Xbox Hits 10th Anniversary – Bonuses for Owners

Posted by at 3:52 pm on November 15, 2011

MS has kicked off the tenth anniversary of the Xbox with a celebration page and bonuses. Everyone gets access to a free avatar prop for Xbox Live that provides a gift box that opens to reveal fireworks. Some downloadable games will also be on sale as part of the anniversary.The console was launched November 15, 2001 as Microsoft’s then biggest gamble to date as it developed a complete hardware and software ecosystem, not just peripherals and keyboards. Some of the credit went to leaving exec J Allard, who helped convince the company for a time that it couldn’t rely solely on Windows-related products.

Inside the first Xbox was a 733MHz Pentium III variant, 233MHz NVIDIA graphics based loosely around the GeForce 3, and 64MB of RAM. The system sold for $299 at the time.

Microsoft had trouble taking any ground from Nintendo and Sony during the Xbox’s early history, although it did get to second place in 2002. While most support came from launch games that were originally supposed to be Mac- or PC-only titles, such as Halo or Oddworld, it was Xbox Live’s arrival in 2002 that was considered by some to be the real catapult for the platform, giving it true, always available online multiplayer at a time when it was sporadic at best on the GameCube and PlayStation 2​.

Most of the console line’s real success came with the Xbox 360, which saw sellouts quickly and grew through bankable game rosters such as the Call of Duty, Gears of War​, and Halo series. Helped in part by Kinect widening its audience, the Xbox 360 is now regularly the top-selling console in the US.

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