IGN: Enter The Beta: "'Seriously -- if you've seen the Xbox 360 pictures Microsoft has released already, imagine that with a different faceplate, a different skin, and a bit of kit stuck to the top for debugging.'"
Nifty picture. Gotta go with Rob Smith on this though, "I wanted Microsoft to say "screw BC (backwards compatibility) -- we're building a system for the future of gaming, not the past, and here's how it's going to rock your world."" Myself I don't care about BC. I have an XBox, I have a Playstation, I have an NES and a Gamecube. I don't need the next-gen system to play those games. If I really want to play Burgertime, I'll boot up the NES. I would rather that Sony and Microsoft ditch BC and it's crippling effect (bloated chipsets, extra OS code, etc) and just make a system designed and built to play the next-gen games. Old game? Play it on the old system.
Is BC a real issue or a marketing issue? I don't know. I do know that the people I know don't care. A few cared, until I asked if they were throwing away their PS2 when the 360 or the PS3 came out. I asked how many PS1 games do they actually play on their PS2, and the answer tends to range from "none" to "a couple of 'em once or twice to see it work, and then never again." My gamer son has been forced to boot up the old PS1 to play Final Fantasy 7. This lasted a couple of days before it got taken down again. I myself have hooked up...er...ummmm... okay, I'm not interested in playing any of the old games.
I'm more interested in playing updated versions of old games. I want to play Shadowrun, but with better AI, better RPG and better graphics. All the things that separate last gen with this gen and hopefully with next gen. I want to play Oblivion from Morrowind from Daggerfall from Arena. Doom was awesome, but I played the freebie that came with Doom3 and you know what? I'm not going back. For its day it was awesome, but it's dated. I moved on from "Dick and Jane" and pop-up books to Tom Clancy for a reason. I moved on from my old Mongoose BMX to a Specialized Rockhopper for a reason. Sure it's nifty to see them and maybe try them out for old times sake, but I don't want a steady diet of outdated superceded games just for grins. I'd rather they put that misplaced effort into making the next-gen systems better.
PS: Okay, I'll make an exception for Halo2, or release Halo2.5 for the 360 and I'll buy it.