Standing at an Xbox 360 display in Best Buy last month, watching a 13-year old kid wrestling a dinosaur as King Kong, a sales person walked up and said, Don t bother.
Come again? Don t bother with the 360, he said. If you don t have an HDTV, which the new system is designed to exploit, the graphics will probably not look any better than any of the old Xbox games.
And the games? I asked.
He shrugged and walked off.
That s one opinion of the 360.
Here are a few others, from a variety of local hard-core gamers.
What people don t understand is you want a high-def screen for this thing, I ve heard people say they were disappointed. Those were always the people not using high-def TVs.
Mike Piddock, 32, owner of Video Game Underground
It s a huge advancement. There are so many little features I haven t even figured out yet. I mean, it has this streaming music feature where you stream music from your computer or iPod. It works amazingly well.
Jake Jaworski, 19, Toledo
They did a pretty amazing job. Some of the online support is a bit laggy. Madden Football they rushed it. But as far as games like Call of Duty 2, games imported from PCs, you ll love it if you don t have a high-end PC. If you do, it s the same thing.
Jamie Swerlein, 32, Toledo
The Bells and Whistles
Well, they improved Xbox Live dramatically. It s easier to connect to friends, to find what games they play, to find people who play the games you play. There s an underground zone for trash talkers. I love everything about it. So does everyone I talk to. Except that the best games are not out yet.
Brandon Rudolph, 21, Lamberville, Mich.
If there s a problem, it s that Microsoft released it too soon. A lot of the games are merely extensions of existing games that just look a little cleaner. As of yet, there s no killer game. But still, it s phenomenal. A lot of people are taking a cautious perspective on it, but when Halo 3 comes out for the 360, people will spend $400 just for that. I would, too.
Mark Putnam, 20, Toledo
I am beyond pleased. The first day I played for 12 hours. It was actually overwhelming at first because they throw so much at you, and give you so many features, you really feel you re getting a good value. My jaw hit the floor. You open the box, and it just feels like a quality unit.
Vinny Lescault, 20, Toledo