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My experience with the XBox last night......


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#1 of 18 Troy LaMont

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Posted October 31 2001 - 04:01 AM

Well,

The EB and KB*Toys at my local mall finally got their XBox kiosks up and running. Here's my initial impressions from what I played.

EB - NFL Fever 2002
  • Excellent graphics - From my 25+ years of console gaming, I'd have to say that this is the best console football game I have every seen.
  • Gameplay - Great! The game reminded me of Madden in it's gameplay. Crisp response to running and passing. Although my initial impressions was it was easy to catch an interception (and most passes).
  • Music/Sound - I really didn't get to immerse myself into this aspect too much because I was trying to focus on what was going on with the game itself. Also the volume on the TV I was playing on wasn't very high.
  • Overall - I rate this a Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image outta Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image, top notch football game with excellent graphics and features.
KB Toys - Oddworld: Munch's Oddyssey
  • Graphics - We're nice, from my initial impressions they weren't the ultimate or precedent setting by any means. I know that the display device had a lot to do with it, which I think was a little fuzzy and the settings weren't adjusted correctly.
  • Gameplay - Oddworld reminded me of a slowed down Rayman 2 (or something to that effect). I played not knowing any of the movements or controls but was able to make out some of the buttons usage. Not really sure what the overall goal was or what I was trying to do. This could possibly be a cool game, but it would have to bump up the excitement level or add some more intrigue (or complexity).
  • Music/Sound - These were where I thought the game excelled at. The sound effects were excellent and very involving. The farting, weird language and walking were great. The TV was at a similiar volume as the one at EB, but I was playing this part where he would run into mines and when he hit a mine, by George you knew it. The explosion is loud and seems bassy (on a nice setup). Top notch sounds.
  • Overall - I would probably rent Oddworld first to get a better feel for what is supposed to be going on. It was a decent game to play but it seemed like it had the potential to get slow at times. Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image outta Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image.

    XBox impressions[list]
  • Joysticks - Not as ergonomic as the Dreamcast joystick that they so closely resemble. The Dreamcast joystick has a ridge underneath the sides that you can grasp with you fingers, the XBox joystick doesn't have this. This makes it a little more difficult to intently grasp the joystick when playing extended games. The buttons seem a little close together also. I had a tendency to press multiple buttons when I was doing a quick out passing play on the football game. I don't think that the black and white buttons are spaced appropriately either. They are too close together as well and somwhat of a reach from the main set of buttons. The triggers on the other hand have a much better feel and response than the ones on the Dreamcast and even the PS2. They do have a very, very solid feel to them, where as the Dreamcast joysticks had a tendency to 'give' (twist) a little under pressure. The rumble feature was nice. The XBox logo in the center of the joysticks looks kinda cheesy and doesn't look like the images on the XBox.com site. They aren't blacked out in the middle and the X and XBox logos don't have that greenish type glow. Overall not bad but they could stand a reconfiguration of the buttons. Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image outta Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image.
  • Console - It's big! That's really all I can say about it. I didn't get to interact much with it (touch it, hold it, fondle it). I can't comment on load times for games either because they were already loaded up when I played.
I'm glad I got a chance to at least take it for a test drive early on. I'm still anxiously waiting for 11/15 when I get to do some down and dirty testing on my HDTV.

Troy



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:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.



[Edited last by Troy LaMont on October 31, 2001 at 11:11 AM]
:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.

#2 of 18 Camp

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Posted October 31 2001 - 04:56 PM

Good write up.

Was NFL Feaver playable on the kiosk you saw? Every Xbox kiosk I've seen has only had a playable demo of Munch's Oddyssey. The other games are all movies.

The Xbox kiosks are rather disappointing. The display is a really crappy Sanyo TV. It's curved screen and blury display indicate Microsoft selected them as a cost savings. Certainly several notches below the 15" Samsung LCD display used in the PS2 kiosks.

Most importantly, how the hell did you make those stars?? Is that a UBB Code?

#3 of 18 James D S

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Posted October 31 2001 - 08:11 PM

Camp,

Quick tip: If ever you want to know how someone did something in a post, just click on their edit button and see.

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#4 of 18 Joe Rigali

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Posted November 01 2001 - 01:52 AM

DAMN YOU TROY!!!!!

Now I have to add NFL Fever to my list!!!!!

Is it really that good?

How's the AI?, what about the play calling - like madden or NFL2k1?

Did you see how extensive the franchise mode was?

Sorry for the 20 questions but that was a game I was teetering on.

Any info would be great.

#5 of 18 Troy LaMont

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Posted November 01 2001 - 04:00 AM

Camp,

Yep, it was the full blown version, with case and intruction booklent and all. They also had Fusion Frenzy but they wouldn't put it in for me (punks!) Posted Image

Yeah, I also agree on the TVs they used. The funny thing is that they replace the logos on front of the sets with 'Microsoft'. I happened to see the remote for the TV at KB*Toys and it was a Panasonic set. Not sure what the other set was at EB, but the picture was nice.

Yes, the stars are UBB. You can do what James suggests below or you can click on the 'Smilies Legend' to the left of the message editor for a listing of them as well. The code is -star-, replacing the 'dash' with a 'colon'.

Joe
  • The AI - was very adaptive. I started out with the Rams and tried to bring the running game. The CPU figured it out after about 2 plays and pretty much shut it down. As far as passing, the DBs and safety's are very receptive and unless you take control of your man on long passes, it'll get blocked or intercepted. If you hit your man on the cut with quick outs or curls you can usually catch the ball.
  • Play calling - Glad you brought that up. The play calling is more layered that either of the two you mention. It also has one selection indicator, which you can hide while selecting the play by holding down the right trigger (sorta like on NFL Blitz). I didn't get a chance to go into the menu options to see if that could be changed. Other than that, there's a ton of plays. Each playbook is somewhat different (ala Madden), and you can create your own of course.
  • Franchise - Didn't get a chance to mess around with this option.
FYI, I played on the hardest mode (All Star) with three minute quarters.

Other than that it was a great play, very similar to Madden as stated above. Very fluid motions and easy to control players. The running game looks really sweet!

You only press the 'X' (hike) button once and the receivers are ready to receive (unlike Madden where you have to hit it twice).

The camera angle I played at was a little restrictive (kinda like Madden classic cam) but I'm sure it could be panned out.

It's pace was very much like Madden as well. NFL 2Kx plays a little faster.

Troy

------------------
:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.


:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.

#6 of 18 Joe Rigali

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Posted November 01 2001 - 05:51 AM

thanks for the honest info - I appreciate it

#7 of 18 Dave F

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Posted November 01 2001 - 10:48 AM

Hey Troy, if you have the chance to check out NFL Fever again, could you check what video options are available (widescreen, resolution, etc...)?

Thanks,
Dave

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#8 of 18 Troy LaMont

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Posted November 02 2001 - 04:00 AM

Dave,

I'll do that. Especially given that fact that I'll be playing on a WS set (Youda thunk I would have done that before, doh!)

Troy

------------------
:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.


:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.

#9 of 18 Andrew Grall

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Posted November 02 2001 - 05:04 AM

That might be what sells me on the X-Box...if it looks that much better on my widescreen HDTV than my PS2...

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#10 of 18 Heath L

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Posted November 02 2001 - 06:02 AM

I'm curious about widescreen capability of NFL Fever myself. That is the deciding factor on whether I pick up that title of Madden 2k2 for the XBox.

[Edited last by Heath L on November 02, 2001 at 07:35 PM]
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#11 of 18 Brad Grenz

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Posted November 02 2001 - 12:06 PM

Quote:
Not as ergonomic as the Dreamcast joystick that they so closely resemble.

Are you kidding? The Xbox controller is far more ergonomic. I had the way the DC's grips are parallel forcing your wrists into an uncomfortable position. After a while my forearms really start cramping up. The Xox controller was far more comfortable, at least based on the couple minutes of use at the EB today.

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#12 of 18 Troy LaMont

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Posted November 05 2001 - 03:46 AM

No 16:9 (widescreen) capabilities that I could find on NFL Fever 2002. I played a whole game (with 10 minute quarters) on Friday!

Sorry guys.

Troy

------------------
:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.


:My teacher tells me beauty is on the inside.
:That's just something ugly people say.

#13 of 18 Frank_Lee

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Posted November 05 2001 - 09:34 PM

I was at a local Gamestop location (Software Etc.) and they actually had a playable version of Halo. I didn't get a chance to play it since the employees were monopolizing it. It looks absolutely stunning. Part of what took so long was that they were trying to get used to the controls for a vehicle and that they were also playing in 2-player cooperative mode. From what I've seen, Halo will be an amazing game. I noticed a couple times when the framerates dropped slightly but hopefully they'll have it worked out come launch time.

#14 of 18 Joshua Moran

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Posted November 06 2001 - 05:23 AM

Gamecube has 16x9 HDTV support also. Just thought I would throw that in.

#15 of 18 Jason Seaver

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Posted November 06 2001 - 05:25 AM

Heck, you could write a 16x9 game for the 2600. Having a 16x9 mode is entirely software, not hardware.
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#16 of 18 Dan B

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Posted November 06 2001 - 09:39 PM

Someone needs to be reminded that 480p is not "supporting" HDTV. Posted Image


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#17 of 18 Michael St. Clair

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Posted November 07 2001 - 01:45 AM

quote:
Someone needs to be reminded that 480p is not "supporting" HDTV. [/quote]

Well, it certainly is supporting owners of HDTVs. Virtually all HD sets accept 480p (though some convert it further), and since a doubler cannot generate true 720x480 60p frames from a non-film-sourced 480i input, it is a VERY good thing that 480p is supported. "Dumb" doubling of a bunch of fields is not the same thing as generating proper frames (plus the 2 - 6 frame lag from some doublers can screw with your reflexes).

We'd really be screwed if new consoles only supported 480i, 720p, and 1080i. If that were the case, most HD set owners would have no way of playing true progressive games, since most sets don't have 720p.

Progressive is a big deal for games, even if some people don't know it yet. I am not saying that there are no games that many would rather see in 1080i, so go flame somewhere else. Posted Image

[Edited last by Michael St. Clair on November 07, 2001 at 08:47 AM]

#18 of 18 Dan B

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Posted November 07 2001 - 04:01 AM

Michael, I agree that 480p is a good thing! I just am upset to see this confused with "HDTV" at times.


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