15 January 2008

Another One Bites the Dust

My Xbox 360 died. Again.

My first 360 I won in a contest at E3 2006, playing a single game of Fight Night Round 3 against an inexperienced gamer. It didn't last more than six months of use before getting the infamous Red Ring of Death. (Don't you love the dark titles we give to Microsoft's failures?)

I'd been using the replacement for just over a year now, but it didn't survive the trip to bring the joy of Rock Band to Greenville. Shortly after returning home, the Little-System-That-Can't froze three times in a row, then failed to boot at all, once again victim to a trio of crimson lights.

A phone call to Microsoft tech support and five days later, I was delivered a prepaid box and label to send in my 360 for replacement. The box was nothing special, just a plain white cardboard box with no distinguishing marks.

I brought it into my local UPS Store for drop off and I kid you not, as soon as I walked in the door, the brown shirt behind the counter says "Another dead 360, eh? Put the box on the scale, please." I stood there, completely stunned at how instantaneously he recognized this plain white box for what it held. Unsurprisingly, the UPS Store is adjacent to Georgia Tech campus, so it's understandable that tons of 360s are processed from that location. But to recognize a plain white box...

I think it's pretty clear the failure rate for the first waves of 360s is MUCH higher than Microsoft will ever admit. What are my chances of getting a replacement manufactured in late 2006 or even 2007?

It's a good thing Jason also has a 360 for times like these. The rocking must go on!

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