April 20, 2016, another significant date in gaming history as today marks the fall of yet another gaming legend. Microsoft has announced that they are, as of today, discontinuing their most iconic system, the Xbox 360.
The decision to end production of one of the world’s most popular consoles comes as the industry continues to make giant leaps forward in technology. Virtual reality and improved 4K engines are just the tip of the iceberg.
According to Microsoft, they are simply unable to continue the production of a console that is now well over a decade old. The future of the company lies with the Xbox 360’s younger brother and its role in the next generation of video games. The current head of Microsoft's Xbox division, Phil Spencer, had this to say:
"While we've had an amazing run, the realities of manufacturing a product over a decade old are starting to creep up on us. Which is why we have made the decision to stop manufacturing new Xbox 360 consoles. We will continue to sell existing inventory of Xbox 360 consoles, with availability varying by country."
The console was first released back in 2005 and has sold over 84 million units. The news comes just a year after its tenth anniversary. The Xbox 360 is, without doubt, the most popular games console that Microsoft has ever produced. To this day there are many gamers out there who still prefer the Xbox 360 to its newer counterpart — myself included. It was the Xbox 360 that pulled me away from the iconic PlayStation 2 — well, let’s not be too hasty — I had both.
The console boasts incredible figures that will be near impossible to rival.
Over 78 Billion Gaming Hours Played
Almost 486 Billion Gamescores Achieved
27 Billion Achievements Unlocked
25 Billion Hours Spent Using Apps
Phil Spencer went on to comment:
"The Xbox 360 helped redefine an entire generation of gaming at Microsoft," Spencer said. "I am incredibly proud of all of the work and dedication that went into development of the Xbox 360 hardware, services, and games portfolio over the last decade. And I'm grateful to the fans for their continued passion and support."
The Silver Lining:
The Xbox 360 game servers will be staying online and Microsoft will continue to offer 360 support online for now. Deals with Gold will still remain in place for Xbox 360, but Microsoft will be upping their work on Backwards Compatibility. The move suggests that eventually the need to support the 360 will be nullified if everyone plays the 360 games off the newer system.
Can any of you truly say that this wasn’t something they saw coming? Microsoft is an ever growing company with viable ambitions of grandeur. The Xbox 360 is a stellar machine but as time goes on, so must we — we will always remember this incredible device.
Covet your Xbox 360 people, look after it, for there will be no more. It's game over.
Time to recount your favorite Xbox 360 memories below!