The Xbox One is right around the corner, and it promises to bring a better gaming experience this time around, with all-new games and better graphics. However, Microsoft is also still focusing much of its energy on the eight-year-old Xbox 360, which the company just updated with a new design at E3 in June during its Xbox One press conference.
With Microsoft’s new console releasing November 22, many gamers will most likely take no second thought and purchase the Xbox One outright (a lot of gamers have already pre-ordered theirs), leaving their Xbox 360 behind, but many people are failing to realize that the Xbox 360 is still a solid console, and will be for at least the next couple of years. With that said, now is the perfect time to buy one.
The Xbox 360’s price is at an all-time low, and since Microsoft just recently gave the console a new look, you’re essentially getting a new, redesigned gaming console for next to nothing. The Xbox 360 starts at a measly $179 (or just $99 if you commit to two years of Xbox Live) — throw in a Kinect sensor and it’s $249 for the bundle. Of course, you’ll probably want a hard drive as well, so we’ll make it an even $300 for the whole bundle; that’s $200 less than an Xbox One.
Of course, if you’re looking for an even better deal, you can easily find a lightly-used Xbox 360 for dirt cheap on eBay or Craigslist. Just last year, I was able to grab a console, four controllers, a 320GB hard drive, and a Kinect sensor for just over $300. If you’re just wanting the barebones, you can find a console with a controller for under $100 if you look hard enough.
Speaking with Eurogamer, Xbox chief of marketing and strategy Yusuf Mehdi said that the Xbox 360 still has yet to see at least 100 more games come to the eight-year-old console in the future, so while the Xbox One will obviously have its selection of exclusive games, the Xbox 360 will get an even bigger selection of games heading its way.
Furthermore, a lot of the big games that will launch on the Xbox One will be coming to the Xbox 360, so it’s not like you’ll be jipped out of a good gaming experience if you get an Xbox 360 this late in the game. Brand new titles like Call of Duty: Ghosts, Watch Dogs, Grand Theft Auto V, and Assassin’s Creed IV will all be coming to the Xbox 360 this year, and if they’re still designed to run on older hardware, then they can’t be that much better on the next-gen consoles. Of course, Dead Rising 3, Forza 5, and Ryse look to be really good games that will only be on the Xbox One, but there’s obviously going to be at least a little sacrificing when you stay on the current generation console. However, there may not be that much to warrant an upgrade to the Xbox One right away.
The thing about newly-released hardware (especially hardware that is meant to have a long life-span) is that it usually goes through several iterations before it gets really good, and the first iteration isn’t usually all that great. Just look at the original Xbox; it was loud and very prone to infamous Red Rings of Death. Eventually, it got a redesign that made it quieter and better looking, and most recently, it received another makeover to resemble its successor in a way.
It’s extremely rare when it happens, but the Xbox One could be a decent piece of hardware when it first launches, but more than likely, it’ll have its share of problems that will be reported during its first several weeks of being out in the wild. And those early adopters will be the ones paying the most money for a piece of unrefined hardware, whereas those who wait a couple of years for the system to get an update will pay less and get a much better gaming console for their money.
Of course, in the end, any hardcore console gamer is going to get the Xbox One no matter what, and they’ll most likely toss out their Xbox 360 once the new console arrives in the living room, but for those casual gamers thinking about breaking down and getting the Xbox One, or if you’re just afraid that your Xbox 360 will instantly turn into a pile of obsolete junk, it’s important to note that the older console is here to stay for at least a couple more years, and you’ll still be able to play some of the more popular games on the market.