The Xbox (later referred to as Xbox Original) is Microsoft's first entry in the console market and was released in 2001. It competed against the Nintendo GameCube and PlayStation 2. It was succeeded by the Xbox 360.
Why It Rocks
- The Xbox revolutionized online gaming with Xbox Live, a fee based service released in 2002. It enabled gamers to download new content and unlike the other consoles from Sega and Sony, Xbox used an integrated Ethernet port. Xbox Live supported the original Xbox until 2010.
- It is the first console to include a built-in hard drive for save files.
- It introduced us to the Halo and Forza franchises.
- It was the most powerful console of its generation.
- Re-released many PlayStation 2, Dreamcast and GameCube games (such as the first two Fatal Frame games) and added extra content that those versions didn't have.
- Most multi-platform games run really well on the Xbox during that generation.
- Around 969 games was released for the system.
- It was popular with hardcore gamers.
- The original controller for the system was too large for many gamers hands, which gained the controller nicknames such as "Fatty" and later the "Duke".
- Not many kid/family-friendly games, because of the console's focus on hardcore adult gamers.
- There wasn't a "mascot character" associated with the console. Microsoft had Blinx: The Time Sweeper as an attempt to get a mascot but the franchise didn't last long.
- Many early Xbox consoles tend to break down easily.
- The console flopped hard in Japan.
While it lost to the PlayStation 2 by a huge margin, the Xbox sold a respectable 24 million units and was very popular in North America, enough to get a successor, the Xbox 360. However, it and the entirety of the Xbox brand for that matter, sold terribly in Japan.
To some extent, the Xbox can be considered the successor to the Sega Dreamcast, to the point that the console's hardware design was strongly inspired by the Dreamcast. In fact, Sega initially negotiated with Microsoft to make the Xbox backwards compatible with the Dreamcast. That didn't happen though, instead, the Xbox got many games that were intended to be made for the Dreamcast prior to its discontinuation. The Xbox controller also shares some similarities to the Dreamcast controller.