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THROWBACK: When Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson Kicked Off the Xbox Era

Published 11/15/2021, 10:31 AM EST

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As everyone might be aware, Xbox turns 20 today! November 15 marks two decades of Microsoft providing gamers with the best of gaming. Reminiscing on the day of the original console’s launch, the players who have been loyal to the console’s fanbase will definitely remember how Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson unveiled the Xbox console along with Microsoft’s founder Bill Gates on January 6, 2001, at the CES.

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It would be a good idea to revisit the day when this launch marked the start of a legacy.


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Xbox being officially unveiled by The Rock and Bill Gates

Today indeed is one of the most historic days in history, as it marks two decades of the existence of one of the most popular console giants on the planet. The console, at CES 2001, was unveiled by none other than Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Bill Gates.

Although Johnson might not have been the popular actor that he is today, he was widely known for being a star in the WWF (now WWE). The funny part in the video is that Bill Gates constantly mentioned: “The Rock” as “Rock” and the wrestler showed great enthusiasm even while reading from a teleprompter.


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On the day of the reveal, The Rock had the following words to say during the official unveil:

“The Xbox is everything The Rock is. Cutting-edge, powerful, exhilarating, and like The Rock, it will be the most electrifying thing coming out this year. What The Rock is to sports entertainment, to the WWF, the Xbox will be to the video game industry: a breakthrough and certainly an original. I mean, The Rock doesn’t impress easily–you know that, Bill. But I’m pretty damn impressed with what we’re seeing here today.”

These words marked the beginning of an era that shaped gaming for an entire generation. Comparing the original Xbox to today’s standards might not be a good idea as the console was released a long time ago, but this console did facilitate the start of a new era of gaming.


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The Xbox anniversary stream will air on November 15, 2021, at 10 AM PT/1 PM ET/ 5 PM GMT and will also feature the launch of the 20th-anniversary special edition console.

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Written by:

Siddid Dey Purkayastha


One take at a time

Siddid Dey Purkayastha is an eSports author for EssentiallySports and is currently pursuing his Bachelor of Arts degree at Christ (Deemed to be University). He has always been into gaming since the ripe age of 9 and has never looked back. Apart from his deep love for narrative-driven or campaign-based games, he enjoys casually playing online games such as Valorant, Fortnite, FIFA Ultimate Team, Warzone, and GTA Online.
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