MS continues to charge for XBL because there's still people dumb enough to pay for it without realizing they can do it elsewhere for free. And I will agree that MS seems perfectly fine letting third party FPSes carry them along despite being the better selling "hardcore" console their own in house studios don't seem to do much these days. Never mind the obscenely embarassing amount of money they paid for Rare only to let them wither away (you forgot to mention that in your letter about how Master Cheif basically bent Banjo over a rail then tossed him aside when he got bored). The Xbox never appealed to me to begin with so I was glad after the third one died and my husband traded it for a PS3 which actually has games I want to play.
I own your Xbox 360, and I was an original owner since you launched it back on November 21st, 2005. Well, actually I was a few days late to the party. I got stiffed on my preorder and had to hunt one down. Maybe if you gave out a few thousand less units away to people who didn't care about them in the first place, I'd have made the first allotment, but that's water under the bridge. Hey, looks like you've turned seven! Sorry, I just noticed. Happy belated birthday, 360!
Anyway, I just wanted to say that I've been a close supporter of your system for most of those seven years. I, like thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands, maybe even a million plus one gamers, were victims of the infamous red ring debacle. You handled it very well, replacing our systems for up to three years at no cost to us. My machine broke down four times, and each time you replaced it without me having to go out of pocket once. Although, you did make me use my own box on the very last replacement. I can easily forgive you for that, though.
Your release was really special to me. It was a solid release, and I had a lot of fun with King Kong, Perfect Dark Zero, and Condemned really blew my mind. Oh yeah, and there was Ridge Racer 6, of course. That game right there got me signed on for the first time as an Xbox Live member. I thought the service was great! You had a lot of cool features, and I made a lot of great friends and got to play with friends I posted with prior to me joining. When Dead or Alive 4 was released, I had even more fun playing online. It was great!
A year later, I bought a Wii and a PS3, but it was always the 360 I gravitated towards. I knew deep down that the PS3 was the stronger system and it would get a great number of better games, but I kept buying games for your system, even if a PS3 version was found to be superior. I loved my Wii, but I only went to it when I wanted a break from the traditional gaming experience. My urges were quickly sated with the Wii, and then I jumped right back in (get it? Jump In?) to the 360.
I loved your controller. It was and still is one of the most comfortable controllers I've wrapped my hands around. I love how you could swap battery packs and even use AAs if you were too cheap to buy packs, something the other guys are still screwing up with. I appreciate not having to plug my controllers in when they get low on charge, and even if I had to, your charging cord was of ample length. The controller was a large part of why I tended to buy 360 versions of multiplatform games over the PS3.
And then there were achievements! Oh, how they were fun! I remember spending countless hours doing things I'd have otherwise had no interest in doing just to raise my gamer score. I used to get so excited when I got 1000 points out of 1000 on a game. I really thought it meant something. Turns out, I was wrong. All I ended up doing was spending too much time on a game I should have put away when I could have been working on another of my many games. That's not your fault; that was all me.
But enough thanking and enough praising. I'm hear to write to you that the love is lost. The unconditional love is still there; you'll always have a place in my heart. I have been forced to remove you, though, as my primary console. The PS3 was been my gaming machine of choice for the past several months, and I thought it only fair that I should let you know. I'm sorry it took so long for me to tell you this, but I am doing it now so please forgive me.
I should have been with the PS3 from the very start, but I neglected it for the first couple of years. One day, I just looked at my collection for the 360, and then at the PS3, and I almost shed a tear seeing how paltry the former was compared to the latter. In an attempt counteract this, I began to buy multiplat versions for the PS3, only buying MS exclusives for the 360, but I have to put the blame on you, MS; this is where you failed.
It turns out I had a lot more fun with PS3 exclusives than I did with yours. Sure, there's Gears of War and Halo, but it seems that's all you have to offer me nowadays. With the PS3, I had Uncharted, and inFAMOUS, and God of War, and Resistance, and Killzone 2 and many more. And even some of the big Sony exclusives you managed to throw enough money at to bring over on the 360 couldn't tempt me back to your camp. You tried with Final Fantasy XIII, but it was much better on the PS3, and all on one disc. Even with HD compilations, nothing you had could match what Sony gave me, which was the ICO and Shadow of the Colossus collection. You'll never, ever, no matter how hard you try, put out a first party game that can match the wonder and grandeur of The Shadow of the Colossus.
Now Halo 4 is out, and I am finding myself unable to care. I need to be honest with you, Microsoft. I don't remember the last time I turned on my Xbox 360. I bet you I have some XBL friends that probably think I'm dead by now. And speaking of Xbox Live, you know why I had to quit you, right? Why are you still even charging for basic online gameplay? Sony's been doing it for free for years. Why couldn't you have adjusted your business model to be competitive by making online gaming free for Silver members and then charging for everything else? Does it still seem right to you that someone has to pay for Xbox Live and then pay again for Netflix? That's why you haven't seen a cent from me in almost a year. I'm sorry, but I just can't do it anymore.
It's not just Xbox Live and the lack of first party titles that interest me that's made me put you to the wayside. You lack focus. I will admit, I was intrigued by your Kinect. It had a lot of promise, so I ended up buying one, but the sad thing is it's still in the box. I don't have the room to accomodate it, but if I did, I doubt I'd be playing much on it. So many games have struggled too hard putting the Kinect to proper use and I just don't believe it paid off. Then, there's the whole SmartGlass crap which I'll probably have to download an update for if I ever get around to turning my 360 on again.
I remember hearing once during your last E3 conference that looking at your mobile and tablet devices while watching shows and playing games is supposed to be more immersive? I'm sorry, but it will be disconnecting. You have to divert your attention from the TV screen to your smaller screen, and then back to the TV again. It's ok to say no when some young upstart comes into a board room with a new idea if it doesn't sound good to you. Come on, you know you thought SmartGlass was stupid, too.
You started off strong, Microsoft. You really did. But you fizzled out. There's nothing left for me if I continue to stay with you. I'm happy with Sony and with the recently released Wii U, Nintendo is once again sparking a love for the company I haven't felt in years. Is there still a place for you in my future? I don't know. It depends on how well you do with your next console. I'll most likely buy your console at launch, but that's not because you've made it. I buy every console at launch, or try to at least, because I like to experience it all. Don't think if I buy your next console, it's because you and I still have something special. Sorry if that sounded harsh.
I'm just too busy with Sony and Nintendo now. They've got the PS3 and the Wii U to keep me company. Sony's even managed to keep me busy for a few months with the Vita, and Nintendo dominates my handheld time with their amazing 3DS. You on the other hand have absolutely nothing to offer in the handheld realm. I guess you don't have enough money to buy your way into that market, huh? Well, maybe that's for the best. Nintendo's unstoppable in that department, and I think even you could see the risk wouldn't pay off. You could always try, though. I'm sure you can't do worse than the Vita, but please don't view this as a challenge!
I hate writing this. I really do. I want to turn the 360 on again. I want to go out and buy Halo 4 and play it and have fun with it, do it just for one last thrill. But as they say, the thrill is gone. Maybe some day, I'll pick up that super comfortable white controller with removable battery pack again, push that big round button in the middle and see that sleek Xbox 360 logo roll its way across my screen again, but I have no idea when, and I'd rather not waste anymore of my gaming time wondering when.
So long, and thanks for all the achievements...
It's always been the lack of interesting 1st party titles which is the reason I never bothered with xbox.
welcome to the happy place. I've been a sony fangirl every since i stumbled onto a PS2 launch unit (long story) so there was never a debate on which console would be set up next to the TV. As most games are multiplatform, i never felt the itch to scratch the xbox offerings. (and Halo, it's on my mac.) As an early adopter of Plus, it's finally paying off with real results (free games, early betas & discounts). the only drawback in my PS3 world was when my trusty BC 60gig got YLOD a couple years ago and i found out (the hard way) about locked gamesaves. i imagine that xbox has the same anti-piracy (really anti consumer) features. I'm intrigued by the kinect so i might pick up a holiday bundle to try it out but i don't see it as an everyday thing like my beloved PS3. PS3 is the better box.
I cant believe i actually read the whole letter but I am very glad I did. As I read your letter I sympathized with you, because the same feelings you felt I also felt along my journey with the 360 and Microsoft. I was a fan at one point, I loved the system and the way everything worked, I had plenty fun with friends and many beautiful memories. Just like you said in your letter the feeling slowly began to dissipate. I remember I ought Halo 3 beat the campaign and played some matches with my friends, and little after that I just ceased to play it. One day I decided to buy a PS3 and that spark I had back when I first purchased my 360 was there, I was having fun again, yet this time it was on the PS3. As time went on when looking at my game collections I realized my 360 collection was being reduced more and more as time went by, because I was trading in my 360 games in order to buy more PS3 games I was thrilled about. Now looking at my 360 collection the only game I see is Forza Motorsports 3, though I never play it, I have kept it because to me its the only true racing franchise out on consoles (imo GT5 doesnt come close). When Halo 4 was released I just couldnt have cared less, even though that was my main focus on the 360. The magic is long lost, and I am sure I will not be purchasing the next generation Microsoft console. Sony has my loyalty now and they have earned it, trough the Metal Gear franchise which I love dearly and specially with their free online service along with Playstation PLUS.
Thanks for your letter, I really enjoyed it.
Yes, Sony's strategy has been working just fine: http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/11/22/sony-credit-downgraded-to-junk
because It is really outrageous to pay a fee of $5 dolars a month to use a network service and people should write letters about that, hm... and others read.
A PSN PLUS membership wich is 50$ a year gets you (i) Game Discounts 40-50% off some time (ii) Free Games and not any cheap games games like dead space 2 , infamous and little big plannet and Many Many more every years and there are lots more things you get if you PAY for it and trust me you will get satisfaction that you got more then you paid for and there are no adds for people playing for free. and voice chat , video chat , youtube has always been FREE too and there are many many more things that sony offers for free lol WHO can disagree NOW plz do tell PSN PLUS not being better then XBL ????
Reading this I just realized how much I agree with you. I had a PS2 and then switched to the 360 because the PS3 was taking ages to release in India and the good games came in very late. 360 blew me away back in the day and the red ring of death attacked within a year. It was replaced however and the new console works fine since. But now playing the same games on the PS3 and 360, i realize that the only thing making me play on my 360 is the controller. I have relatively large hands and the PS controller feels puny. But that's just about it. Xbox live is ridiculous and I think i would like to give PS4 a look before trying to stretch my loyalty to Microsoft. Gears Of War is fantastic but I want to try Uncharted and the like. I miss God Of War too. Excellent writing.
I am still a 360 gamer but am getting a PS3 for Christmas. Very excited to play all the exclusive games at bargain prices. I don't agree with the strong start you mention. I, for one, cannot forgive MS for how much they charged for that GD WiFi plug in, (100 bucks when the same thing for a PC was 30) the stupid thing that came out with no hard drive (and how much an additional hard drive used to cost), and the stupid points system for currency. Was it too difficult to just use straight up cash amounts? No, they wanted you to always have some left over. They overcharged, then proceded to nickle and dime us to death because wtf can you do with 40 points? Maybe Sony and Nintendo do that too, I'm not sure or can't remember.but I think its bullsh!t. I got very little use out of the Wii and there were only about 10 wii exclusives that I enjoyed. The newer XBOX 250 gig model with built in WiFi is what they should have released to begin with. I felt like I was punished for not just waiting for 4 years. I too sent mine in 4 times for RROD and even though they paid for it, It was still annoying to have to ship it and be without it for a week. Then they just flat out stopped updating the XBOX original games. That annoyed me too. They did do a great job at bringing PS exclusives to the 360, I will give them that. And I also still love the achievements. Some were stupid and time consuming, but most of them gave me motivation to use different weapons and added alot of unique challenges to games that I otherwise would have overlooked or not cared about. What my first choice in the next gen line up is TBD. I will be much more cautious this time around with which system I choose first and won't just automatically go with MS. That's for sure.
Despite this letter reaking of Sony fanboyism, you do have one very good argument: XBL. I let my subscription expire just recently. I am so tired to paying for online service and getting flooded with ads! The dashboard is just one large advertisement now! And not being able to use video streaming services like netflix or hbo go without a gold subscription is just wrong.
I guess I will just stick with the PC.
yeah i agree with this, its like paying for a beautiful flashy dashboard full of advertisement,
dont really see the point.
Nobody cares new ps3 fanboy, especially not microsoft they just sold 750000 consoles and watched ps all stars get #38 on the top sellers list on its opening day. It's really annoying how you write this like ms is actually going to read it or that they care in the slightest, it'll probably just get mixed in with the pile of money they just made from halo 4.
@SangheliZealotX lets see: Loves xbox,loves halo, great list of shit tastes you got there man,I bet you smell alot
we all know that MS dont give a sh... shoop, but we have the right to express what's wrong, if MS dont read it... too bad, maybe other people will, and will start thinking about it, maybe they will realize they are throwing their cash by the window, its us, the player, the customers, who have to react by simply choose another option, in this case, sony (i would say nintendo but they are on another category), not because we're are PS fanboys but because we want them to understand that its wrong to charge people to play muliplayer.
We have to stop this, otherwise they will keep coming for your pocket.
@franksmoothfat It's also wrong to have online passes, I don't here any ps3 fanboys bashing sony for that. Microsoft charges for a superior service that has cross game chat and wont go down for a month. Sony charges people to play their games online even though they all have online no one plays.
There was no online pass for Bop2 this time by the way , strange to see how they could let this moment go off there hand lol.
@SangheliZealotX As I've told others, I felt like doing some creative writing. I don't expect MS to read it or care. And I'm not a PS3 fanboy; not a fanboy of any system, since I play them all. Just not that MUCH of an MS fan (not to be confused with fanboy) right now.
@SangheliZealotX WOOW you sound liike a Fanboy too and a Pissed off one too lol
amazing how people who pay for xbox live are saying, that its ok, and dont mind to pay cause its better than psn, i guess when you are getting fu.... i mean "inserted in the as.. the nose" its hard to admitted it,
and i own a xbox, my bro have a ps3, i played multiplayer game on it, and it was just fine, and it was free,
my next generation console is gonna be... no doubt about it ... ps4!
Microsoft is always able to figure out how to do something - about a year after Apple does it.
Boy is MS lucky that Apple doesn't make a console. Or maybe it's unlucky - they have nobody to copy.
@samomluva It's not like sony copies everything. Trophies were a totally original idea that came out 2 years after the completely unrelated achievements, and it's not like sony also has ripped off halo more times than one and it's not like they just recently ripped off super smash bros and mario kart. Also the wii move, sorry I mean playstation move was such an original idea. Sony is so original. The only difference between ms ripping people off and sony ripping people off is that ms can actually make a better product than what they ripped off.
Yea like they did with Sony controller copied it and call it there original design LMAO yea right and the fan bot belife its a original design now look at nintendo they came up with there original design both TIME didnt have too look aroud or copy someone eles
@OB_Shah The xbox controller is a rip off of the dreamcast controller not the PS.
LOL welldone nice letter loved it and whats wrong with Ps3 controller compare to the 360 brick. MS coped sony controller design look at nintendo they came up with there original design which doesnt look like a Sony controller unlike MS did and you can charge your controller on a PC when your working on a PC just plug it in and charge it Simple LOL. Sony cares for its Customers alot more then othere do. and most important thing is that PSN is FREE why does MS charge you for online gaming when you paid for your game and your internet why and for what does MS charge you for, when PSN is doing the same thing for free? lol MS just rips people off there Money same reason Xbox is without wifi so you have to PAY for a wifi adapter.
@OB_Shah Well the thing is, I hate having cords attached to my controllers. Always have since the WaveBird.
Xbox Live is not what it use to be. It's a shell of its formerself and seems to serve as a display for Windows 8.
i'll summarize my experience in as much brevity as i can:
once i had a 360 and ps3. now i only have a PC.
(go ahead and call me elitist, then go and attach your PC to an HDTV, load skyrim and mod it, then come back here and well discuss more :D)
hows red dead redemption on pc?
how about GTAV?
MGS Ground Zeroes?
i got skyrim and i sucks compared to demon's souls
@Masoud03 If all I cared about was graphics, sure.
although im pretty sure you will disagree with most of what im about to say but here goes.
i want to note that most worthwhile games are already present on the PC (street fighter, demons souls ...) . for PS2 games there are emulators and Wii is practically fully supported on the PC.
what remains are a handful of exclusives that, as far as i'm concerned, can stay where they are.(heavy rain ?? GeoW ?? ill pass)
but where the real issue lies is when developers screw the PC users and that's where consoles really shine (like dragons dogma and the GTA V rumors, unfortunately) but you can play those on your xbox too :)
when you can, try a 5 button mouse with an RPG game, or better yet, an RPG/FPS hybrid. maybe you can forget about the xbox controller too :) (yeah, the extra buttons really make a difference)
@Masoud03 Well, I saw your reply but for some reason, it vanished. The thing is, I was raised on consoles, so I know what to expect from them. And I actually really enjoyed Heavy Rain and Gears of War. Having all three consoles gives me more than enough exclusives to keep me occupies, and I just feel PC isn't something I need.
@Masoud03 This is the best way to evolve in gaming imo.
welcome back to the family WHERE THE REAL GAMERS ARE
call me old fashioned but imo a console is only as good as the games it has
360 only has 4 franchises that get spammed every other year (halo/gearz/fable/forza) THATS IT SAD
sony actually has a DIVERSE GAME LIBRARY of exclusives (not found anywhere else)
from MGS4 to demon's souls, God of war, uncharted, infamous ,killzone, GT5, (i could go on for a while)
AND THEY MAKE NEW IPS (The Last of Us, Beyond, The Last Guardian)
Sony dosnt rip you off either with FREE ONLINE (no fucking ads)
OPTIONAL PS PLUS (how a subscription service should be done, games galore)
BLURAY (one disc no swapping bullshit, nothing breaks the immersion of a game like changing as disc
its 2012 we shouldnt have to by now)
imo get yourself a 360 style ps3 controller (i recommend the pro a, but theres more of em)
and dont look back
theres a reason people put the money sign in M$
You dumped Microsoft and gloated about how well you're getting along with the 2 Asians at the same time. Some nostalgia, but the reality is ol' Microsoft is too high maintenance and just ain't worth it to you.
Ah well, it just doesn't work out sometimes.
Your blog (whilst well written) says nothing at all. Good writing can never, ever cover up having nothing to say.
You didn't like some stuff. So you didn't play it or don't play it any more. You liked some other stuff. So you're playing it.
Good for you. I'm happy you found games that make you happy. Why you thought to write a blog about it is completely beyond me (I assume you also update facebook with "had lunch" type statuses).