Friday, 16 December 2011

Criticisms of the Xbox 360 Dashboard

My 360 updated a few weeks ago to the new dashboard. I promptly took it offline because I didn't want to download the broken Skyrim patch, so I couldn't really judge it. Now, with the release of the new patch which un-breaks magic resistances, I've put it back online. First impressions: "oh joy, another dashboard update". Second: AAAAAADDDDDDS. There's a lot of adverts everywhere.

I decided to go to the indie games because I had 300 points sitting around after having bought some New Vegas DLC for the other half. The games section was four sections in which wasn't cool. I found a section which had a few indie games, but after digging a bit further, I found the indie games. You can sort by release date and title, but there doesn't appear to be a way to reduce the amount displayed, so you have to scroll through 2200 games, 5 at a time. This is phenomenally poor design. The regular game store is no better.

I then went into my game library, and that suffered from a similar lack of organisation. 128 games, 5 at a time. You can sort by demo, arcade or indie. No Games On Demand option, so if I want to play Fable II or Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas I have to scroll for quite a while.

It is blatantly obvious that they've designed the new dashboard for use with just the Kinect. There's nothing in the design to indicate they even bothered thinking about people with joypads. It's all big icons and few things on every page, and has very obviously been designed by some guy who thinks form over function. I feel for the indie and arcade developers who are nigh impossible to find with this new marketplace.

And that's to say nothing about the fury I feel at having ads on a console I paid £300 to buy and £35 a year to use online. That's disgusting.

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