If you’re not really a fan of electronic games, it might not be clear to you why EA took the top poo in this year’s Worst Company in America Tournament. Maybe Alex’s experience can serve as an illustration. There was no huge amount of money involved, and his problem with EA didn’t affect his day-to-day life. But the utter lack of response from EA to a real and easily solved problem makes even a loyal customer like Alex feel that they don’t matter.
After his Xbox Live account was stolen, Josh had to file a Better Business Bureau complaint in order to make MIcrosoft pay attention to him and restore his account access. After three months, he was delighted to log back in to his account, but surprised to learn that he had been banned for a “code of conduct violation.” What did his account do to get banned? It was trying to steal other accounts. Imagine that.
When Microsoft announced earlier this week that it would be selling Kinect for Windows starting in February, a number of people envisioned a near future where they would be moving the cells around on their Excel spreadsheet by waving their hands, or finally getting quality motion controls for PC games that have never been ported to the Xbox 360. But neither of these situations is really what Kinect for Windows is about.
It’s difficult to imagine such a rustic, primitive existence, but Dustin doesn’t have broadband Internet access at home. He seems to manage, though. Except when it comes to his Xbox 360. When he downloaded a game expansion, a Microsoft representative gave him bad advice, instructing him to put his hard drive in the console of a friend who does have broadband at home. The representative left out a step, and the game expansion license now belongs to Dustin’s friend’s account. No one at Microsoft is able to help him get the content back under his own gamertag so he can use the content he paid for.
In recent weeks, we’ve heard from quite a few Xbox Gold customers who report that points have been stolen from their accounts, but Microsoft doesn’t seem terribly concerned about it, or about stopping the account breaches. Today’s example: reader Jesse, who loaded several cards on his account before a move, for some reason assuming that the points would be safer in his account (in the cloud!) than packed for his move. Not so. Someone spent those points on content that Jesse never downloaded, and Microsoft isn’t giving him those points back.
Earlier this week, Microsoft rolled out its rootin’-tootin’ motion-sensin’ new dashboard interface for the Xbox 360. And along with the host of new features came a most unwanted companion — ads. Luckily, for those willing to tinker a bit, there may be a way to stop Chuck Norris from showing up on your Xbox dashboard.
If you’ve been sitting in the same position for hours at your computer, stand up now and stretch or do some jumping jacks: A 20-year-old man addicted to gaming has unfortunately been killed by that same dedication to Xbox, falling victim to a pulmonary embolism after sitting for hours playing online games.
Pete wanted to share the joy of muliplayer gaming with the rest of his family, and so opened up a Family Gold account. All was well until he used some of his own points to buy downloadable content for his stepson. The system prompted him for a password that his stepson didn’t have, Pete didn’t have, and no one at Microsoft has the power to recover.
Reader Ben was sad. His Xbox was doing the ol’ Red Ring of Death. He thought that was quits for his trusted gaming companion but then he started doing some research on Consumerist. Perusing our archives, he realized from some of our old posts that included in the price of the repair to the machine he had done not too long ago was a one-year warranty extension. Huzzah! Here’s what he did next:
Christopher did something very, very stupid yesterday. Well, that, or one of his Xbox controllers did something very thoughtful and bought him a present on its own, even though it’s not Christmas or Bill Gates’ birthday or anything. Unfortunately, the gift was a copy of Call of Duty: Black Ops that there isn’t even room on his console to download, and the Xbox used his Live account. Some present. This is the reason why you shouldn’t leave anything on top of your controller that will keep hitting “accept.”
Two new studies may provide some ammo for kids that want to get more time in front of the Wii or Kinect. According to researchers at Brigham Young University and University of Massachusetts, “exergaming” for 10 minutes can result in a workout as stimulating as walking three miles on a treadmill.
Nick is stationed in Germany with the U.S. Air Force. After a long day of serving his country, he likes to play Xbox. But online play is difficult for military gamers serving abroad because of the way that payment systems at Microsoft and Sony are set up. For those whose credit card billing address is their APO address, the system just won’t accept their addresses and go through. Can’t anyone help the fine, brave gamers of the military?
Here’s the thing with warranties: they’re limited not by how many hours you’ve used an item, but by how long you’ve owned it. Usually, this works in our favor as consumers, but not in Nathan’s case. He writes that his little-used Xbox 360 has failed after three years, presenting the dreaded Red Ring of Death. He wonders: since this is the same problem that more frequent Xbox users see after less time has elapsed, why can’t Microsoft offer him a repair even though his warranty has expired?
Peter tells Consumerist that in early November, he purchased a new Xbox 360 with Kinect. His new system didn’t waste any time–it started breaking down that very night. Bringing it back to the store wasn’t an option, since he had transferred all of his licenses. His only choice was to contact Microsoft for repairs or a new box.
Whether it’s through the Zune Marketplace or Netflix, you can already watch movies and other video content on Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console. But a new story says the company is looking to expand its offering to what could end up turning Microsoft into your cable company.
There’s a reason why the instructions on the Xbox Kinect, which allows you to play video games by sensing your gestures, tell you to clear the playing area and make sure you have plenty of elbow room, especially when you are playing with two people. The reason is this video.
All those shattered TVs and cut-up hands that resulted when the Nintendo Wii first came on the scene sorta made sense. People were flailing their limbs around holding a plastic controller with a flimsy strap. But the new Kinect motion-sensing system for the Xbox 360 should have cut down on at least some of the damage done by removing the controller completely. And yet, some moron in Arizona has already ruined a perfectly good TV with his recklessness.