video games. The ages of the people I asked were between 21-35, that demographic that MS wants to hit with this new console. And it also helped that they were all close family and friends. But IMO Microsoft is going to have a hard time convincing those who are not hardcore gamers to buy this console. They have really put themselves into a real uphill battle for the consumer.

    Hopefully they will change their message next week at E3. And focus on the people that got them to where they are now, the gamer.

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