First Impressions of the New Xbox Experience

Pros

  1. It’s responsive.
  2. Downloading games to the hard disk is a fantastic feature, making the Xbox 360 so much quieter.
  3. The whole interface reminds me of the various media centre apps out at the moment, with context sensitive backgrounds and information.
  4. The mini guide that appears when you press in the Xbox guide button is fast and actually useful.
  5. You can delete 0 gamerscore games, bye bye old arcade demos and Perfect Dark Zero.

Cons

  1. The majority of the tabs are advertising.  Spotlight, Inside Xbox, Games, Movies etc.
  2. The friends tab is completely unusable if you have more than a handful of friends.  It has gone from a list to a side-by-side lineup of everyone’s avatars, which is slow to load and looks awful.  I have 99 on my list (which guarantees that there’s someone out there playing the same game as me!) and it looks a mess.  Thankfully the mini-guide has an old school friends list.
  3. The whole marketplace is slow, slower than the old one.  Though I’ll put this one down to the NXE only being out for a few hours.
  4. Old themes are almost useless now as the majority of the dashboard is taken up by a grey background.  Remember people, no refunds!
  5. The Miis – er I mean avatars appear to be a piecemeal attempt to tempt some of the illusive casual Wii playing market.  So far I can’t see the point of them.  Also the level of customisation is in fact less diverse than the lower fidelity Miis.  Why can’t I have a blue shirt?  Because it was only developed in green.  Go figure.
So I sound quite negative.  However installing games to the hard drive is such a great feature, I’m willing to put up with all the cons!