Posts tagged Microsoft
Like most Xbox One owners I’ve been playing a good amount of Titanfall. But something I’ve noticed more and more is silence. No one is using their headsets to talk to each other. The only audio I get during the game is the crackling of the NPC commander yelling at me. This is true in every game type I’ve played, including Hardpoint, an objective based game type.
It’s just insane to me that no one uses their headset. Especially when playing games where tactics are a huge part, you have to use your mic. With a microphone included with every Xbox One and Xbox 360 there is no excuse.
I’ve noticed this trend in the last few years on Xbox. When I was started playing games on Xbox Live (Crimson Skies and then Halo 2) people wouldn’t shut up. You always knew exactly where everyone was, who was going to take the flag and who was staying behind to defend.
It actually got to the point where there was too much conversation. Sure you’d get people would singing, and there was a ton of trash talk (I produced two videos at CollegeHumor exploring just that) but those were fringe cases and overall it was better that people were talking.
There was so much talking during Xbox games that Bungie made a point to show how easy it was to mute people in Halo 3. That’s what I want to get back to. Making shooters social again. I would much rather mute a few people talking too much (or breathing heavily into their mic) than have complete silence during the game.
I first noticed the decline of conversation playing Halo Reach Multiplayer and it was very apparent in Halo 4 (ok, look I don’t play that many online multiplayer games, but Halo is a big enough series that I think it makes for an adequate sample size). Since roughly 2010 I’ve noticed a decline in talking during multiplayer games.
Now, I’m not saying we should all immediately become best friends with everyone who we play Xbox Live with. But letting your teammates know that you’re going to attack or defend goes a long way. Me and the small group of friends who play Halo together are not, by any means, great at Halo (well Justin is, but he’s an anomaly). But because we’re talking we win far more matches than we lose.
And I think everyone can agree that it’s way more fun to win a multiplayer game than to lose.
If you’d like to play Titanfall with me my Gamer Tag is Ice Jedi. But please, wear a headset.
Tom Warren from The Verge gives you a quick look at some of the new features Windows Phone 8.1.
notification action center is a huge addition. I spent 2 weeks with a Lumia 1020 last year and one of my biggest complaints was no unified place for notifications.
Yes, the two biggest features are a digital personal assistant and place notifications which have been on iOS and Android for some time. And yes, Microsoft is playing a bit of catchup, but I still like the look and feel of Windows Phone. Actually being able to get work done with it, is a little bit exciting.
Bleep Bloop - Your Best Game
I’m a few weeks late posting this, partially because I’ve been busy, partially because it was hard for me to find the right words. The video above is the final episode of Bleep Bloop.
This series means a lot to me, both as a nerd and professionally. Yes I worked on about 80 episodes of the show so I’m close to it. But even from the very start I thought of Bleep Bloop as important. Yes, the directive from Jeff was always “funny first” (after all the show aired on a comedy site), but I always felt like we were doing the community a kind of service. Even though were poking fun and prodding the industry and calling out bad games, we were also informing and speaking to a certain part of video game culture, and hopefully we expanded their horizons with our comedy video. You can see it in 8-bit Rock Band, Artsy Fartsy Games, Night Vision Goggles, Dante’s Infreno, Wii vs Kinect vs Move, iPad Games, and Uwe Boll.
As someone who follows tech and games journalism pretty closely there was really nothing else like it when I started working on the show at Episode 12 in January 2009.
Professionally, Bleep Bloop is what propelled me into a full time job at CollegeHumor. I early in my days freelancing for CollegeHumor I was brought in to shoot and edit this show. Shortly thereafter they hired me full time and I can thank CollegeHumor for seeing a producer in me and allowing me the opportunity to produce some of their highest profile content. Presently I’m a commercial / music video producer, but you can draw a straight line from freelance shooting and editing a few episodes of Bleep Bloop to where I am right now.
So please watch the final episode of a series I have a lot of love for. Oh, and you can spot me in the last one at 10:40 choosing my favorite game of all time Zombies Ate My Neighbors.
Today Microsoft released Xbox Music on iOS and Android. Man, talk about too little too late. Forget that fact that it doesn’t have offline support (even though Spotify and Rdio do (and have for years). Bringing Xbox Music to other platforms is something Microsoft should have done years ago. I wrote this in 2010:
It’s just that Microsoft has an opportunity to make software (and cash in) on every platform, not just their own, and in doing so this early in the space they’ll have created a massive foot hold for wherever the mobile computing space goes. Having Office on the iPad or an Android tablet makes the device far more appealing than it is right now.
I understand the mobile operating system game is all about what you can exclusively bring to the table. And Microsoft would argue that people who want Zune, Xbox and Office should just buy Windows Phones. That’s fine, except people aren’t switching. They’re dealing with Pages on iOS and they’ll soon be using PlayStation Suite on Android. Windows Phone doesn’t have the market share to play keep away, they should, instead, realize they can still win by creating mobile software that everyone want’s on every device that’s sold.
Happy your here, but now you have to make compelling software, something that can actually compete with Spotify and Rdio. And feel free to bring the rest of your software over as well. People will pay good money for Office.
Maybe I can be up for CEO at Microsoft.
Major Nelson unboxes the Xbox One
People are making a big deal over the included headset, as if there was a chance they wouldn’t include one. I really never thought that was going to be the case. Community and talking is the driving force behind Xbox Live, and the bundled headset is what makes that possible.