March 07, 2014, 6:00 AM —
It's pretty clear that the suits at Microsoft are worried about the Xbox One, and it seems they have reason to be given how well Sony's Playstation 4 is selling (over 6 million units so far). Just last week we talked about an Xbox One price cut in the UK and the announced Xbox One TitanFall bundle which lists at the same price as an unbundled Xbox One.
It seems even that wasn't enough, because now we've got word of another bundle that's coming next week. Buy an Xbox One and get a digital copy of Forza 5 for free.
This bundle is a little different as it'll be offered at "select retailers" for a limited time. It also doesn't seem to have a fancy box, which suggests it hasn't been planned as carefully as the TitanFall bundle. A cynic like me can read a lot into this. Maybe pre-sales of the Xbox One TitanFall bundle aren't at a level that Microsoft hoped they would be. Maybe TitanFall isn't going to be the Xbox One system seller that Microsoft assumed it would be. (I personally know a lot of people who're excited to play TitanFall....on their PCs. I don't know anyone planning to purchase an Xbox One just for this game. But that's pure anecdotal information of course.)
I can't help but feel that Microsoft has put all its eggs in this TitanFall basket. What other upcoming Xbox One game have we been hearing about lately? I'm not sure the Playstation 4 is much different, but Sony has been doing a better job of teasing smaller games coming to that platform. If you follow the Playstation Blog rarely does a day go by without some upcoming indie title being talked about. I think the XB1 will get many of these titles as well but Microsoft doesn't seem interested in promoting them.
Anyway, if you've been thinking about picking up an Xbox One, wait until next week and get either TitanFall or Forza 5 free.
Oh and just to stir the pot even more, check out this post on Crave Online about why TitanFall 2 won't be an Xbox console exclusive. The author has transcribed some of Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter's latest "Pach Attack" video, in which Pachter basically says that EA assumed the Xbox One would dominate in this generation and that's why they partnered with Microsoft. And now there're 6 million PS4 users who could've been potential TitanFall purchasers had EA made a different choice.
I'll admit I'm beating up on Microsoft a little bit here, but in truth I want the Xbox One to do well (I own one after all). I've been happy to see MS rolling out patches that address issues users have and to add features that should've been ready for launch. But frankly I'm tired of how the company has been treating the Xbox One as "the TitanFall Box" and I'll be glad when that game is behind us and we can start to hear about other great games headed our way.
Read more of Peter Smith's TechnoFile blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Peter on Twitter at @pasmith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.