With the Electronic Entertainment Expo 2010 fast approaching, much speculation is taking place. This is perhaps the most joyous time of the year on a gamer’s calendar as the uncertainty builds to the ultimate payoff. That being said, what does Microsoft need do to make a positive impression this year?
5. Be concise about the release schedule for the remainder of 2010. Gamers worldwide have been treated to what could possibly be the strongest first half of any calendar year up and to this point. There has been such a plethora of quality titles brought to market so far in 2010 that without defining what is yet to come, many people will be playing catch-up for some time to come. If you cannot give us dates, at least offer small release windows. We need more than just a sizzle reel.
4. Reinvent the Dashboard. Again. Let’s be frank, here- the Xbox360 Dashboard can be a fairly intimidating experience at first(to be fair, it can also become ultra convenient once familiar). A large focus of the motion control arms race we find ourselves witnessing at the moment is depending on not turning anyone off or away just by powering on the machine. Simplicity is sometimes the best approach- and for God’s sake, eliminate the advertisements and ad-like components. No one wants to pay for anything that could even barely be conceived as commercials.
3. Project Natal(or Wave) MUST be under the rumored $150 USD price tag. The sexiest tech to hit console gaming in years, Project Natal is an unquantified question mark when discussing retail price and value. This rumor probably had teeth at some time(I believe it to have been $150 before the onboard CPU was yanked), but it is inadvisable at this juncture. Forget adding in value when bundled with a console- give all players the same common ground to allow the hardware to speak for itself.
2. The console re-invigoration SKU must be attractive to hardcore and casual alike. What if the “NextBox360” doesn’t turn out to be what everyone is assuming that it is? What if this reinvention is a hybrid-audience machine instead of comparable to the PS3 Slim? Think about it- 32GB internal, inaccessible storage with a front-loading disc-slot. Intentions behind opening up USB support on the platform would finally make perfect sense.
1. Show more than expanded audience applications for motion control. The biggest item is sometimes the no-brainer. E3 is a show for the enthusiast press and the gaming enthusiasts who listen to or read them. Gamers want to remain tied to their conventional input devices, but giving them new ways in which to perform menial gaming tasks could go a long way in acceptance(not to mention the pacing of most software titles). Don’t overdo the gimmick, just show the world that this is an experience that cannot be missed- no matter who you might be.