Next Generation Gaming

It’s time for my obligatory, once per year post. (Just kidding but I do have a notable track record.) Life has simply been too busy for me to spend much energy on posting to my blogs. I would love to post more regularly but any brief pauses I have are usually times I try to rest before the next round. I am still making a good pathway as an IT Director in my current position and though it has had its ups and downs, it’s been a fun experience. I also have been continuing my efforts as a teacher with Liberty University and that’s been a fun and unique walk in of itself.

But this post isn’t about life, you can read that on my Facebook and other places. It is, however, about tech. As some of you might remember, I purchased a Nintendo Wii (original, not WiiU) about  6 years ago so that Mady could have a game system that was kid-friendly. It has served its purpose for some time and was even the first way we could ever watch Netflix. However, as our other children have grown up and want to play games, the Wii’s library of available games continues to wane and the game discs are starting to act up more and more. I noticed, over time, that Adrian spends his down time after church playing the Lego games on the church’s XBox 360 systems and seems to enjoy it. It was financially silly to purchase an XBox 360 given that it is on its way out and probably running older (or almost as old) hardware as the Wii. That being said, I finally broke down and purchased an XBox One as a late family Christmas gift.

I found it extremely humorous that the first thing it wanted to do when I set it up was download updates. That’s Microsoft’s mantra I guess. Even though our internet at home is getting better over time, it’s still maxed out at about 3.5 Mbps and a 4 GB update will take a LONG time. So, I brought it to my office and plugged it into the Student network to let it get the updates. It only took about 5 minutes to get the rest of the update that would have taken hours at my house. It then grabbed several new updates culminating in an hour long download cycle. At last it was updated and I used some of the bandwidth to download a few games as well.

I was initially concerned that the library of games available was highly limited for younger gamers (most games are E-10+) but there are a few games such as the ever so popular Minecraft, a few Lego games, and an interesting game called “Ori and The Blind Forest”. I sucked in the Megaman Legacy game (has all 6 of the Original Megaman games in one) and a “Family Game Night” at my sister in law’s suggestion.

This thing is pretty slick so far. Yes, my friends are mostly PlayStation gamers so I certainly got my fair share of comments at choosing the system that is not their favorite but I think the library for PlayStation 4 games that are kid friendly is even smaller – not to mention there is no Minecraft. I like the fact that it does an HDMI pass-through on my cable box so I don’t have to sacrifice the other devices connected to my TV’s shocking 2 HDMI ports nor do I have to reattach the HDMI switcher box as it was prone to forgetting when devices were connected. My wife, our exchange student and I had a great bit of fun playing Monopoly on the Family Game Night game and I had fun beating Mady at Scrabble. The kids have enjoyed playing Minecraft as well… or at least the bigger kids and our bonus kids.

Right now, I feel like this is a good piece of tech to purchase but we’ll see if I have buyer’s remorse after a few months.

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