2014 saw its fair share of headlines but which one created the most impact?
This year didn’t have the benefit of two major consoles releasing, never mind the various controversies that went on behind both their releases, but headlines were still buzzing a’plenty with what had happened.
If it wasn’t Microsoft acquiring Mojang and Minecraft for $2.5 billion with Markus “Notch” Persson departing soon after, then it was the acquisition of Oculus VR and Rift by Facebook for a whopping $2 billion. Twitch also made plenty of news this year with rumours of its acquisition by Google before Amazon finally picked up the video game streaming site.
Street Fighter 5 being exclusive to the PS4 was also a hot topic especially since it confirmed that Sony was as much involved in keeping third party exclusives as Microsoft was. That being said, there was one particular event this year that caused plenty of impact in the industry itself. Thankfully, it worked out in a positive way for the party in question.
Winner: Xbox One price drops and Kinectless SDK
After its initial reveal and the controversies that followed, Microsoft took every single step possible to address concerns. 24 hour online authentication? Gone. An always on Kinect? Gone. No game sharing in either the digital or retail space without paying a small fee? Gone. Horrible indie publishing policies? Gone. Don Mattrick? Thank Christ he was gone.
But there was still the issue of the Xbox One costing $100 more than the PS4 due to the inclusion of Kinect. Microsoft tried to spin this as beneficial but eventually, even it had trouble justifying the purchase. So when it was finally announced that the Xbox One would $399 without Kinect, there was both anger from those who made the day one purchase and jubilation from those who always wanted to get on.
The price drop helped sales as well. Microsoft reported double the number of sales within the first month of the price drop and though official numbers are yet to be released, the Xbox One is catching up pretty well to the PS4. It may seem minor – it is just a price drop after all – but the Xbox One costing $399 and ditching Kinect is our pick for biggest news of the year.
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