Xbox One Countdown: The Cool New Features

By Melissa Evans on November 16, 2013, 7:25PM EDT

With the Xbox One getting ever closer, we thought it was a fantastic time to bring to light some cool new features with Microsoft's third-generation of hardware. Yesterday we looked at the console's launch line-up.

Now, while many of these features may be common knowledge, there may also be some others that manage to creep in that you might not be aware about.

So here's our Top 10 for the coolest new features that will be available on Xbox One when it releases on the 22nd of November:

It Can Read Your Heart Rate And Expressions
The new iteration of Kinect takes things to a whole new level. Not only will it be able to track six people independently, it will also be able to monitor your heart rate when using it for exercise.

On top of this, Kinect will be able to identify different facial expressions and it will be able to tell who's paying attention to the game and who's not.

Party Scout
One of the core online features for Xbox One is the Party Scout. This means that you will be able to find the "perfect" buddies for playing online.

Once you specify things like age, skill level, language and downloadable content restrictions, Party Scout will search for people in the background that meet with your criteria.

It Will Work Offline
This might not seem like a huge deal now, but it was huge earlier this year. Microsoft planned for their console to be always-online to work, but have since backtracked. Of course, there's still a ton that can be enjoyed about Microsoft when going online - we're going to be having a whole feature about Xbox Live - but at least it's no longer mandatory.

This also showed that consumers do have a voice and that if it's loud enough, even a company the size of Microsoft will listen.

Troll Tiers
Xbox 360's reputation system is going to be revamped for Xbox One, which means there will be a tiered system for trolls. It will work in a similar fashion to Grand Theft Auto Online, whereby trolls will be paired against people of a similar nature. It means that for the most part, people who want to have a clean, fun gaming experience should be rewarded.

Almost No Sound
The Xbox One is a very quiet system, even to the point that it can barely be heard when running in a room with literally no other sounds. Microsoft deserve a lot of credit for this, as while not a prerequisite for success, it's great if you enjoy playing games at night when you live with other people.

You Can Route Other Consoles
In an interesting move, the Xbox One has an HDMI input. This means you can run your Xbox 360 through your Xbox One, but it also means you can run a PS3 and PS4 through the system - lag free.

There are numerous advantages to this, the most obvious one being that you only have to have one connection through to the TV.

Achievements Are Expanded
'Challenges' are time-based things, that aren't tied to one specific game. They can also be designed for mass use. For example, a challenge might require all players to rack up a million headshots in one weekend. Because they're time-based, they won't count towards gamerscore. However, they will unlock new content in games.

We've seen publishers themselves doing similar things, but it's good to see Microsoft get on board with this kind of scheme. Well, as long as it means the publishers don't hold back core content on purpose.

It Comes With A Headset, But Kinect Does The Job Either Way
Kinect's new directional microphone means that it can isolate background noise extremely well. It's at the point where Kinect can see who's holding the controller, can then focus on that person's voice even if other people are speaking and if there's loud noises coming from the game itself through your TV.

It's all pretty impressive, but if you want a far more personal experience, then yes, there's the packaged headset.

Friends List Now Expanded
Due to the new cloud-based Xbox Live, the amount of friends you can have has increased considerably over what was offered on Xbox 360. It means you can have well over 1,000 friends.

These are just some of the most important new features and improvements to the upcoming Xbox One. Stay tuned for more articles in our count down to the console's release!

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