The Next Xbox
Here we go again! This isn't confirmed officially, but VG247 and Verge sources have also said it's true.
So, here's what we know about the Nextbox so far:
- The codename is "Durango." The final name is suggested to be something like "Xbox Loop" or Xbox Infinity"
- The CPU is basically the same as the one in the PS4 - an AMD "Jaguar" based 8-core CPU running at 1.6 GHz. This may seem like a weak CPU (it is compared to Intel desktop CPUs) but keep in mind that almost all computation is done on the GPU in these new systems.
- The GPU is an AMD Radeon-derived chip with 12 CUs capable of ~ 1.2 TFLOPS of computational performance (vs 18 CUs and 1.84 TFLOPS on PS4)
- 8 GBs of DDR3 RAM, with 68 GB/s of bandwidth (vs 8 GBs of much faster GDDR5 on PS4 with 178 GB/s of bandwidth)
- 6x Blu-Ray drive (same as PS4)
This information is from leaked official documentation and was confirmed by a lot of people working with the system. The specs are unlikely to change at this point as it would delay the system and push the launch into 2014.
The following are rumors that have come from multiple sources, so they are likely to be true. Take them with a grain of salt nonetheless.
- The system will not work without an internet connection
- Used games will be blocked entirely - this one is causing a lot of uproar as you can imagine and Microsoft is dumb as all hell if they actually go through with it.
- Kinect 2.0 will be packaged with ever system. If you're wondering why Microsoft is releasing a console with a lot less power than the PS4, this is the reason right here. There's just no way they'd be able to package in Kinect and keep costs low enough while competing with Sony on hardware.
So. Predictions? Late April is pretty far off so it's likely we'll see more "complete" looking games than we saw at the PlayStation meeting. If these rumors end up true though, I don't know how Microsoft will be able to compete unless either Kinect 2.0 turns out to be amazing or they moneyhat devs for exclusives. The PS4 will be a lot more powerful, it will have a more consumer-friendly online service, there won't be a huge emphasis on Waggle-style casual games, it won't block used games, it won't require an internet connection to work, and it will likely have a lot more exclusives. I'm betting that we'll either see a lot of moneyhats for timed exclusivity/DLC, or the system will be disappointing and come off as anti-consumer. Microsoft hasn't had a very good track record in the last couple of years convincing people that a $50 pay wall between the consumer and Netflix is a good idea, for example. So we'll see if they can change that. So far things aren't looking too great though. In fact, some devs have apparently expressed their lack of enthusiasm about the system as well. It's unfortunate that Xbox today is not run by the same visionary people who created the 360. It's run by suits and people determining how they can best gouge their customers for more money.
if the next xbox is going to X86 architecture like PS4 did then that will be great news for us PC gamers, we won't have sloppy unoptimized ports anymore like we did with 360 and PS3.
Very true! Good times ahead for us PC gamers. There will also be less focus on the CPU as a major component in games, meaning we probably won't have to do a complete system rebuild for quite a while.
So basically its suppose to be good as Ps4 is?
In terms of specs? No. It's quite a bit less powerful than the PS4. The blocking of used games also means you won't be able to borrow a game from a friend or let a friend use one of your games (if that rumor ends up being true, which I am doubting more every day considering all the backlash.) A large chunk of the cost of the system will be for Kinect as well. So if you don't like Kinect, too bad! It's part of the system so you have to pay for it.
In terms of actual games we'll just have to wait and see. I'm sure that despite all the negatives that have arisen so far, there will be some good games. And that's really all that matters.
I'm sure I'll also be able to play them all on PC eventually too. Good old Microsoft, at least they don't make you buy their console.
If these rumours are true I can't see Xbox being a success. A lot of the time I only buy certain games if they're on sale or preowned. So yeah, PS4 it is for me if that's the case. Also the hardware is disappointing in comparison to the playstation, and kinect is just pointless for me.
VGLeaks recently posted some screenshots of the XDK devs received:
The only interesting thing in it other than the specs (which we already know) is this:
You'll have to squint a bit to read it but what we can take away from this document is the following:
- "Always online" system. What this actually means we don't know yet.
- Low power mode similar to PS4. Game states stored in memory for quick resume of play
- Kinect comes with ever console and is improved in just about every way
- The system will not function without Kinect plugged in (lol)
- Improved controller ergonomics and latency (same as PS4 - probably using same wireless tech)
- Blu-Ray drive, but games must be installed to HDD. Games won't be played from the Blu-Ray drive (lol again)
- Big HDD for storing all these games
- Can start playing a game while it's installing (same as PS4)
When you start to put two and two together here, it becomes evident that the rumors of used games being blocked is more and more likely. There are two possible scenarios here:
1. Installed games must still have the disk in the console in order to play, like on the 360. Used games would be supported in this case.
2. The game must be activated after installation, rendering the disk completely useless afterwards and effectively blocking used games. This activation would also require an internet connection, so regions with no or very poor internet are screwed.
I'm going to give MS the benefit of the doubt and for their sake hope they're going with #1. Because they're dead in the water if the company is now run by people who are so anti-consumer that they'd block used games entirely. Then again making everyone pay for Kinect at the cost of weaker hardware is also pretty daft so who knows what's going to happen.
Yep. It's looking like a PS4 for me with these specs. I think MS have shot themselves in the foot if this is what they're offering. Disaster.
So if you happen to fuck up Kinect in any way you will have paid for a big plastic brick? At least until you buy a new Kinect unit etc etc?
Seeing how the average developer handled Kinect on the 360, I don't think they could have made a worse decision than making a Kinect 2 the basis of the entire new console. No matter how well the system is designed, if a developer doesn't know how to handle the Kinect like many in the current generation didn't, a lot of games will just be plain broken.
^don't forget the user. There are simply people who dont want anything to do with kinect..
Like me, for instance. I have no desire to use hand motions to control a video game or media device. I want buttons because there's no mistaking buttons. You press a button and it does what it says.
Kinect? Wave at it. Does that mean turn the volume up? Or does it mean go back to dashboard? I'll do both!
*whole family is awakened by a self playing advert that Microsoft has deployed on the dashboard because fuck the user base*
Oh boy, here we go...
But the big news story is Microsoft's d-bag creative director defending the notion of a console requiring a connection to play with some really stupid arguments.
Bonus: Essentially more confirmation from a well-known developer working on next gen systems:
Microsoft basically saying "deal with it" to anyone with poor Internet, no Internet, or bandwidth caps. The outrage is at the point where I wouldn't be surprised if they change their strategy before their announcement, because the negative hype this system has is beyond terrible.
I was actually considering going over to Xbox this gen, simply because sometimes change is necessary, but my wireless connection is spotty at best in the room where I keep my console. No dice man, what a shit head.
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