How you know Microsoft nailed with the Xbox One controller: use it exclusively for two weeks then go back to the Xbox 360. You’ll think the 360 controller is a piece of junk. The one previously considered the best console controller ever made.
I’ve been playing more of Forza 5 and enjoying myself. Re-learned the technique of braking gently and accelerating gently through turns. Capturing awesome overtakes is such a joy with the Kinect sensor. I wish they’d make the command “Xbox did you see that?” I haven’t done any tuning; on the default difficulty it’s not hard to dominate your Drivatar friends. Maybe I should crank it up a bit.
Forza 5’s Drivatar system leads to weird situations: a friend of mine bought Forza 5, played it for a bit, then traded it in. But Xbox doesn’t know that. I still see his car driving around like it always has. This is going to get really awkward when people die in real life but their ghosts continue to haunt our digital motor speedways.
Peggle 2 also came out yesterday. It’s… well, it’s still Peggle. I hope I don’t get in trouble by comparing it to Angry Birds, but it has the same simplicity of player input and complexity of play. Past the ball launch you’re there to watch the lights, listen to the sumptuous sound effects, and rock out with the purple-maned unicorn. There’s plenty of strategy in choosing the angle, timing, whether to pick up powerup balls, and positioning yourself for a free ball. Massive kudos to Popcap for charging money for this game and not bilking players for microtransactions to retry.
It’s also a revelation to be able to use the Kinect to record snippets of casual games like Peggle 2. Not only can Xbox see, but also everyone else on Earth.