In brief: Remember the Mad Box, the machine being planned by Project Cars developer Slightly Mad Studios that was supposedly “the most powerful console ever made?” It looks as if its future is now in doubt, all because of Google.
At the beginning of the year, Slightly Mad CEO Ian Bell said the Mad Box would launch in “three-plus years,” and cost a “standard plus next-gen price.” He added that the specs would match “a very fast PC two years from now,” and it would also provide a high-fidelity VR experience.
Snazzy concept images of the Mad Box and its screen-sporting controllers arrived a few weeks later, but we haven’t heard too much since then. Now, however, it appears there may never be a final product.
Nathan Bell, Slightly Mad Studio's online marketing director, told PCGamesInsider that following Google’s announcement of its Stadia game streaming platform, two investors have pulled out of the project.
"We had some solid investment lined up but Google saying 'the future of gaming isn't in a box' hasn't done us any favours."
“All I can say at this stage is the future of the project is questionable."
Stadia, of course, promises 4K HDR streaming at 60 frames per second, and all you need is a device with Chrome and a fast internet connection. Google even promises 8K resolutions at 120 frames per second when the technology evolves.
Stadia isn’t the only thorn in the Mad Box’s side. Slightly Mad filed the Mad Box name with a European IP organization in January, but a French games company called Madbox objected, leaving the firm no choice but to withdraw its application for the trademark.
So, it seems that in the unlikely scenario Slightly Mad ever does make “the world’s most powerful console,” it will have a different name.