Rant Central #13: Avatars: Why so much hate?

Level 13 loaded……..

Over the course of the few hours that have pasted since the E3 2008: Microsoft Press Briefing and the introduction of the “New Xbox Experience”, there has been quite a bit of discussion all around the web as to what they think about “Avatars”. Over on the Xbox forums a poll has been put up by non other than TriXie360 (Gamerchix/Community Confidential/ and more) and what will you find in response to this poll? Of course, some rational thought and a whole lot of hate on the side to go with that. Now, of course when Denis Dyack said what he said on 1up Yours a few weeks ago many chose to take the easy way out and just call him crazy by dismissing any and all that he was talking about. Failing to actually listen to what he was really saying, the aforementioned forum thread clearly proves Denis’ point.

No one on the outside of Microsoft has had any experience with this “New Xbox Experience” so why are so many people so quick to damn it to hell without using it first? Surely these are the same people who went ape sh*t crazy when they profusely said they were unhappy with the current dashboard, especially when it was revealed that some XBLA titles would be delisted as to clean up the clutter. So, I here by ask again, why are so many hating all over this new direction?

All of the games you’ve bought and/or are going to buy are still going to be the same as they where before. Then again, I bring another “why” question. Why are so-called “Hardcore gamers” so quick to want to isolate themselves from the rest of the world? It’s painfully obvious that this new dashboard update isn’t just thinking about those that may happen upon these words. It’s thinking about those who aren’t so enthralled in this medium to feel most of the population isn’t worthy to be included. Sorry to tell you folks, gaming isn’t just for the hardcore anymore.

If you want to lock yourself away in a closet of self wallow while you keep telling yourself that no one should be able to play a videogame unless their super serious about it, have at it. You complained about the current dashboard all the while screaming to high heaven about innovation and wanting something new, but when it’s tried you do nothing but bitch. How about you wait and see how you feel after actually using the “New Xbox Experience” first. First impressions are one thing, but declaring that the old dashboard is better already is ridiculous. Compare it to Mii’s all you want. There’s no mistaking the similarities, but don’t go making the copycat arguments when both the other two competitors are freely “trying” to parody the experience of Xbox Live. Calling someone a hypocrite at this point isn’t worth it, because there are no words to describe the blasphemy going on.

Oh, wait, you say that none of this matters in the long run? Well if you do, that’s where you’ll be completely short sighted. Don’t tell me that when someone who doesn’t play videogames often or ever asks you about this stuff that your opinion doesn’t carry any weight. That’s when that mindshare thing happens. So when the Xbox 360 is considered a hardcore only console what did you most likely do when the Nintendo Wii lauched? You more than likely told that person they should buy that, because its non gamer friendly and guess what happened? They went out and bought and continue to buy the Wii not because they researched ahead of time, but because people like us told them it was made for them when it really was just marketed well toward them well. Now, go tell me that our opinion on forums which turn into the mindshare don’t matter.

Level 14 loading……….

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

25 Responses

  1. well said

  2. It seems to be entirely based upon fear of a “kiddy” environment that some gamers seem to feel that the Wii solely provides. I’ve read comments on various major sites and they all revolve around this concept.

    Adding this in is a good idea. It’s another way to make the system more social and customizable without going to the extreme like Home has. It clearly is a nod to the success of Miis, but come on, the concept of an Avatar is so basic to Internet existence that it’s hard to point a lot of fingers about it (many chat programs, including some of MS’s own, have used this concept to some degree). It’s certainly not as blatant as that rumored Newton controller would have been.

    I personally think it’s a good idea and coupled with their promises for Primetime I think it’ll work out well. I’m willing to bet that as time goes on we’ll find it’s really a vocal minority as things like this usually are.

  3. agreed.

  4. Tony: I most definitely noticed that as well, but wanted to expand a little bit with something else here other than what I supplied in that horrendous thread. I had something else in mind as far as Denis Dyack for a while now, but this applied rather nicely. I’m still not done with Denis though. Here’s my post in that thread:

    “Why are so many quick to call Avatars “kiddy” when those on the outside of gaming in general looking in are also quick to judge us for playing videogames as “kiddy” in the first place? It’s funny how gamers are so easily distilled into the same malarkey when judging what you don’t know comes with reckless abandon. [:$]

    Lets wait until everyone gets to actually experience it for real before you go and crucify it. Not caring for it initially is one thing, but calling it kiddy is a whole other ball of wax.”

  5. Well, since msn had the weemees a few years ago I always wondered if they will port them to the xbox, the fact that the wii did it first has made some people (ive read) call them copiers for that fact …
    but anyway, personally I simply dont like the idea at all, Im hoping there is a way to pass on the “avatar” and stick with the normal pic on the gamercard but can see this wont happen.
    I will deal with it and not moan about it, after all Ive got 2 consoles, and the family loves the idea .. damn the kids are soo excited about it already !! (even my lil new born who doesnt know any better will find it fun once she’s of age lol)
    I think its a good move for getting a more family feel to it … but maybe a bad move for the older gamer.
    Hey at least they are doing something this year !! lol

  6. I like my Gamerpics, I don’t like Miis, I don’t like how these look either.

  7. I bet even the hardcore will end up liking it. its not that bad , just be happy there was no “waggle remote”

  8. Also there is a way to keep ur themes and gamer pics, you dont have to make an avatar

  9. The correct answer is:
    People fear change.

  10. true that.

  11. Torment: You can use the themes you already have, even on the new dashboard.


  12. I love the idea of avatars so far, but my only gripe is their going to sell clothes and items for your avatar, that’s just ridiculous and I will in no way take part in paying money for pixelated clothing.

    On a similar note however, there has been mention that developers have the option to reward gamers with items and clothing for their Avatar via playing their game, similar to Achievements. Plus they might also be related to that game. (Think Gears of War 2 T-Shirt) That is an awesome idea and something I very much look forward to.

  13. free hat ???????

  14. Paustinj: The clothing idea is in a weird place for me. If we could leverage it somehow like this, then I like it, but if not it would have lost some of its luster already. Otherwise it’s a nice change of pace even so. If dev’s will be able to do it, why can’t we?

    tokertm: I’m in a fight that even Batman would quiver at. I hear you. I’ll be honest. I wanted the free hats weeks ago (like before E3). Road blocks are abound.

  15. Like VelocityGirl?

    I don’t see that happening any time soon.

  16. Paustinj: Speaking of VelocityGirl, I have an idea that should be quite fun. It’ll come with the “free hats” as soon as I free them from The Matrix.

  17. Glad to hear the free hats are still coming. I’m working on 1000/1000 on Halo 3 still. Only metagame is left.

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  19. Wonder who this mystery client is…

  20. I got a client
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  21. exposure lol

  22. […] – bookmarked by 4 members originally found by wiirocks1010 on July 16, 2008 Rant Central #13: Avatars: Why so much hate? http://thexboxdomain.com/2008/07/15/rant-central-13-avatars-why-so-much-hate/ – bookmarked by 3 […]

  23. Burndem: Hmmmmm……I’d love to whip out a witty comment, but no one would see it. 🙂

  24. I’m watching….

    /grabs comfy chair

  25. Nice post im a little annoyed at the whole avatar thing, I mean it was too cutesy on Wii and do we need it for 360? I dont think we do and im not too bothered with it.

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