VGcore.com    Forums    Blogs    PC    PS3    PS2    PSP    Xbox 360    Live    Xbox    Wii    GameCube    DS
Content Drought and Microsoft’s Way Out
         
 XBOX 360     
   News
   Games List
   Reviews
   Previews
   Release Dates
   Videos
   Screenshots
   Cheat Codes
   Editorials
   Interviews
   Hardware
   Companies
 
 RELATED       
   Xbox Live
   Xbox
 
 COMMUNITY 
   Forums
   Blogs
   Login
   Sign Up
   My Account
 
 SYSTEMS      
   PC
   Playstation 3
   Playstation 2
   Sony PSP
   Xbox 360
   Xbox Live
   Xbox
   Nintendo Wii
   GameCube
   Nintendo DS
 


Content Drought and Microsoft’s Way Out


When you look at the overall picture of Xbox 360 and all of its games, what sticks out? Nothing. It is not that the Xbox 360 isn't a great game machine or doesn't have great games, it's that there is no “killer app” or console selling game just on the 360.

From day one, the original Xbox had a console selling game that made it unique. (Of course, that game was the first Halo.) Halo quickly became Xbox's ringer. At that time, Nintendo had Mario, Sony had Grand Theft Auto and Metal Gear Solid, and Microsoft had Halo. Fast forward a few years…and what does Microsoft have on the Xbox 360 at launch that you can't get anywhere else? Not much...

COD2 was the king of the 360 launch, but couldn't compare to Halo on the Xbox.
Rare's Perfect Dark Zero was supposed to be Xbox 360's console selling game from day one, but it turned out to be a mediocre first person shooter. And, arguably, it's a disappointment for the fan's of the popular series. So what then? Well, there came third party title, Call of Duty 2, that ended up taking the king of the Xbox 360 launch; a game that was previously released on the PC no less. But, is and was it the "killer app"? Not quite. As we look back, we can see that the Xbox 360 launched with only "good" games to start off the new year and was missing that ever so important game that marked the 360 as being worth the money -- and prove it's a great console.

Then came the month of March. What an excellent month for the Xbox 360, for two reasons: Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. These were two extremely great games, games you could dig right into. But still, as great as they are, they still fell shy of the “killer app” status. On top of that, they are now both available on the PC, and GRAW now on the Playstation 2. The Xbox 360 still doesn't have a killer game for the 360 owners to point to; nor does it give others a reason to go out and buy one, not for the games that is...

Now, about a quarter of a year later, there still isn't a game that represents the Xbox 360 the best. Sure, sure, you're saying: "There <i>are</i> a good amount of great games available!", well, let's name a few for the heck of it (that hasn't previously been stated): Dead or Alive 4, Project Gotham Racing 3, Fight Night Round 3, Table Tennis, Burnout Revenge, and Condemned. All of these are wonderful games that are all worth purchasing… but the average gamer won't play these games continuously. If you look at the stats, Halo 2 is still one of the most played games on Xbox Live, surpassing almost all Xbox 360 titles.

Xbox Live Arcade worked well, but has since run dry.
So when is the Xbox 360 going to get its killer app? Before we look into this, let's take a look at the content on Xbox Live. The Marketplace and Xbox Live Arcade offers huge additions of game content on top of the already popular Xbox Live service. The Xbox Live Arcade had some unique and fun games at launch -- and Geometry Wars was considered by many to be one of the best games on the new console. However, a few months later, the game releases moved to a trickle. Now, the last game to hit Xbox Live Arcade was two months ago and it was an extremely simple card game (Uno.) Not number one in my book...

The content on the Xbox Live Marketplace has a similar story. At launch it was a really neat feature and the free game demos, offered for just about every retail game, was truly amazing. This was something that has never been offered on any other console... and it was going great. Gamers then saw a huge ramp-up of content on the Marketplace during E3. Tons of game trailers, video footage from E3, and three playable demos all in one week! It was an explosion of content that has never been pulled off by any other console. After E3 though, things have really slowed down in the marketplace, considerably. This is understandable due to the fact that there are almost no games coming out, but weeks and weeks go buy with nothing but a few picture packs and themes... Another issue is that other non-gaming related content seems to be more common. Music and movie downloads have increased a lot! And, honestly, they just feel like advertisements. This content is being featured on the main Xbox 360 page, so when you first start up your console -- BAM! there's this huge advertisement for some new movie taking up half the screen.

Ok, enough ranting about that, let's see what's ahead and if there is actually a light at the end of this long tunnel. Microsoft was excited because they were the first to market their next generation console and they were getting at least a year's head start on the competition. By the time Sony and Nintendo launched their next consoles, Microsoft believed they would already be far, far ahead of them. The games so far have been good, but nothing outstanding…no killer app. It looks like Microsoft has gotten a head start… but they can't keep it if the 360 doesn't remain a unique console selling games, not advertisement space.

Gears of War is in a tough spot. It has to become the new Halo for this holiday season.
Bungie has already announced that Halo 3 won't be available until 2007. So what is going to keep this ship afloat during the hectic holiday season; not to mention the huge bloodbath that takes place when Sony and Nintendo launch their new consoles? Hopefully, that game is going to be Gears of War. From the makers of the popular Unreal Tournament, Gears of War will be an Xbox 360 exclusive that is coming out this holiday season. It was the talk of E3 and it seems to have potential to match Halo's success. Aside from this “would-be killer app,” Microsoft has some other great titles, but none that seem to be as powerful as Gears of War. These games include: Forza 2, Too Human, and Mass Effect. The later two could just as easily turn into 360's ringer, but if they don't make it in time for the holiday, Gears of War will be out there on it's own, with no backup.

I don't think Microsoft can afford another slip this holiday season. If Gears of War goes the route of Perfect Dark Zero, things aren't going to be good for the 360 and it's respective sales. If come holiday shopping time the 360 still has nothing to stand out of the crowd, consumers are going to be going elsewhere.

Halo worked wonders on the Xbox, but I don't think it can save an already sinking ship. If Microsoft does great this holiday season and can follow up with the release of Halo 3, it seems likely that Microsoft will be able to keep their lead; and their gain, over Nintendo -- and finally Sony. If things fall apart at the end of this year, Halo 3 will be forced to makeup for its shortcomings and launch as quickly as possible. As we all know, launching a game too early, or cramming for a release date, just won't cut it.

The middle of the year is always slow in gaming, and things aren't too good for the Xbox 360 at the moment, in terms of game content. But come the end of this year, things are really, REALLY going to heat up. Microsoft is working on getting two aces in its pocket, if they play them right, and at the right time, the Xbox 360 should be an excellent spot -- on top! With the way things stand now for Microsoft, slipping up is not an option. Sony, and possibly Nintendo, would easily take the lead. If Microsoft messes up this holiday season, like they did the last one… it could spell disaster.

Article By: VGcore Staff

 Xbox 360 News
 
Ninja Gaiden 2 Gameplay Trailer
Tecmo recently released a new gameplay trailer of their upcoming game Ninja Gaiden 2.
 
Halo 3 Heroic Map Pack Available December 11
After launching to incredible acclaim and fanaticism, “Halo 3” players will be able to enjoy three all new multiplayer maps on Dec. 11 as part of the Heroic Map Pack, the first in a series of download...
 
Call of Duty 4 Tops Gears of War
According to Xbox Live stats, more people played Call of Duty 4 than Gears of War this week.
 
America's Army: True Soldiers Now Available
Ubisoft and the U.S. Army announced that America's Army: True Soldiers, exclusively for the Xbox 360 is now available in retail stores nationwide at the manufacturers suggested retail price of $59.99 ...
 
Project Gotham Racing 4 Cat and Mouse Coming Soon
The Cat and Mouse mode for PGR4 will be included in the next PGR4 update in the coming weeks.
 
Project Gotham Racing 4 Tournament Modes Now Available
Microsoft recently released four new, upcoming tournament modes for Project Gotham Racing 4.
 
Call of Duty 4 Now Available
Starting today gamers can enlist in Activision's Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, a gripping modern-day action-thriller that deploys them into heart-stopping battles across the world’s most treacherous...
 
Guitar Heror III: Legends of Rock Tournament Details
To support the launch of Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, Activision, Pontiac and Hot Topic are teaming up on a national promotion giving Guitar Hero fans, ages 16 and older, the chance to show off t...
 
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Now Available
Activision today announced that Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock will officially rip it up on retail store shelves nationwide this Sunday, October 28.
 
Mountain Dew Game Fuel Now in Limited Edition Aluminum Bottle
Mountain Dew Game Fuel is now available for a limited time in limited edition aluminum bottles.
 
Hot Games: Halo 3 | Super Smash Bros. Brawl | Crysis | Dead Rising | Metal Gear Solid 4
About Us | Contact Us | Staff | Join Staff | Advertise
Copyright ©2003-2015 VGcore. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Use