Wednesday, June 12, 2013


My obsession for books is extremely clear to anyone who knows me. I eat, sleep and breathe books. I don't leave the house without a book. Look a little further than the big towering piles of books in my humble abode and you will find a small shrine to gaming. A deceased Playstation 2 (RIP 2004-2010), a shiny Playstation 3, controllers and small stacks of games and sundry deceased GameBoys. I even still have my original Nintendo, complete with game cartridges and Duck Hunt gun! I love video games. I grew up getting my ass handed to me in Mario by my father and having to go to the hospital for an injury sustained while playing Duck Hunt (protip: that Duck Hunt gun hurts, especially when welded by your sore loser sister). My fondest childhood memories involve sneaking around in the dark of night to either read with a flashlight under the covers or gather up the courage to descend into the dark basement to play Zelda after everyone had gone to bed.

I have strategies for gaming; from utilizing psychological warfare in fighting games (pick the creepiest character possible) to being almost obsessed with not leaving a room in a FPS without checking every single corner, drawer, closet or dead body for swag. There's something tactile about a video game that you don't get in a book. You also can't scream obscenities at a book and feel satisfied, like you can while failing a level in God of War for the thirteenth time. Back in the "day" (the 80s), games were little more than pixels and basic story lines and yet still you could feel Mario's pain when he learned that, yet again, his princess was in another castle. Now games and their systems are much more complex... and therein lies the problem. Enter Microsoft and the Xbox One.

Microsoft has been making questionable decisions for a few months now. First it was the horrific implementation of Windows 8 ("hey guys, let's put a touchscreen UI on a desktop! That'll work!") and now we have the latest XBox, the XBox One (or XBone as the internets are calling it). E3 has come and nearly gone and, well, it doesn't look good.

The latest XBox is a mish-mosh of nonsensical draconian rules. There is a 24 hour online check in requirement. Your games must phone home once a day if you want to play them. There's concern over used games and rentals. There's the all-seeing, NSA-bait Kinect that is required if you wish to use their system. It's a travesty and Microsoft can't stop shooting themselves in the foot. Don't have a steady internet connection? You can always get an XBox 360! Someone in their marketing division actually said that. "Let them eat cake!" Microsoft is proclaiming. (Never mind that the cake is, and has always been, a lie). The system will cost $499 when it comes out in November.

The internet isn't pleased.

In rides Sony, a top a unicorn and prepared to be victorious in battle. Their E3 announcement was a few hours after Microsoft's and it couldn't have been more different. No online connection required. Boom! No restrictions on used/loaned games! Boom! Price point, $399. Boom. Mic drop. Done.

The internet exploded with glee as it watched Sony knock the shit out of Microsoft and mock them at the same time. Time will tell how this latest console war shakes out, but for now Sony has drawn first blood.

Will you be picking up an XBone or a PS4 on launch day? Let me know in the comments!

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  1. Definitely a PS4 (but not on launch day, I'll wait a few month, in hope for a price drop).

    Not to forget one other thing about XBox: if you want to access services like Netflix or Hulu, you need a Gold membership. Yes, you need to pay two subscription fees for the same service. That's just ridiculous!

  2. PS4. Though probably not on launch day, the bills still need to be paid after all. But once some spare cash has been squared away, you betcha!

  3. And don't forget they have refused to comment on what happens if you DARE to sell you XBox One. Speculation is that they will require a "change of owner" fee at the very least. (Me thinks they are running out of feet to shoot.)

    1. PS4, likley used, and likely from a store that XBone may have put out of business with there crazed scheme.