How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

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Steve
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How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby Steve » August 22nd, 2017, 1:57 pm

It’s been a rough year for Xbox One fans. Personally, I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve played this year, whether it was an exclusive (Halo Wars 2, Voodoo Vince, Gears of War 4, and Forza Horizon 3 expansions), replaying Halo 5 in online co-op, or playing the entire Dead Space 3 game co-op online with a complete stranger through backwards compatibility (good use of the Looking for Group feature). So, how come a bad year? The Xbox brand almost seems to be taking more of a beating this year than in years past which is surprising since most people think they have been on a course correction after their 2013 pre-release fiasco. Critically acclaimed after critically acclaimed as well as fan favorite after fan favorite games are coming out for PS4 (or announced). Personally, I have no desire to play many of these games as they are not my type of game (Persona 5 & Nioh are two examples). It doesn’t help matters that to me, some of these games are overrated – that’s an opinion partly based on an emotional response since I am totally unfamiliar with them. Whether justified or not, the general consensus seems to be that not only PS4 has more exclusives but better exclusives. Throw Nintendo into the mix and you have Microsoft looking at a guaranteed 3rd place. It only goes downhill from there.

Through all of that, I choose to “remain loyal” since there is no doubt I still enjoy my console and refuse to base my enjoyment when compared to others. However, there have been a few announcements recently (3 of them very recent) that are really causing me to lose faith in how the Xbox division is managed.

    1) The whole “Play Anywhere”/ releasing almost everything on PC. I’ve read arguments from Microsoft directly as well as independent articles stating that this is a good thing for the fans as well as the business. I’ll never be convinced of this. While on the surface, it certainly seems like a good deal (Buy 1, get 1 free), it literally destroys the concept of exclusivity. It doesn’t have a direct impact on me since I get to play the games I want but the perception is out there that there is no need for an Xbox when you have a PC. It’s just damaging to the brand.
    2) Re-release of Xbox 360 Kinect games on Xbox One. This one was just announced this week in the form of 2 Disney games (Disneyland Adventures and Rush: A Disney Pixar Adventure). To be fair, I’ve read that Kinect was removed as a requirement but still may utilize it as an option. Since there are no details, I’m going to assume they are not Kinect enabled. Personally, the only reason I stopped using my Kinect on my Xbox 360 was that I moved it to a different room that doesn’t get used much. Otherwise, I still enjoy Kinect games and would welcome rereleases on a clearly improved Kinect camera. If these games don’t have Kinect support, then I would officially declare Kinect dead. I think I was one of the last holdouts since most people declared it dead a long long time ago. They have a chance to redeem themselves here. I can’t imagine it would be that difficult to implement Kinect on some of the older, better Kinect games.
    3) Age of Empires released for PC only. This is huge for me. For a console that’s proven it can do RTS games successfully and considering the Xbox is basically Windows 10, not doing a console release is inexcusable. I know mapping controls can be difficult to implement but it’s a complete contradiction of my #1 up above. Basically, Xbox console exclusive go to Windows 10 since it is better for the company, industry, and fans but not the other way around? Again, they can redeem themselves but it’s not looking promising and this makes me furious. Especially considering the simultaneous announcement of Age of Empires IV as well as rereleases of Age of Empires 2 & 3 in the future.
    4) Crackdown “delay”. Personally, I enjoyed Crackdown 2 quite a bit and was looking forward to the new one. I didn’t even mind the graphics shown at E3 since the gameplay seemed enjoyable. While many games get delayed to further develop, I just have a bad feeling about this one. One could also argue they moved the date to take it away from all the AAA 3rd party games coming this holiday and have a stronger Spring than usual. Anyone else think this one is getting cancelled? I do unfortunately. I hope I’m wrong.
    5) Release of Backwards Compatibility of Original Xbox games this fall/winter. This was a highlight for me at E3. Crimson Skies was one of my favorite games of that generation and the ability to play it again on a working system is great. So, what is Microsoft doing wrong here? Not much but I can guarantee it will hurt sales. No achievements. I’ve never been a completionist when it comes to getting all achievements but one thing the achievement implementation did was make me finish games I started. I have a vast library of games I only just started or never started and this is a good reason to visit them again. To me, it’s a missed opportunity not to implement achievements. Since they would be new to these games, there can be few of them and simple. I’m no Engineer but I find it hard to believe it is that hard to implement “Finish game > 1000 gamerscore”. It’s minor but probably a good example of NOT giving their fans what they want. And before anyone says it’s not important, it was important enough for people to post directly to Microsoft about their implementation.
    6) Halo Wars 2 DLC. This is more of a game specific rant than anything else. Most people who play this game are upset about the fact that they are not including the upcoming “Awakening the Nightmare” expansion as part of the Season Pass. Personally, I can see both sides of the argument but that isn’t what even upsets me (probably because I didn’t buy the season pass). What upsets me is that it’s very confusing when there are things like “Ultimate Edition”, Definitive Editions, Season Passes, individual DLC’s, and separate add-ons like this upcoming one. It’s just impossible to keep track. For a game like this that I really enjoy, I gladly would have purchased it, probably at full price if it was clear what would be available. I’m not against paid DLC but this is one reason why it is a bad idea to announce things like this before release. Season Passes should include all future content. If there is a lot of content coming, raise the price or at the very least be clear and state upfront “doesn’t include x or y”.

I hope Microsoft can see the benefit of resolving at least a few of these issues otherwise they are going to lose part of their loyal fanbase.

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Stalvern
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby Stalvern » August 22nd, 2017, 4:49 pm

If you're still an Xbox fan in spite of the Xbox One itself, they know you aren't really going to leave them.

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VideoGameCritic
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby VideoGameCritic » August 22nd, 2017, 6:38 pm

Thanks for sharing Steve. Xbox certainly does seem to be in a tailspin with no clear path forward.
My Xbox One has been collecting dust of late because there's no exclusive titles to give me reason to play.
For cross-platform titles I just pick up the PS4 version because it's more offline friendly.

Funny how one botched launch can turn a company from leader to doormat.
They never have recovered.
The thing is, a LOT of people saw it coming, but Microsoft thought they knew better.
Clearly they did not.

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DrLitch
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby DrLitch » August 29th, 2017, 3:22 am

The upcoming X Box One X might shake things up a little - those AAA titles released by 1st and 3rd parties might look considerably better on the X Box One X than a PC or the PS4 Pro.

It is odd though regarding PC releases of exclusives, 99% of us here have a PC or laptop. Since you already have your PC/Laptop, it would make economic sense to hold off buying the Microsoft console. Then again not all PC's or Laptop's are primed for gaming...

Irrespective, it is a hard to figure out the merit of Microsoft's duality / cross platform approach.

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scotland
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby scotland » August 29th, 2017, 7:30 am

I don't think we've talked about the Xbox One X yet, and welcome to the boards on your first post.

First, the console name sounds like a star ward droid XB1X. From what little I've read, the console is focused on 4k resolution, not improving performance or better graphical settings for 1080p. Its also $500, which is twice the price of an Xbox One S. Given those things, it sounds mostly like this is going to be a niche product, and not really a game changer.

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ptdebate
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby ptdebate » August 29th, 2017, 11:38 am

DrLitch wrote:The upcoming X Box One X might shake things up a little - those AAA titles released by 1st and 3rd parties might look considerably better on the X Box One X than a PC or the PS4 Pro.


Better than a PC? PCs built years ago outperform the Xbox One X. Regardless of how much an advancement in console technology it represents, let's be real--the X will not surpass a dedicated gaming rig. My storebought Dell tower pulls more teraflops than Microsoft's product.

I feel like I should add a disclaimer that I love console gaming--it's not all about specs. But when it comes to specs, consoles will always be behind (and deliberately so) due to considerations of cost and form-factor.

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DrLitch
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby DrLitch » August 30th, 2017, 3:49 am

scotland wrote:I don't think we've talked about the Xbox One X yet, and welcome to the boards on your first post.

First, the console name sounds like a star ward droid XB1X. From what little I've read, the console is focused on 4k resolution, not improving performance or better graphical settings for 1080p. Its also $500, which is twice the price of an Xbox One S. Given those things, it sounds mostly like this is going to be a niche product, and not really a game changer.


Thank you for the welcome! I am a long term lurker here. You might be right regarding it becoming a niche product - I usually preorder new hardware but this one I sat it out. I will review purchasing this console next year depending on how things line up software wise for them.


ptdebate wrote:Better than a PC? PCs built years ago outperform the Xbox One X. Regardless of how much an advancement in console technology it represents, let's be real--the X will not surpass a dedicated gaming rig. My storebought Dell tower pulls more teraflops than Microsoft's product.

I feel like I should add a disclaimer that I love console gaming--it's not all about specs. But when it comes to specs, consoles will always be behind (and deliberately so) due to considerations of cost and form-factor.


Dell/Alienware is good equipment. The 16GB/i7-7700/GTX1070 is a potent combination for a gaming PC. If yours is the one with GTX1080, it is a beast. That said, not many folks are willing to fork out the dough for this. The more popular entry level gaming PC's/laptops have an RX480 or GTX1050 with a good perfoming AMD or i3/i5 CPU. They are generally very competent 1K gaming machines, 4K not so much. Most folks will not have a GPU in their laptops or PC's that will benchmark as well as the GTX1060, let alone the 1070. The Xbox One X should be able hold its own.

Herschie
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby Herschie » August 30th, 2017, 9:22 am

A good baseball game might pique my interest...

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ptdebate
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby ptdebate » August 30th, 2017, 1:03 pm

DrLitch wrote:Dell/Alienware is good equipment. The 16GB/i7-7700/GTX1070 is a potent combination for a gaming PC. If yours is the one with GTX1080, it is a beast. That said, not many folks are willing to fork out the dough for this. The more popular entry level gaming PC's/laptops have an RX480 or GTX1050 with a good perfoming AMD or i3/i5 CPU. They are generally very competent 1K gaming machines, 4K not so much. Most folks will not have a GPU in their laptops or PC's that will benchmark as well as the GTX1060, let alone the 1070. The Xbox One X should be able hold its own.


I'm admittedly more of a Mac guy but when it comes to gaming PCs, I always go with Dell. I have the XPS tower that comes with a 1070 (which, at second glance, may be simply equivalent to the X1X, which is impressive for the Xbox).
Value and accessibility will be the twin strengths of the X1X, but it depends on how well Microsoft markets it and makes people feel like they need genuine 4K gaming (which the PS4 Pro does not consistently deliver).

GameOfThrones
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Re: How Xbox can lose a loyal fan

Postby GameOfThrones » August 31st, 2017, 12:57 pm

Halo Wars 2. Wow how to ruin a good RTS. So they learnt the lesson of Halo 5 no one cares about the Prometheans. Halo 4 was okay but instead of getting better the series got worse. So they put an rts minus their flood replacement. It did not help the game. HW2 just is not as much fun as Hw.
Gears of War 4, Halo 5 and now HW2 have all had microtransactions so that you can play to win. Also all have featured heavily mp only types of scenario. All the extra stuff just makes me think I do not want to play this game after i have beaten it.


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