|Larry Hryb, Xbox's Major Nelson||Host||Xbox Live|
|Jeff Rubenstein||Co-Host||Xbox Live|
|Briana Roberts||Preferred Language on the Xbox Store||21:37|
|Erik Garcia||Xbox Wireless Headset||30:33|
|It Just Got Easier to Discover Games on Xbox in Your Preferred Language|
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Larry Hryb: Hi. It's Larry Hryb, Xbox's Major Nelson. Welcome to the show, the Xbox podcast, the official Xbox podcast, but it's not really official until I do that. Now, it's official.
Larry Hryb: Hello, Jeffrey.
Jeffrey: I was like, "I have no idea." Every week I'm like, "I have no idea where you're going with this." But you're just introducing me.
Larry Hryb: And it just happens. So, good to see you again. It's another week, another...
Jeffrey: Thanks. Have you noticed anything different about me?
Larry Hryb: Yeah, it looks great. The headset. I see the headset. I see the bright...
Jeffrey: [inaudible 00:00:33], yeah?
Larry Hryb: ...Xbox wireless.
Jeffrey: Oh, you've got yours, too?
Larry Hryb: Xbox wireless headset, here it is. We got a great interview later on. We're going to interview the engineer, one of the engineers behind this device and you're going to learn how it works really well with your Xbox One, your Xbox Series X or Series S. So we'll talk about that later. Do you have anything you want to say about this?
Larry Hryb: Or?
Jeffrey: Your computer, because right now, I've got this connected to my laptop, which is processing and going out to you. I'm using it for listening. We have more studio quality mics. So I'm using the mic to speak to you here, but listening through here. It sounds great, but the awesome thing is, I'm also at the very same time, I'm synced to my Xbox.
Larry Hryb: Off to Jeff's right is his console, so he's actually looking at his console right now.
Jeffrey: Yeah, and I can hear it, and then I can use the left balance meter to, do I want to hear your louder or do I want to tune you out and go back...
Larry Hryb: Or do you?
Jeffrey: ...to playing Dragon Quest? I shouldn't have presented myself with that choice because...
Larry Hryb: Is that what you're playing? Actually...
Jeffrey: I have something to think about.
Larry Hryb: Let's go to full screen so you can see that.
Jeffrey: I have.
Larry Hryb: Is that better?
Jeffrey: Oh, yeah. So these rotate. Volume is over here. That's my right ear and then on the left side, you feel a nice little niche and I think this is what really helps this tactile response. You're going to talk to the engineer. I'm sure they're going to talk about this. When I turn it in one direction, I really emphasize the chat to the point where I can completely remove game audio and I can do the opposite here. But if you want that balance, when I first put them on, I don't remember where I let off, I can find a nice little groove here that...
Larry Hryb: You can center yourself and come back, right?
Jeffrey: ...it lands on. Exactly. From that point, I can balance and figure out where I want to be.
Larry Hryb: And actually you dial it in...
Jeffrey: Mute is back here. You dial it in. Exactly, so really big fan. They're not noise-canceling, but noise-isolating, which is really good.
Larry Hryb: [crosstalk 00:02:28].
Jeffrey: Sometimes noise-cancellation-
Larry Hryb: Yeah?
Jeffrey: No, go on.
Larry Hryb: No, I was going to say [inaudible 00:02:32]-
Jeffrey: Oh, no, I'm talking about this. I'm a fan. I'm a client. I'm not the engineer, so I should shut up and let that person talk about it.
Larry Hryb: We're going to talk about the Xbox wireless headset later on in the show. We've got a whole interview, a demo. We're going to walk through what it looks like on the console. So don't even worry about it. It's going to be great. I know you'll love it.
Jeffrey: That's awesome.
Larry Hryb: In fact I love it...
Jeffrey: I do, just so you know, it is out next week. You're going to start to see media and creators talking about it next week as well. It seems to be hard to get right now. I think it's currently sold out, but one of many exciting things to talk about this week.
Larry Hryb: It's good to see you. It's good to see you. Haven't seen you all week.
Jeffrey: It's true. We, you never brought that Mustang by here, which I was a little heartbroken.
Larry Hryb: I know, I know. I feel terrible about that. I was supposed to bring the Mustang by to see you. And it just, go check out my Instagram for all the... I got a lot of people. I told you, I got a lot of people pinging me about that Mustang videos that I put three or four up and people loved it.
Jeffrey: Yeah. I was reading that it actually had put a dent in... From a market share perspective. Tesla is sort of the undefeated number one electric vehicle in the US market, but the Mustang came in really strong and you know taking away some share there. So I think it's good. I love first of all, these are, cars that are built here. I remember when I got my Volt and I'm sorry, my Bolt, my Chevy Bolt and talked about it on the show, someone a listener said, "Hey, I helped make that car."
Larry Hryb: That's kind of cool.
Jeffrey: That was just really cool. And so I really, plus there's just a lot of advantages to electric and the fact that they're becoming more accessible to more people is awesome. So also it just looks really cool and I wanted to drive it Larry.
Larry Hryb: I know, I feel bad. I'm going to see if I can get Ford to let me borrow it again for the week. You and I tried to get together. You were busy. I was... It's just, it's amazing where we live so close, we live about a dozen miles apart, but we still can't seem to connect. So I feel bad.
Jeffrey: No, no, it's fine. There's a whole pandemic.
Larry Hryb: By the way, A lot of gaming news this week, you can see I've been playing a lot of games over here. And the one that I got to tell you, should we just talk about this one? Cause this one just right before we started recording the show, this one happened and this is Overwatch. So this is really kind of cool. I don't know if you want to bring this up, but why don't you bring it up and I'll... Go ahead and talk about what the news is.
Jeffrey: Sure. So specifically with Overwatch so we're seeing just lots of games optimized for Xbox Series X and Series S and take advantage of the horsepower that these new next gen consoles have under the hood and Overwatch has done so, which is really cool. So a new patch released this week on all platforms.
Larry Hryb: Oh look at this.
Jeffrey: And there you go, there's the option. So you now have the ability to toggle for these different resolutions and frame rates. So you might look at this and go with resolution and balance. Like, why would I choose 4K over balanced, which is 1440P. But there's image quality versus resolution. And then where I know you can take advantage of this, Larry if you have a TV that is capable of broadcasting, 120 frames per second,
Larry Hryb: Put displaying 120 frames.
Jeffrey: Display, this is why you're the AV guy. I'm sitting here in 60 Hertz land. Both the Xbox Series S can Series X are both capable.
Larry Hryb: I can't see you in 60 frames.
Jeffrey: I know, right? I feel like I'm a slideshow. I'm like stop motion animation here in 60 frames, a second.
Larry Hryb: Is that a real player you're using?
Jeffrey: I'm using the win app video visualizer. So yeah 120 Hertz for both Xbox Series S and X are capable. One is of course the X is on a higher resolution, 1440P, which you have there. And but I love hearing these conversations about what people prize more. Do they value frame rate more? Do they value resolution and the image quality more? It's your choice, go with what you want.
Larry Hryb: This is interesting because I'm actually going into the practice range here, which I'm in, I picked Pharah, you know my Pharah, but I can actually on my, I have an LG TV and on the LG TV. If I hit this, here's a little secret. If you have an LG TV, a newer one, you can hit the green button a few times. And then in the upper right-hand corner, I don't know if you can see it. Yeah, you really can't see it.
Jeffrey: You've got a rather large nog in there. Oh, okay. It's over there.
Larry Hryb: It actually pops up and tells you, and you can see that I'm running it 4K 120. Tells you all of it right there. That's a little LG hack, so I'm sure other TVs do this as well, but I just haven't, this is what I have. So there you go.
Jeffrey: Yeah, we haven't played in a while, but I know just last week we were talking about getting back into it because I know we're all sort of jumping into our different games and we Apex together. We used to have like a really big Overwatch crew and we could run a full six and those were good really good times. And we've sort of like delved into different games since then. We should go back to it.
Larry Hryb: We, bifurcated, I believe is the proper term.
Jeffrey: Wow, that's very corporate America Larry.
Larry Hryb: We've got, so you and I have been playing A Way Out still after that interview last week.
Jeffrey: Yeah. Yeah. I'm glad you figured out. Because that was the time to figure out the curse word.
Larry Hryb: The bleeping
Jeffrey: Bleeper. but yes, exactly. So that was pretty... You should just like bleep me randomly from time to time. And I probably deserve it. I think that's a sequence on Jimmy Kimmel where he'll bleep things that are not actually,
Larry Hryb: Bleepable
Jeffrey: Yeah, Bleepable, And it sounds funny.[inaudible 00:08:15] Yes, exactly.
Larry Hryb: All right. Enough of that, it's probably killing someone's ears and I'm sorry.
Jeffrey: Yeah, it was a respectful level. So, hey big week this week.
Larry Hryb: Do you want to go through some news here since we're, since we kind of just kind of just drifted into the new space.
Jeffrey: You know, we could talk about what we're playing, but this is not your ordinary week. This is nothing even close to it. This is the week we welcomed Bethesda into the Microsoft family and got to say it feels pretty awesome. As soon as this was finalized earlier this week, I got to have like my first email with someone who does very similar work to what I do. Hi, Sean Baptiste,
Larry Hryb: Is it Sean?
Jeffrey: Over at Bethesda, Yeah.
Larry Hryb: I've known Sean forever. He used to be at Harmonics.
Jeffrey: He worked at harmonics. Yeah, exactly.
Larry Hryb: I love Sean.
Jeffrey: He's worked in a number of different places
Larry Hryb: I didn't know that.
Jeffrey: And there was a great video that came out earlier this week where you got to meet a lot of these different teams. And I got to say, I've been a huge fan of certain folks, like Harvey at Arcane.
It's just really awesome. And I'm like, wait, [inaudible 00:09:20] we work with him and his team now? Shinji Mikami, Tango Game Works in Japan. I mean if you look up Shinji Mikami's his resume. You're like, "Oh, wait, these are like all time classic games that he worked on." And we get to work with him now. And so it's just been, it's like finding out, you've got this long lost wing of the family that happens to be awesome. And we're just now going to get to start. Did we just become best friends? That's like sort of that feeling there.
Larry Hryb: Anyway, you could see the whole post that that Phil put up, Phil Spencer put up on Xbox Wire. I mean, just look at some of the images there and the iconography and the franchises that we, that are now part of the family. And it's pretty cool. It's very cool. I'm really excited.
Jeffrey: To say this. I think I should change my name to Jeff Wolfenstein just to honor this arrangement. I think that.
Larry Hryb: And I'll change mine to B.J. Blazkowicz.
Jeffrey: Major Blazkowicz. I mean, it's about as hard to spell as Hryb is to be honest, it's much longer, but people misspell them each at similar rates.
Larry Hryb: That's how you spell it right there,
Jeffrey: Right there. [crosstalk 00:10:40]
Larry Hryb: I was going to say, go watch the Bethesda video this week. Also, by the time this airs, there's another really, really cool round table up. That is going to air, or that has aired with Phil and some of the folks there and just, Phil and some of the team, and Aaron, went out to Bethesda, Maryland on the East coast of the US and kind of chatted with them. So you got to watch that as well. It's about, I saw it. it's about an hour, it's over an hour. It's amazing. So check that out to.
Jeffrey: Yeah. By now you've probably seen it, but if not, it's just really cool to meet a lot of these folks from different studios around the world. Now for the first time we're working with teams in Japan, we're working with teams in France, in Texas in lots of different places around the world, obviously in Maryland. So I'm just...
Larry Hryb: Over the moon.
Jeffrey: Super excited. but what does that mean for you now? Well, what it means is there are now 20 Bethesda games from some of these just iconic franchises as part of Xbox Game Pass. So there were different amounts in different places and some had been in previously and have come back. Now there's 20. And so I'm just looking through this list. The Dishonored games definitive edition for the first one that was such a great game and Dishonored 2 to which I need to I need to finish.
Larry Hryb: If you're a Game Pass subscriber. Thank you. The value of Game Pass just went like, boom. If you're not a Game Pass subscriber, what are you doing? What are you doing?
Jeffrey: You know, I was reading my favorite Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet and they were just talking about it, and they were talking about it is such a great deal.
Larry Hryb: Were you reading that over your morning Kugelblitz?
Jeffrey: Is a Kugelblitz a thing? Because I don't know. I mean, a kugel is right.
Larry Hryb: Your morning helping of sardines and sour cream.
Jeffrey: We'll just leave it at that. Fish for breakfast is highly underrated. Larry we have our pancakes and our eggs and our biscuits and those are awesome.
Larry Hryb: This is a country that is built on [crosstalk 00:12:45]
Jeffrey: Breakfast around the world. I know exactly we should not be, we should never be looking down at anyone else's cuisine. So the Doom, the Doom games we're talking everything from like Doom 1993. Which I mean, I had a lot of great memories with that one, all the way up through Doom Eternal, which is just phenomenal...
Larry Hryb: It defined a genre in many ways. A lot of these define the genres, I mean Fallout.
Jeffrey: Morrowind, Oblivion, Skyrim, ESO. And then we have The Evil Within which I've never played, but I probably should. Fallout 4, Fallout New Vegas, Fallout 76.
Larry Hryb: I played so much Fallout 3. I told this story many times I was filing bugs with those guys and I was, I completed everything. I mean, I was sending emails to Todd. I love a Fallout 3, Fallout 4, loved them all. Of course Vegas. So it's just here we are ladies and gentlemen, this is an amazing time to be a gamer and to be part of Xbox and to be a Game Pass subscriber, more importantly.
Jeffrey: Yeah, a game that we played a lot of just about two years ago, I want to say in the spring of 2018 or 2019, jeez. Rage 2 really, really enjoyed that that game that's part of Game Pass. And then Wolfenstein titles, Wolfenstein the New Order, which is phenomenal. the Old Blood and Young Blood. So we have all of the bloods are there.
Larry Hryb: Finally.
Jeffrey: And that is by popular demand. Thank you for speaking up. It's one of those things that we're testing this month and with a limited set of players
Larry Hryb: Let's be clear. When it was missing. You and I said, "well, wait a minute." And I sent you some of the emails I sent to the team.
Jeffrey: Yes. Yeah. I think I sent you a couple of emails on that, but you know, it's coming. The reconfigured Xbox app is amazing in a number of different ways, especially for setting up a new console and things like that. So it'd be great to have achievements coming back into that. And there's just a number of other settings here. A new way to manage your subscriptions and managing your game experience. And you can choose what to install and a lot of other things like that. So you're going to want to take a look on Xbox Wire at the Xbox update rollout post from Jonathan Hildebrandt, and that went up this week.
Larry Hryb: Jonathan, great guy. Runs that team over there. Thank you for that update. Jeffrey. That's good stuff. What's going on back here did I launch a game too. Apparently I did.
Jeffrey: It looks like yeah,
Larry Hryb: Far Cry.
Jeffrey: I think that's a Far Cry is that Far Cry 4?
Larry Hryb: That is Far Cry 4. Of which you and I played forever, we had so much fun in that game.
Jeffrey: Such a good game.
Larry Hryb: That gyro copter...
Jeffrey: Troy baker.
Larry Hryb: with the sniper was so OP.
Jeffrey: One of the best bag. I know a lot of people really loved Vass from Far Cry 3, and I totally get that. But Troy Baker in Far Cry 4 was just phenomenal and had a lot of personality for an enemy. And the endings were really cool on that one. That was one where you definitely wanted to see it through a number of different ways.
Larry Hryb: Had a good time with that one. That's got the frame rate boost by the way. That's why I put a little bit on.
Jeffrey: Exactly. And I actually loaded it back up and I was like, "Well, maybe I'll play through some of the stuff I didn't finish in that game." And I realized. No, I played everything in that game. I played the DLC. I think there was like a Yeti DLC.
Larry Hryb: Oh, that Yeti one was fun.
Jeffrey: I love me some Far Cry. Yeah. And there was something where I think you would sort of, you had to, you were dropped off in a tower and you had to make it to a destination by any means necessary as quickly as possible. And I remember I had done that too.
Larry Hryb: Right. What else we got there Jeffrey?
Jeffrey: Before we get too far into the show. I know we had talked about.
Larry Hryb: By the way, the timer says 20 minutes.
Larry Hryb: So we're pretty far into it.
Jeffrey: Okay. [inaudible 00:18:51] a long run. Right? So last week we had talked it was the first show of March and that Xbox is celebrating international women's day. International women's day was this past Monday, but there's content and a celebration of women's history month taking place all week. We have a great blog post that details everything over on Xbox Wire written by Jennifer Lane, the Turn 10 Studios design director. And she's the co-lead of Xbox's women in gaming. The one thing I want to point out as something that is coming up next week, and it's something that I've helped support is stream takeover. So we're doing programming on our Twitch channel, Twitch.tv/Xbox all month long. But there's going to be, we're going to be highlighting select creators throughout the week, and to tune into them, you're going to be introduced to some new Xbox creators on Twitch playing some fun games.
And I would say if you can. Welcome them make them feel loved as part of the Xbox community and some really good people on there. I may actually be joining one of them to play some Apex...
Larry Hryb: A surprise.
Jeffrey: Since we're talking about it. Lena Madrid from Strawberry 17.
Larry Hryb: Ow yeah, we've played together.
Jeffrey: Phenomenal player. We played, we used to play Overwatch and we also used to play... a heck of a sniper, as I recall. And also played a number of other shooter games because she's very good. She's carried us. So she's going to be streaming as part of this and a number of other great folks joining us throughout the week, usually around 11:30 AM Pacific. So if you're during your workday...
Larry Hryb: 2 o'clock Eastern.
Jeffrey: You're breaking classes, whatever it is, exactly, pop on over to Twitch.tv/Xbox and say, "Hi."
Larry Hryb: Hi.
Jeffrey: It would be, I would appreciate it.
Larry Hryb: I also want to thank our good friend Maxi Graff, who hosted the Xbox podcast. This very show earlier this week for international women's day with a Gabriela Ponce from Turn 10 and Saher from Minecraft and Jenn Panattoni the head of Xbox social, but go check that out. It should be in your feed. If you subscribe anyway, if you like and subscribe, you probably already saw it or listened to it. So thank you. Thank you to those folks for hosting. It was a lot of fun to see them.
Jeffrey: We should absolutely have them buy more often.
Larry Hryb: Oh, without a doubt. I mean the door is always open. The door is always open. So what do we got next? Jeffrey.
Jeffrey: What do we have next? So this is something that actually will lead into one of our guests. Something that is been a requested feature is to know when you're playing a game or you're about to buy a game what languages are supported and is it a language that I speak or prefer to engage with in a game. And you're going to be able to do that.
Larry Hryb: Joining me today is Briana Roberts who works on the Xbox store, which everybody uses every day to download games and buy games. Briana, thank you for joining us.
Briana Roberts: Thanks for having me. I'm excited to be here.
Larry Hryb: We've got some cool stuff to talk about. You had a blog post that went up earlier this week on Xbox Wire. And I want to talk about that because there's some little changes that some people really may enjoy in the Xbox store. Tell us about them. Because they're kind of cool.
Briana Roberts: Yeah, absolutely. So the feature is called supported languages. And basically what this means for our customers is they can see whether or not a game has localization support before they purchase, before they acquire that. So it's awesome from a choice standpoint, they have that power to know that information before they actually grab that game.
Larry Hryb: And it's interesting. Because I'm actually going to open it up right here. In fact, we'll go over. This is actually my console. We're going to go over here and I'm going to go up to, let's go to the Minecraft starter pack here. And I think this one will help us out, but this is what we're talking about right over here, the supported languages, right? Let me click A on that and tell us what's going on here. Because there's a lot of information here, but it's very logically laid out.
Briana Roberts: Yeah. So there are three components to in game localization. The first is interface and that refers to the menu all the buttons within a game.
Larry Hryb: The UI
Briana Roberts: Can I actually, the UI Yeah. Can I actually play it because it will be in the language, my native language or perhaps your secondary language. Then audio refers to any spoken audio in the game and then subtitles against that audio. And you can see it for all of our console supported languages.
Larry Hryb: And you can kind of see here. I mean, Minecraft is maybe a bad example that I chose because there's not really any subtitles.
Briana Roberts: There's more, there are more.
Larry Hryb: You know, this is a feature that I want to point out is, you guys have been working on it for a little while the team's been working on it for a little while and it's starting to roll out and you're going to see it more and more games. Is there another game maybe I should look at here that maybe is a better example.
Briana Roberts: Yeah. Let's take a look at some of the FIFA titles.
Larry Hryb: Ow FIFA that's right.
Briana Roberts: Let's do that.
Larry Hryb: Let's go in here and do that. What do people need to do to get this feature? They don't really need to do anything. It's all updated on the backend.
Briana Roberts: Yeah. It's live. So they will see that information as soon as they click into the details of the PDP. So you can conduct a search like you just did, you're in search for FIFA. You're gonna go into the detail section and then you actually see, we call it a card, but there's that card for supported languages. And that modal pops up for you. And what I love actually. So this is a little, even better example because it shows interface and audio checks. What I love is that your console chosen language pops at the top. So for you, Larry, it shows English. For me if I have my console set to French. One, all of this is going to be in French, but it's going to show French at the top.
Larry Hryb: Right? So it obviously knows what you have the system set to. And it says, "Oh, this is probably what you want to see." So we'll give you that at the top, you can of course, scroll down and see all the different, and there's a lot, there's a lot here. I mean, look at this, this kind of goes on forever. And this is really to support all of the regions and countries around the world. Because it's, a lot of people forget in the United States. There's a couple of predominant languages, but around the world, that's very different from region to region. So tell us how your team approach that.
Briana Roberts: It was taking a look at... Right, We're a global company, global platform here that players love and how can we do right by our customers. And without being able to tell this information prior to making a purchase or acquiring a piece of content, it's tough. And I think it detracts from how much you enjoy gaming. And so this means before they even get there, they can trust that this content will work for them, that they can play it. And then I think it adds to that sense of enjoyment. So it was really important for us to, ow sorry.
Larry Hryb: It's great because I know that a lot of people, I see it in my Twitter feed, I know you're on Twitter as well. I just popped your Twitter handle up. There's a lot of people perhaps in some other countries they want to understand. "Hey, what kind of experience am I getting with this particular title?" Yeah. Okay. Maybe it's English, but is it going to support subtitles in German or subtitles in French or Arabic or Chinese and what version of Chinese. So there's a lot of information that you guys on the store team on the back end kind of have to figure out to make sure you're presenting it. To your point, making sure that customers understand what they're getting and they can maybe choose the right experience. Is that right?
Briana Roberts: Yeah, absolutely. And it's an immersive experience. Right? I do speak French. I might want to play a game in French and I might want to play it with my kid next to me and have us learn together. And I might need those subtitles because it's been a while, I could brush up on that a little bit.
Larry Hryb: Right that's kinda cool. So it's really nifty. And as I said earlier, it's a feature that you're rolling out now. It's kinda quietly rolling up, but as more and more games adopt it, that card as you called it earlier will just appear. Right? Under the detail section and users don't have to take an update or anything like that. It's all dynamically pulled from the server. I mean, I don't want to use your language, but I'm using your language.
Briana Roberts: Yeah. You got it. There's my engineering speak. We've got this on the back end. And then it'll just show it to you. The intent here is that you should not have to hunt for this information. You should be able to see it when you're looking at a product details page or a particular game that you are interested in.
Larry Hryb: And I will, I'll put a link off in the show notes to this blog post. It's just about, it's called, it just got easier to discover games on Xbox in your preferred language. Now, Brianna, I want to talk to you about this because you've been at Microsoft for a little while. Tell us about some of the other projects that you worked on. It's an interesting journey you've had.
Briana Roberts: I feel like I have had nine lives at Microsoft. I'm very privileged to have nine lives here and seemingly different stops along the way. I mentioned I spoke French. That was actually part of my first job. I was on what was called the geopolitical team at the time. And I actually reviewed content to make sure, gaming content, no joke to make sure that it was appropriate for a French audience. And then I merged into our certifications, our professional, Microsoft professional development certifications, and again had kind of the localization and global view. And then from there I had some time in Windows and that I managed a team that was focused on our documentation. So all about all of our internal tools and systems and my customers there were Windows developers. So you can kind of see a similar thread. And now I'm in gaming and around making sure that the experience is great and customers know what they're getting and how to use our platform.
Larry Hryb: No, it's interesting You say that. Because you started out, you talked about speaking French and you started talking about doing the geo-pol as we call it internally, the geo-pol and then you work with developers and then it kind of merges your two worlds and here we are. So you're...
Briana Roberts: Yeah here we are.
Larry Hryb: You're like the perfect person to be working on this feature. So this is something, as I said earlier, that we can expect to see more and more games that's going to start. It's just going to start getting, the features just going to start popping up more and more places, right?
Briana Roberts: Yeah, absolutely. And we were looking at all of our all of our gaming endpoints. Excuse me, actually this is live right now Larry as well on our Game Pass app. So you can see this in Game Pass as well.
Larry Hryb: I didn't know that. I'll have to go check the Game Pass app as well. Game Pass, a lot of people really like Game Pass. So that's good to know that they can figure out what they're doing. And what's also great about this is it tells people what they're getting. But to your point, I know that some people want to perhaps learn other languages or brush up on them. Maybe you can go into the game itself and switch to French or German or some of the other supported languages that you'll see on card to maybe practice some of your real world language skills, right. It's always fun to do that.
Briana Roberts: Yeah exactly.
Larry Hryb: Awesome stuff. Brianna Roberts, really appreciate you. Let's show the card one more time. Very cool. You can find it on some of the game detail pages as you go as you search for your game. Just kind of scroll down to the detail section and go over to the right here. And then you'll see supported language, click on A, and that'll kind of pop it up and you can use your right stick to kind of scroll up and down this list. How many languaging languages are there? There's like 20 something.
Briana Roberts: 27. So those are the 27 console supported languages. So we have asked, collected this information against those languages.
Larry Hryb: Right. So there you go. It's all there. Spanish Mexico, Spanish Spain, Swedish, Turkish. Amazing. I appreciate it. Briana Roberts, thank you so much. Looking forward to seeing what you're going to be doing with the store in the future as well. Thanks again for your time.
Briana Roberts: Thank you so much Larry.
Larry Hryb: We're gonna talk about this little guy here, the Xbox wireless headset. Joining me today is Eric Garcia, who is the architect and product lead for this little guy and Eric good to se you.
Eric Garcia: Hi, nice to meet you.
Larry Hryb: Let's talk about this. Because we announced this last month, it actually goes on sale next week the 16th of March in most areas of the world. And we're excited about this. It's kind of sold out in a lot of areas, but I wanted to take a moment to kind of do a deep dive on this great device. Because I've had the opportunity. I don't get to talk a lot about things, but I've been testing this for quite some time, as you know.
Eric Garcia: That's awesome.
Larry Hryb: But this has been a great device. Can you walk us through, tell us about the device.
Eric Garcia: Yeah. so if you look right behind me, we've built some over the ear headsets in the past, I see the white one and the black one right behind it. Xbox has never built a wireless over the ear gaming headset. And it took a lot of work to get back into the space and we've done controllers, we've done headsets, but you know, putting the whole experience together. It was really something that we felt was very deserved to a lot of the customers because it's the end to end experience that we wanted to ensure had great audio quality, but it really supported all those gaming sessions that people had.
Larry Hryb: Yeah, it's funny because I'm an audio nerd as a lot of people know, and I love. I've got all the different headsets, all the manufacturer, they have some amazing third-party partners that we deal with. But tell us about some of the things that we've done differently with this, with the Xbox wireless headset, because there's a lot of cool things that go on here. And I got to tell you what I'm excited about. I mean, we're going to walk through some things, this things that incredibly affordable. So let's walk through some of the highlights.
Eric Garcia: Yeah. When we first started the program we looked at it and we had these kinds of product pillars. And I think the main thing that we really wanted to go after was wanting to make an amazing high value headset. It has to sound great, has to feel great, but when you think of Xbox and Xbox accessories, it just has to work. It has to have that seamless experience. We wanted to build a headset that when you just open it, pull it out of the box, push the button, the pairing button, you push the pairing button in the console right here. It needs to connect smoothly, right? When you put on the audio, I think that's one of the things that we really kind of started figuring out is, what is audio?
There's countless, hundreds of headsets out there, whether you want a wired headset, a wireless headset, one that goes directly to the console. Some that have an adapter. So when people say, "Hey, this is the best headset you can buy." Even if you're an audiophile, that's not true because my hearing, I've listened to a lot of bass music over time. And so my hearing is really poor in the low bass frequency domain. And so when we started looking into, how do we make this headset great for everyone? We started thinking about, "Okay, well how do we create a customizable solution that feels great and that can hear great and works easily for everything."
Larry Hryb: Yeah, it's interesting because you're absolutely right. I mean, I've been, I was worked in radio for many years and I have a similar situation where some of my hearing bands, I don't quite hear that or, but it doesn't even matter. The reality is regardless of what we do, we all hear things slightly differently and we all like things to sound slightly differently. So let's walk us through. Because one of the things that I can't really show that, but when you turn on. well, maybe I can do this. But when you turn it on, you can kind of hear, it makes the same sound as. I mean, you heard a little bit of it there, but it makes the same boot-up sound as the console. Right? So that's, that's kind of a nifty touch that, that you guys add is, but there's a lot of those little fit and finish things in here, right?
Eric Garcia: Yeah. When we went to go design this and develop it, every single thing you can imagine, this is why this is a really, really tough program, because everything just has to be perfect. The first time that you put something and deliver into the market, it has to sound like the Xbox family, it has to look when you put this right beside a console, right. Your X or your controller, it has to look aesthetically, like it's just all together. All of the gaps and steps the color, the material, the finishes. Just how it moves around and the quality of the sounds that you hear. It just has to have that great Xbox experience.
And yeah, just looking at this I'm really, really proud of the team because we've spent countless, countless hours working across all different time zones to make sure that when you push the button to turn it on, it sounds like the console, when you push it to pair, it sounds like it, when you mute, it's similar, the way that the dials turn there's a lot of work that was done into what is it like from the surface headphones and how does surface headphones feel and what is it as a lifestyle device, but then taking that knowledge and learning from all the other gaming headsets. Okay, great. But what is a great headset for gaming? And that's a very different story. So yeah, it was a lot of details that we had to go through to make sure it was perfect.
Larry Hryb: Now, a couple of things I want to point out that you may not be able to tell here, but I mean, you talked about the dials. One side is the party chat. Party and game balance. And the other one is the master volume. You kind of see them on the back here. We've got these little iconic cues here. You can kind of see it right here telling you which side. And then the other side over here. And that's important. And that's the power button right there. The pairing button, you can see it's this beautiful green. Also on the inside, you see left and right. So you know exactly what ears go in which. And a lot of people are asking, "Hey, guess what? USBC." Which is great right? People love that. But the other nifty touch is, for instance, the mute, you can kind of see this little, like I'm doing a terrible job of showing it, but there's a light on the front here that when you mute or unmute, I'm doing a terrible... Let's go to this instead, because it's going to be better to show it's at the end of the microphone so that when you're muted or unmuted, it's really clear and you get the audio tune as well, right?
Eric Garcia: Yep. Absolutely. And again, that mute even the location of the mute light, when you're in a bright room, like I am right now, I can still see it. When I'm in a dark room, I can also see it. But when you're in a dark room, you also don't want to see it because you don't want something out of your peripherals is distracting you from what's going on. Right. So there's, that is one of the many things that we designed so that you can customize. I know we'll talk about that stuff later in a bit.
Larry Hryb: The other thing I noticed, I'm going to try again, when you mute. And again, it's in micro, it sounds much better in here, you can kind of get it, you get this audio sense of mute and unmute, which is something that as a gamer and as an audio guy an audio person, you always want to hear that it get. okay. I see it. And I hear, okay, I'm muted, "Honey, what do you need?" Right. So you don't want to have those moments. Let's talk about some of this cool customization, because one of the really neat things, and I actually have my conflict. This is a live demo, which means anything can happen. But we're going to go to my console here. And you're going to see in just a minute, this is actually my console right here is that when I've already paired, but you can see my controller here, but there it is. There's the Xbox wireless headset. And now Eric, at this point you're like, "Oh, okay. That's great. Okay. I got I'm connected." But no, no, no. This is the [inaudible 00:38:06]. Click on configure. Tell us about all these different options in here. Because this is really cool.
Eric Garcia: So one of the other things that a lot of headsets have a lot of these features too, right? Like being able to change the EQ. But I think the part that we really wanted to focus on is that seamless experience, right. Everything just has to be very simple, really straightforward because you're on the console to game right. Or a PC to game, to have fun. You're not here to be spending time trying to figure out how do you set things moving from one app to another. So in the accessories app we give several options to be able to customize and personalize this headset to your liking, right? So this was our effort of making it great for everyone because everyone can tailor it to make it great for themselves. That equalizer. So I noticed that you're playing with equalizer a minute ago.
We came up with some different options. What this really is giving is it gives people an opportunity to make the sound a little bit better for them. So in my case, for example I tend to listen to more on the music side and use that as a start. But I like to increase that base response because I really need to hear that, a little bit more gain in that frequency band, the low band, the 125 Hertz and below. But then also as a lot of people when we say gaming, it's the game plus speech and for lifestyle devices, that's kind of similar to what you would get from a movie. But the difference is that you need certain specific areas of audio to really pop and it's from the one kilo Hertz to the four kilo Hertz, that's the speech domain.
Like the majority of all of speech comes in that. That's why for example telephones they operate specifically in those bands. So we focused a lot on making sure that, that frequency band. You can raise it in the way that you can really have that speech pass through, but you don't want to lose that. And that's where Microsoft on our signature was. We wanted to start off with having a relatively flat response, but add a little bit more base because we've noticed that a lot of people who love certain headsets. Base is what they like. And this allows you to tailor it so that you can get the right area of roughly where you want it to be. And then you have that little base boost part on the bottom that you could just amp up a little bit.
Larry Hryb: Max it out.
Eric Garcia: And just get that great sound. Exactly. So when you're playing a first person shooter with modern type arms, you can hear those explosions. Those low base explosions and the footsteps, but you don't lose the sound and the muddiness by trying to just move everything up, because you want it to sound great for how you're trying to coordinate with your team. So a lot of work went into just the EQ itself.
Larry Hryb: So the EQ is awesome. And then backing down here, and I don't know if we want to do this, or we want to come back to this. Because the auto mute is really kind of cool. I'm really excited about that. Let's come back to that, I want, we're going to go back to that in a moment. The mute light is pretty straightforward. That's the light that we showed. You can kind of, Eric said, if you, you can kind of put it on low, medium, or high, and then mic monitoring, which I call side tone. You can kind of see over on the right hand side, why don't you explain this Eric, because this is really critical. It's one of those things that you don't realize you need until it's not there.
Eric Garcia: It's almost like, so my daughter will go play and she'll be gaming. Some of these first person shooters. She plays more first person shooters than I do. I like to do more of the racing games. She used to use our old headphones, she would just start yelling. And I'm just like, "What are you doing?" Like, why are you yelling so much? And I was like, "Oh, it's actually, it's cool. Like she's really enjoying the game. Like just let her be." And then as I started, we started developing this headset. We're like, "Oh, side tone mic monitoring. Oh." So when I, one of the first builds, I put the headset on her and I was like, "Hey, why don't you go ahead and play?"
And all of a sudden it went from screaming and yelling because she couldn't hear that other people were hearing her all of a sudden that feedback. So immediately when you speak, it goes right into the microphone. It doesn't get processed. It's literally the raw audio. So you don't get that latency. It just comes right back into your speaker, your headphone speaker, and you hear yourself speak. So it's another part, the mute button. We talk about the led of the mute, the sound of the mute. This is just another feature that when you don't hear yourself going through, it kind of gives you another feedback of, "Hey people can't hear me." But when you have it on high, you can hear yourself. So you kind of use your inside voice.
Larry Hryb: Now I noticed that we've got, we've got the mic monitoring. You can turn it high, medium, or low, or of course Eric's daughter's version, which is off. So you can still hear yourself.
Eric Garcia: Now on high. it's on high now.
Larry Hryb: Now it's interesting because mic monitoring or side tone. I'm actually a nerd in this space. And I read a whole article about how back when the telephone was invented. How the engineers found exactly what you found, which is people were screaming and they put a little bit of the side tone in it. It brought everybody down. So if you want to read about that, that's kind of cool. Now up here, let's go to auto mute. Cause this is an interesting feature tell us about this Eric.
Eric Garcia: Yeah. So actually, I can then change it as well on my side...
Larry Hryb: So let's be clear, you're talking through the Xbox wireless headset right now, because it also has Bluetooth and you've connected it paired it with your PC that we're doing this interview on right?
Eric Garcia: Yeah, actually good point. So, and I do this a lot at work as well. So I will connect my headset to my PC and I'm using that through Bluetooth and simultaneously I have my console right beside me to the left and I'm controlling everything through the console. So if you're gaming and taking those work calls, at least you can be rest assured that when you unmute yourself, they can't hear anything that's going on, that you're doing other than on this work call.
Larry Hryb: So I think you have a demo for us, right?
Eric Garcia: Yeah. so what I did is, So I'll go ahead and auto mute has been off the whole time. I will go ahead and turn it on. And I also, while I'm doing that will turn on a fan because some people, if you're in a cold environment, you have a heater going on or something. And then unfortunately this turned off, but we'll go ahead and put some audio in the background. Coincidentally we have spatial audio from your last video.
Larry Hryb: That's the video with Jason Ronald about spatial audio. So that's just imagine somebody behind you talking.
Eric Garcia: So you have all these sounds going on right now. And you're there gaming. And I stopped talking, right? I don't think that everybody wants to hear the fan running here or hearing the gaming or the people speaking behind me.
Larry Hryb: And let's be clear, those are still going, the fan and then the audio are still playing behind you. But because the auto mute does exactly that. It just basically shuts everything off, even though it's still going. So you could be playing in a room with a bunch of people and we may not hear you.
Eric Garcia: Yeah, and I think that was the whole point that we wanted to make as part of this feature. Was if people, now again this is just right here behind me. But if you have someone in the room next door, you have a roommate, a sibling or you're just trying to hide away from everybody, and just kind of have your alone time but people are doing their own thing. It is a little frustrating, you know I have to go back, push the mute button, or trying to change something while you're playing a game. It just makes it a little bit easier that you know that people who are on the far end. They are not going to get annoyed with that background sound.
Larry Hryb: So when you stop talking, they can still talk. That's kind of cool, and as I showed you here in the accessories app on the console. You can control, play around with it to decide what it sounds like. And you've got obviously, turn it off, low, medium and high. So that's really helpful isn't it.
Eric Garcia: And just to specify on low, medium, high. What that really means is, how sensitive the algorithm will kick in. If it's on high, it's basically going to take a lot for things to pass through. So if I probably bring this sound a little bit closer and closer. It might eventually let some of that audio pass through. But if you put it on low. Because you don't have much going on, that's probably good enough. And I think the thing that it really also dictates on high, medium, low, is also your voice. If you're coming in really loud, then you might, low is fine, or high is fine. Because it just makes sure that is takes a lot to pass through. But if you don't speak loud or you're just trying to be a little bit silent because you have a little one trying to fall asleep beside you, right? That's when you probably put it into the low setting because it's already going to be quiet anyways. But it's also going to allow your voice when you've had a super quiet inside voice. To pass that through as well.
Larry Hryb: And you guys did a lot of engineering work to kind of enable. That's a cool demo. Again, for the price point, to get that, and it's all kind of built in there. That's amazing. And you and I were talking before we started. And it was an interesting approach, that no two ears are the same. Whether it's your ears, anybody ears. Everybody listening has a different set of ears, and how they do that. All these customization elements just really help you dial in how you want it to sound, right?
Eric Garcia: Exactly, Because again, people really, when they want something and it's Xbox right. We have a lot of special and limited edition controllers. We have the accessories, how you can customize things with either controller that you have. This is just being consistent in the message that we have. We want to make everybody feel that this is tailored for them, and made for them. So that they can really go focus on the main thing which is having fun.
Larry Hryb: Now you had the show on there, from a previous audio show, which was about spatial audio. And I assume that these guys, this headset supports our spatial audio, because it is our first party. Tell us a little bit about that.
Eric Garcia: Yeah, so when we first started developing it, one of the first questions we had was, "What's the frequency response the algorithm normally expects?" And how do we make sure the audio quality is great and consistent with that algorithm. But on top of that we also worked with a lot of the game developers and started asking them, "Hey, when you develop your audio and the music that you have within the game. What is the response that you want?" And so that's how we started with, what is great audio quality? And then being able to tailor it to each person. So it normalizes to each persons respective hearing. That's where we said, "Hey, this is great." Then when we start looking at spatial audio, "Okay but now that you can hear things great, you have to know where things are happening, where things are going on." So in my case for racing, it's really nice to know, "Hey, where is the other motor that I'm racing against. Are they behind me? Do I start hearing coming a little bit to my left or to the right."
Larry Hryb: Wait a minute, are you third person? Are you in the cockpit? Are you in front of the car? What's your view that you like to drive with when you're playing Forza? Tell us.
Eric Garcia: Overhead.
Larry Hryb: Okay that's fine. So to your point. With the spatial audio. You can hear whether it's coming up on your right and whether you want to go left, and so on and so forth. It helps everybody in every game.
Eric Garcia: Yeah, it's just on of those things that, when I was playing games as a little kid, we didn't have all those different options, right? So I just got so used to seeing the car at that level, but when I'm driving at home obviously we are in the driver seat. So audio wise, I feel I love where things are relative to me, and also those small tidbits of, if a person wants to pass you, they are going to start downshifting or up shifting. Drafting you right? So all those characteristics, it really brings you into the game, so that you know and kind of live that real world experience of when I'm racing someone. It really feels like I'm racing someone. And that's why I also love Forza because it really, is kind of built on that, and that experience. And it allows me to drive the cars I don't get to in real life.
Larry Hryb: No we've talked about spatial audio and there is a Dolby Atmos offer that is available for these headsets, because it's a limited time offer. Tell us a little bit about that, because that is actually really exciting as well.
Eric Garcia: Yeah, no that is actually really awesome too. So we've partnered with Dolby, there is a limited activation. And as you have here, you go to Dolby Access, so if you don't have Dolby Access already you can download Dolby Access. And literally once you open it up, it will recognize, "Hey, you have a Xbox wireless headset." And so what you have on the top right hand side, it'll say Xbox wireless headset and it gives you an expiration. When you do this for the first time you will get a little toast that pops up saying, "Hey, congratulations. You now have Dolby Atmos." And it's going to be there for I believe 6 months or so. And so that way you get either Windows Sonic that comes automatically provided, but if you want to have that Dolby Atmos experience, you get to try it for those 6 months. To really try and get a feel for, what do you like? How does each work? And have a great experience.
Larry Hryb: And that is again, if you purchase a headset, any headset that is purchased between now and September 3rd. You get to try it out free for 6 months. And that's a great way to really hear it with your own ears, if you like this, you like Windows Sonic, and go back and listen to the show Eric was playing behind him as a demo, to hear more about the different audio settings that we have. It's an amazing, I mean and the price point for this, it's great. It plugs in, it uses our, its 99.99 in the US. It's available in many regions. Uses USB-C, it uses and I want to be very clear. It uses our wireless technology, the same technology that we use to connect the controller. So you don't have to plug... Completely wireless. So you're playing and it's low latency and high reliability and it's a great device. And I've got to tell you Eric, this has become my primary device when I'm playing Sea of Thieves and what not all weekend. I mean, I love the chat, the easy dials, everything about it is just great. So I want to thank you and the team for doing a great job with it, it's really exciting.
Eric Garcia: Yeah, there was thousands and thousands of hours that we put into this, and asked a lot of people questions, interviews, ranging from all different ages and groups. So when we wanted to build this headset, we really, really wanted to make sure that everybody, no matter who you were, when you picked up this headset, you would have a great experience. Because we just had to think about everybody who would get a controller, everybody who would want to use a headset. It needs to work.
Larry Hryb: It just needs to work. I just want to correct something, I said something, I misspoke earlier. The limited activation on Dolby Atmos is free until September 30th of this year. So you've got plenty of time to check that out. It's a great little device, in fact let me bring up the device again, I know I've got it here somewhere. And just kind of show off. It's a beautiful piece, and it just belongs perfectly with the Xbox series family. And this also, Eric that's actually a good point. This works with Xbox One as well, correct?
Eric Garcia: Yes, yes it does. It uses the same Xbox wireless protocol. It will connect in the same way that you do with the controllers. And all the different experiences with the touches, the sounds, again it feels, lives, breathes Xbox. Actually on of the things that I do like. And there's always those little nuggets. In the same way that you have the X, if you take off, you'll also get the green.
Larry Hryb: Ow interesting, I didn't know that.
Eric Garcia: So if you look really closely, and I'm not sure if you can see it here. If you look... no unfortunately not. But if you look really closely inside through the ear cup you can kind of see that little bit of green inside.
Larry Hryb: Yeah so, you can see that this is kind of... That's a nifty touch. And it just kind of snaps right on. That's really cool. And again I also want to point out that you can this pair to your console and your Bluetooth device. Whether it's a mobile phone or computer. So you can kind of live in both worlds as Eric said a little bit earlier. You know, we are not going to say you should be gaming when you're on those teams and zoom calls. But if you do we don't mind, right?
Eric Garcia: Yeah, Larry I'll tell you this, as a parent I've caught my daughter in class and playing on her console at the same time. She is getting great grades, this is working for her, but I was like. "Wow, you're really exercising all these features.".
Larry Hryb: Hey dad, I'm using the product you made, so you can't hate me for that.
Eric Garcia: That and she said, "You did it yourself, I've seen you racing and in a meeting, so why can't I?" [crosstalk 00:55:13] So as long as you get good grades, you're all right.
Larry Hryb: That's right, keep up the good work, all right. Anyway Eric Garcia, architect and product lead for the Xbox Wireless headset. It's on pre-sale now, it's pretty much sold out everywhere. It's going to go on sale the 16th. We'll continue to get more out there as possible. A lot of excitement for this. It's priced at US 99.99. Check your local retailers for the actual pricing and so forth. Eric, thank you so much for your time, and well done shipping the headset.
Eric Garcia: Thank you, Larry. I appreciate, y'all have a good day.
Jeffrey: Thank you so much Brianna and thanks so much Eric. For telling us all about the Xbox wireless headset coming out next week. And you'll definitely want to keep an eye out. These have been selling pretty briskly. Which, thank you for picking these up ahead of time. But they'll be arriving with you next week. And send us your pictures. As you pop it on, if you want to tweet at us. We'd love to see it. And I've been enjoying mine for some time, I know you have as well Larry. Joining the wireless revolution. That should not be the marketing tag.
Larry Hryb: I just want to give a little behind the curtain look. Because Jeff, you and I talk about the fact, when we're playing, when we're testing out hardware like the headset. This is the final version, what we start with is nowhere near this. It's a very different experience in terms of their testing out materials and colors. And fit and form factor. And all sorts of things. So it's great that this is where it is now is amazing. Just to let you know, what we do is we test it internally, and a lot of gamers. A lot of what you all are like, "I wish it does this, or like that." A lot of us are gamers here and we test them for things like that. We're filling bugs and giving feedback all the time.
Jeffrey: It's one of the fun parts of working here for sure.
Larry Hryb: I thought this was?
Jeffrey: Ow yeah, this is great, this is life changing.
Larry Hryb: That's one way to put it.
Jeffrey: Yeah I guess. So what else have you been playing? I know you had fired up Overwatch. But you hadn't really played with it yet. Wait, wait. Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow, wow. Is that Yakuza Kiwami?
Larry Hryb: Why yes it is Jeffrey.
Jeffrey: Do go on.
Larry Hryb: No I don't want to say anything more than that. I'm trying to spend some time with it. Because I think that it's a great game and I know you, I believe you really like those games, I can't recall.
Jeffrey: I don't know what to think, and my only response is, "Nani?"
Larry Hryb: I mean this week has been a tough week in terms of getting some gameplay in. Sea of Thieves, still going to Sea of Thieves, they're coming up on their 3 year anniversary, so that's exciting.
Jeffrey: Ow my God yeah, that is right around this time.
Larry Hryb: Sea of Thieves and the Little Nightmares. So I just haven't had a real chance to get back into anything else, but that is kind of what I've been doing? What have you been doing?
Jeffrey: Well I've wrapped up, over the weekend, last weekend, I wrapped up Yakuza 4. And it was so fun. Like the end is pretty intense and there was a lot of like, I was really wailing on the controller. There was a lot of like...
Larry Hryb: Yeah a lot of that.
Jeffrey: Really, it's an action game. And to the point where my wife came downstairs and was like, "Are you okay? Like what are you, I'm just hearing a lot of like banging around." There was some grappling and you had to wail on the Y button I think.
Larry Hryb: Hey, Watch the spoilers, watch the spoilers.
Jeffrey: Or the A button to get up. Ow this is, it's a mechanic, it's part of the whole game. And my hand, I was feeling it the next day. It's sort of like you play a fighting game for a long time. But you really have to be on it, the timing has to be on it. And anyway I completed it, but I was standing up, I had to get out of my chair and I'm like, come on. And so I was like, I'm going to take a break. Before jumping directly into Yakuza 5 which is a pretty lengthy game from what I'm told. So I said, "I'm going to play a quick little jaunt, I'm going to try Dragon Quest 11." The joke being that it's about an 80, 90 hour game.
Larry Hryb: Right, that is quite the [inaudible 00:59:29]
Jeffrey: But the last Dragon Quest I played was Dragon Quest 8 back on the PS2. That's how far back we're going. Which was an awesome, phenomenal game. And Dragon Quest is really good. It's part of Xbox Game Pass. It looks good, it's got a lot of quality of life updates. Those games did not always have that. It's great, I'm just like pausing. When I've got to go, if I can't get to a save point. I just shut it off and I come back and quick resume to it. Which is even better. The load times are super brisk. To the point where you can't. It's one of those ones where you can't read the tips. Because it happens too quickly. I hope I'm not missing anything. I'm sure I'm not. But really, a really fun game and I'll be spending a lot of time with that. If you played Yakuza 7, or Yakuza Like a Dragon. It's constantly referring to Dragon Quest, and so that's why it's fun. It really is a lot like it...
Larry Hryb: So you fell for their ploy.
Jeffrey: Obviously without taking place in modern day Japan.
Larry Hryb: So that's what you're telling me, you fell for their ploy.
Jeffrey: Totally. Completely worked. So I would say if you've played Dragon Quest and not Yakuza Like a Dragon. That should be your next game. If you've just come of Yakuza Like a Dragon. Why don't you try out Dragon Quest 11
Larry Hryb: 11
Jeffrey: Definitive Edition. And it is on, there's not a lot of Dragon Quest on Xbox Game Pass. I'm pretty sure it's the only one. So you won't have to like sort through. The first one came out on 1987, it actually was my first RPG and so it's been a long journey. But it's good. That's what I'm playing.
Larry Hryb: I'm trying to see what I'm playing here. I just need shut this console off. I've got all these consoles, I've got a console here, I've got a console over there. You don't want to hear about my first world problems do you.
Larry Hryb: Anyway. We went through some of them headlines, did we go through all the headlines? I don't know.
Jeffrey: A couple more here. One is that.
Larry Hryb: I'm not even going to bring up that ticker this week. I'm just going to let you go.
Jeffrey: Okay that's fine. So Forza Horizon 4 is available now on Steam. So of course, Forza Horizon 4 came out a few years ago at this point. Maybe the best racing game ever made. That's just one man's opinion. Definitely the one I've spent the most time with.
Larry Hryb: The opinion of many.
Jeffrey: I mean I think it is. And not a lot of people played it so. Of course it's part of Xbox Game Pass on console and on PC. And you can play it remotely and everything else. And via the cloud. That being said. Some PC gamers, they prefer Steam. Totally get that.
Larry Hryb: That's fine.
Jeffrey: And if you're one of those people. You can now buy Forza Horizon 4, that joins other mainstay games such as Sea of Thieves, such as Halo the Master Chief Collection. Have seen phenomenal success on Steam. They are now joined by Forza Horizon 4. So if waiting for it has held you back from picking it up. This is the time. It's there. It Takes Two had a new trailer which looked fun. You've talked about It Takes Two and we had Josef Fares on last week. Exactly. That is not morse code. Very well handled by the way Larry.
Larry Hryb: That was the S.O.S
Jeffrey: Thank you, wow very good. The game is really not that far off. It's coming out on March 26th. So that means.
Larry Hryb: That means we have to finish,
Jeffrey: We're on the clock.
Larry Hryb: Yeah we've got to get this done.
Jeffrey: I feel like we're setting up for like the epic finale here, with A Way Out. But we had a lot of fun.
Larry Hryb: If you played A Way Out,
Jeffrey: Busting out of jail, and we played a bit more.
Larry Hryb: Jeff and I just finished the farm scene. We'll leave it at that.
Jeffrey: Yeah, that's a good way of putting it. And the stuff that comes after it actually. Which I can't believe we finished that on our first try. Because I really thought you were going to, this is where you get the beep ready. I really thought we were going to... the... and I didn't think we had any chance of finishing up the...
Larry Hryb: And here we are. So we did. I told you remember I said, "We got this, we got this." But we were like one tick away from not having it.
Jeffrey: Yes, yes exactly. This looks like a. That was a much more serious, and I don't know if it was rated, rated M. But it definitely was more serious content. And this looks a lot more family friendly. Much like Brothers, a Tale of Two Sons was.
Larry Hryb: Family friendly because they're getting a divorce. If you want to look at it that way.
Jeffrey: I mean there is that to. So anyways, last thing I wanted to bring up, actually two things. One was Watch Dogs Legion which we played through in November and had a lot of fun with really enjoyed that.
Larry Hryb: I've decided to bring up the ticker here. You were going long I'm bringing the ticker.
Jeffrey: All right. They have an online mode that launched this week. [crosstalk 01:04:21] So you can join with up to three other operatives, a group of four. For open world co-op, it's a free update across Xbox, and it's online mode is separate from the single player campaign. And it takes place after the campaign. There is the title, but I'm giving the details Larry.
Larry Hryb: I know.
Jeffrey: So you build a new DedSec Cell, recruiting people in the open world, like you did during the main game. But there is apparently a quicker way to do it. You don't necessarily run missions, there is a new point series. There is special co-op objectives. So anyway, phenomenal game that we really enjoyed also...
Larry Hryb: Did we finish it?
Jeffrey: Was enhanced or optimized for series X. Ow yeah and I did the post game.
Larry Hryb: That's right I did too.
Jeffrey: Sort of, there is a cool mission that is given to you where you can delve into the history...
Larry Hryb: Sadness.
Jeffrey: of one of the most enduring characters. And it is, It's a sad story. Almost played like Black Mirror-ish, in a way. Actually very Black Mirror-ish. So anyway if you've played through Watch Dogs, you enjoyed it, you want to go back to it. Watch Dogs Legion. The online mode is there so jump in. The game is also been marked down. The gold edition which originally was 100 bucks, is now 39.99. It's their [inaudible 01:05:36]. Lastly, I want to call out. I want to know if you watched the Colbert Show on CBS on Tuesday night. I think it was Tuesday night.
Larry Hryb: I don't think I did.
Jeffrey: Well he talked about the Halo MOA Burger Pringles. He was like, "Pringles and Microsoft announced, yes that's correct." And so anyways, if you listen to the Kinda Funny Xcast you would've seen it. As well as Jordan Payton LEGQIN.
Larry Hryb: I'm actually not...
Jeffrey: You did a Taco Bell commercial with LEGIQN.
Larry Hryb: I did, we did it right down here at the Taco Bell in Seattle. It was funny,
Jeffrey: He's a big Halo fan.
Larry Hryb: It's just I'm bummed they didn't send us anything to try out. What's going on?
Jeffrey: That's probably on me, I should've brought that out. So why don't we see if we can have them for next weeks show. There are Pringles out there. I think it's a Walmart exclusive you can check it out. But there are MOA Burger, so the MOA Bird that is eaten on Reach. So it's a bit of a deep cut for you Halo fans. But you've never tasted one until now. So I heard it was very umami. That's sort of that savory taste.
Larry Hryb: I don't want. No, no, no, no, I want to do the...
Jeffrey: I'm not spoiling it, I haven't had it. That's the description. I've got to eat one to.
Larry Hryb: Well we'll be on air testing next week. Are you going to make this happen? Are you going to get us cans of Pringles?
Jeffrey: Actually I am going to make this happen, so next week we're going to do it. The key thing to keep in mind for you Pringles aficionados. These are the wavy Pringles. That gives you more surface area for the flavor to reside on your tongue. The surface area to volume ratio is very important.
Larry Hryb: Sure whatever you say.
Jeffrey: All right that's the news.
Larry Hryb: That's all you got?
Jeffrey: I felt like that was a pretty big week.
Larry Hryb: It was. No there was a big week. Any time we're talking about new hardware, a headset. New Pringles, your mouth. And frame rate boosts.
Jeffrey: And Bethesda. And growing the family by 40% or whatever.
Larry Hryb: It's a seven billion dollar week.
Jeffrey: You don't see that every week. That's for sure.
Larry Hryb: No, you don't, you really don't. I know Jeff you've worked at large companies, and I've been at Microsoft a long time. And it's...
Jeffrey: You don't work at much larger than Microsoft.
Larry Hryb: Yeah you lose sight of the fact that, "Ow we just bought a seven billion dollar, what?" It's just you lose track of some things like that. It's just the scale and scope of the company is so big. But it's awesome to be able to do that. It's really exciting that Phil and the rest of the team and even Satya. Their very excited to see what we're going to do with gaming. Yes sir.
Jeffrey: Yeah, down the line it would be great to start bringing some of those folks onto the show.
Larry Hryb: Ow I've already reached out.
Jeffrey: It's too soon. Of course.
Larry Hryb: No, no, it's actually. I've got a couple of them. We're going to work on getting on. And see what I want to do is, I'm going to start interviewing a bunch of the different community managers for the different franchises, just to remind people what franchises are now part of the family.
Jeffrey: No there are some really great people...
Larry Hryb: I want to get you to do some as well.
Jeffrey: That I've known for a long time.
Larry Hryb: I don't want to do them all, I want to get you to do some as well.
Jeffrey: I would love to do that. I would absolutely love to do that.
Larry Hryb: All right let's get going here Jeff. It's been again as you said a big show.
Jeffrey: Yeah, because this is the time in the show where we usually end up talking about bidets
Larry Hryb: And toilets.
Jeffrey: Maybe we skip that this week.
Larry Hryb: Electric cars. Pringles.
Larry Hryb: I can't believe you didn't get us any Pringles.
Jeffrey: I was busy trying to get it to other people. I didn't even. I'm very selfless when it comes to snacks, also I know I will just eat the whole tin in one go. And I will hate myself for it.
Larry Hryb: What's your favorite potato chip? I mean we talked about the MOA ones, I haven't tasted those yet, so they may be my favorite.
Jeffrey: All right so this is a recent change.
Larry Hryb: Or crisps.
Jeffrey: Crisps as they call them in the UK and around the world. So there is these Oregon chips. They are made in Oregon, I didn't know they grew potatoes in Oregon, but I learned a lot. And it makes sense, it borders Idaho, called Spud Love. And they are, I used to love the kettle chips, those were my number one choice, usually the black pepper or the salt and vinegar ones. Spud Love they are like super crunchy, super thick, they just taste incredible. And I usually get salt and vinegar or black pepper. Like I just love to do. And those have taken the cake. Actually did you ever go to Schlotzsky's back in the day?
Larry Hryb: Of course I did. You took me to Schlotzsky's. You're a big Schlotzsky's fan.
Jeffrey: I did take you to Schlotzsky's, probably in Austin. Those were probably my all time favorite chips. They had the most aggressively sour salt and vinegar chips. But now Spud Love has taken my heart.
Larry Hryb: Where do I get those?
Jeffrey: I find them at one of the markets near here. So I don't know if they're everywhere. They might be regional. Sometimes a lot of chips a regional...
Larry Hryb: This is by the way...
Jeffrey: You don't see like Utz chips out here right? Or Herr's if you're from Philly.
Larry Hryb: Or State Line.
Jeffrey: So yeah I've never even heard of those. Did you know Herr's? H e r r s is what I grew up eating. Because that was a Philly-ish brand. And yeah.
Larry Hryb: Herr's was big. State Line was one up in Connecticut. Which is [crosstalk 01:10:39]
Jeffrey: So see I'd never heard of them.
Larry Hryb: What were the other one. What was the one that came in the tin in Philadelphia. Remember those? Charles, Charles Chips.
Jeffrey: I've never had that before.
Larry Hryb: Really. [inaudible 01:10:49]
Larry Hryb: We're going to go out a whole potato chip away, but we'll figure that part out so.
Jeffrey: That's part of our other podcast. Snacking monthly.
Larry Hryb: Happy crunchy. Happy crunchy is the one where we talk about potato chips and life in Japan.
Jeffrey: They have some good chips over there too. That's for sure. And you can get them now.
Larry Hryb: I was reading this article about all the. There is one vending machine in Japan for every 23 people.
Jeffrey: I mean I believe it based on what I've seen. And their vending machines do stuff that our vending machines could not even...
Larry Hryb: Dream.
Jeffrey: Comprehend of. Like out of the same vending machine, you can get something that is hot, and something that's cold. And some [inaudible 01:11:34] even be the same thing. That can be got in hot and cold. And it's not even a big vending machine. Our vending machines have a lot of catching up to do.
Larry Hryb: Ow and the other thing, it's usually down a side alley somewhere, right?
Larry Hryb: It's just...
Jeffrey: My favorite thing to get was the canned coffee. Boss Coffee. I'm a big fan of Boss coffee.
Larry Hryb: I know you were. I used to get those at 7 11 over there.
Jeffrey: Yeah you can do that too. But you're never more than like a 30 second walk from a can of Boss coffee. And it's only like a hundred Yen. Which is like a dollar.
Larry Hryb: What was the other place? Lawson's.
Jeffrey: Also If we're going to get on this, our convenience stores do not hold a candle to Japanese convenience stores. Like you go in there, it smells delicious because they have these... I'm forgetting the name. But they are sort of like these, these sort of containers with essentially like a stew of individual fish balls and fried tofu things and all these things that you can pull out of it. And they just taste amazing. There is a name for it, it's escaping me right now.
Larry Hryb: The convenience store over there are models of efficiency. They just...
Jeffrey: So good. And if you play the Yakuza games you get to see this. It's almost like stepping into a Lawsons.
Larry Hryb: I know...
Jeffrey: Its called a Poppo in the Yakuza games. And even just like the sounds, they are well staffed. Even some of the same stores we have here, over there. Can you tell I miss really going to Japan?
Larry Hryb: Me too.
Jeffrey: We were supposed to go this year, and for very good reasons we have not.
Larry Hryb: Well, now that we have Bethesda and we have more studios over there. Let's saddle up gang.
Jeffrey: Tango Game Works, surely you want me to come visit for some reason. I will do anything.
Larry Hryb: We are Tango ready. All right. Do you want to tell people how they can find the show and what they should do to stay in...
Jeffrey: Of course. We're available anywhere podcasts are found. So if you're listening to this on Spotify...
Larry Hryb: Actually we're available where your better podcasts are found.
Jeffrey: Not the lower quality podcasts. Good to know. But if you want to see us for some reason, you can find us on YouTube, and thanks to the audience we are building there. You can subscribe to us at YouTube.com/majornelson.
Larry Hryb: [inaudible 01:13:53]
Jeffrey: Yes, exactly. Wait is it not /majornelson?
Larry Hryb: I think I just have my last name. Just go to my blog majornelson.com [inaudible 01:14:03]
Jeffrey: It's just what I know, it's just you can search for Major Nelson podcast. Like, subscribe, ring the bell, please leave a comment. We love to interact with you there.
Larry Hryb: Yeah, love the comments, we love the comments. We love the comments from the international women's show. Don't forget to listen to that, or watch it. Great stories from some of the... It's just a few, a few of some of the amazing ladies we have here at Xbox. We'll be doing some more shows, so make sure you tune into next week for the cool takeover that we're doing on the Twitch channel. All right how do they find the Twitch channel Jeff?
Jeffrey: Twitch.tv/Xbox. Pretty popular, Go ahead and hit follow this way. If you want to turn notifications on, by all means. But you can also watch it directly from your Xbox. Download the Twitch app and the people that you follow, you can even get a toast notification that will pop up if that's what you like. And you're right. YouTube.com/Hryb. I always would just type in Major Nelson, it would pop up there.
Larry Hryb: That's fine, I think they can figure it out. But regardless, love to have you, of course find us on Spotify, Apple podcast, Google whatever they call their thing.
Jeffrey: Soundcloud. You do have a Soundcloud. So if you ever say something viral you can reply and go, "Yeah, I do have a Soundcloud."
Larry Hryb: I do, it's Xbox.
Jeffrey: I can't believe. In fact you say something viral every week. Normally when you're giving out codes on a Friday. Invariably on Friday afternoon I'll go and look at trending topics as I tend to do when every time I have a free minute, and it will say. Free code Friday. Free code Friday contest is what it says. And who is at the top? Xbox's Major Nelson.
Larry Hryb: Just having a little bit of fun over there on Twitter, can find me @majornelson, just like Jeff said, you can see right here on the screen. Or @jeffrubenstein for the complaints, hit him up there.
Jeffrey: And you tend to, so thank you.
Larry Hryb: All right gang. Jeff if you have time next week, I'd love to have you back.
Jeffrey: I would love to be here, thank you.
Larry Hryb: All right gang...
Jeffrey: You say this every week...
Larry Hryb: We'll see you next week, we'll have some more reviews some more fun, some more gaming news. And more importantly, we're here for you and we'll see you next week. Bye bye everybody.
Jeffrey: Thank you.