Xbox One update takes players into the Arena with custom gamerpics
Microsoft is continuing to work on a series of upgrades to the Xbox One interface, and now it is testing new multiplayer and profile features as well.
Xbox Live is getting competitive gaming features this month in the form of the Arena, which is a portal where players can find and sign up for tournaments for free-to-play shooter World of Tanks. Other games will use the Arena in the future. Microsoft’s online gaming service will now also finally enable players to add their own custom images as their identifying gamerpics. The company is also improving how it is sorting games and apps for Xbox One owners. These features will roll out to select people who are participating in the Xbox Insider Program for beta testing new patches on Xbox One.
For the Arena, the Wargaming studio (which makes games like World of Warships and publishes others such as Master of Orion) and esports organization ESL are running the competitions. By signing up for the events, Xbox Live will notify you when your tournament is starting. The service will also automatically report the results, which is an improvement over the player-reported results on some other third-party tournament sites. After your match, you may also share your wins on your Xbox Live activity feed to brag to your friends.
In addition to the custom gamerpics, the Xbox One profile and activity feed is getting a “Join broadcast” button. This will enable you to instantly jump to a livestream of one of your friends. You can now also hide and pin posts in your activity feed. Microsoft is also expanding the tools for its Clubs and Looking For Group features that should make it easier to create posts and customize the look of your gamer congregation. Most notably, players can start a Looking For Group session from the Achievement page or from a Game Hub or Club Hub, and clubs can now have custom images and backgrounds.
Finally, Microsoft is also further improving browsing your game library. Under the My Games and Apps section, where all of your Xbox One software ends up, you may now sort by platform. If you only want to see backward compatible Xbox 360 games, you can now choose to do that.
Above: Sorting by platform.
While these features are entering testing in the next couple of weeks, they should roll out to everyone else soon after that.