Friday, December 13, 2013

War on console sales has begun. Sony claims more, Microsoft claims fastest

With both consoles releasing in November, both have sold an impressive amount. Sony reportedly leads with a higher total sold throughout the month, however Microsoft makes a bold statement saying that their console reached sales numbers much faster than the PS4. The numbers really can't stand out for much in just the first month as they both launched in different weeks.

With both manufacturers posting over 2 million units sold, it's hard to tell who is really in the lead, but with that full extra week, it's more than likely that Sony is ahead of Microsoft on total units. In the end, numbers don't really matter unless you are a shareholder or really want to be "that guy/girl" who plans on slamming your enemies in the console wars, but it is interesting to note that Microsoft was willing to post an exact sales number whereas Sony was not.

Battlefield 4 patch due out today *UPDATED*

For those BF4 players who have been experiencing multiplayer instability, or who have come across the one-hit kill bug and found it rather bothersome, rejoice, for the end is near.

A developer over on the Battlefield 4 forums had this to say in regards to the situation:
We will be rolling out the Xbox One game update today, starting 10AM UTC / 2AM PDT. Players may experience some downtime as we upgrade our services. Expect patch notes to become available soon.
 Hopefully this update fixes the majority of the problems gamers have been experiencing since launch.

 Update: List of fixes -
-Fixed three common crashes that could occur during map transitions
-Fixed a common crash that could occur when using the in-game Battlelog in the "end of round" screen
-Fixed two crashes related to destroying vehicles
-Fixed a crash that could occur when the player lost connection to a server
-Fixed a crash that could occur when using the scoreboard
-Fixed a crash that could occur when players were using the voice chat
-Optimized performance when shooting destroyed Levolution objects on some levels
-Removed the blur effect on soldiers that appeared when Commanders were using EMP attacks
-Fixed the "one-hit kill" bug where damage from a single bullet sometimes was applied multiple times. This could lead to firefights where normal rifles sometimes dealt one-shot kills, which is not as designed
-Fixed a memory leak that could lead to crashes at certain points
-Further reduced the probability of getting a corrupt save file in the single player campaign
-Fixed the audio drop outs that could occur when playing on large maps. Typical map affected was Golmud Railway in Conquest with 64 players. Ambient sound would sometimes cut out, like foley sounds from player running, vehicle engine sounds, vehicle movement sounds, and map ambient sounds
-Fixed an issue with going online after resuming your Xbox One from suspended mode
-Fixed some issues with the handling of Xbox One parties
-Made the icons used to signal voice chat status more reliable

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Xbox One off to less than fantastic start

Launches of any new product can often be problematic. Clothing may be made of weak material, vehicle engines may contain flaws, electrical equipment may have faulty wiring. It's all relatively quite common for these instances to pop-up. Recalls do happen to make the products safer and more reliable. However, these instances are few and far between compared to over a million customers all experiencing the same issues the way that Microsoft consumers are with the Xbox One.

Anyone who has used the Xbox Live user interface knows that it's a fairly sleek operation. Party chat, while problematic if there is instability in the online network, is pretty strong and allows you to chat across different games. Notifications can be turned on or off so that you can see invites or when friends get online. Microsoft failed to move even these simple features over to their new system. Riddled with bugs, the Xbox One user experience is slowly drifting towards massive interest and, in some cases, downright disgust.

Fans desperate for a fix made a website listing out a lot of the problems they feel could be made right and also some improvements that would make the experience a lot better. A few examples would be:
  • When in Skype, voice chat is also transmitted into the game. So people in-game can hear you while in Skype.
  • Option for voice chat to go through the headset or tv, or both
  • Voice chat should be enabled automatically when joining voice chat as there is a physical mute on the headset input and in the party chat interface. Its an just extra unnecessary option to enable voice chat after joining a party chat
  • Ability to see the remaining amount of hard drive space 
  • Ability to String Commands for example "Xbox, Play Battlefield and Snap Netflix"
  • Controller Battery Indicator on the home screen
The majority of these are things most people would figure are already included, but they are not. Microsoft seems to have taken several steps backward and removed key features from what even the original Xbox had more than 12 years ago. Microsoft's Larry "MajorNelson" Hyrb has made it known that they are aware of the issues people are having and promises that it "will get better." Let's hope that Microsoft can fulfill that promise promptly.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Black Friday/Cyber Monday XBL Marketplace deals

Black Friday may have come and gone, but the deals on the Xbox Live Marketplace continue through Cyber Monday. Some killer games have been slashed by more than 50% including some fan favorites like Fallout 3. Grab these games before Microsoft realizes they're giving games away at cost.

Persistent Week-long Offers (26, Nov. – 2, Dec.)
Content Type % off
The Bureau XCOM Declassified Games on Demand 67%
Deadpool Games on Demand 40%
God Mode XBLA 50%
Skyrim Games on Demand 50%
Skyrim: Dragonborn Add-on 50%
Skyrim: Dawnguard Add-on 50%
Fallout 3 Games on Demand 50%
Fallout 3: Mothership Zeta Add-on 66%
Fallout 3: Point Lookout Add-on 66%
Fallout 3: The Pitt Add-on 66%
Fallout 3: Operation: Anchorage Add-on 66%
Fallout 3: Broken Steel Add-on 66%
Wolfenstein 3D XBLA 75%
The Cave XBLA 75%
Rockstar Table Tennis Games on Demand 66%
Tomb Raider Games on Demand 50%
Sleeping Dogs Games on Demand 38%
Mark of the Ninja XBLA 66%
Mark of the Ninja Special Edition Add-on 66%
Runner 2 XBLA 50%
Sacred Citadel XBLA 50%
Deadblock XBLA 75%
Motocross Madness XBLA 75%
Dust XBLA 66%
Metro Last Light Games on Demand 50%
Puzzle Quest Challenge of the Warlords  XBLA 70%
Puzzle Quest Galatix  XBLA 57%

Cyber Monday 1-Day Offers (2, Dec. Only)
Content Type % off
Far Cry Blood Dragon XBLA 75%
Red Dead Redemption Games on Demand 75%
The Witcher 2 Games on Demand 75%
Dark Souls Games on Demand 75%
BattleBlock Theater XBLA 67%
Rayman Origins Games on Demand 50%
L.A. Noire Games on Demand 75%
Fast and Furious: Showdown  Games on Demand 75%
Men in Black: Alien Crisis Games on Demand 75%