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Where's My Xbox's Soul?

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Someone once said: ‘Arguing on the Internet is like the Paralympics - even if you win you’re still retarded’. Harsh, I find, but fair. It’s in the very essence of human nature that a bunch of fanatics communicating in complete anonymity will argue. Argue for the sake of argument, because it is their nature to believe that they alone are possessors of all knowledge. You know who you are.So, perhaps calling the Xbox ‘soulless’ was too poetic for the medium of forum? The pedantic took the topic too literally. We, of course, know that inanimate objects cannot actually posses a soul – that plastic moulding has no existential realisation. The point was lost in a feeding frenzy on the bones of one-upmanship and is why I’ve decided to lay my opinions to rest here, rather than in the occasional quagmire that is the Modern Gaming forum.soul·less adj1. lacking warmth, sensitivity, or feeling2. lacking anything that might stimulate or engage the feelingsIt is in the second sense that I apply the word to the Xbox. I need clear up the fact first that I am an Xbox owner and an Xbox fan; I even bought two Xbox games just today (Crimson Skies and DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball, if you’re interested).Microsoft’s machine, for me at least, fails to stimulate or engage my feelings fully; it passes time and amuses me, but does no more. There is no dense history of triumph and failure as a Sega console; it has no library of familiar licences to lean on, encouraging you to delve deeper in to its world, like a Ninty machine; it wears its marketing strategy on it’s sleeve – the place where an SNK joybox would have it’s 16-bit golden heart.The flare is lacking in its design. The Xbox is big lumbering clumsy giant, functional but without anything making it personable, but that is also its triumph. The Xbox does what it does well. It may not have the lovingly created first-party games and may be missing support from some of the more noticeable developers, but it has solid games and is a solid machine. It’s dependable. It’s there. It’s my Xbox - not my sister, mother or secret lover.

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I entirely agree with you on the Xbox lacking soul. It does have some good games, but mostly the market today reminds me of the movies: hundreds of soulless ripoffs and a few good movies. I think it's because the focus has shifted away from the indicidual programmer, and to the (expensive) team-based approach. I think the 'soul' you are referring to is that creative spirit that goes into something when the creator (writer atist etc) actually loves what they do. Most of the homebrews on this site have it, because they were a labor of love. Occasionally you get that in modern games, but mainly they are like the movies: shallow, predictable, and lucrative.

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