Anybody i knew or talked to both on the internet as well as in line for 21 hours in 16 degree weather were talking about the games.
Then they were deluded. The 360's launch lineup was awful. The first AAA title to hit the console was Gears of War. The first original title worth buying the console for was Dead Rising (and it pissed off people without HDTVs).
the reasons I bought the system to begin with are slowly becoming overshadowed with this third party stuff.
Why do you say that? Have you SEEN the laundry list of games coming out this year?
Especially since most new HDTVs, Blu-Ray players, Home Theaters and even DVD players are already coming prepacked with much of this software with no need of extra subscriptions.
Have you used those clients? They range from queue-only to partially servicable. They definitely aren't as smooth as the 360's offerings.
We are even reaching an age where you can stream this stuff straight from your cell phone to your TV.
Uh... I guess? It's a bit unwieldy to hook up a phone to a TV?
To watch something like Netflix on the Xbox 360, you have to pay twice to access it even though i already have three other ways to access it. With better quality software even.
Then... don't pay?
It's getting to the point where unless Xbox Live is the main part of your social life, you don't even need many of these apps.
That would be the point behind why they're adding the apps. They have a large active customer base. The apps and offerings help deliver content to those customers instead of those eyeballs wandering off to another place.
apps from your gaming console are going to become that much more pointless.
But you can argue that for any device. Why are you cabling a PHONE to your TV to watch movies? Why would you suffer the slow speed of a Blu-ray player's Netflix client when there's a fast client on the 360?
Now you say that during this point in a consoles lifespan, exclusives are a negative thing? Now why is that?
Thought that was pretty clear - middleware is mature. There's little to gain by being exclusive if the middleware is suitable.
You say that the UE3 does not matter on either console yet in early 2005, Epic came out with an exclusive Xbox engine called the UEX2 which even made 360 games outperform many current gen PC games of the time even though it was running on extremely dated hardware.
Uh, no. UE2X was an original XBOX engine and helped make Unreal Championship 2 look as good as first generation 360 titles. The optimizations included with UE2X were incorporated into UE3.
According to Epic back then, the exclusive development allowed them to do things they could not do otherwise because since everybody was running the exact same specs, they could tap into the consoles true potential.
You're comparing a final stage XBOX engine on last generation hardware to seasoned middleware on an extended cycle for this generation.
The XBOX lasted four years. We're now in year seven of the 360's lifespan and year six of the PS3's lifespan. Yes, optimizing for one console will work, but that has to be weighed against the monetary losses going single-platform may result in. This generation's middleware is cleary quite mature and capable, so... why go single platform?
So now when is the best time during a consoles cycle for exclusives?
When the middleware isn't able to deliver the performance desired.