Ten years ago Microsoft unveiled the Xbox One to the world, its third console after the computer giant decided to muscle in on the console race. Stepping on stage was then head of Xbox Don Mattrick to introduce and reveal the new console. But what would unfold over the next hour has gone down in video game history as a notorious spectacle in how to alienate your fanbase in one single presentation.
Held at the Xbox Campus in Redmond, Washington the hour-long showing focused on the console’s media capabilities, with Mattrick choosing to highlight the Xbox One’s TV features, Snap mode, and the new Kinect. Fans, rightfully, wondered where the games had gone, with a gameplay trailer not appearing even halfway through the presentation. It would prove a disastrous demonstration as Xbox seemed to forget its dedicated audience, a fanbase that adored shooters like Halo and Gears of War. Microsoft had somehow decided to heavily focus on the new console’s all-media features instead.
Over on the popular XboxSeriesX subreddit, Xbox fans have been discussing this doomed reveal with the hindset of a decade as the anniversary of the announcement passed. It seems folks also remember the infamous Q&A afterwards as viewers were left confused and media grilled the Xbox boss on the console’s internet requirements. One interview was with our man Geoff Keighley, of The Game Awards fame (which started a year later in 2014), with Mattrick basically saying those who didn’t like the internet requirements of the Xbox One to just go ahead and stick with the Xbox 360. The interview, suffice to say, didn’t go down well.
10 years ago today the Xbox One was revealed
by u/The_Iceman2288 in XboxSeriesX
Gamers certainly haven’t forgotten. “Remember guys if you don’t have Internet we have a product for you,” paraphrased a sardonic comment in the above thread. “It’s called Xbox 360.” The comment drew more than a thousand upvotes. And others eagerly leapt on it. “Yo he is a legend for that,” came another upvoted reply. “The smugness and disrespect in that answer was wild. [I don’t know] how he wasn’t fired immediately.”
Before then, Microsoft had been doing well and gaining ground on its fierce rival, the PlayStation. The Xbox 360, with its innovative Xbox Live features, a stable of well received exclusives, as well as third-party games that seemed to run better on the console than the PlayStation 3, had attracted enough consumers for it to be easily one of the most successful generations for Xbox. “The worst moment in Xbox history,” came another comment about the reveal. “Single-handedly destroyed all the good will they built up over the 360 generation.”
It’ll be a lesson for console makers, hopefully, and the Xbox One, unfortunately, seemed to never get that much momentum, losing badly to the PS4 during a generation that Phil Spencer recently suggested was a pivotal one, since gaming libraries started to emigrate to online only. But still, it’s good to look back for a moment to witness history in the making.
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