Is Microsoft Placing Too Many Eggs In One Basket?

With the latest releases of two great exclusives in the form of Halo Reach and Fable III, also adding to the equation the new dashboard updates with Kinect just around the corner, prepped and ready to serve up 19 all-new titles for the highly anticipated peripheral and on the surface things are looking quite stellar as we end out 2010 for the Xbox 360.

However, looking ahead to 2011 does paint a different picture. Of course this is not your typical doom and gloom opinion piece pointing the finger at Microsoft’s future woo’s, but rather more of what seems to be an intentional direction taken by the manufacturing giant.

Today both the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 offer a robust list of entertainment options by way of their ever-increasing networks. From networking applications, music video stores, sports channels, exclusive features, HD movie playback to built-in virtual infrastructures, internet browers and social networking tools, I mean the list goes on and on. Yet, while both platforms are doing their best to stay current with networking resources for their loyal fans, Microsoft also seems more interested in placing their future in Xbox Live and Kinect rather than investing in exclusive software to keep their hardcore gamers with the latest cutting-edge titles which would only be experienced on the Xbox 360.

For the Xbox 360, 2011 while filled with a list of amazing multiplatform titles, has Gears Of War 3 on the horizon as an exclusive with not much else to sing home about, right now. Sure, there will also be other Xbox 360 exclusives making their way to 2011, however, as of now many of those titles if not Kinect exclusive titles are slated for Xbox Live Arcade. In fact, two Xbox Live Arcade titles to definitely keep an eye out for are BREACH and HYBRID both gearing up to offer an impressive shooter experience from their respective developers when they make their 2011 debut.

On the competition side of the coin, Sony has taken quite a different approach. As firmware updates have made their way to update systems with 3D-enabled functionality and robust Netflix application as cross media bar options, Sony looks to make quite a distinction from their competitor with not only Playstation Move titles but also flagship PS3 exclusives. With titles like KILLZONE 3, Resistance 3, inFAMOUS 2, Little Big Planet 2, SOCOM 4, The Last Guardian, Ico/Shadow of The Colossus Re-Mastered, Final Fantasy XIV Online, DC Universe Onine, Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One, just to name a few and you start to see Sony trying to get back to their glory days of the PS2 which due to it’s robust line-up of exclusives cornered the market and forced the hand of a prematurely launched Xbox 360.

However, you would have to be crazy to think Microsoft is going to just stand aside as the competition flaunts it’s exclusive muscle in 2011. If history has told us anything about Microsoft during this generation of consoles, you should know that what you see today is not always the end result come holiday season.

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  • Missed a few Xbox exclusives…

    Forza with Kinect (working title)
    Project Draco
    Codename D
    Release date unknown
    Milo and Kate
    Codename: Kingdoms

  • Nathan Six

    In fact history has been VERY clear on this issue. Every year we see dozens of short sighted articles like this one, claiming PS3 has an invincibly strong line up for NEXT year, and the 360 seems to have nothing. Yet every year Sony turns out to be full of… well, it; and MS pulls out just enough exclusives to again trump PS3 in the holiday season.

    I have an idea, instead of falling for Sonys BS every year, and continuously pumping out these regurgitated articles, why doesn’t someone have the balls to call Sony on front loading their exclusive library every year, then only delivering delays and mediocrity.

  • Daverage

    Lets say kinect is a succes….around 7 million then after than you need your core crowd and they have nothing for them…they are putting everything in kinect…and it will be a short term success long term the hardware is only good as the software and it is simply not there…no matter how you slice it…there will be no COD or Halo Kinect to keep it selling its biggest selling point is that it is new….after that wares off and if ps3 is its competition it will surpass them in sales by the middle of next year even with the kinect boost if not this xmas…good bye xbox as we new it

  • Nathan Six

    Yeah kinda like the wii huh?

    You need to rethink things buddy, rethink things.

  • Dave

    @ nathan six

    No. over the last couple of years, the PS3 has always brought way more exclusives to the table than the 360. Its just som happens to be that the 360 gamers seem to be more content with the next COD or Halo game and little need for anything else.

    Look at this year alone, Sony has got MAG, GOW3, Heavy rain, Modnation Racers, Sport Champions and GT5. All games that will never be seen on the 360 and all very good games. Take note, I left out over 10 games from that list that may be deemed as not very good games. At the 360 has what? Splinter Cell, Fable 3 and halo? Mass effect isn’t even in that list anymore cause its gone multiplatform. Now nothing wrong if that is all the gaming you feel you will ever need… just don’t go saying Sony gives BS compared to what MS does…

  • Jack

    And the fact is, that PS3 did sold quite better during 2010 than Xbox 360. And it was in the year of “Halo: Reach”, “Alan Wake” and “Fable III”…

  • Dave

    @ nathan 6

    And this talk about mediocrity and front loading their exclusives? Was there really a need for them to release LBP2 this year too? Or Killzone3? they have already released over twice or thrice as many exclusives this year than MS.

    And you talk mediocrity…. please do some research, just look through metacritic, look at the amount of PS3 exclusives that score 85% or more every year since 2008 and compare that to the 360. You will shocked with what you see.

    A more direct example, look at a game like MAG, 256 players. Is there one game that does that on the 360? Or lets even be more direct, someone should call out MS for making ppl pay to play games online.

    Again, its ok if this is what you want, but please see how stupid it is to make arguments such as yours if your primary console is the 360.

  • Daverage

    Wii is not kinect……will never be…Ms has faild as a first party ad cant make games that anyone wants on a large scale…even Halo has scaled down…..Wii has nintendo behind it…dont get it wrong the wii didn’t make wii succeed it was nintendo with great games and DS converers and the price point. Kinect does not have mario, ssmb ,no more heroes. just the reject games of the wii or shovel ware that flooded the console.

  • Tom Ato

    LOL, you must have learning difficulties. If Microsoft’s exclusives trumped PS3’s then why did Uncharted 2 win GOTY 2009? Shouldn’t it have gone to a 360 exclusive if they were better? I love watching ignorant 360 fangirls embarass themselves like this.

    The below – average, last – gen garbage on the 360 like Fable, Halo and Forza are all crap games with crap graphics and crap online. Which is why they got laughed out of the building when they were put up against Uncharted 2. The 360 lacks the quality to compete with the PS3 which is why the sales gap has already been reduced to nothing.

    Do some research on the videogames industry before you comment, Sony owned the exclusive category in 2009, Uncharted 2 ALONE was better than all the last – gen crap on the 360 put together and by trying to argue with facts you’re just making yourself sound like an ignorant, inbred moron.

  • Nathan Six

    Come on Dave, GT5 still has no release date, Mod Nation racers? seriously?
    Sport Champions? If your going to count games of that quality than you only hurt your argument, 360 has had several exclusives that didn’t get a lot of hype because they were not big budget AAA titles, in fact when you add all those kind of games, plus XBLA, 360 has more exclusives than PS3 for 2010. Look it up, that the problem with you fanboy types, you know little to nothing about the 360, you go simply by what you read on N4G.

    Oh and Mass Effect 2 is still a 360 exclusive for 2010 since I cannot play it on my PS3. So is Crack Down 2 and Alan Wake by the way.

  • Daverage

    crackdown two sucked….and i can play mass effect on my pc ad its better

  • Insidious

    Daverage, you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about.. your talking about the Wii like as if it’s a company and not an inanimate object. Nintendo marketed Wii all to hell and look at them now they are struggling to actually sell Wiis and it’s not because everyone already owns one.. it’s because no one cares anymore. It was a fun ride.. but 90% of the games on the Wii are terrible and the rest are made by Nintendo themselves. People refuse to listen to me but I’m gonna say this one more time, the Wii will be Nintendo’s last console.

  • Jack

    Alright first

    @ Insidious. Even if the Wii isn’t selling as well as it was, there is no doubt that for the next few years; The wii will remain the king of this generation. Sales don’t lie and I believe it has sold over 70 million compared to the 40 some million on ps3 or xbox. I don’t consider the Wii a good system, but in terms of sales; it destroyed.

    @ Nathan 6. Holy crap you are full of it. And just because I said that, anything else I say here you will just instantly attempt to shoot down. The PS3 is a much better system for many reasons. Not just in quality but it is showing in sales. It has sold more PS3’s than 360’s this year. It’s what, 3 million behind now (Oh and don’t forget most of the systems sold were replacements for defective ones)? Also don’t forget the 360 came out a year before hand.
    As for exclusives; you can never ever say a game is bad. You are ignorant when you instantly shoot down any title with no interest to yourself. Modnation racers was simply amazing, and I know it sold well and I know it was a great game. Sports champions is questionable, but still a great game. And yes there are more PS3 exclusives. There are always great games on the PS3. Sony has a TON of first-party companies. The ps2 was afterall the best selling console of all time. Microsoft instead invested all their money into getting timed exclusives or third-party exclusives. Of which they have lost most of the 3rd parties, such as mass effect, or this being the last gears of war, or dead rising.
    The ps3 exclusives are not just better in numbers, but quality too. Such as Killzone 2, yes 2, a 2 years old game having better graphics than halo reach. Look at any screenshot comparison. If you really say otherwise you are the worst kind of blind fanboy there is.
    Microsoft has realized it can’t compete with the PS3 in new powerful games and decided to let multiplatform games fill that department. They can’t release a new system cause no one would pay 600 dollars. So they try to cut in on the wii market.

    When I buy a system, I want great exclusives, not just now but in the future too. Other than Kinect stuff, there is what; the non-bungie halos and gears 3? I like a disk tray that doesn’t destroy my disk when i lightly tap it. I like a blu-ray playing, hi def system that only needs one disk instead of 3. I like to pay nothing for my PSN services instead of $60. I like to have ACCURATE motion controls. You are either ignorant, insane, or too blind by fanboyism to not realize which of the two is a better system.

    And for the record, PC>both. No question there. I guess mostly because of steam for that. I just wish I could trade in PC games -sigh-

    Does anyone have any non-biased facts or reasonable arguments to refute me? And just to say one more time. Games do not suck. Most likely someone, if not a lot of people love that game, so your opinion does not mean anything about it. The only thing you can mention is its sales and if those sales didn’t meet its expectations. Other than that only ever say good things about games. When you don’t you’re an idiot.

  • Jack

    Just to clarify, the selling more cause of defective systems referred to the 360. And I’m sure someone will point out some minor contradictions I might have accidentally made during my points. Please, don’t be ignorant and refute or agree like mature gamers

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