In case you didn’t watch yesterday’s episode of Inside Gaming Daily, here’s the scoop: Microsoft has confirmed that the Xbox One console won’t be coming with a packed-in headset, a reversal from the included game-chatting accessory that came with many bundles of the Xbox 360. Furthermore, Microsoft is pretty serious about not featuring any kind of backwards compatibility in its new system, as the Xbox 360 headset will not work in the new console.
According to a post on Ars Technica, Microsoft issued a statement about the decision, and why you may not really need a headset after all (haha, just kidding, of course you do):
“Xbox One does not include a pack-in headset accessory. Each Xbox One includes the new Kinect sensor, with a highly sensitive multi-array microphones designed to enable voice inputs and chat as a system-level capability, both in-game and with Skype and other experiences. For gamers who prefer a headset, we have a variety of offerings that you can find on the Xbox Wire.”
Yeah, that’s cool and all? But when you’re playing a game full of gunfire and explosions coming out of your TV, I don’t care how sensitive your microphones are. It’s going to get picked up by the Kinect, and your chatting will sound like garbage. I would love to believe that this won’t be the case, but I’m not confident of such an outcome. Of course, Microsoft will sell you a headset that fits right into the Xbox One controller—but as to how much that will cost, it’s not yet clear. My guess is at least $20, but probably closer to $40 or so. I can smell it.
Meanwhile, the PlayStation 4 will offer players a standard headset jack, meaning you’ll probably be able to just plug your cellphone headset into the controller that way. This is a similar move to Sony’s decision to offer Bluetooth headset support with the PlayStation 3. And also, the PS4 will have a mono earbud and microphone already included in the package.
So let’s think. Xbox One costs $500 and requires you to buy an accessory to do in-game chat. The PlayStation 4 costs $400, and will allow you to use a headset you probably already own.
At this point, it seems more and more like there’s a pretty clear winner regarding which console maker is more interested in letting a customer keep spend cash on things like great games. Which is funny considering how stupidly overpriced the PlayStation Vita and its proprietary memory cards are. But, you know, win-some/lose-some, I guess. Let’s just give everyone all our money all the time already.
[Via Ars Technica]