So far I have to say I’m enjoying my Xbox 360 a lot. Part of it is the rarity thing, since they’re still not terribly easy to get, the fact that I have one alone is cool. But what’s terribly fun to me is the interface of the system. It is always available no matter what you’re doing with a single button press. There’s a ton of information on your friends, what games they’ve played, etc… There’s a messaing system (either text or voice) between players and friends. There’s ways to watch videos from other computers on your lan (same goes for music & pictures). The interface is customizable with different skins, colors, & pictures. It’s just sleek, slick, and to be honest, when I first started my 360 for the first time, I probably went about 3 or 4 hours before I put a single game in the thing. I’m one of these people who loves looking at every option available to me in a piece of software, and whether I use them or not normally, I love the exploration. The 360 interface sucked me in – it’s very brilliantly designed.
It’s very cool being able to bring up one of your friends, and look at their game list, and see what they’ve played. What else is cool is the sense of competition that the system brings with your friends. Every Xbox 360 game has accomplishments – goals if you will – that you can get in the game. Each accomplishment brings with it a point value. That point value is added to your global “Gamer Score”. That score is kept across all games for your account. It’s a very cool way of encouraging you to play games you probably wouldn’t normally play as much of to get points. When you get a game with a scorekeeping function, it’s also very cool to see a high score table of just your friends, as opposed to every single Xbox live player. I know my group of friends seems to be constantly trying to top each other in Hexic (which is a Bejwelled knockoff (but better, IMO) that comes with the 360 Hard Drive). In fact, games like Hexic are great, because they’re small, and you can find yourself lost in them, eihter just playing, or trying to top your friends’ scores.
Another thing is this “HD Era” Microsoft keeps talking about. I don’t have HD yet. Even with prices dropping, it’s not something I have that kind of extra money for. I have a baby. :) But I will eventually. But don’t let them fool you. My Xbox 360 games look a lot better than Xbox 1 games. The quality of them even on my “regular old TV” is way better than what I was used to seeing.
If you can get one, get it. It’s a lot of fun. I probably could write a novel about all the stuff on there, but that wasn’t my intent – just a quick notice on how I love the Xbox 360 interface, and how the unified online solution (point system across all games – even the small ones like Hexic) is a brilliant device, and one that I hope serves Microsoft long into the future. Great idea.