Going into this year's E3 press conference, there was no shortage of hype surrounding Microsoft. After a year of teasing its newest hardware offering, the manufacturer was set to take the show by storm, delivering the 4K Xbox One announcement everyone was waiting for to standing applause and cheers from the crowd.
It was very unfortunate, then, that none of this came true.
Boasting the tagline "the most powerful console ever", Microsoft failed to deliver where it mattered most to today's gaming consumer: the price. Setting up the Xbox One X at an initial price point equivalent to two times that of its base model evoked a "DOA" cry from gamers everywhere. How Microsoft neglected to read the countless user comments indicating this is behind my comprehension. In fact, Sony itself mentioned that there was no way it could sell its PlayStation VR higher than the PlayStation 4 when it first launched. To not go by the industry leader's logic in this case proved to be an unwise choice.
Of course, the issue of price would be less severe if there was reason to support the premium threshold, which the manufacturer – along with Sony last year – also failed to do at this year's presser. Microsoft gets more criticism for this simply because it was all talk and no show, hyping this momentous beast of a machine and in the end giving no one any reason to buy it. Again, it could have very easily learned from Sony's mistakes with the PlayStation 4 Pro reveal, but adamantly refused.
Then comes the games. Needless to say, proclaiming 20 exclusive partnerships and impressing with only a few will not sell a $500 console – especially if a lot of the titles shown don't fully realize the system's capabilities (Minecraft in 4K is a meme now). Now more than ever, the video game industry lives by the expression "show, don't tell." Microsoft needs to stop saying and start doing for the sake of the Xbox brand.
There's no doubt in my mind that the manufacturer can do this – it just has to start delivering. With negativity around the Xbox One since release and stumbles here and there (like the Scalebound cancellation), MS is in no position to be boastful.
In my opinion, it's for this reason that the company ultimately ended up being E3 2017's biggest loser. Capturing an industry's attention and then losing it over the course of just over 90 minutes is a failure both to your investors and to your loyal customers.
Microsoft need to get its overall strategy (hardware AND software) together in such a way that it rivals well with Sony's and Nintendo's increasingly threatening one. It needs to get the ball rolling and listen even more to consumers about what they want from the company, and needs to start investing in those areas. Activating your loyal consumers can prove to be a powerful thing, and delivering to them what they actually want will only future-proof the Xbox brand going forward.
The opinion expressed in this article is purely that of the author and is not representative of KeenGamer as a whole. Follow David on Twitter: @ZenoCreator125