What Microsoft Did Right And Wrong At Its Xbox One Reveal [OPINION]

By Ural Garrett , Updated May 22, 2013 08:44 AM EDT
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Microsoft finally unveiled its next generation Xbox on Tuesday. The Xbox One's internals will host a Blu-Ray player, 8-core CPU and a 500 GB hard drive along with an upgraded Kinect sensor. That essentially puts it on par with Sony's Playstation 4 in terms of blow-for-blow power compatibility.

What separates this from its contemporaries more than better graphical capability? 

Cable and satellite television will run through the Xbox One and offer some form of connectivity. Microsoft is also trying to blur the line between television and video games through a project with Remedy entitled Quantum Break along with Steven Spielberg directing an episodic series based of the Halo franchise.  

Games, that's more important right?

EA gave the run down on its sports franchises including the next-gen return of NBA Live along with new entries of Madden, FIFA and UFC. Infinity Ward closed out the reveal with the first trailer of Call of Duty: Ghosts. Looks like gamers are going to get Forza entry. The only original title debut was the Quantum Break but the actual nature hasn't been revealed. 

Lets look at some of the things Microsoft did right and wrong at the Xbox One reveal. 

Right 

Showing exactly what its intentions are with Xbox One: Microsoft has made it clear from the get go that it hoped for the Xbox to become the front and center of the living room. Between Sony's PS3 becoming the number one living room television use for Netflix and Nintendo's Wii controller doubling as a remote control, Microsoft seems to have perfectly blended the two through the Xbox One. What Microsoft has done is create the ultimate media hub. The Xbox One's cable or satellite functionality creates a less cumbersome experience when transitioning between watching TV and gaming.  The social aspect has been heightened with an improved Xbox Live and Skype integration. On the control front, subtle improvements to the Xbox360 controller felt safe and smart on Microsoft's part. Making voice activation support and Kinect standard was even smarter. That means that developers who want to support it can and those that don't aren't penalized. This is a lesson Nintendo could learn if it's able to make another console past the Wii U.

Wrong 

Games seemed more like an after though: It was nice that EA, Infinity Ward and Remedy showed videos but not showing actual gameplay was quite the shocker. Microsoft had unfinished versions of its Xbox360 launch titles ready for hands on previews in 2005 during that cheesy MTV special so what changed here? Was anything not ready? A gameplay demonstration would have gone a long way. The fact that the Xbox One supports voice and hand control is nice for system functionality but how does that transition over to gameplay? Something had to be ready to at least try. One of the key points of Sony's presentation of the Playstation 4 in February was that even if potentially faked, Killzone: ShadowFall and Knack were actual gameplay demonstrations. The presentation also mentioned that around eight out of the 15 exclusive games will be new franchises. Where were they? Sure E3 is around the corner but a small hint would have sufficed. 

What do you think? What did Microsoft get right and wrong at the reveal?

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