That’s right, an Xbox One! I’m as surprised as you are. At the end of the last console generation, I was pretty sure I’d be a PC-only gamer for a good long while. I definitely have enough games in my Steam library to keep me busy until the heat death of the universe.
When I sold it for about $50, I hadn’t powered on my Xbox 360 for at least a year. My PS3 had transitioned to being a box for Netflix and blu-rays. I’d resolved to hold out for as long as possible before maybe picking up a PS4. After all, I’m obsessed with the Souls games and I knew Bloodborne would be irresistible. Sure enough, when Anthony had an extra PS4 thanks to a prize giveaway, I decided to buy it, thinking that would be it for me and the current generation.
So, what changed? What made me decide to drop several hundred dollars on an Xbox One less than a year later? The short answer is that I’m a sucker for a deal and I’m ready to cut the cable cord (again).
Although it helped that Rise of the Tomb Raider was an Xbox One exclusive for a few short months, the biggest draw for me was the potential of the Xbox One as a media center and DVR. My TiVo is getting a bit long in the tooth, and I seriously considered upgrading to a Bolt when they were first announced.
I spend a lot of money on TV these days, and the One has the potential to save me a decent amount because it doesn’t require a monthly fee to use. That could be a killer feature if it actually arrives this year. Even when I was using a Mac Mini and a TV tuner as my DVR, I was paying for TV listings.
So, when Microsoft started offering Xbox One bundles that included a second game of your choice for free, that tipped the scales for me. I picked up Fallout 4 and Rise of the Tomb Raider and figured I’d be fine waiting a few months for the DVR to arrive.
Funny thing is, it turns out that the One is already a fantastic media center, and it easily took a place of honor at the center of my TV setup. Switching from live TV to an app is almost instantaneous. The video does occasionally stutter if I leave a game running in the background, but it isn’t a huge hassle to exit games after I’m done playing. That also feels like the sort of thing they might improve over time.
The great thing is that the One has a huge selection of entertainment apps available, and I think some of them actually have better interfaces than their PS3 versions. Amazon and Netflix both feel like they have a bit more polish.
I’ve also really enjoyed what I’ve played of Fallout 4 so far. I haven’t experienced any of the widely reported frame drops. I’ve also spent so much more time with Xbox controllers because of the 360 and the PC that they feel more natural in my hands. I’ve barely scratched the surface of Tomb Raider because Fallout keeps dragging me back in, but I look forward to playing more soon.
Ultimately, I think I’ll buy AAA games on one of my consoles and indie games on the PC. I’m not sure which system I’ll favor for cross-platform releases, however. Only time can tell.
Am I the only one who made an unexpected console purchase, or are there others of us out there? Sound off in the comments and tell us your sorry tale!