With so many rumours flying around regarding the Xbox 720, we decided to gather the most prominent here for you all in a handy top five list, to be read at your leisure. We’re too good to you people.
1. What’s in a name?
We’re all calling the next gen Microsoft console the Xbox 720. That’s largely due to a commercial in the movie Real Steel. While it seems likely that filmmakers simply doubled 360 and came up with the name from that, a lot of people are wondering if this is a hint from Microsoft, a little subliminal advertising. But 720 is not the only name being bandied about.
One of the other main contenders is Xbox Loop. This came from a blog post by noted MS blogger, MS Nerd. No-one knows who MS Nerd is, though he’s believed by some to be an employee at Microsoft, possibly with “Leak tantalising nuggets of info to those poor saps who buy our stuff” written into his job description.
Yet another rumored title for the next-gen console is Xbox 8, to bring it in line with Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. This comes from ThisIsXbox.com, citing a source who also states that non-console form dev hardware has already been sent out to developers. In this article, Infinity is also mentioned. This has been another rumored name for the new console from Microsoft but ThisIsXbox claims that it will be the name for an enhanced version of Xbox Live.
2. No more pre-owned titles?
A rumour surfaced a while back which caused much wailing and gnashing of teeth in forums all across the net. Microsoft are apparently going to incorporate a system into the Xbox Whateveritscalled which will prevent users from playing pre-owned games.
Kotaku previously reported this, referring to an unnamed source. We’re wondering if the source had solid information or was just reacting to the increase in online passes, designed to push consumers toward new copies over pre-owned.
We’re thinking this one is bogus, as smashing the pre-owned market would alienate customers, which is generally considered a bad marketing move.
A report from GamesRadar suggests that the Xbox SomethingOrOther will be only 20% more powerful than the WiiU. This would still make it around six times more powerful than the Xbox 360, but it’s not quite the gargantuan leap in gaming power that we would expect.
The article goes on to suggest something which many suspect, that Microsoft are going after Nintendo’s market. Microsoft obviously hope that Kinect motion-gaming will draw folk away from the Wii, but now they may be pushing the family angle more.
The new Xbox is shaping up, potentially, to be more of an all-round entertainment system which will appeal to every member of the family on a different level. This is reinforced by the earlier blog from MS Nerd which suggests that the 7LooptyTwenfinityBox will be smaller, cheaper and more Kinect orientated.
There are also a lot of rumours flying around about a tablet controller for the 720ish. Maybe WiiBox should be another name we’re hearing.
4. Blu-ray support?
The last few months have seen rumour and speculation but the need for Blu-ray support in the NextBox 1080 has been closer to an outright demand by the gaming community at large.
Microsoft’s support of HD-DVD was a bold move and one that proved to be ultimately foolhardy. When was the last time someone told you to pick up the HD-DVD special edition of anything? Exactly.
Blu-ray is being touted as the successor to DVD, not that DVD’s are going anywhere for a while yet, but to ignore that would be a foolish move indeed on the part of Microsoft. We’d say that it’s fairly likely that the next-gen will make the move to Blu-ray and HD-DVD will die out with barely a whimper.
NOOOOOOOOOO! 3D is a fad which needs so desperately to die out. That being said, it’s a personal opinion and one which the world at large does not currently seem to share. Microsoft certainly seem to be fans of the 3D tech because rumour has it that they’re working on bringing it to the Loopfinityboxofmagicawesomeness.
A recent job posting, calling for an “Algorithm Research & Development Engineer for XBOX team” mentions development for “state of the art 3D imaging systems”. There has been a notable increase in sales of 3D televisions of late, so it’s not surprising that Microsoft would at least investigate this tech for their next-gen machine.
Ultimately, it’s all whispers in the wind folks. We’ll have to wait until the big announce at E3 this year. Of course, that’s also a rumour…