The first of the next generation of consoles to hit UK shelves is released on Friday. The Xbox One aims to steal a European march over its Microsoft rivals by launching a week before the PlayStation 4.
It has felt like a very long time since Microsoft announced that it would be releasing the PlayStation 4 this year, but the time is very nearly upon us. While the Playstation 4 has already launched in the US, it won’t be reaching our shelves until Friday 29th November. Before then, we have the release of the new Microsoft Xbox One, which launches this Friday 22nd November. A number of fortunate reviews have already got their hands on the device, so you can judge which of the two consoles you plump for, rather than spending £800 buying both.
Microsoft has had to make a number of climb-downs since it was first unveiled. Initially, it was announced that the console would have to be connected to the Internet at all times, but the company backed down from this position. They said that it would be impossible to play second hand games, but have had to make a U-turn on this decision too.
First things first, the design won’t win many awards. It looks a bit bipolar with a half matt, half gloss finish. While the green light has been replaced by a better looking white version, it really does have a face for radio. In a year or so, when the Slim version is almost certainly released, there may be some improvements to its ugliness, but for now, it’s a sacrifice, especially because Microsoft wants us to use this as our primary entertainment device in the living room.
The controller is another slice of fairly ugly, but at least this is a case of function over form. The Xbox 360 controller was widely regarded as the best of the bunch, and it has been improved upon this time around too. It offers haptic feedback through the slightly larger triggers, and even connects to the Kinect. The Kinect 2.0 bar is far from attractive either, but it is a vast improvement in the technology when compared to the original Kinect offered to gamers.
Make no mistake, the Xbox One is a whole heap of ugly, but it is powerful and hotly anticipated ugly. It is also recognition of the fact that even massive companies like Microsoft make glaring mistakes, and do actually listen to criticism in order to improve on occasion.