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Xbox One is a games machine first and foremost, says Activision

Xbox One is a games machine first and foremost, says Activision

Thu 23 May 2013 7:03pm GMT / 3:03pm EDT / 12:03pm PDT
HardwarePublishing

Eric Hirshberg says there's a "false divide," that hardcore gamers can enjoy other entertainment like watching TV too

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During Microsoft's unveiling of the Xbox One, games seemingly took a back seat while the company shined a spotlight on the next-gen console's enhancements for TV watching and other forms of entertainment. That's rubbed some core gamers and some members of the press the wrong way, but Activision Publishing boss Eric Hirshberg isn't concerned. He's confident that the core will flock to Xbox One to play the new Call of Duty because "it's a game machine first and foremost," he told VentureBeat.

Hirshberg believes Microsoft understands that all game consoles "have to be great game machines first." He continued, "I think that's the tip of the sword. Everyone's trying to own the living room and own the entire entertainment experience."

While Hirshberg has been "pleased" with Microsoft's approach so far, he also pointed to a "false divide" he sees when it comes to how people enjoy entertainment.

"I don't think competition for different forms of entertainment in the living room is anything new. People can watch TV in their living rooms now. People can listen to music in their living rooms now. There's a false divide that gets created in people's minds sometimes, as though hardcore gamers don't also consume other forms of entertainment and wouldn't appreciate those things being made more seamless and more integrated into a more elegant experience. I think that's all that you're seeing here. To me, as a gamer, I'm excited by it," he said

Hirshberg also seems excited by Kinect's evolution. While Activision never fully supported Kinect before, it seems that the company could be changing its tune.

"I made a passing comment that you're going to see voice integration, voice commands via Kinect, which is something that we haven't done in the past with Call of Duty. We think the improvements to Kinect really excite us because of the level of responsiveness and detail. I thought that the demo they did with the voice commands on television, the instant changing between games and music, was really compelling. You'll see more of this coming from us as we get closer to the launch," Hirshberg said.

"Obviously, we didn't reveal that element today. We just mentioned it. But we've always made sure that we don't just use new technology for novelty's sake. We always make sure that it makes the gameplay better. In this case, we think it will."

24 Comments

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
Its not the same hearing what someone has to say to you, from someone else. We need to hear this from microsft.

Posted:A year ago

#1

Morville O'Driscoll
Games Blogger & Journalist

1,508 1,282 0.9
There's a false divide that gets created in people's minds sometimes, as though hardcore gamers don't also consume other forms of entertainment
So... If this is a false divide created in people's minds, why were MS so reticent to show games? Why have they, in fact, specifically created a two-part reveal where they show first the living-room features, then the games? Obviously it's to target two different audience groups.

Posted:A year ago

#2

Christopher Bowen
Editor in Chief

405 537 1.3
Aaaaaaaaaaand here comes the spin doctoring from companies with a horse in the race.

Posted:A year ago

#3

Axel Cushing
Writer / Blogger

102 128 1.3
@Christopher
Past a certain point, you can't spin stuff enough to save your skin. Less than 48 hours after their big announcement, Microsoft has surpassed that point. Doesn't matter how many other suits at how many other companies are helping the effort, but the only thing the spin will do at this point is help them drill straight down to the center of the Earth. I have this burning need to line up everybody involved in this abortion, have Steve Ballmer sitting front row center, and recreate Tony Stark's rant from Avengers. "There is no throne, there is no scenario where you come out on top!"

Posted:A year ago

#4

Christopher Bowen
Editor in Chief

405 537 1.3
@Axel - I think the best thing Microsoft and their associates can do at this point is shut up and let the hate subside. Start spinning again once that happens, and build from a mostly fresh base. All they're doing right now is salting the earth behind them.

Posted:A year ago

#5

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
I think it started as a game machine first and that was initially it's core. But eventually they swerved to the other entertainment side a bit more. But they still haven't released it yet so only time will tell how much they emphasize the gaming parts over the other parts of the XB1.

Posted:A year ago

#6

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
from 360 to 1... how the hell did this happen....

Posted:A year ago

#7

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
@Rick Lopez--Either you aren't very bright or you haven't been paying any attention over the last three days. The "One" is short for "All-In-One", as explained several times in the press conference and all the interviews that followed. The name actually makes perfect sense based on what the Xbox One is, an all-in-one media player.

Posted:A year ago

#8

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,148 1,061 0.5
It seems (based on what I'm reading on other sites) that this was an event more for the investors than for the controller crowd and E3 will be the big surprise gaming reveal that sets the ship right (hopefully).

Still, now that I think about it, will 8 new IP (and 15 games) really be enough for the launch/launch window? Granted, that "new" audience MS wants to cater to isn't going to see the new console as a gaming system at all, so they won't know Halo from a harpoon. I'm willing to be surprised, so into the freezer with me as I want for E3 and see what's what...

Posted:A year ago

#9

James Prendergast
Research Chemist

734 429 0.6
I agree with Eric Hirshberg that it's a false divide - though not everyone is talking about this or to this point. From a capability standpoint I don't have a problem with different events focusing on different aspects of a device. However, there is a very real divide between US-centric services and the rest of the world.

The real problem with the MS conference was that they showcased things that will mostly apply to gold subscribers and US residents whereas the Sony conference showcased things that would be available to everyone worldwide. Some people may dismiss this as not being a problem as both companies may be covering this ground in their respective events at and around E3 but it's the intent that matters and so far Sony is being inclusive whereas MS is being exclusive. It's this mentality that is being presented that is driving the emotions and reactions of the consumer base - at least from my point of view living in the EU.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by James Prendergast on 24th May 2013 10:18am

Posted:A year ago

#10

Daniel Hughes
Studying PhD Literary Modernism

436 496 1.1
Of course gamers enjoy other forms of entertainment--but we usually have those bases covered, so we buy a games console to play games.

Posted:A year ago

#11

Adam Campbell
Associate Producer

1,148 927 0.8
I don't think it necessarily is a games console first but I don't think that really matters. Consoles are computers that would be incidentally capable of most of these multimedia features and there is a high proportion of the population using them. That can't really be ignored, when 'the console' has for many become the central entertainment device in the living room.

Posted:A year ago

#12

Kingman Cheng
Illustrator and Animator

949 166 0.2
from 360 to 1... how the hell did this happen....
By turning 359 degrees in either direction, so nearly completely backwards!

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Kingman Cheng on 24th May 2013 12:01pm

Posted:A year ago

#13

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
@Paul Jace ------>
Either you aren't very bright or you haven't been paying any attention over the last three days. The "One" is short for "All-In-One"
I understand the whole "ONE" thing.... And talking about bright it seems you didnt get my statement.... from 360 to 1....

Im just left dissaponted by the announcment... alot of things I dont like about the XboxOne.

Posted:A year ago

#14

Nick Parker
Consultant

279 143 0.5
Bruce has been very quiet over all of this.

Posted:A year ago

#15

Axel Cushing
Writer / Blogger

102 128 1.3
@Axel - I think the best thing Microsoft and their associates can do at this point is shut up and let the hate subside. Start spinning again once that happens, and build from a mostly fresh base. All they're doing right now is salting the earth behind them.
@Christopher
I agree that the smart thing would be to shut up and let things cool down. Unfortunately, I think they had their PR plans locked in, much like the targeting sequence of an ICBM right before it leaves the silo. Even if somebody wants to shut up, they might not be able to. They're committed and probably without any sort of method for aborting the mission. Consider the whole "TV achievement" blurb that came out earlier. If you were a PR manager and you were hearing this much hate up to this point, would you have willingly gone forward with that idea? I'm trying to be fair to the PR guys who are having to do this, but even the most jaded huckster should have at least tried to talk Microsoft out of making that announcement.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Axel Cushing on 24th May 2013 9:40pm

Posted:A year ago

#16

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
I understand the whole "ONE" thing.... And talking about bright it seems you didnt get my statement.... from 360 to 1....

Im just left dissaponted by the announcment... alot of things I dont like about the XboxOne.
I got your statement perfectly, just like everyone else who have read it. It simply said: "from 360 to 1...how the hell did this happen?"

Theres not too many ways you can take that statement and I took it exactly at face value, which is to ask "how do you go from the subtitle of 360 to the subtitle of 1?" Like I said, if you don't get that then you really aren't very bright. But now you added that you are left disappointed by the announcement. Well so are alot of people, although I personally am more disappointed by what they didn't announce(used game initiative, exact online requirements, etc.).

Theres nothing wrong with being disappointed with the announcment or not liking Microsoft's direction for the One. Trust me, I get that. However, you chose to word your disappointment very poorly by asking how they went from 360 to 1. Because that part is perfectly clear now.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paul Jace on 25th May 2013 1:10am

Posted:A year ago

#17

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
@Paul Jace
However, you chose to word your disappointment very poorly by asking how they went from 360 to 1. Because that part is perfectly clear now.
Just poorly for you.

Posted:A year ago

#18

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
Actually poorly for anyone who had to read it. How do you expect to equate "from 360 to 1--how the hell did this happen?" to "I am disappointed with Microsoft?" That makes no sense. Like I said, very poorly worded.

Posted:A year ago

#19

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
@Paul Jace

Seriously, now your just trolling, sorry my post touched you the way it did. i dont think i have to explain it to you, i dont think your that stupid. I just think you have other motives that are not constructive feedback.

But just incase you arent that bright... Its the same as saying "From Xbox360 to XboxOne... How did this happen!?" 360 is higher number than 1, so metaphorically, it would equate to Xbox 360>XboxOne... etc....etc...etc, just looking for a fun way to say something and not write as much... but anyway...

Sorry you didnt like the way I expressed my dissapointement and it didnt meet your standards for expressing a thought.... go get a life.

Posted:A year ago

#20

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
I'm not trolling you at all and was just trying to have a constructive conversation. You being butt hurt over this doesn't affect me one bit. But back to what we were discussing...
But just incase you arent that bright... Its the same as saying "From Xbox360 to XboxOne... How did this happen!?" 360 is higher number than 1, so metaphorically, it would equate to Xbox 360>XboxOne... etc....etc...etc, just looking for a fun way to say something and not write as much... but anyway...
Um Rick, you do realize that I said that very same thing to you in my second post. I'll even quote myself here:
It simply said: "from 360 to 1...how the hell did this happen?"

Theres not too many ways you can take that statement and I took it exactly at face value, which is to ask "how do you go from the subtitle of 360 to the subtitle of 1?" Like I said, if you don't get that then you really aren't very bright.
So at first you said I didn't get what you were saying but now you are saying that I was right all along. Your other title must be politician.

Posted:A year ago

#21

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
"From 360 to 1", big-small, more-less... you get the picture... anyway there is not much to it... Had it been another website i might continue this just for kicks. But this specific website isnt place for that.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 26th May 2013 4:58am

Posted:A year ago

#22

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

887 1,311 1.5
Ok.

Posted:A year ago

#23

David Serrano
Freelancer

299 270 0.9
He's confident that the core will flock to Xbox One to play the new Call of Duty because "it's a game machine first and foremost,"

The combined installed base for the PS3 and 360 is 146 million, the active installed base is approx. 87 million. Black Ops 2, the best selling console game of all time has sold approx. 25 million copies. 25 million copies represents 17 percent of the installed base and 29 percent of the active base. The average AAA game only reaches a single digit percentage of either base.

So if 83 percent of the overall base, and 71 percent of the active base didn't flock to the best selling COD title to date on the consoles they already own, why in the world would they invest $400 or more for a new console to play the next COD title?

Repeating the lie over and over again doesn't make it true. 13 to 25 year old male multiplayer fans are not "the core," they are a subsegment of the core. They are not responsible for a majority of all game sales, they are only responsible for a small percentage of all game sales. The majority of the core have spoken with their wallets and they have no interest in bro-dude centric games. Companies like Microsoft and Activision have simply decided not to listen.

Posted:A year ago

#24

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