There have been rumblings of problems with the Microsoft Xbox Live, broadband multi-user gaming service that was launched about a week ago, but they’ve sold out the initial 150,000 $50 units within a week.
They’re also trying to bring a more ‘street’ feel to the product, trying to emulate the big success Sony had doing the same to the PlayStation. MS is building on their current sponsorship of the Vans Triple Crown Series, which covers skateboarding, wakeboarding, surfing, snowboarding, BMX and freestyle motocross.
Vans, the hallowed skateboard brand, are allowing MS to create Xbox Lounges at eleven Vans Skate parks around the US, so the ‘Kids’ can take a rest from skateboarding, pick up an Xbox controller and … err … play virtual skateboarding on Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 and three other non-skateboarding games.
MS see the importance of broadening the awareness of online gaming by getting people to recommend it, and to this end Xbox Live will be available at all but two of the sites, only as those sites don’t have broadband connections.