It is that time, the rare time in a gamer's life where the consoles are going through a transistion, and new hardware is coming out. I haven't been this excited since 2005, when I bought my Xbox 360 at launch. I still remember drooling over Perfect Dark Zero and Kameo and thinking how great the system was. Sadly Rare never kept the games flowing, I really hope they'll be more involved in the Xbox One life. But, when the 360 came out it really paved the way for stuff we take for granted today, so it's time to pay respect!
#5 The Home Button: Every controller that came out with a system or handheld now has this button. A simple button that brings up a guide or can take you to the home dashboard. Seems like a simple thing, and just something we take for granted now. I remember holding the 360 controller weeks before the system came out and wondering if I'd ever use that button. Little did I know that how essential it would be, to check on friends, achievements and browse back to the dashboard. Still seen today.
#4 Xbox Live Arcade - Yes when this first debuted it was nothing but glorified arcade ports, but it quickly evolved into something truely special. You have to remember this was even before Steam had any sort of foothold in this market and was a hardcore PC store instead of a name any gamer knows. Yes, Steam did take the XBLA concept to a whole new level. But XBLA let game developers make smaller, cheaper and more risky games to give to us gamers. Just think of all the amazing digital games we take for granted today, that wouldn't be around without this. I'm positive Sony and Nintendo borrowed this great idea, and why wouldn't they? It's an amazing outlet for not only classics, but for making new great games. Xbox One is going to kill off the "Arcade" subtitle, but digital is the way of the future, and Microsoft seen that 8 years ago.
#3 Custom Soundtracks - Something Sony would never implement for many years, the awesome ability to either stream or rip music onto your HDD and play it while you're enjoying a game. I can't even fathom the amount of times I rocked out to Metallica and other bands while I play racing games and other games where sound isn't as important. They also took it a step further and let you stream media (pictures, movies, TV) from your computer onto your TV. This might sound like common place now, but you have to appreciate how forward thinking it was.
#2 Party Chat - Another thing that Sony didn't get worked out for quite awhile, was the nice ability to have a group chat while killing noobs in your favourite shooter. There's nothing quite like you and your friends laughing as you either get a kill or mess up and cost your team the match. Not even party chat, but even talking to random people was something so great at the launch and really brought a new element into multiplayer gaming. Xbox had a headset included in every console, something Sony has yet to do.
#1 Achievements - Whoever thought of this deserves my biggest thanks. I love these things. When the 360 first came out I didn't pay much attention to them, it wasn't until maybe 2008 that I really got into trying to actually achieve crazy acts in games for that glorious pop up. Sites are dedicated to it, and there's many gamers who spend hours trying to 100% a game. I think this really gave games a great boost and really helped them have a longer life and more reason to go back and replay, or do stuff you'd never thought you'd like. Yes, there's some bad examples out there, but achievements are an amazing addition to our great hobby. Sony quickly followed suit and made their own version and I'm very happy to see that my gamerscore comes with me when I hook up my Xbox One.
I'm not a MS fanboy. I just thought I'd make a fun list to really show that the 360 was a great console. I enjoyed great games on all 3 consoles this generation, and I can't wait to start the next generation on November 22nd!