We're looking for new writers to join us!

Crafting my New Xbox Experience avatar

by: Randy -
More On: Blog
PhotobucketDo you hear what I hear?  That's the sound of my Xbox 360 no longer hitting Boeing jet decibels when Fable II is spinning in the tray.

Thanks to the crispy fresh NXE (New Xbox Experience), I download Peter Molyneux's ear-bleedingly-loud-in-the-tray role-playing game from the disc and onto the hard drive.  It took a grand total of 12 minutes.  And, let me be frank for just a moment, there's absolutely nothing else I did for 12 minutes this week that gave me the warm-fuzzy feeling that I'm feeling right now with Fable II.  In Fable II, if you're still running it from the disc, you don't have to do anything more than stand around an uneventful town square and you'll have to engage your 5.1 speakers at 80% just to hear what the in-game town crier is shouting right next to you.  But now?  The gravel-churning sound from my 360 has ceased.  Calmed itself.  Found peace and understanding with itself.

And it has graciously granted me a slice of that same peace.

But then with Grace, my wife, nestling next to me on the couch -- though she doesn't know why I'm dragging her in front of the 360 -- I open up the Avatar Customization screen.  The bright NXE spectrum splashes against the backdrop and I gingerly hand the controller to Grace.  "Okay," I say, no hubris in my tone, "it's time to make me!"

With very little hesitation in her movement, Grace makes a slightly-below-medium height fellow with caramel-colored skin, hair black and slightly slicked back, then skillfully fits him into a pair of Timbalands, dark jeans, and a straight-lined jacket.  Not bad, I say.  Not bad at all.

I grow distressed, however, when she keeps trying to adjust my avatar's chubby factor.  "Is that all the further it goes to the right?"  She looks at my stomach, looks at the avatar, looks at my stomach again.  "Hm," she says.  "Maybe you'll be that skinny again.  Someday."

She then promptly puts a wedding ring on my avatar's finger and then heads for the Facial Features screen.  She flips around the options, chuckling at a few, and settles on dropping a scar over my avatar's right eye.

"Hey?" I say.

"Hey," she stops me.  "Do you want to be you, or do you actually want to be interesting?"