Saturday, December 4, 2021

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Microsoft unveils its next-gen game console: the Xbox…5?


xbox5eventOn the heels of Sony’s PlayStation 4 announcement, Microsoft unveiled its next-gen game console at a New York City press event last week. Curiously, the system was christened the Xbox 5, despite only being the third iteration of the company’s gaming platform. Chief of Xbox Marketing and Propaganda Alan Douglas took to the stage to address the crowd’s confusion.

“Numbers are meaningless,” Douglas explained. “It’s not like there were 359 Xboxes before the Xbox 360. And let’s face it, when consumers see the PlayStation 4 sitting on a store shelf next to the way-more-advanced-sounding Xbox 5, which one do you think they’re gonna buy?”

Douglas then handed the presentation over to the hardware development team’s Chief Nerd, Martin Blumenthal, who proceeded to boast about the console’s vast synergistic features, including its ability to wirelessly connect to your smartphone, tablet device, PC, Bluetooth headset, digital camera, MP3 player, printer, scanner, fax machine and refrigerator.

“This console will be your one-stop shop for everything from streaming digital content to accessing every social media site known to man,” Blumenthal said. “We did have to scale back on a few things to make room for all of this spectacular multimedia technology. So the Xbox 5 won’t actually be able to play video games.”

This revelation was met with murmurs of disapproval from the audience, prompting Blumenthal to offer reassurances.

“Not to worry,” he said. “All of your favorite first-party video game properties will have an enormous presence on Xbox 5, in the form of “Fable”-inspired desktop themes for your home menu screen or Master Chief costumes for your functionally useless Xbox avatar — all available through Xbox Live for a low, onetime, monthly fee.”

Blumenthal added that though the Xbox 5 wouldn’t play current or pre-existing Xbox games, it would be fully backwards compatible with HD DVDs and other defunct media such as Laserdiscs and Betamax tapes. He then went on to describe the successor to Kinect — the Xbox 360’s motion-sensing control interface, which suffered from frequent unresponsiveness issues and a tendency to make its users look like hysterical idiots, wildly waving their arms around.

kinect2“In designing Kinect 2, we really listened to the feedback we got from the fans,” said Blumenthal. “To avoid the motion sensing problems that plagued the original Kinect, we’ve created a small device that you can actually hold in your hands. This new device has a directional pad you can use to select different onscreen options as well as buttons you can press to execute those options. It’s 100 percent responsive, and no flailing is required. And to ensure that there are no issues with battery life, this device will be tethered to the Xbox 5, siphoning power directly from the console and, by extension, your electrical outlet.”

Despite the Xbox 5’s several controversial features, by the end of the press conference, people were already camped out in front of Wal-mart — even with seven months left to go before the console’s release this holiday season. We spoke to one of these campers, Eddie Godfrey, about his anticipation for the new system.

“Nah, I don’t care about video games,” said Godfrey. “But I know when this thing comes out, it’s gonna cost a fortune. I’m gonna buy as many as I can afford and sell them for three times the price on eBay right before Christmas.”

Godfrey is optimistic the profits will last him until the next console generation. APRIL FOOLS

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