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One of the more in-depth reviews for the Xbox One comes from Adam Sessler from Revision3 Games. The review is a lengthy 15 minutes and covers a lot of the important aspects of the console that you might be considering when it's time to take the plunge and buy a new console this holiday season.
Putting all Doritocratic biases aside, Adam Sessler hunkers down and reviews the Xbox One with unhinged objectivity. It's a refreshing bit of non-nonsense and avoids any jabs that could inadvertently incite a flame-war in the comment section. In other words: I wouldn't be caught dead producing a review like that.
Nevertheless, Sessler's review runs absolute circles around some of the competing reviews, especially ABC News Review of the Xbox One, which, well... I'll just let you check that out for yourself *cough*Mountain Dew ad money well spent*cough*.
The thing is, the Xbox One's media hub center receives quite a bit of praise and “snapping” has meme-worthiness written all over it. I almost can't wait to see what more nefarious-minded gamers will come up with using the snap features.
While the Xbox receives a lot of high points and notes for being able to switch efficiently and conveniently between apps, games, movies, sports and TV, there are some hiccups with using the Kinect and the voice commands. You'll need a nice, clear, confident voice to get the Kinect doing anything, and that means you can't have a mouth full of Doritos trying to snap through movies, otherwise while you're trying to impress your new girlfriend – who has a weird fixation with manly neckbeards – she might be turned off when you're trying to say “Kinect, show Shogun” and you end up saying “Kinect, show Showgirls” and you'll end up all alone for the night... with Doritos, Mountain Dew and a box of Kleenex.
The voice command issue isn't limited to the gravely-voiced General of gaming reviews, Engadget rolled out fair criticism just as the barely-out-of-puberty Eric Limer from Gizmodo, also rolled out an exceptionally informative review for casuals and cores alike (with more praise than repugnance) noting...
So if your gaming zone is reasonably quiet, you are in for an almost Star Trek experience. But if you've got roommates, or kids, or dogs, or whatever, you're probably going to have a lot of "everybody be quiet while I talk to the TV" moments, which really ruins the magic. That's a shame, because it is magic.
Magic, you say? Well, that's assuming you like magic.
And here's where things break down between potential buyers: Are you a core gamer who wants a bigger, badder, better Xbox 360? Well, you're in for minor disappointment because the Xbox One is definitely bigger but not necessarily badder. The system is coming in behind the tech curve in a bad way and developers will have to get inventive to make the most out of the Xbox One for the long haul. Are you a casual gamer who enjoys watching TV on your TV? Well the Xbox One seems to be made for you. It offers a lot of the same things you enjoyed from the Xbox 360 but streamlined for people who aren't necessarily core gamers. There's a lot of “all-in-one” functionality but it's something you have to have to want.
The debate raging right now is that the Xbox One is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist for gamers (i.e., combining an entertainment hub in with a home game console) while others are saying this is the righteous path to innovation (i.e., bridging living room entertainment together through a single device). As a game console it leaves a lot to be desired on the spec front. However, as a piece of media technology, the Xbox One teeters on going either way, depending on the audience it picks up.