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November 19, 2008

Ok, so…

Today is november 19th, the release of the new Xbox experience. After having some signing in problem and taking a while to download and a ten minute install, I was finally in. It opens with a very flashy and random as hell opening video, followed a lengthy sign in and a changed in the T&Cs, which again take ages to load.

Making An Avatar
You start with picking a starting point Xii. There alot of creation options, far more than the Wii, it’s also got a far better style to it and the avatars dont have huge annoying heads. plenty of clothing options are avalable but being as though microsoft love money, I’m sure youll be able to buy a halo helmet or gears armour in no time. After kitting my little dude out with a messy haricut and cons, I take a picture of my new virtual me (not mii) for my gamer picture. Saving the avatar throws you straight into the new dashboard.

The Dashboard
Opening with the welcome channel fullof marketing spheel from microsoft. Turn that off.  Spotlight…more marketing…inside xbox…more of the same…. Now friends list. all your friends avatars standing by a console shouting there name via a speech bubble an easy visible option for adding friends, and friends who arnt online greyed out. All shiny and fancy and lovly. Incredibly user friendly., video marketplace next…same content but in that media center format. The only new addtion to the marketplace is XNA games, which I’ll coem backto after downloading a few and the fact that you can view it on a PC (not MAC), w00p Games being the same. My Xbox is interesting. What they’ve done is condensed all the libarys into one menu, again very user friendly, with the settings at the end of the row. Your gamer card is now all split up with each game on one easy to read screen in stead of flicking through loads. You can delete 0 gamerscore games, good for those with OCD and you can install games on the hard drive…which, in turn, speeds up loading times and shuts up your system.

The new xbox guide (the big X on your controller is also shiny and new, with quick acsess to all the sutff you’ll use a lot.. like chat, games and friends. Speaking of Chat the new party systems allows exactly that party chat…with game and movie launching on the fly. The new guide is basically the old dashboard in the center of the screen.

For more opinions check out the next episode of FROM THE MINDS OF the podcast.

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