Editor’s Note: The following article was written by Alex Cotton, a multi-sport student-athlete from Chaminade High School [Locust Valley, N.Y.]. Alex won an essay contest, making him STACK’s representative to the Global Xbox Crew, a collection of teens who are invited to exclusive Xbox events and have the opportunity to try out new Xbox gear and games, meet game designers and interact with star athletes or celebrities who are in attendance. After each event, Alex writes an article detailing his experiences. This posting—Alex’s first—is about the Next Gen event in New York City on Oct. 30, 2008.
Recently, I got the chance to go to Xbox’s Next Gen event in New York City. The first thing that I wanted to try out was Guitar Hero: World Tour. My friend and I immediately got into the game. He played the guitar while I played the drums. I couldn’t help but be disappointed because it seemed like I was only playing two notes. The upside of Guitar Hero’s drum set is that it has cymbals that are really cool to play. And the guitar for this game was no doubt better than Rock Band 2’s. It has a touch pad thing for solos and some really cool new features.
Rock Band 2 was my second stop. It doesn’t have a lot of new features like Guitar Hero, but it is still a lot of fun. If I had to choose between the two, I would chose Rock Band just because it has so many songs and because I am so used to it.
The next thing I tried was Xbox’s new dashboard that was updated onto your Xbox November 19. I know a lot of people won’t like this, but it really isn’t that bad. It has a lot of cool features—like Netflix. I will use this feature a lot because I love movies. Another cool feature is Avatars. With this, you create your own avatar [person that looks like you], and when people look at your stats or something, that is what they will see.
The next game I had the chance to play was Madden 09. This game is just pure fun for any age or any type of person. If you don’t play sports or follow them, you can still enjoy this game. When I played, my friend was somewhere else so I had to play a ten-year-old, who was very good at the game. He told me it was his third time playing, and I was amazed. It just shows you how easy it is to pick up the controller and start playing.
The game right next to Madden was NBA Live 09. This game is also an amazing sports game with great graphics and an easy gameplay interface. Both games can help you in real life sports by showing you how to react in certain situations on the field or court.
The last game I got to take a look at is Lips, which is for anyone who thinks they can sing or anyone who loves music. Lips is sort of a karaoke game, but when the words come up, it also shows the original music video of the song you are singing. After trying out all these great games, I got the chance to talk to some of Xbox’s executives who were at the event. They told me about some new games, some of the new features in the games and the new Xbox experience. Everything I tried at this event was great, and I look forward to playing these games when I buy them when they are released.