“Which system is better? Wii or XBox 360?” A while back, I would have said Wii hands down! As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been swayed to think there are some pretty great things about XBox too, especially with Kinect!
Without the Kinect, the XBox 360 seems to not be as family friendly. The games seem to be mainly geared towards older children, especially boys. Don’t get me wrong, there ARE games that kids can play such as the Lego series of games, Rockband/Guitar Hero, and other games such as Kung Fu Panda or How to Train Your Dragon. Most of the games however, have more mature content. There are a lot of first person shooter games such as Halo, Crackdown 2, etc… Many of the games contain a lot of gore, profanity, and sexual content.
One thing I DO like better about the XBox over the Wii is that each gamer has their own profile. Achievements can be earned by each person, and his/her progress in a given game is saved with that specific profile. I also like that profiles can be saved on a jump drive and brought from location to location. Gamers can go to their friends’ house and each play with their own profile. If a person subscribes to an XBox Live account (a paid service where gamers can play online vs other players, and access downloadable content over the internet), a group of friends could have a “party”, with everyone playing the same game (or viewing the same movie), each from the comfort of their own homes.
The addition of Kinect to the XBox platform has been awesome! Your whole body is the controller. It scans your body and follows your movements. Even the simplest of games end up being a great workout. It’s a great way to get off the couch and get your body moving.
Wii seems to have a much larger variety of children’s and family-friendly games. While many of the Wii’s games use motion sensitive controls, they often require awkward movements, or just the right aim with the controller. The Wii has 2 remotes in a sense. There is the regular Wii-mote, then the nunchuck which some games require, and some don’t. The movements allowed by the nun-chuk can add to what the gamer can do, but the chord between them can also hinder the movements you want to do. Gamers each have their own profile, but progress in the game is saved on the console. One person can make a ton of progress through a game, and the next person to sign on to that game will start where the other one left off. There are often options to have up to 3 or so saves per game, but again, they are not specific to a user. My understanding is that profiles can be saved on a wii-mote and transferred, but I do not have experience trying it.
My personal opinion is that the Wii is still better for the whole family, due to the range of games available. The Xbox 360 with Kinect is also a great choice, but there aren’t as many games available yet. XBox 360 is probably the better choice for the age 16+ crowd, as the games are more mature, and offer greater challenge.
My fiancée, Jason Strate (twitter|blog) has this to say when asked the question: “X-Box. Given the option to play between any of the platforms, my kids always choose X-Box. Wii is awkward and is generally annoying over the long run as you try to convult your body to work in the “optimal” position to win the games. Get the Kinect and play the games exactly how you want with the correct movement. Also, the 5 year old I know struggled with every game to figure out how to play the games and get through the boards – now that he is on X-Box he is enjoying games without frustration.”