Next-gen Xbox details leaked, from someone who claims to have one

By Stephen Totilo and Luke Plunkett on February 12, 2013, 8:30 AM

The next-generation Xbox—the one that will follow the still-popular Xbox 360—will run multiple games at once, require game installations, and will only work when a much-improved version of the popular but divisive Kinect sensor array is plugged in, according to a source who says he has access to development hardware.

Those are a just a few details about the new console, codenamed Durango, that were shared with us by a person with access to next-gen information. Our source also claims to have a pair of Durango development kits.

We've also heard more about how the system apparently works and what it will be like to control it and play games on it, though we've not seen the unit ourselves. Our source even claims to have played some Durango games, describing the graphical leap from current-gen console gaming like going from playing Halo 2 on an original Xbox to playing Crysis on a powerful PC.

Our source for this new info goes by the name SuperDaE. He first came to the attention of lots of people last year, when he tried to sell a Durango development kit on eBay (he says the sale was blocked by Microsoft over a copyright issue; we've asked them to confirm and will let you know what they say, if anything). He's an unusual but surprisingly well-informed source.

More recently, SuperDaE contacted Kotaku with information about the next-generation PlayStation, all gleaned from more than 90 pages of Sony development kit documentation. He had a trove of new details, tied to what appears to be hundreds of pages of Microsoft documentation, to share about the next Xbox as well.

Like Sony, Microsoft refuses to acknowledge that their next-gen system is in the works and that people are making games for it. They're focused on selling current consoles, not giving people reasons to hold out for the future, no matter how near that future may be. As a result, Kotaku sources who have told us about things such as the codenames of the new Wiis, Xboxes and PlayStations of the world have done so from the shadows of an industry still not able to beam brightly about the next generation of console hardware. Sources can be mistaken. They can mislead. And specs can change. Nevertheless, what SuperDaE told us synched with other reports, and some details—such as the Durango's support for Blu-Ray discs—lined up with rock-solid reports we've gotten from our own proven sources.

None of the details that follow have been confirmed by Microsoft. When contacted about some of the specifics of the story late last month, a rep cited Microsoft's policy not to comment on rumors and speculation.

SuperDaE's information comes from what appears to be more than 20 white papers—overview documents—crafted to prepare game makers for the next generation. Much of what we learned from them presents the notion of the Durango as being an exceedingly capable console that merges the traits of a powerful game console with the expectations of multi-tasking users of smartphones and tablets. Peripherals such as hard drives and the Kinect sensor that were optional in the last generation are mandatory in Microsoft's next go-'round, according to SuperDaE's information.

Here's what we learned from our source, with the understanding that, while what follows is fresh info relevant up through the state of Durango development in January 2013, specs and plans can change. The likelihood of further changes does diminish as the console's expected late-2013 release gets closer. An important note: many of the specs we were made privy to were said to be set not just for development kits but for the final retail consoles as well.

Kinect is now mandatory

As we reported a year ago, the new version of the Kinect motion-control sensor array will be included with every Durango sold. The unit seems far superior to the one currently found for the Xbox 360 (or the PC, for that matter).

Perhaps most importantly, this isn't an optional accessory. It's mandatory. Not only does a Kinect ship with every console, but it must be plugged in and calibrated for the console to even function.

This requirement is due to the way Kinect has been integrated with the Durango; because every console can be guaranteed of having the camera, developers can now program every game with the peripheral in mind.

It's also because the Kinect will always be watching you. The new version of the camera is able to track up to six individual "skeletons" in the same room at all times. This has clear gameplay implications, such as allowing a game to instantly identify a person, but could also be related to a recently-patented Microsoft system for monitoring and maybe even charging users based on who is watching what. SuperDae's Kinect documentation also makes mention of automatic player identification becoming part of a gameplay experience.

The camera has also been improved upon the models currently available, with the Durango's version capable of independently tracking your thumbs, determining whether your hand is open or closed, and even, it's claimed, reading your facial expression and seeing whether you're angry, sad or excited. The improved viewing angle is so wide that the new Kinect doesn't even need to nod to find the best viewing angle.

For more detail on the ways in which Kinect has been improved since the device's first release in 2010, take a look at the diagrams below.

Storage & Installs

A point of confusion during the lifetime of the Xbox 360, and one of consternation for developers, was the way in which Microsoft split the install base of the machine, selling some consoles with a hard drive and others without. This meant games could not be programmed to specifically take advantage of a hard drive installation.

That divide is gone this time around, with all Durango retail consoles shipping with an HDD. That drive is 500GB in size, which should be enough for your media storage needs, but it'll mostly be used for games, which must now be installed immediately upon first insertion of the game disc.

What's more, this installation can take place automatically, while you're playing the game. Durango titles can be designed in "sections," so that you can pop your disc in, start playing and, in the background, the rest of the game will install. Installing games should bring performance improvements, we think, but doing so in the background should also get rid of pre-game install waits, one of the more annoying hold-ups of the current generation of consoles.

Durango game installations will also be mandatory, as games can't directly access data from the disc.

Game-Juggling

The Durango will be able to run more than one game or app at once, according to the information shared with us. If you're, say, a computer or smartphone user, this is not exactly sending-a-man-to-the-moon level of innovation. But game consoles have long been stuck just running the system-level functions (cross-game voice-chat, Achievement alerts, etc) while a single game runs. On an Xbox 360, even an app as simple as Twitter could only be used if whatever game the user was playing was shut down first. Durango, thankfully, gets past that.

The Durango is said to also allow games to be put into "suspend" and "constrained" states, which seemingly allow users to pause a game, switch to a second game, then return to the first game without losing their place, provided game developers follow some Microsoft protocols. Again, this is no revolution for users of computers, phones, or even Nintendo and Sony handheld gaming machines, but it is one giant leap for consoles.

Controller

The Durango's control pad will be a "natural evolution" of the Xbox 360's pad, according to SuperDaE's info. While this suggests a near-identical layout—not necessarily a problem considering the cross-platform popularity of the layout with the PC—Xbox 360 controllers won't work with the Durango, as they use what Microsoft is calling a "new wireless technology."

Companion App

Perhaps to complement the lack of direct advances to the 360's controller itself, Microsoft is looking to bolster support for its Xbox Companion App.

Some of the possibilities we've learned of are far more dramatic than those originally intended for the current version of the app, taking advantage of both a phone/tablet's motion sensing capabilities and Kinect to execute actions more like those you'd expect from Nintendo's Wii U controller.

Microsoft says, "There is no limit on the imaginative possibilities with this input medium and its screen real estate." The only question is if developers have the manpower (or willpower) to make the most of it.

Specs

While various outlets, including Kotaku, have shared information on the technical specifications of Durango development kits, the specs you're about to see here are those for the final retail units that consumers will be getting their hands on.

The next Xbox will run on custom hardware that includes an 8-core, 64-bit CPU running at 1.6ghz, an 800mhz DirectX 11.x graphics processor unit and, alongside them, various "custom hardware blocks" that are able to handle certain individual tasks, taking the strain off the main CPU.

According to sketches from information shared by SuperDae, there's 8GB of DDR3 memory, along with a small amount of flash memory for system tasks. The Durango's optical disc drive is 50GB in size, while, as mentioned, there's a 500GB hard drive, with read speeds of up to 50 MB/sec.

If you've got a 3D TV set, the Durango is capable—if developers want to support it—of delivering stereo 3D content in 1080p.

Those reliant on wi-fi, and who were forced to pay for Microsoft's costly external adapter with the original Xbox 360, will be happy to know that the Durango ships with built-in wi-fi (though there's still an ethernet port for wired connections).

In terms of audio, the retail Durango will output via either HDMI or S/PDIF (optical) connections, and can support up to 7.1 channels.

There is always a high level of interest in a new generation of video game consoles, and things get particularly wild during the months before console-makers issue their official announcements. So much information flies around: some of it made up, some of it from sources we know, and some of it from sources we don't, characters who come knocking with extraordinary tales to tell.

No one seems to know everything about the new machines. SuperDaE, for example, offered nothing about the machine's name nor the look of the console or controller. He said nothing about the idea of the new Xbox requiring a constant online connection, something most recently reported by the respected Edge magazine. (One reliable Kotaku source has told us it's true, though, again, plans can change and the strictness of that online requirement—would it tolerate a spotty signal?—remains unclear.)

Soon, the leaks will be replaced by official statements and dazzling announcement events. It is nearly guaranteed that Sony will reveal its next PlayStation to the world at a major February 20 event in New York City. It's possible that Microsoft might try to spoil that event with a pre-show tease, or hold out as long as they can wait to announce—maybe until E3 in June.

For now, those who want to plan their console gaming future are left with whispers, rumors and leaks.

Our best sources continue to assume that the next Xbox will be out by the end of the year. With Xbox 360 sales remaining high, Microsoft doesn't have to put out a new machine, but with development so far underway and with hardcore gamers' apathy for circa-2005 console tech increasing, the time is increasingly right for a new gaming console.

We'll let you know as we learn more, and we'll be as clear as we can every step of the way.

Republished with permission. Stephen Totilo and Luke Plunkett are editors at Kotaku.




User Comments: 61

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5 people like this | captainawesome captainawesome said:

Screw you MS for making the old controllers incompatible. That is JUST to force people to buy more new gear and you know it!

Greedy buggers

3 people like this | Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

Sony & MS can do as they like with their consoles for all I care. I'd never waste money on any gaming console. For me it's PC gaming only or no gaming at all.

1 person liked this | psycros psycros said:

LOL! George Orwell, your game console has arrived. F you and your vile Kinect + always-connected spying, Micro$haft.

1 person liked this | Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Well, I don't like the idea of being forced to use the Kinect? I dunno if I'm the only one but does anyone ever sit there, watching a movie and the kinect is just there staring at you? I can't help but think:

"Is a Microsoft employee watching me sit here in just my underwear?".

Anyway, things I think are great is Bluray finally making an appearance, with 50GB on tap, games could have nice high res textures and be quite big and detailed.

I like the idea of having to install games, this just speeds up load times dramatically.

Specs seem reasonable, 8GB of RAM is actually quite a lot, Guess Minecraft can now be ported properly xD

But I'm worried how much this thing is going to cost, with a Kinect as standard, those specs and then all new gear, I can't see this being cheap.

Besides, I'll wait for the PS4 announcement before giving a final judgement, I've got a feeling this time round Sony are going to try and get back on top.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

Sony & MS can do as they like with their consoles for all I care. I'd never waste money on any gaming console. For me it's PC gaming only or no gaming at all.

And yet here you are...

mevans336 mevans336 said:

I'm a little puzzled by the inclusion of an 8-core chip. I suppose in actuality this is a 4-module Bulldozer or Piledriver chip, perhaps based on Trinity? Regardless, I am curious what all that processing power will be used for.

Guest said:

...you could just ut a towel or soemthing over the kinect sensor, or turn it around.

MrBungle said:

I'm a little puzzled by the inclusion of an 8-core chip. I suppose in actuality this is a 4-module Bulldozer or Piledriver chip, perhaps based on Trinity? Regardless, I am curious what all that processing power will be used for.

Its a curious CPU choice... for gaming you'd be much better off with a higher clocked quad core, if the 1.6GHz figures that have been thrown around are true and this is in fact an AMD design this CPU is a gutless wonder from a gaming stand point, not every type of program can be threaded in such a way that it will take full advantage of 8 threads.

captainawesome captainawesome said:

Amen to the dislike being watched idea. The Kinect also has a microphone I assume? so a cloth over the camera wont be enough to stop the overlords from listening to the plebians speak.

Anyhoo, on the PS4, I dont think they going to get anywhere if they want to remain this closed to things like external apps and a decent marketplace.

spencer spencer said:

LOL! George Orwell, your game console has arrived. F you and your vile Kinect + always-connected spying, Micro$haft.

I know what you mean, good one.

spencer spencer said:

Also I have had the kinect ever since in came out, I constantly get the aurora that I'm being watched and when I do I beat the shi* out of it. It never breaks though. Ps3 monitors you by biometrics? and the xbox will monitor you by kinect. the only way not to be watched is to get a gaming pc and even then you can't be sure. As for the wii u I'm sure they are monitoring you somehow. Only way to be sure is to turn off wifi and get a rf signal detector.

Guest said:

Apparently I'm the only one who still uses an original xbox and the first black 360.(not the slim)

1 person liked this | Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

And yet here you are...

That sounds exactly like the line Haytham uttered aboard the ship in Assassins Creed 3

Tygerstrike said:

What if Im not a fan of the Kinetic? I personally believe it to be a waste of my gaming time. I work on my feet all day. The absolute last thing I want is to have to do is Jane Fondas workout to play a game. I want to come home and sit back and relax. And yes I am abit paranoid about MS being able to access my system and watch me. It prolly wont happen, but Im the kind of guy that likes to pull his curtains and walk around in the buff if I chose. Im not to keen on the whole Kinetic idea. That and the not being allowed to play my xbox 360 games on it means its now going to be a deal breaker. Im hopeing that Sony does their release soon so we can get a look at the specs. If both Sony and MS decide to screw the consumer, I will just move to a different form of gaming. Maybe I will break out my old GameBoy. No.....GameCube!! Mario Golf hasnt seen some action in awhile.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

What if Im not a fan of the Kinetic? I personally believe it to be a waste of my gaming time. I work on my feet all day. The absolute last thing I want is to have to do is Jane Fondas workout to play a game. I want to come home and sit back and relax. And yes I am abit paranoid about MS being able to access my system and watch me. It prolly wont happen, but Im the kind of guy that likes to pull his curtains and walk around in the buff if I chose. Im not to keen on the whole Kinetic idea. That and the not being allowed to play my xbox 360 games on it means its now going to be a deal breaker. Im hopeing that Sony does their release soon so we can get a look at the specs. If both Sony and MS decide to screw the consumer, I will just move to a different form of gaming. Maybe I will break out my old GameBoy. No.....GameCube!! Mario Golf hasnt seen some action in awhile.

That sounds kinda creepy. Watch out, Big Daddy's watching.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

Screw you MS for making the old controllers incompatible. That is JUST to force people to buy more new gear and you know it!

Greedy buggers

Boo hoo. We had to basically do it for every new console before, don't expect them to do you any favors...

m4a4 m4a4 said:

And mandatory kinect doesn't mean that new games will always use it (or use it to get active). It just means that the devs will know that it is standard so they can add a cool thing or 2 to their games...

2 people like this | amstech amstech, TechSpot Enthusiast, said:

I think of the console market like I do the music industry; It's controlled by teenies. Artists with trash music selling millions of albums while popular only to be forgot about in 3 months. With consoles, its not teenage girls, its teenage boys. They don't care about all these new changes/methods, they just want to game.

Personally I don't like being forced to use a giant state of the art camera probably capable of sending my sperm count to Uncle Sam.

And my gripes about Xbox Live and local games stay the same. I installed some games onto my Xbox 360S, but I still need the CD to play them...so...umm, whats the friggin point?

And new titles don't show up on Live until long after they hit shelves...

My love for Microsoft keeps dwindling and I am using my PS3 and Gaming PC more and more.

Guest said:

F that $h!t...I'm NOT having anything that's ALWAYS on and mandatory. Why the F would I voluntarily allow M$ (or whoever else) spy on me!??

Guest said:

To those who comment, on this article how AAAwesome and powerful is their pc they have on mommys basement , why bother dude

SantistaUSA said:

And my gripes about Xbox Live and local games stay the same. I installed some games onto my Xbox 360S, but I still need the CD to play them...so...umm, whats the friggin point?

Well I hate that Microsoft charges for live as well, it is a rip off, but I about been able to install the game to your hard drive but still needing to have the dvd in there makes perfect sense, if they allowed you to do that then why would I buy the game when you can borrow from your friend, copy it to your hardrive for free! the point is of been able to install is less noise, stress on your system.

I'm also not happy about kinect been mandatory, but all this are just rumors, let's wait til it is official!

Guest said:

Nope. I've been using a 120gb Elite on a wired connection without a single problem since it was released.

wastedkill said:

To those who comment, on this article how AAAwesome and powerful is their pc they have on mommys basement , why bother dude

Ye But you forgot about consoles as well.

1 person liked this | captainawesome captainawesome said:

I find myself in the precarious position of agreeing with everything everyone said. :-)

2 people like this | Guest said:

I can't imagine Microshaft forcing players to always have Kinect on, or always having an online connection. More likely, they'll produce variants of the same console, tailored to different needs. For those that want all the pointless bells and whistles, they can have them, but I'm sure they'll just sell the basic console for console gamers.

If they don't, then I won't be bothering to buy one. I have never played a Kinect game in my life, or been anywhere near Xbox Live. The last thing I want to do is to jump around my living room after a hard day at work! And the only thing that I have connected to the internet is my PC.

That's how it should always be (unless you're an annoying, spotty 14 year old).

1 person liked this | ikesmasher said:

Ill be placing ducktape over my kinect, k thx bye.

1 person liked this | MilwaukeeMike said:

You know...when the camera was invented people thought it was capturing their souls. When e-commerce became big people thought sending their credit card over the internet would be a sure way to get the number stolen. When Bluetooth came out people thought using the headset would be a great way to let others tap into your conversation. When we learned about NFC, people thought it was yet another way to get hacked. Now we have Kinect and the fear is...

Personally I don't like being forced to use a giant state of the art camera probably capable of sending my sperm count to Uncle Sam.

My love for Microsoft keeps dwindling and I am using my PS3 and Gaming PC more and more.

So go ahead... hide behind your PC (yeah, the one with the webcam) until those of us with an ounce of common sense have enjoyed the new Xbox for a while. We'll let you know when it's safe.

amstech amstech, TechSpot Enthusiast, said:

So go ahead... hide behind your PC (yeah, the one with the webcam) until those of us who understand we're not being constantly watched have enjoyed the new Xbox for a while. We'll let you know when it's safe.

You do know Uncle Sam has been caught monitoring phone calls, text messages, user activity and purchases red handed without permission several times right? And no, my U3011 doesn't have a camera :P

Guest said:

You know...when the camera was invented people thought it was capturing their souls.

You don't live in an area where there's CCTV everywhere then?

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

You know...when the camera was invented people thought it was capturing their souls. When e-commerce became big people thought sending their credit card over the internet would be a sure way to get the number stolen. When Bluetooth came out people thought using the headset would be a great way to let others tap into your conversation. When we learned about NFC, people thought it was yet another way to get hacked. Now we have Kinect and the fear

Ok hold on a second here, all of those technology's you just mentioned have governing bodies and standards.

Kinect isn't, It was developed purely by Microsoft, Sold, by Microsoft.

The company that creates Windows which sends heaps of data back to the Mothership.

What makes you think this Xbox won't be sending pictures back to Microsoft to "help" them improve the Kinect recognition software?

Just saying, its possible.

MilwaukeeMike said:

You do know Uncle Sam has been caught monitoring phone calls, text messages, user activity and purchases red handed without permission several times right? And no, my U3011 doesn't have a camera :p

But have they ever been caught watching someone play video games? I'm not joking... that's part of what makes this so ridiculous. Being scared of having your credit card stolen is at least legit, because there are people who steal credit card. Why on earth would MS or Uncle Sam or anyone want to watch anyone play video games?

captainawesome captainawesome said:

But have they ever been caught watching someone play video games? I'm not joking... that's part of what makes this so ridiculous. Being scared of having your credit card stolen is at least legit, because there are people who steal credit card. Why on earth would MS or Uncle Sam or anyone want to watch anyone play video games?

Why does Facebook care which links you click on. Why does Google care what email goes through your Gmail account? So that they can understand their target market better in order to try and sell more crap/ads. Or perhaps because they just like seeing my GF in her pink panties? Or maybe they want to see the meth lab my neighbour has going on in his lounge. or maybe they selling the data to the Illuminati. Seriously??? Can you really not imagine WHY someone would want a video camera perched on your primary TV at all times and one that is always on at that as well.

soldier1969 soldier1969 said:

With specs I've had on my gaming PC for a couple of years now and continue to upgrade..I hate the thought of what hardware I will have this time next year when the 720 releases. Basically it will be outdated at release, but hey if your 12-17 yrs old this is good news...

Guest said:

I think they know what there doing. They have engineers that know more then us about this stuff. but the know it all's on the internet will go one about how stupid everyone is at microsoft is and im not buying this garbage and keep complining. but in the end they will buy one and say how awsome it is when the time comes.

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

I'm a little puzzled by the inclusion of an 8-core chip. I suppose in actuality this is a 4-module Bulldozer or Piledriver chip, perhaps based on Trinity? Regardless, I am curious what all that processing power will be used for.

Its a curious CPU choice... for gaming you'd be much better off with a higher clocked quad core, if the 1.6GHz figures that have been thrown around are true and this is in fact an AMD design this CPU is a gutless wonder from a gaming stand point, not every type of program can be threaded in such a way that it will take full advantage of 8 threads.

You're right in regards to AMD CPU's being poor on PC's, but an AMD CPU/APU optimized for a console just may be where their chips truly shine.

As far as multi-threading goes, you don't need programs developed with it in mind when you want to run multiple programs at once, which seems to be the case with things like Game Juggling. I mean, unless your video editing or transcoding, multi-threading on a console is useless.

2 people like this | hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

And my gripes about Xbox Live and local games stay the same. I installed some games onto my Xbox 360S, but I still need the CD to play them...so...umm, whats the friggin point?

Well I hate that Microsoft charges for live as well, it is a rip off...

I hear this so often it doesn't make sense to me. For the price of one game, you have access to probably the best online community available (outside the PC) for a year. How is that bad?

Please explain why you think it's bad, besides the fact that Playstation has it for free.

Tygerstrike said:

@Mike

Actually youre question is easy to answer. It would be a unregulated, secure, and hard to prove. MS could watch how you play games on Kinetic. How many ppl play the game or watch others play the game. This is really all focus group information. But MS would have to pay focus groups. With this tech being mandatory to play ANY game, MS would have virtually complete and unfettered access to view any person they chose too. This way they can claim that any viewing they are doing is solely for increasing product performance. All that aside, its more about what is percieved by the consumer. If it looks lke a duck and walks like a duck, its prolly a duck. What the consumer sees is that MS is demanding that what amounts to a camera be plugged in at all times to use their new system. MS may not be watching anyone, but it looks like they want to. In the retail business, perception is reality. So like it or not MS looks like they want to spy on ppl.

Guest said:

Just going to get a small picture of old folks having some kind of strange orgy and put it in front of the Kinect. Aggregate THAT data, Microsoft.

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Am I the only one who thinks a 500GB hard drive on a console using blu ray disks that can hold up to 50GB of information is to small when in most cases if you have to install the game it will require almost 20GB per game not to mention any movies or music you may have.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Am I the only one who thinks a 500GB hard drive on a console using blu ray disks that can hold up to 50GB of information is to small when in most cases if you have to install the game it will require almost 20GB per game not to mention any movies or music you may have.

Yup. Doesn't make sense. Just like a lot of this stuff doesn't make sense.

The paranoid parrot in me is thinking that MS and Sony are purposely leaking false information that the gamer public will see as bad, just so when the final product comes out everyone can be very pleasantly surprised.

Guest said:

Kinect mandatory?

I can already see the headlines: "NEWSFLASH! Hackers jack into Joe Smoe's kinect camera and watches him as he sits on his couch!"

3 people like this |
Staff
Per Hansson Per Hansson, TS Server Guru, said:

All you paranoid guys are missing the point, Microsoft programmed the kinect so it can recognize hot chicks.

So they just home into the console when there is a hot chick in only her underwear infront of the xbox...

Why why they wanna see your hairy ass?

Oh, and on the CPU cores thing, I think it's great, this will mean game devs will need to program their games so they utilize multiple cores well.

So perhaps we will see some better console ports in the coming years

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

You're right in regards to AMD CPU's being poor on PC's, but an AMD CPU/APU optimized for a console just may be where their chips truly shine.

As far as multi-threading goes, you don't need programs developed with it in mind when you want to run multiple programs at once, which seems to be the case with things like Game Juggling. I mean, unless your video editing or transcoding, multi-threading on a console is useless.

Well not necessarily, did you watch the PS3 adverts and listen to why Sony chose having multiple cores? they used the example of one core could be dedicated to processing rain effects and another for water physics when the drops hit a puddle, as an example, then another could be dedicated to lighting etc...

I guess that's the theory but the ps3 didn't really show much extra graphical omph over the Xbox 360 so it may of just been a load of rubbish to be fair.

Guest said:

I kinda have a problem with Burtys comment, as M$'s Xbox 360, is way inferior, although people seem to have come up with a few fancy things for the kinect, which I see people here bashing so... But alas its the fact you think the 360 stands high above the ps3 that it gives me a hard time believing Sony can retain the crown.

To explain my logic. The Xbox came out and it was cheaper... or so everyone said. The PS3 was too pricey, and everyone ran away from it crying. No one compared the bang for your buck, and how out of pocket you would be buying an Xbox 360. To make it even compare to the PS3 you had to buy, the console, the HD-DVD player, either 7 years supply of batteries, or rechargeable battery packs, and 7 consoles. Total cost £1700, to Sonys £400. I may embellish a little there, but I have read of people who due to the RROD purchase 7 machines. And I can only think of, a fool and his money, and stupid is doing the same thing and expecting different results.

And the reason for the RROD was the X clamp, a clamp that did nothing, did not need to be there, and yet although M$ knew this left it in and didnt remove from refurbished models. Nubs.

I also read ( and sure maybe I read some BS by a fanboi online journalist ) on how the Xbox being the lowest common denominator = bad ports of games. Like many people here who only believe in PC gaming and how consoles are the reason for programmers being lazy, and making the games for the weakest link of the bunch *points at Xbox360* so that every platform is covered with the one tacky version of sorts.

Yet, everyone does believe Sony failed, for some reason, everyone plays Xbox. I have both, I play Halo, would rather see it on PC, specially as my xbox in its 3 years or so has seen 30 hrs of play total. I don't understand how a console with such a fail rate, which is the reason for such pants game ports elsewhere, is preferred by so many. The only thing going for Sony would be the Blu ray player on the Xbox. One of the very reasons articles claimed for poor ports on PS3 was the lack of interest in developers writing for the bluray format.

So while I have no problem believe that Sony can always walk over M$ as they rarely get anything right ( XP, Win7, and not much else ) I have to say I don't believe in the human race. Too many people who know not what they pay for, they pay and play, and hope it's ok to follow the herd down that path blindly.

2 people like this | MilwaukeeMike said:

@Mike

Actually youre question is easy to answer. It would be a unregulated, secure, and hard to prove. MS could watch how you play games on Kinetic. How many ppl play the game or watch others play the game. This is really all focus group information. But MS would have to pay focus groups. With this tech being mandatory to play ANY game, MS would have virtually complete and unfettered access to view any person they chose too. This way they can claim that any viewing they are doing is solely for increasing product performance. All that aside, its more about what is percieved by the consumer. If it looks lke a duck and walks like a duck, its prolly a duck. What the consumer sees is that MS is demanding that what amounts to a camera be plugged in at all times to use their new system. MS may not be watching anyone, but it looks like they want to. In the retail business, perception is reality. So like it or not MS looks like they want to spy on ppl.

Ok... think of it from another angle. What does MS gain compared to what do they risk if they were ever caught being ABLE to spy on people. Google almost got their pants sued off because they were recording Wi-Fi locations. Apple almost got sued because they were recording your locations in a file on the iPhone, and those were WITHOUT personal data. Now imagine if MS had video archives of people in their homes. It doesn't matter why they say they're recording people.. or viewing, or whatever. Every civil rights lawyer in the country would be jumping all over it. I can't even think of a legal case (or even conspiracy theory) that comes close the level of outrage that would result of the Kinect recording people.

The reality is, MS is probably going through great lengths to make sure the Kinect CAN'T be accessed remotely. And it's not to make you feel better about whether MS is spying on you. It's to stop common hackers and/or thieves from getting a view of the inside of your home. If you really think this system could be used for spying, at least understand that Big Brother won't be using it... it'll be a hacker who knows when you're not home so he can break in. And that's why MS will do their best to make it secure.

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I kinda have a problem with Burtys comment, as M$'s Xbox 360, is way inferior, although people seem to have come up with a few fancy things for the kinect, which I see people here bashing so... But alas its the fact you think the 360 stands high above the ps3 that it gives me a hard time believing Sony can retain the crown.

To explain my logic. The Xbox came out and it was cheaper... or so everyone said. The PS3 was too pricey, and everyone ran away from it crying. No one compared the bang for your buck, and how out of pocket you would be buying an Xbox 360. To make it even compare to the PS3 you had to buy, the console, the HD-DVD player, either 7 years supply of batteries, or rechargeable battery packs, and 7 consoles. Total cost £1700, to Sonys £400. I may embellish a little there, but I have read of people who due to the RROD purchase 7 machines. And I can only think of, a fool and his money, and stupid is doing the same thing and expecting different results.

And the reason for the RROD was the X clamp, a clamp that did nothing, did not need to be there, and yet although M$ knew this left it in and didnt remove from refurbished models. Nubs.

I also read ( and sure maybe I read some BS by a fanboi online journalist ) on how the Xbox being the lowest common denominator = bad ports of games. Like many people here who only believe in PC gaming and how consoles are the reason for programmers being lazy, and making the games for the weakest link of the bunch *points at Xbox360* so that every platform is covered with the one tacky version of sorts.

Yet, everyone does believe Sony failed, for some reason, everyone plays Xbox. I have both, I play Halo, would rather see it on PC, specially as my xbox in its 3 years or so has seen 30 hrs of play total. I don't understand how a console with such a fail rate, which is the reason for such pants game ports elsewhere, is preferred by so many. The only thing going for Sony would be the Blu ray player on the Xbox. One of the very reasons articles claimed for poor ports on PS3 was the lack of interest in developers writing for the bluray format.

So while I have no problem believe that Sony can always walk over M$ as they rarely get anything right ( XP, Win7, and not much else ) I have to say I don't believe in the human race. Too many people who know not what they pay for, they pay and play, and hope it's ok to follow the herd down that path blindly.

Ok, I wasn't saying the Xbox was any better than the PS3, I just mean if you look at games made specifically for that system, say Halo 4 vs Killzone 2/3, the graphics aren't necessarily better on either, I'm not an Xbox fan boy, in fact I hate the Xbox more than the PS3, I was just stating that this time round, the Xbox did beat the PS3 in sales figures, I've been to quite a few gaming conventions as well, I try to go to PC specific ones but even places like Eurogamer the Xbox was used on a lot of the stands.

Also, the Xbox was not the lowest denominator, it was the Wii, which sold more than the Xbox and PS3.

Tygerstrike said:

@Mike

Like I said previously. Its about appearances. It LOOKS like MS wants the Kinetic hooked up at all times for something shady. As for any trouble they would get into, I simply point to ANY ToS page that we as a consumer have to agree to. They could bury somewhere deep in their ToS that MS is allowed to view you while you are gaming. Most ppl blindly accept a ToS simply because a ToS is normally filled with so much legalese that the average persons brain just clouds over.

My concern is still mainly the backwards compatibility. I can get over the Kinetic being plugged in at all times. I would just turn it around and if MS wanted to watch all they would see is the bottom of a TV. I have spent MY money for MY games. Roughly $60 per game. I dont relish the fact that I will have to put those games away or keep both a 360 AND a 720 out. Im thinking that the console makers have forgotten the golden rule. He who has the gold makes the rules. As the consumer, we have the gold. If MS and possibly Sony follow through with their plans to cut out used games, well they wont be getting my gold.

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Ok, I wasn't saying the Xbox was any better than the PS3, I just mean if you look at games made specifically for that system, say Halo 4 vs Killzone 2/3, the graphics aren't necessarily better on either, I'm not an Xbox fan boy, in fact I hate the Xbox more than the PS3, I was just stating that this time round, the Xbox did beat the PS3 in sales figures, I've been to quite a few gaming conventions as well, I try to go to PC specific ones but even places like Eurogamer the Xbox was used on a lot of the stands.

Also, the Xbox was not the lowest denominator, it was the Wii, which sold more than the Xbox and PS3.

The Xbox also had a 1 year lead on the PS3 if you look at sales figures the PS3 has been catching up. Also the xbox for the first 3 years had like almost a 40 to 50 % RROD rate which is ridiculous how much has the RROD cost Microsoft? I think that games designed for PS3 look better than ones designed for Xbox 360 but compared to computers they look like complete crap.

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

Ok, I wasn't saying the Xbox was any better than the PS3, I just mean if you look at games made specifically for that system, say Halo 4 vs Killzone 2/3, the graphics aren't necessarily better on either...

What do you mean by not necessarily better? Both titles are exclusives with different developers and game engines.

Well not necessarily, did you watch the PS3 adverts and listen to why Sony chose having multiple cores? they used the example of one core could be dedicated to processing rain effects and another for water physics when the drops hit a puddle, as an example, then another could be dedicated to lighting etc...

Ok, saying MT is useless on a console is going too far, but I don't see them doing much more with multi-threading on next gen consoles than what they are doing on current gen systems. I don't see them challenging the PC for example.

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

Oh, and on the CPU cores thing, I think it's great, this will mean game devs will need to program their games so they utilize multiple cores well.

So perhaps we will see some better console ports in the coming years

What cores thing? Do you mean multi-core, because we have that in consoles already. 3 in the XBOX, 7+1 in the PS3.

Staff
Per Hansson Per Hansson, TS Server Guru, said:

The AMD Bulldozer architecture is quite weak at FPU calculations, which are very important for many games. Ontop of that it has a very low clockspeed, which is also important in many games...

Well, I should clarify and say current games, my hope is that if the consoles ship with such hardware game engines will be rewritten to take better advantage of it, also helping PC gaming (well, the console ports to PC that is, but today that is like 99% of PC gaming)

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