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Commonwealth Games 2002

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Thursday, 15 November, 2001, 10:50 GMT
Xbox: Your views
The Xbox looks and feels like a serious piece of hardware
Xbox joins the battle of the consoles
Microsoft launch their first games console, the Xbox, in the US on 15 November.

The console will come up against Sony's PlayStation 2 (already available) and Nintendo's GameCube (to be launched in the US next week) in the battle to take over the games market.

"Developers have been able to get to grips with the Xbox technology quickly and the first generation of releases are as good as the current crop of PS2 games," says BBC News Online's Darren Waters.

But what do our American readers think?

Is it better than PlayStation 2? Is it worth the money?


WOW! I've been playing this sytem non-stop since yesterday. Got to go now and eat food. Halo rocks! There is no other shooting game like this. Also, Dead or Alive 3 blows away Mortal Kombat and Tekken. Havne't tried Project Gotham Racing, but my friend has it and loves it, and I'm going to swap with him for a few days. I love this machine. There goes my job. Thank you Bill Gates!
Tom Ridge, USA

I've just played the X-Box at their stand at Comdex. I only got to play Gotham Racing but I can definitively say that it is a mere shadow of Gran Turismo 3 on the PS2. If this is any reflection on the rest of the games then Nintendo and Sony will be very smug at the moment. The market of serious gamers that MS need to capture will know that they can get more bang for less buck elsewhere.
Conal Loughrey, USA

Let's face it, the Xbox is destined for third place. For just the name Nintendo, Gamecube will out do Xbox in sales and in games this holiday season; not to mention next year when Mario, Zelda, Star Fox, And Samus debut for their next generation games. We're all already getting goosebumps. Games like Metal Gear Solid 2 and Jak and Dexter are going to sell thousnads for the PS2. There is just no room for the striped down Microsoft PC.
Joshua Zachariah, USA

The Xbox rules! Not only is it the present of Console gaming but also the future. Its all very well saying that the Gamecube has resident evil and ps2 has GT3, but the XBOX won't rely on old games to take the gaming experience into the future!

I have played Gotham racing and Halo extensively and I must say they are fantasctic! Yes, there is room for improvment but remember these are the first games shipped for the XBOX; I don't believe that GT2 was released with the playstation and comparatively GT's graphics were not that great!!

Microsoft has a history of providing absolutly excellent development tools, therefore game development for the xbox is only just starting! with Nvidia's chipset and the fastest processing chip on the market (in a console)- hey I'm not surprised Sony are worried and have considered ramping up of the develoment of the PS3!! Yes sony you had better be scared, the XBOX is the best console out on the market, and we have only seen the beginning of what it can do...
Gavin, UK

The weight for me is an added bonus as it means my husband's friends are unlikely to bring them along to parties

Tessa White, US
Just got mine. man, what a platform... the realism in some of these games is unreal, as is the vibration effects in the control... do I even have to mention the sound?! full 5.1 surround. nice. VERY nice.
Chrishar, usa

XBox is hard to develop for, GameCube is user friendly. Last gen PS was easier to develope for than the 64. It, only depends on how easy it is to develop for. And most people are going to realize that it is a computer in a smaller form. So if you want a computer, get Boxed. If you want a gaming system, get Cubed.
Ben, USA

I disagree with the points made by Alfred and Derek. Whilst the Xbox may be reminiscent of an 80s hi-fi, at least it will blend into my decor unlike the garish purple thing. The weight for me is an added bonus as it means my husband's friends are unlikely to bring them along to parties! Go Microsoft!
Tessa White, USA

The graphics on the Xbox kick the ass of the PS2 into distant orbit. For proof just compare NFL Fever for the Xbox v Madden for the PS2 and then go and eat your sorry words, you PS2 adoring idiots.
David Hodgson, USA

Cool name, Cool look, bad price, bad game selection. Xbox, nice try but I will stick to my PS2 and PC games.
Whiteside, Canada

I'm disgusted that so many people have doomed the Xbox to failure because of their feelings for Microsoft. Hearing people say that the Xbox isn't more powerful than a PS2 is reminiscent of Macintosh users claiming that their G3-500s were just as powerful as P3-1000s. The graphics are glorious, and graphics DO matter. If only the games mattered, like so many people here have said, then why isn't the original Nintendo still selling like mad?

The first generation of games written for the Xbox are already much more attractive than the current crop of PS2 games. The quality of the games is easily as high as the original crop of PS2 games too. Oddworld - Munch's Oddesey is fascinating. Halo, of course, has no comparison on any other gaming console. I think the naysayers of the Xbox are actually complaining that there won't be the SAME high quality games that they're used to.

After living with an Xbox for several days I can say that using it is a much more enjoyable experience than using a PS2. The PS2 locks up constantly. The Xbox has run smoothly, with higher quality graphics, a higher quality feel (the controller is worth its weight in gold), and much better sound than any previous console.
John, USA

I got the Xbox, and after playing it for a while wasn't all that impressed. There are a ton of new PS2 games out now that are far better than anything X-Box has to offer, so I returned the X-Box for a full refund.
Gary Koltookian, USA

Just waiting for the first blue or "Green" screen of death from Xbox. Tried Xbox...not bad..didn't like the games much.. NC and P2 (and upcoming P3!) got the games and the play. Xbox games will be out for my computer anyway, I don't need another "mini" computer just to play games on when I already got a REAL one. Bigger isn't always bigger, after all.. an Athlon Chip at 600mhz Slower STILL beats an intel p4 in most benchmarks, ie it's hard work and not big money that make a system and Nintendo I feel is really going to be working hard instead of saying "No worries boys..M$ says we can try again next year or the year after that if we don't win this one...etc..etc..etc"
Jim Johnson (JJ), U.S.A

Microsoft should be losing some money finally. Afterall their joy stick and mouse are pretty bad quality and this one cheaply built.
Yogin Nero, US

I preordered a Gamecube, and have been unimpressed. The graphics are smooth, but so far gameplay has been unexciting. If Microsoft release some of their fine titles for the Xbox (eg. Flight Sim) it will certainly be the superior choice!
Abdul Azim, USA

XBox, while having a fraction of a blink faster CPU is certainly not overwhelmingly more powerful than the GameCube. But the real issue is notpower as MS would have you believe, it is games that sell systems. Now that the Resident Evil series is exclusive to GameCube and with the great track record Nintendo has, by the end of the console war if Nintendo hasn't dominated then it will be very close. XBox has no initial appeal except maybe HALO which turns out to be not much better than Tribes 2.
Jeremy Webb, USA

I just came back from the US where I had a chance to play with the Xbox. I already have a Playstation 2 and I have to say that the Xbox controller is nasty, feels lower quality than the PS2 and the button/joysticks are badly placed. More to the point, the graphics did not impress me. It certainly doesn't feel like it is twice as quick as the PS2 in the same way that a 2Ghz P4 is not quicker than a 1.4Ghz Athlon. Worst of all the gameplay was less smooth than the PS2 and had a tendancy to stutter. I understand that it is early days but it is unlikely to gain many friends in its current form. Glad I bought the PS2!
Shane Sturrock, UK

Having played the XBox over here it is clearly a superior gaming experience, the sound is stunning and the laying and tracing code Microsoft have come up with is stunning. Baring in mind that this is the first entry into this market for MS it is a really good, extraordinarily powerful product that with time will prove it's ability to move the quality of in-game play as close to real video as possible. The extra power means it will be able to stay current far longer than the PS2 or the Game Cube.
Andy Norris, USA

This is an awesome level of graphics. It is the most advanced on the market - however it remains to be seen if any better games come out in the future.
Chris Francis, USA

Here in Canada they want $599, 200 more then GameCube. I have tried the Xbox and is the same as playing a game on by PC. the Xbox is a money pit.
Frank, Canada

The Xbox may be powerful but a system is only as good as the games. I think Nintendo will be a bigger contender than before. It finally has disposed of the cartridge format and gone to mini disc. Also there are more games for mature audiences than the mostly g -rated games for n64 and that Game Boy advance has outsold PS2 in terms of fastest selling new item.
Neil Patil, usa

I agree with SG, in that the GameCube is worth waiting a few more days for. The Xbox is known to be difficult to develop for, and with studios like Rare and Nintendo's in house developer, there is no doubt that Nintendo will have the edge in quality software, if not quantity. That Microsoft feels it needs to spend $500M US on promotion indicates that this console will not be able to compete based on merit alone.
Sean Crutcher, Canada

Sean Crutcher obviously knows nothing about games development. The X-Box might be a monstrous black doorstop but it is fairly straight-forward to develop for.
Gareth Thomas, UK

To be fair, no-one thought Sony was a games maker 7 years ago. They went up against established oposition, and thrashed them into submission - despite not having a "proven track record". With Microsoft's money behind it, Xbox stands a very good chance of making an impression on the market.

The PS2 is fundamentally difficult to develop games for, and that is what will sell any console - look at the number of titles that actually made it out for launch of PS2, compared to how many are already available for Xbox! The levels of support Xbox is receiving from developers is what will make the console swim.

It is obvious which machine is superior (XBox... I know I have to spell this out for some of you)

Andrew, US
The comments about Microsoft's games (the questionable track record)is ignorant at best - many of the worlds best selling games are made by Microsoft, and all are delivered at very high quality levels. Just look at Flight Sim, Train Sim, Age of Empires, Halo... the list goes on.

MS might have a dodgy image, but if they can overcome that they stand every chance of winning this 3 horse race, especially considering the graphical horsepower of the beast.

It galls me to say it, but best of luck to Microsoft!
Steve, UK

Why would anyone purchase an XBOX? Two words: BAD GAMES.
Dave, US

You are all insane. Yes it's bigger than a Dreamcast, but its still a lot smaller than a VCR. It is heavy, but what difference does that make? The performance and graphics BLOW AWAY the PS2. Seriously. Not all XBox games have taken full advantage of the power (ie Tony Hawk 2X) but for games that do (Halo, DOA3) it is obvious which machine is superior (XBox... I know I have to spell this out for some of you).
Andrew, US

First, some news. Xbox has just launched in the US. Barely 5-10 folks showed up to pick up his/her Xbox at individual stores. (Nothing like the PS2 launch).

As for which console will win the hearts, minds, and money of gamers, Xbox will have a hard time just to get people interested. With the GameCube launch in 3 days at $199 and more impressive titles, people are going to choose Nintendo over Microsoft. Still, Xbox will stick around as long as Bill Gates's willing.
Henry, USA

I was able to test a XBOX some weeks ago. It is impressive but not enough to make me part with my PS2.
Stefan, USA

The Xbox is powerful. There seems to be no doubt about that and it comes with some great extra features for those that want them, but it is not the second coming of videogames. Don't be fooled by announced specs. The Xbox will not be pushing 100 million polygons per second in any game. The PlayStation could push more polygons than the N64, but did you notice that whenever a game was on both of those systems, the N64 version always looked better? Microsoft has to prove to me, a hard-core gamer, that the Xbox will really be offering me anything that I can't get anywhere else.
Jarrad, USA

Realistically it is competing against the GameCube since the PS2 is really already established. A simple comparison I believe shows the Xbox is simply outclassed. The GameCube is 100 dollars cheaper, looks very attractive and has automatic hits with characters such as Mario, Link( Zelda ) and Samus( Metroid ) not to mention Phantasy Star. Last but not least we can not forget about the GameBoy Advance tie in. Lets be real - MS does not have a prayer in the long term.
Shafik Yaghmour, US

Well, Sony is coming up with PS3 now in a short while and guess what ? PS3 will play PS2 games! Now, how many hardcore gamers will trade all they've got for PS2 just to switch to that "gree-and-black 16 pound heavy green-screen-o-death" generating box ? Now way! Rendering on this box may be good, but guess what? PS3 will blow M$ "X-box" out of water. Just a little bit too late, Mr.Gates, you lose!
Alex, USA

From the hardware specs it is easy to fool people that is has a faster processor than the PS2. In reallity it is so rediculous. The truth is that Graphics processing are large number/floating point intensive and the 128 bit chip in PS2 will beat this 32bit 750 Mhz Intel chip anyday. Basically it is like PS2(128x350) > XBox(750x32). And that is very well proved by the currently available games as well. Besides why do I need another mini PC when I have a big one already. Good try though :) Microsoft.
Manish M, Canada

Sony has the best sports games and Nintendo has the best children/adventure games. Microsoft has neither of these qualities. Sony ps2 let's you play your old ps1 games on the ps2. Sony and Nintendo should remain industry leaders.
steve, usa

The Xbox, not only looks nasty, but also sounds it

Chris, US
I'm looking forward to the Xbox. I think Mr Gates knows what he is doing, the fact that he is the richest man alive makes that self-evident. Plus the Xbox will be good for competition, the Japanese will finally have an overseas rival in the game console market. The fact that its made by a US company just makes me prefer it more over its foreign counterparts, even if the parts for it are made in Taiwan.
James, USA

Now, I'm all good with Microsoft trying to get into the gaming world. Why? Because they have the right to do that. But if your going to do it, at least do it right. The Xbox, not only looks nasty, but also sounds it. (Not literally) The damn thing isn't upgradable, unlike a PS2, and a GC which is. And a major factor other than this is the games! The graphics on this monster may be awesome, but do we really want to buy a PC like piece of equipment just to look at the graphics, which mind you aen't better than a PS2 or a GC with the proper programming. I don't want to buy a $300 box just to say that my thing has better graphics than yours. I want to play! That is why it is called gaming, not graphicing.
Chris, USA

Let's not forget that SONY had no experience in games consoles when they released the Playstation. Many people believed that SEGA would win that war. How wrong they were. The Xbox deserves a chance. If it is good enough it will sell. Simple as that.
Glenn Harrall, Canada

The X-Box is a good machine, it can turn out impressive graphics and it will have some good games, however most of these games will also be available for the PC. Those of us who already have a PC really need not spend another $300 on hardware when we already have it in the form of a PC.
Mike, USA

The Xbox uses the same layering techniques as the PS2, however, its superiority lies in Microsoft's rendering functions and programming code, which makes it better than anything else on the market. Microsoft do it again!
Nick Punj, UK

I won't be getting an XBox. At least, not yet. One word: HALO. If I do get an XBox, HALO will be the reason. I might get Unreal Championship, but since I already own Unreal Tournament on PC I don't really see the point of getting what is merely an upgraded version of the same game. The XBox is a good high-spec console, but I think that Micro$oft are asking too much on the initial price.
Simon, UK

MS will have to go along way to sway me into buying an Xbox. If it is based loosely on the contents of a good PC then showing me a couple of demos of flashy games will not, at first, take away the dread that the console will just become another platform to play elaborate strategy games. Games consoles should be just that, for adrenaline rushing, "pick up and put down" games. The PS2 rules this market at present and long may it continue!
Mattock, England

I think that the Xbox will fail because the PS2 has sold over 20 million units. By the time Xbox is released in the Uk, the PS2 will have sold over twice as many units as the Xbox, so the battle will be won eventually by the PS2.
Akream, UK

Apart from Halo, none of the initial games really excite me, so I'll probably wait till the first price drop, or another 2 or 3 good games come out.
Mike, USA

History tells us that the most powerful machine never comes up ont top. I can't ever see Gamecube or even Xbox reaching the sales of Playstation 2. 20 million machines is a long way to go and that catching up will be even harder in Europe where we have to wait untill next year for Xbox and GC. personally I have already pre ordered both Import machines. Europe is always being ignored and I can't wait that long.
Martin Chima, UK

I reckon the PS2 is far better. I pre-ordered an XBox but when I got it I was disappointed. Maybe the games will get better as it develops though.
Bonstio, America

Being an old man now (62), I remember when things were better bigger! However, the size and weight of this monstrosity is outrageous. And where did the idea that this black box of potential failure is twice as powerful as the PS2 come from? Ridiculous!

Microsoft have spent hundreds of millions of Mr Gates's money to try and convince the general public to buy this overweight PC in a box (despite what Microsoft say, that is what it is!) Obviously the foolish will be fooled but somehow I feel that Microsoft will have their tail between their legs before long.
Alfred Morton, UK

The Xbox is a huge black monstrosity, born of Bill Gates's misconceived notion that the future of interactive entertainment has to weigh 16 pounds and look like a 1980s Hi-fi.

The Microsoft corporation should learn from Nintendo, and at least make the thing purple.
Derek, USA

I feel that the Xbox will not win the console war. PS2 has already sold millions and people are happy with their products. It will be similar to PCs and people are afraid to try something new. They feel comfortable with Sony and will stay with them. Keep to making operating systems, Microsoft, and leave the gaming to the pros.
James Nicholson, USA

I'll be waiting for the Nintendo GameCube. All Nintendo consoles are excellent, as is the quality of the games. Microsoft, on the other hand, has no concerns about proper testing, which is essential in producing the quality of games that Nintendo do.

In this economic climate I'd be surprised if MS convince many people to fork out $300 for the Xbox. It's an unproven console from a company with no track record in console hardware manufacture and a record in games publishing that's questionable at best. It makes you wonder if their executives have ever heard of the Atari Jaguar of the 3DO!
Sar, UK

When a 2GHz PC with 64Mb Geforce card is available for 899 I see no sensible usage for a glorified Atari console.
Phil White, UK

I hear time and time again about how Microsoft are unproven in the console market and how they have no experience ! Well, neither did Sony before the playstation and they seemed to do alright!

People should stop talking about specifications and polygons and see if the games are any good,that is what its about isnt it ? games ?
Edd,H, England

Microsoft's new machine is destined either for glory or complete failure. There will be no in-between. It certainly looks to be a powerful machine, and easy to program for. But the problem is the games. The games really determine the success of a console, not the specs of the console. Because of SONY's success with the original Playstation, it has quite a few strong relationships with game giants such as Konami. Time will tell. So far, the only game that is worth out time is HALO. And once everyone jumps into multiplayer games online, we will have to see how Microsoft will handle it.
Lev Nakhshunov, USA

Why are some people talking about how heavy the Xbox is? Don't they realise you don't have to sit it on your lap when you use it?
Lewis Henderson, UK

Mannish from Canada, get your facts right! The Pentium 3 is not a 32 bit processor, it has internal paths that are 256 bits wide, and has a 64 bit external bus. The GeForce3 chispet used for the graphics engine on the XBox also has a 256 bit data path. I very much doubt that the Emotion Engine in the PS2 has this sort of bandwidth available to it (and yes I do own one).

To all those people who refuse to consider the XBox because it is produced by Microsoft - grow up guys! I bet you all use Linux on your PCs as well.

Will I get an Xbox? Well, I'll just have to have a look at one when they are available here and then make a decision on what I have seen, not what I have heard!
Andy, England

Does anyone remember Altered Beast? It was a dire game that was packaged and released with the Sega Megadrive when it first came out. Yet, even though it was so bad, the console still sold well, mainly because it was "The most powerful machine available" and would eventually have some great games to play.

Having read through the comments above, there are some wise people suggesting that perhaps we should hold off commenting on the console at least until some more games are released. I agree with this. The main reasoning behind my view is that if you compare games that were available when the PS and PS2 were first released, to the ones that have been released recently, graphics quality, gameplay and features have all been increased exponentially. So, is it not possible that the Xbox could have the same thing happen? Comparing the graphics quality now, most people agree that the Xbox is superior to the PS2. Just imagine how it will look in 6-12 months time!
Mark, UK

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