Michael Cavacini

An award-winning arts and culture blog.

Power On: The Story of Xbox

Last night, I finished watching Power On: The Story of Xbox, a six-part documentary on the 20-year history of one of the most popular and influential brands in gaming. Is this docuseries worth watching? Read on for my thoughts.

Below is a rundown of all six episodes of Power On, including some teaser text to give you a glimpse of what each one covers.

Chapter 1: The Renegades

A small team of upstarts sets out to convince Microsoft that it’s time to enter the console business.

Chapter 2: The Valentine’s Day Massacre

The battle to own the living room is on–but not without significant cost and risk.

Chapter 3: And it Didn’t Turn On

Public doubt intensifies as issues threaten to spoil the 2001 launch for Xbox.

Chapter 4: Cool… Now What?

A console is only as good as its games… and Xbox needs a gamechanger to survive. Enter Halo.

Chapter 5: Red Ring of Death

The demand for Xbox 360 is at fever pitch, but a critical malfunction threatens its success.

Chapter 6: TV… Or Not TV

Xbox loses its way. Can a former intern get the team back on track?

My Thoughts

Power On: The Story of Xbox is fantastic! I blew through all six episodes, which are about an hour each, in just a few days. Having owned the original Xbox and its successor, the Xbox 360, it was a pleasure reliving happy memories and wild times. This past week I signed up for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to play Xbox games on my PC and phone, which resulted in me buying an Xbox Series X that I’m picking up next week! So, you could say the timing of my watching this documentary series was perfect. I was able to catch up on the years I dropped off, saw how Xbox lost its way, and, now, with the Series X and Series S, the future is bright. Xbox is heading into the second full year of this generation of incredibly powerful machines, Game Pass is the future of gaming, and the community that Xbox created so long ago with Xbox Live is alive and well. If you’re interested in the past, present, and/or future of Xbox, I strongly recommend watching Power On. It’s an amazing story that makes me grateful for the past and hopeful for what is yet to come.

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