Xbox 360 Impressions

I’ve had a chance to see and play a bit with the 360 that Andy brought home the other day, and here are a few of my initial thoughts…

  • The dashboard (OS) is great and gives you just about everything you could want out of a media center. Interface is a little less than intuitive at times, and the “friend is online” alerts appear over everything. Very annoying, but there’s probably an option to change that somewhere.
  • Backwards compatibility is a little rocky. Some texture artifacting here and there, and really bad mic sound in Halo 2. But connectivity to other players on regular Xbox Live worked just the same.
  • Games look great. Crisp, high-res, high polygon counts, yadda, yadda… But in Project Gotham Racing 3, the developers took too much advantage of the higher resolution and made some of the menu and UI text so small, it’s almost impossible to read on a normal TV. Wake-up, not everyone’s going to be playing on HD.
  • Gameplay? Well, that all depends on the game, so… same as any other console. Aside from more glitz, glamour, bells and whistles, the launch titles are more of the same.
  • Little things go a long way… Wireless controllers out of the box, power buttons on the controller, and standard USB ports to plug any device into the 360.
  • It’s loud. When the fan comes on, it sounds like it’s ready for lift-off.

Fun to have one around, but I don’t think I need my own just yet.

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