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Top 10 360 quirks the Xbox One needs to fix

Xbox One Screenshot - Don Mattrick Xbox One

A new Xbox is on the way. We know the name (Xbox One), the vague mission statement (TV, Sports, Call of Duty), and what the hardware looks like (a VCR?). What we don't know and may not know up until launch are all the little things -- the potential quirks that will make or break the console during everyday use.

The 360 as we know it now has its fair share of issues, and while the hope is that the Xbox One is so different that these issues will be irrelevant, we simply don't know yet. A bright future could arrive,  but let's hope it doesn't come saddled with the little issues we take for granted on 360. Issues like these:

1 - Better game library list/discoverability

Steam Library

As a bit of an Xbox 360 power user, I've run into just about every edge case and odd quirk you can imagine. With a console cycle this long, retail discs that can be had for as little as $1.99 at Gamestop, and Xbox Indie Games that cost even less, it can be pretty easy to accrue a library of hundreds of games. I’ve done exactly that, and Microsoft doesn’t do people like me any favors. Try to make space on your Xbox 360 by deleting digital downloads and you may never see them again. The only place the 360 lists purchased and deleted content is deep within the account info of your XBL profile. Compare that to Steam, which lists your library in a clean list, denoting whether the games are installed or not.

That’s the way to do it, and if Xbox One doesn’t help you keep better track of games you purchased, it’ll already be off to bad start. Consider this: with a 500 GB Harddrive, assuming games are, say, 25 GBs, you couldn’t even fit 20 games on it before you’d have to start deleting them.

 

2 - More reliable cloud saving

Cloud syncing

Most people do all their Xbox gaming on one console. I’m not most people. With a 360 in my bedroom, a roommate’s in the living room, and another at my girlfriend’s house, my XBL profile bounces from one console to the next on a daily basis. The profile itself does that without issue, and I commend MS for streamlining that process. Cloud saves on the other hand, aren’t so easy.

When I’m playing a game and want to move locations, I have to back out to the dashboard and babysit the console, waiting around to make sure my saves are uploaded properly before shutting down. The Xbox One is always on in some capacity, and all saves are backed up to the cloud, so with any luck this will be a non-issue.

 

3 - Faster UI / Dashboards / Loading

Xbox One

The Xbox One presentation spent a lot of time focusing on the speed of their new interface. With resources rigidly split between gaming and dashboard/apps, the new Xbox should be a multitasking whiz. That said, my 360 has become as sluggish as an old gen iPhone or internet video in the late 90s. Loading the dashboard can take five minutes or more, and popping up the guide can cause the console to lock up entirely depending on when I try it. The Xbox One shouldn’t just be fast, it should be built to maintain that speed no matter how many new features are bolted onto it. Thankfully it seems that is exactly the design philosophy they’re taking.

 

4 - Fix controller syncing nonsense

Xbox controller pile

Your friend just signed in with your favorite controller. Well, you can either stop being a picky b**ch or turn off the 360 altogether, because that controller will NEVER forget its place in your buddy’s hand otherwise. The 360 has some annoying quirks when it comes to wireless controllers and couch co-op that the Xbox One better address. Supposedly the Kinect is simply going to take care of things, allowing you to pass controllers around however you want. Face recognition and a sensor in the controller will take care of the rest. It sounds too good to be true, though.

 

5 - Don’t do this %$#&!

Xbox 360 UI glitch

In the process of updating the dashboard time and time again, Microsoft has introduced some pretty offensive UI faux paus. The latest 360 dashboard for example, seems to load in UI elements and buttons as needed, depending on the page you’re on. If you press X to go to game details in an attempt to install a game, the install button may suddenly shift mid-action like a whack-a-mole, resulting in you loading up a game you intended to install first. The Xbox One is more reliant on the internet/cloud/streaming than ever, so they’d better make sure navigating the dashboard doesn’t feel like trying to predict the future.

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Joe Donato Video games became an amazing, artful, interactive story-driven medium for me right around when I played Panzer Dragoon Saga on Sega Saturn. Ever since then, I've wanted to be a part of this industry. Somewhere along the line I, possibly foolishly, decided I'd rather write about them than actually make them. So here I am.
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