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Next-Gen Console Wars Will Soon Begin In Earnest

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the weaponizing-the-red-ring-of-death dept.

Sony 284

When the Wii U was released at the end of last year, Nintendo got a head-start on the long-awaited new generation of video game consoles. Now, Sony has announced a press conference for February 20th that is expected to unveil the PlayStation 4, codenamed 'Orbis.' This will precede the announcement of the Xbox 360's successor, codenamed 'Durango,' but that too will likely be announced by E3 in June. Specs for development kits of both systems have leaked widely. The two systems both use 8-core AMD chips clocked around 1.6 GHz. Durango has 8GB of DDR3 RAM, while Orbis has 4GB of GDDR5 RAM, though Sony is trying to push that up to 8GB for the console's final spec. Reports also suggest Sony is tinkering with its controller design, going so far as to add a "Share" button to let people exchange screenshots and recordings. Developers indicate the systems are very close in power, though Sony's system currently has an edge. With the upcoming announcement of the PS4, the big-three console makers will kick off a new round of direct competition. They'll maneuver to one-up each other with the most powerful hardware and the slickest software. However, they'll also hope the release of three major consoles in rapid succession will help to anchor a part of the games industry that no longer enjoys the dominance it once did, thanks to threats from mobile.

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Well, it was nice while it lasted (3, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | about a year and a half ago | (#42771953)

Somewhere, a Nintendo exec is opening a bottle of Jack Daniels to pour a toast to the one year they had a current gen console.

But seriously, any word on the optical drives for the new consoles? I imagine Sony will stick to a blu-ray drive (I just hope they lose the bluetooth remote and include an IR sensor this time). But will MS swallow their pride and go bluray (widely viewed as a Sony technology), or develop some proprietary optical drive, or use some sort of SSD-type technology--or take the REALLY bold, and risky, step of going download only? I think they would be better off swallowing their pride and going blu-ray myself. But, then again, I say that as someone who has a lot of blu-ray movies and who would really like one console to watch all my stuff instead of several.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Informative)

The Living Fractal (162153) | about a year and a half ago | (#42771969)

Nintendo is not really about technology as much as innovative, fun games, for the whole family.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772063)

yea innovation like new supermario world zelda quest 387

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Interesting)

Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772111)

How many COD games are there again?

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

jhoegl (638955) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772151)

Should I tell you from my high res gaming console or from my minecraft esq one?
When Qbert games match your quality of gaming output, you should re-evaluate your purchase.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772405)

"high res gaming console" HAH! Good one. Console games aren't even in 720p anymore, they are 600p and lower, upscaled to 720p running at 30fps.
You keep thinking your puny console is high res, in the meantime I'll be enjoying truly gaming at "high res", on my PC.

Compatibility (2)

fyngyrz (762201) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772497)

My concern is primarily compatibility. We've got a good sized collection of games -- far more dollars invested there than in the consoles -- and if the new hotness won't play them, it's not coming to my shelves.

Not sure how to deal with the lies: XBox 360 claimed they would implement compatibility via downloads; then they didn't produce the downloads for the best games (the Mechassault series for one example.)

Then there is "the cheapening": The PS3 (original) came with PS2 hardware, and that really worked pretty well. Then they took that out. Which doesn't work for me, but I do have the original version. Sadly, only replaceable via EBay now because the newer PS3's stripped that out.

So PS4, XBoxXXX... going to wait and see if they obsolete my game library, and if they do, pffft. If they don't, will wait at least a little and see if the compatibility is decent.

Really not very happy with these companies.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772387)

what part of "whole family" did you miss there. rare (very rare) is the family where mom, dad, little bobby and mary sue all play, and enjoy, call of doodie.

dad's too busy downloading porn while mom plays some matching game on her phone. little bobby might play doodie, if he happens to be old enough that the parents will allow it but not old enough yet to have discovered girls or dad's porn, and mary sue is too busy txt'n nekkid pictures to her future-ex-boyfriends to care about video games at all.

nintendo does in fact cater to the *whole family* with a more casual lineup of games compared to sony or xbox, ones suitable to play *as a family* (ya know, like your parents and older relatives did with a deck of cards or a board game) -- you won't find very many families huddled together playing doodie or halo.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772645)

they do now, after getting their asses handed to them with the gamepube, but they never have before

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

dbug78 (151961) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772429)

Only 3, I think, but they keep re-releasing them with new titles.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772525)

The question is whether there are enough to write a story about, ie a cod piece.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

black6host (469985) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772783)

The question is whether there are enough to write a story about, ie a cod piece.

Well there was enough to write a lengthy Wikepedia entry about those :)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codpiece [wikipedia.org]

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772539)

How many COD games are there again?

There are 9 CoD games [wikipedia.org] .

On the other hand, there are 18 Super Mario games [wikipedia.org] , 12 Mario Party games [wikipedia.org] , 10 Mario Kart games [wikipedia.org] , 19 Zelda games [wikipedia.org] , and 12 Metroid games [wikipedia.org] .

I am not the AC you're replying to, but I do agree with him. Nintendo basically re-re-re-re-re-releases the same three games over and over. Claiming they're "about innovation" is ridiculous (and I seriously question "fun for the whole family" too, given that all their multiplayer games either aggressively punish good players or have effectively random scoring systems).

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772567)

obligatory [penny-arcade.com]

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Insightful)

Latentius (2557506) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772633)

While the number of games alone certainly does seem to support your point, there are a few things to keep in mind. One, would be how different are these games from one another (in any way you care to compare games)? Another, you have to keep in mind the lifespan of these games. Yes, there are 18 Super Mario games, but they're also spread out over 30 years, which isn't all that different from 9 CoD games over 10 years. It's just that the Nintendo series have been around for longer. Given a few more decades, the other game developers are sure to milk their franchises for all they're worth.

Though, I hardly see how this is even really relevant. New people are continually being introduced to gaming, and even of those who've been gamers for decades, if a particular series continues to be fun to play, who cares if there are 20 previous games in the series?

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772613)

not 30 years worth

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

zakkudo (2638939) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772181)

Xenoblade. Pandora's Tower. The Last Story.

Nintendo released 3 brand new IPs at the end of the Wii's life cycle. You don't see anyone doing that nowadays. Yet, as expected, no one notices... including the trolls complaining about lack of new ips. I suppose this story is similar to how 3rd party games are not noticed on Nintendo consoles.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772333)

Uh, MS put out Halo 4 at the end of the Xbox life cycle. I'm just assuming that counts considering you counted Xenoblade as a "brand new IP" even though it's a continuation of the Xeno series (Xenogears, Xenosaga Episodes 1, 2, and 3).

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (2)

qwak23 (1862090) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772549)

uhhh... Xenoblade was NOT a continuation of those games, in fact it's original name didn't even have "Xeno" in it.

Also, Xenosaga was not a continuation of Xenogears (more of a spiritual successor due to similar themes, although episode 1 did also include similar combat mechanics).

Really, the only reason this is even considered a series is that Tetsuya Takahashi was involved in the production of all of them and that they have the prefix "Xeno" in each title. I can see Xenogears and Xenosaga being lumped together, but Xenoblade is a far departure from those.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772891)

So they are not a series like the Final Fantasy series is not a series (except the \d+-2 versions).

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

lbbros (900904) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772233)

Also about tight-fisted control on what you can do with the console, even more than Sony or Microsoft. Region lock, anyone?

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772315)

No consoles are about technology really. They're miles behind gaming PC's at launch, and fall further behind during their lifespans. I mean, look at the specs of the current PS3 or XBox. We have mobile phones/tablets with better specs now.

Along with the lacklustre primary specs, consoles have slow loading media with little if any caching capability, no opportunity to upgrade, ever, inferior input compared to keyboard and mouse for the primary game type: FPS shooters. Also the increasingly draconian DRM preventing games being resold or lent to friends (they will be locked to a particular console) means the idiots who buy these things are getting double butt-fucked.

Once again, consoles are a tax on the stupid.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

Cinder6 (894572) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772487)

Once again, consoles are a tax on the stupid.

I disagree. I have a very nice gaming PC, but I feel that consoles fill an important niche. They're typically inexpensive compared to a comparable gaming PC; easier to use, thanks to less troubleshooting, no drivers to worry about, and generally simpler games; and are much more likely to be connected to a nice (or at least large) screen than the typical computer.

Beyond that, most games are designed with consoles as the primary target. You see this all over the place with crappy, console-esque menus on PC games. Just look at Darksiders 2 or Dark Souls--both games are arguably better on a console due to the interface and controls (Dark Souls is essentially unplayable without a game pad, and Darksiders 2 isn't much better).

A gaming PC is an almost objectively better investment, but in cases like the Wii or Wii U, you just aren't going to see the kind of gameplay offered by those systems' respective controllers on the PC. Whether this is good or bad is up to the individual.

Also the increasingly draconian DRM preventing games being resold or lent to friends (they will be locked to a particular console) means the idiots who buy these things are getting double butt-fucked.

The PC is the pioneer of DRM and lock-in. Even today, console games are much "freer" in that you can still trade in your old games. I only know of one PC game distributor that allows you to resell your games (Green Man Gaming), but even there, you can't sell back most of the new stuff. GOG may be a bastion of DRM-free titles, and gaining momentum, but we're still a long way from that being the norm.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772847)

Hold on. A gaming PC that is treated like a console DOES NOT require more troubleshooting. The problem is everyone wants their gaming PC to ALSO be a full blown Workstation. Build yourself a steambox, standardize the hardware/software stack incl controllers etc, and you have a PC console that will smash anything Sony or MS puts out. They had their chance and they fucked it up badly. All the cool things that we get for free on PC, MS packages up and SELLS. They wont even let the devs set the price or give it away.You last point is a joke. Compare Skyrim on Xbox versus Skyrim on PC. Its not even close due to the fact that Skyrim PC has Steam Workshop and people will be making free items for the game for the next decade or so. Consoles are freer my ass.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772905)

Just look at Darksiders 2 or Dark Souls--both games are arguably better on a console due to the interface and controls (Dark Souls is essentially unplayable without a game pad, and Darksiders 2 isn't much better).

Er...you *are* aware that you can use game pads on the PC, right? That, in fact, you can generally use the exact same hardware you use on the console, if you're minded to.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772611)

Their games are not innovative and they sure as

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Insightful)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | about a year and a half ago | (#42771991)

Somewhere, a Nintendo exec is opening a bottle of Jack Daniels to pour a toast to the one year they had a current gen console.

If you define "generation" by technological capabilities, then yes. If you use the actual definition, then they have had a current gen console for years, and Sony and Microsoft are now joining the next gen that Nintendo started back in November.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772187)

They've been a generation behind for years.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

VanGarrett (1269030) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772677)

The Wii sold 99 million units (making it quite easily the most popular of the generation), and was the least powerful unit of the generation. The PlayStation 3 sold 70 million units (making it arguably the least popular of the generation, though the Xbox 360's tendency toward hardware failure may very well make up for the 5 million unit difference between it and the PS3), and was the most powerful unit of the generation. Modern video game graphics are well beyond the point where we need to be desperately concerned with the limit of simultaneous colors or polygons. Nintendo is just the only one whose marketing department acknowledges this.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772861)

You do realize that the install base is irrelevant by itself without discussing attach rate...right?

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772863)

The thing is my Wii contributed to making it the most popular of the generation.

However, it never gets used, it gathers dust. Their is a lack of decent games for it. My 360 and PS3 on the other hand get loads of use, despite not being as "popular".

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772263)

Nintendo controller accessories (e.g. power gloves, Wii, Wii U) are the only thing that they are ahead of others. They are too cheap on the processing side of the platform to keep with MS or Sony.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (2, Informative)

alen (225700) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772019)

blu ray is not a sony tech, the consortium is over 300 companies including apple and microsoft. i don't even think sony owns most of the patents. they were just an early producer of the technology and wanted to push HD for their own profits

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Informative)

FriendlyStatistician (2652203) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772119)

Perhaps you've forgotten that Microsoft backed HD-DVD against Blu-Ray [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

alen (225700) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772493)

Microsoft is part of the blu ray consortium along with toshiba

Most of the patents were in both consortiums and the differences were minor

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Asmor (775910) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772133)

Blu-ray is totally Sony.

Also, don't forget that MS backed the HD-DVD horse.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (4, Interesting)

dagamer34 (1012833) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772029)

If Microsoft wants to make the ultimate entertainment device, it's going to have a Bluray drive. I don't think it has anything to do with "sucking up pride", it's simply impractical to ship a new console with a DVD drive in 2013, and using some proprietary format is just plain idiotic because of the overhead costs. Heck, if even Nintendo has adopted the technology (but not licensed the ability to play BD video), then it's a given that Microsoft will include a Bluray drive in its next console. A given. I do expect 1st day digital downloads for all games though.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (2)

elrous0 (869638) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772085)

using some proprietary format is just plain idiotic because of the overhead costs.

I'm actually kind of surprised MS didn't just buy up the old HD-DVD patents and re-task that format for game discs.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772203)

Nobody's manufacturing the lasers any more. The generation of HD players that supported both HD-DVD and BluRay had two lasers in them, one for each disc.

It's a great format to use for game discs (or movies for that matter), but it's probably more expensive to implement HD-DVD than BluRay because supply costs will likely outweigh patent licensing costs.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

Ironhandx (1762146) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772209)

Because they want to push "home entertainment system" so that folks don't have to buy both an xbox and a blu-ray player etc.

Part of the reason I bought an original xbox was for the dvd capability. From my perspective the system didn't cost me $400 it cost me $400 minus the cost of a dvd player, so it ended up costing at the time a net of around $250.

Concerning Blu ray (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772227)

I honestly would not be shocked if MS did not include a Blu ray, and instead kept pushing digital downloads and more local storage. BR is not the must have next step DVD was comming from VHS. Im not trying to hate on Blu ray I have 2 players one on main computer and one for the master tv room, and I use them very seldom. The movies are more expensive and if its not a AA++ blockbuster made within the last decade your not really getting much of a difference picture wise. I guess as far as a game console goes I would just assume opt for bigger storage and install/uninstall the games im currently playing if im too lazy to swap the disk out (usually just once) during gameplay. If excluding a BR drive knocks a hundred bucks off the model price I would just go with that, the incentive for blu ray just is not good enough in hindsight. (Does anyone think BR takes forever to load? Both my drives take much longer to load then dvd, and they have decent read speeds. I find myself using the xbox dvd drive and only use BR for...well just blu rays...all 10 of the ones I own...)

Re:Concerning Blu ray (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772373)

2 words: data caps

Re:Concerning Blu ray (1)

Omestes (471991) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772899)

No one ever plans a product around caps. Developers tend to completely ignore that they exist.

I'm lucky that my home internet (Cox) doesn't have a cap. But my mobile provider (Verizon) sure does, which they inflicted on me the second I signed a new contract. This means pretty much all the cool new "cloud" stuff isn't usable to me or many other people, unless we're okay with massive overage fees, or coughing up an extra decent amount of change monthly.

Hell, Steam goes on, even with much of the East Coast (I think) running with caps.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772765)

Durango and Orbis dev posting AC - both are specced to have at least a BD-ROM drive, though whether they'll end up paying the licensing to decode BluRay is anyone's guess.

Looking forward to the beta kits in a few months, if the past is anything to go on, Sony will ship a rackmount laserdisc-looking monstrosity, with Microsoft going with retail plastics to save on cost.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772883)

IM sorry but Blu-ray is not 'the ultimate'. It might be the ultimate optical disc, but HDD based video smashes it in every metric.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772041)

The PS4 will most likely have an 8-core 64-bit PowerPC+Accelerators on a 32nm process which would easily quadruple the performance of the PS3 all the while keeping the processor under 25-watts.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772105)

Somewhere, a Nintendo exec is opening a bottle of Jack Daniels to pour a toast to the one year they had a current gen console.

Meanwhile, there are executives at Sony and Microsoft preparing to commit seppuku and jump out windows, respectively. Take a look at the grim reality of console gaming:

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Xbox-360-PlayStation-3-and-Wii-U-Are-Sold-at-a-Loss-Says-Industry-Veteran-319390.shtml

The fact is, Sony and Microsoft bled out $5 billion and $3 billion on the PS3 and 360, respectively, by going bleeding edge. Nintendo was the only company that actually made money last generation, and currently break even on the Wii U with the sale of just one game. Say what you want about Nintendo's hardware being behind the curve, but their business strategy is the only one that's actually sustainable.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772737)

'Cause nothing is ever "sold at a loss" because they make their money on the support products. Its such an aweful business model. Just about every retailer in the world should stop doing it. Supermarkets often sell milk and eggs at a loss to get you into the store to spend piles of money on other things. I have a gas station down the street that sells gas at a slight loss and requires you to pay inside the mini-mart despite having credit card readers on the pumps.

Take your ignorant ass and drown yourself.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772869)

You entirely missed the point: Sony & MS have not and will not make money on their current consoles, even including the games and accessories. They've written off billions.

Face it, designing a $1000 game console and trying to sell it for $500 was crappy business plan; they way overshot the market and paid the price. The next generation Sony/MS consoles will be more modestly speced upgrades designed to sell at a break-even point. Just like how Nintendo does it.

Hello- What about the Upcoming Steam Box -by Valve (2)

spineboy (22918) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772589)

I think that the new steam (Linux) box by Valve will grab a significant market share. Why? because it will be much more customizable, AND run current PC games.

Re:Well, it was nice while it lasted (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772697)

or take the REALLY bold, and risky, step of going download only? ...with their own App Store and taking a measly 30% cut of every download, and tying everything into a marketing exercise in shifting Windows 8 phones and Windows 8 tablets? Nope, can't see that happening at all.

Blu-ray is for losers who want to own their own content and watch it again and again, Microsoft says you should pay to watch every movie you used to "own" every time you want to watch it.

Let the Crapware Games begin (5, Funny)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42771995)

Starting the launch with Mario Sequel 58, Zelda Remake number 14, Halo 5, and who can forget Final Fantasy XIV - II: Offline Edition?

Re:Let the Crapware Games begin (4, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772055)

In the next gen, poor Kratos will be down to killing gods from minor cults in western China.

Re:Let the Crapware Games begin (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772467)

Except the series you mention aren't crapware.

Re:Let the Crapware Games begin (1)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772595)

I just think it's time they got shelved.

Re:Let the Crapware Games begin (1)

Maudib (223520) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772507)

Vampire U on Wii U was pretty amazing. Definitely innovative.

There are lots of good new titles I think. Its just that they don't have the marketing $, so you haven't seen most of them.

release is not until later this year (1)

alen (225700) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772005)

Nintendo had crappy sales of the WiiU and the 3DS and so MS and Sony probably smell blood

announce their new consoles now to keep people from buying a Wii U. not like there are much games for the Wii U anyway. most of the good ones are still months away

Dev Console Specs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772035)

Dev consoles have better specs than the actual consoles, because they need to run unoptomised debugging code..

Re:Dev Console Specs... (1)

Durrik (80651) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772179)

Speaking as a developer of console games. The CPUs are the same between the dev kits and the retail console, so running unoptimized code will run the same on both CPUs. Where the kits differ is usually in the supporting hardware.

Both the Xbox360 and the PS3 had additional hardware in the box to aid in debugging. The PS3 had another 128 megs of ram. And a second Ethernet port. Being an online engineer I almost worshipped that second Ethernet port. Being able to put the 'game' port onto a packet filter (for latency, and other testing) while having the debug port still available unhindered was very valuable.

The PS3 also had a hard drive for running BluRay emulation on.

The Xbox360 (the ones I played with), had the same RAM on both the dev kit and the retail kit, they did add another 512 megs in later versions, but I never got to play with it. The side car had equipment for hooking up USB for DVD emulation and debugging support. It also had an internal hard drive, which the retail kits didn't have.

Mainly the 'better' specs were for debugging, not for actually running the software on.

X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windows (2)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772065)

X86-64? cpus? will they be able to run linux or a full windows desktop?

Now a nice to have will be some kind of cable card / tru2way / allvid system as well.

Re:X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windo (1)

CronoCloud (590650) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772165)

Well considering both the PS2 was/is and PS3 was/is (depending on which firmware it has) quite capable of running Linux, I would say yes.

Re:X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772195)

Microsoft's Durango will probably run some Windows 8 variant. Sony's Orbis is rumored to run Linux.

Re:X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windo (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772779)

I thought that playstation traditionaly ran a modafied free or net Bsd wonder why they would break with there old kernal

Re:X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windo (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772647)

More interestingly, how are they going to keep it cool without noise? People are used to PCs that whirr, they are less forgiving of consoles.

Re:X86-64? cpus? will they run linux or full windo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772885)

Have you used an Xbox360? Quiet, it isn't.

and the winner (1)

Jaktar (975138) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772067)

The winner will be decided by which one will allow "install another OS". We can trust that this time, Sony would mean it.

Re:and the winner (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772461)

PC+Steam. Easy

Re:and the winner (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772639)

Why would that determine the winner? Nobody outside of Slashdot gave a shit last time around.

Meh (1)

Walzmyn (913748) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772073)

Meh
My Feelings

1.6 ghz? (1)

Immostlyharmless (1311531) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772075)

It seems to me if these things are going to be running powerhouse next gen games, then they are going to really have to optimize these games to be multithreaded. Hell my Galaxy Note II runs with a 4 core processor at this speed. Perhaps I'm out of line, but I would have expected at least a *slightly* higher clock speed.??

Re: 1.6 ghz? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772103)

Clock speeds don't really tell the whole story as far as CPU performance. Do you really think a 3 GHz P4 is going to perform as well as a 3 GHz Core i5? That's the sort of comparison you're making.

This is a tech site, you should know better

Re: 1.6 ghz? (1)

Immostlyharmless (1311531) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772141)

No but at the same time, A given chip with a higher clock speed WILL out perform the same chipset at a lower clockspeed. We all know that the AMD chips don't really live up to the intel chips in the gaming arena, so the fact that went with (by todays standards) a very low clocked chip is a curious choice. No?

Re: 1.6 ghz? (1)

Pezbian (1641885) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772223)

It seems mostly to be a matter of optimization of the code. If you're programming for a set platform like that, without having to double or triple dip, you're golden.

What I wonder about this AMD octopus is whether costly OOE will be left out like it was with the Power architecture chip used in the 360.

Then there's also the memory bandwidth of DDR3 versus GDDR5. Bandwidth is king. I've seen more computers fade into obsolescence for slow RAM than for lack of processing power. YouTube runs like ass on single-core Centrino machines now, for one example. It's the codecs doing it, but it has been the harsh reality with gaming for a long time.

Re: 1.6 ghz? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772225)

It allows them to keep the ambient temperature at a reasonable level. An octo-core processor at 3GHz is going to put off a lot of heat, no matter what current fab process you use.

Or, they could do what Microsoft did last time: let AMD do all of the development work, then swap out for Intel at the last minute.

Re: 1.6 ghz? (3, Insightful)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772301)

No but at the same time, A given chip with a higher clock speed WILL out perform the same chipset at a lower clockspeed.

Depends on the kinds of operations you're throwing at it. If it's simple integer math, then yes, every single time. If it's more complicated floating point math, then it'll depend on how efficiently it's implemented in the instruction set (which is why a 2.8GHz i3 will smoke a 5GHz P4 on almost every benchmark). If it's very large array math (such as most graphics computations and AI), then it'll depend on how parallel your code is and how many threads you can execute simultaneously. You can take a modern Intel chipset, and clock an i7 at the same speed as an i3: for some types of operations they'll score exactly the same on benchmarks, and for others the i7 will score about 4x better (twice the cores, and hyperthreading enabled = 4x the threads).

There's a reason that NVidia and AMD are competing on stream processors more than they are clock speed: modern graphics processing is embarrassingly parallel, and performance scales linearly with number of processors, while you see diminishing returns with clock speed.

As for gaming, and why they will have gone with a lower clock speed... very little in modern games is actually dependent on having a high clock speed. Almost everything that games do is dependent on graphics, which is a completely different problem, which leaves things like AI and object tracking, both of which benefit more from parallelization than they do an increased clock speed. They also need to worry about EnergyStar certification, and a consumer base that is increasingly aware of the power consumption of their electronic devices. Money is not infinite for their consumers, and they get better economy throwing a manycore low speed processor at it than they would throwing a high speed processor with a low core count.

Re:1.6 ghz? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772145)

Yeah, because clock speeds across cpus and chipsets are a real meaning full comparison. Who cares about stuff memory bandwith and speeds.

Re:1.6 ghz? (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772295)

Yeah, because clock speeds across cpus and chipsets are a real meaning full comparison. Who cares about stuff memory bandwith and speeds.

AMD are producing the Pentium-4s of this generation, which need about a 25% higher clock speed to be comparable with a similar Intel CPU for single-threaded use. So 1.6GHz is probably going to be soundly dumped on by Intel's low-end i3s unless they can really take advantage of all eight cores (which are presumably four of the Bulldozer-styte cores and not eight full cores).

Re:1.6 ghz? (2)

zixxt (1547061) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772781)

Yeah, because clock speeds across cpus and chipsets are a real meaning full comparison. Who cares about stuff memory bandwith and speeds.

AMD are producing the Pentium-4s of this generation, which need about a 25% higher clock speed to be comparable with a similar Intel CPU for single-threaded use. So 1.6GHz is probably going to be soundly dumped on by Intel's low-end i3s unless they can really take advantage of all eight cores (which are presumably four of the Bulldozer-styte cores and not eight full cores).

More FUD. AMD's chips are full cores that just share an FPU/SMID unit, you do not need a FPU unit to have a core. Most CPU's made do not have FPUs to begin with, so nobody doubts those are not CPU's.

And Intels chips only dump on AMD's in canned bentmarks, not real world tasks.

Re:1.6 ghz? (0)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772837)

Ha-ha. I caught a fanboy.

Re:1.6 ghz? (1)

Narishma (822073) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772159)

Clock speed doesn't say much about performance, unless you're comparing the exact same processor with different clock speeds.

who buys Sony any more? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772077)

After all the shit Sony has pulled, who's gonna buy something new from them? Seriously their list of customer abuse is long...

Time to let Sony die.

Re: who buys Sony any more? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772115)

When they're going against the likes of Microsoft, it's a wash as far as abusive and shitty behavior.

Re:who buys Sony any more? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772167)

Mind posting (a part) of that long list?

Re:who buys Sony any more? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772253)

Bait and switch.
Computer intrusion.
False advertising.
Conflict minerals.

There that's part of that long list.

Re:who buys Sony any more? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772483)

I have no clue what you are trying to tell about Sony. I'm just simple consumer and have no idea what these generic keywords have to specifically with Sony.

*bait and switch: sounds like a seller/retailer problem
*computer invasion: is this the rootkit fiasco? Sure impeded sales of the the ps3, so how does it matter for a new console?
*false advertising: again retailer?
*conflict minerals: ?

Re:who buys Sony any more? (1)

WhatAreYouDoingHere (2458602) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772593)

bait and switch, false advertising could both refer to the same thing: the removal of "OtherOS" (Linux) from PS/3 through firmware updates... a feature that was advertised on their own packaging, not a retailer problem. I'm not sure if there's other examples that AC had in mind... and I have no idea what they mean by conflict minerals....

consoles loseing dominance to mobiles (1)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772091)

err what was the submitter smoking when they wrote that - no way that the marquee games like halo ME3 etc are going to face any threat from mobile any time son

WiiIU is not a next generation console. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772123)

It's a PS2 with a tablet forcibly inserted.

Re:WiiIU is not a next generation console. (1)

richman555 (675100) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772173)

Its actually more like an Xbox 360 with a tablet forcibly inserted.

I think the time is ripe for a revolution. (3, Insightful)

blind biker (1066130) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772177)

The Android concolelets, like the Ouya, could be about to upend the whole thing. It's just one more consequence of the "good enough" being embraced by both gamers and the industry. Nintendo was in this space before, and they'll definitely have to compete with Ouya, Gamestick and the sea of nameless Chinese manufacturers of Android mini PCs. The heavy games, those that needs tons of storage, CPU and GPU power will still be around, of course, not everyone who bought an Xbox was playing those. Problem (for MS and Sony) is, there's a new kid in town who wants to eat up some of that (the heavy gamer) marketshare: Valve.

Re:I think the time is ripe for a revolution. (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772261)

That doesn't really seem like a revolution; just a new competitor making headway into the same old space. The revolution would be if NONE of the next gen consoles sell well because all but the hardest of the hardcore are too busy playing Cut the Rope on their iPads to bother purchasing a console at all.

"press conferences" don't "unveil" things... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772205)

"Sony has announced a press conference for February 20th that is expected to unveil the PlayStation 4,"

I think the moron who wrote this meant to say "in which it is expected they will unveil".

Cretin.

8 gb thats it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772289)

my own game rig has 32 gb
and as far as video if i want i can toss in a nvidia sinlge 8GB card
and guess what i can upgrade.

Re:8 gb thats it? (1)

Narishma (822073) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772427)

my own game rig has 32 gb

And pretty much no game uses more than a couple of gigabytes.

My Console Has 512GB of DDR8 RAM (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772329)

And can render half a trillion fully-effects-processed polys per frame at 128 frames per second. The little plastic dual-thumb controller still means that the speed at which I turn and aim is capped, so it's not possible to play online with PCs without even the very worst PC players stomping all over the very best console players, but at least it looks nice.

Pricing will decide a lot! (1)

godrik (1287354) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772459)

I have been playing the wii up to now. I am actually interested in the Wii U. But the price is just too high for me to get it.

370 bucks for a gaming system with one game. Then each subsequent game is $60 new, $50 preowned. I am going to pass on that.

For comparison the wii launched at $250 and games were less than $50. 20% jack up in 7 years is too much. according to [1], inflation since the wii launch is only 14%. So definitely, the price rose.

[1] http://www.usinflationcalculator.com/ [usinflatio...ulator.com]

Share button? Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772471)

fts: "Reports also suggest Sony is tinkering with its controller design, going so far as to add a "Share" button to let people exchange screenshots and recordings."

Does a controller really need to be wasting space on a ridiculous "share" button? It needs to focus on being comfortable (in size and shape) and positioning as many controls relevant to PLAYING the games> in easy to access configurations.

Putting a "share" button on a console controller is the equivalent of when keyboard makers thought everyone needed "Email", "WWW", and other program specific buttons on their keyboards. Notice how you don't see those much anymore? That's because they were pointless, and so is a "Share" button. Button space on a controller is premium space and doesn't need to be wasted on "fluff".

Just a rumor, but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772481)

The Xbox, Durango or whatever, supposedly will also double as a Steam Box to break into the market for Valve and offer double your money for MS. Discreet Steam Boxes will come later after the hardware prices fall and Valve can get an acceptable level of playability out of it. Valve can't compete on price at the moment (or power if price is matched) so they'll break in then ween off. Maybe. Now we see why Apple TV and not next gen consoles were Valve's biggest worry.

Intel are the massive losers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42772601)

Intel CPUs are so putrid, no-one in the new computer business is choosing to use them.

Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft and (likely) Valve are AMD houses. Apple is about to drop Intel big-time, as its entire computer product range swaps to ARM.

Intel makes giant power-hungry chips optimised for only one thing- to win the single-threaded performance crown when running pure x86 software (no GPU enhancements). This metric no longer has any useful value in the industry. Now cost, power consumption, and integrated GPU performance are all that matter.

1) Cost. The Intel tax means Intel can NEVER compete on cost against ARM, or increasingly against AMD. The 'Intel tax' means massive dies with expensive IP, sucking up loads of energy, and adding an extra layer of abstraction (x86 -> Intel's internal 'RISC' instruction set)

2) Power consumption. The 'Intel tax' means vastly higher power usage dealing with the circuits that translate the legacy x86 instructions into the actual instructions the CPU core uses these days. Lack of elegance in the ISA simply means more power required. Intel's PRETEND ultra low power Haswell parts are not what they seem. They hit tiny power profiles by disabling most of the hardware blocks responsible for high performance, turning the CPU into something like a crippled Atom. Intel hopes to fool people because these blocks can be turned back on when benchmarks run, BUT at the cost of massively increased power consumption that would melt the mobile device they are intended for if the benchmark runs for any extended period of time.

In other words, the chip is designed to run ultra-fast for maybe a minute or so before extreme thermal throttling kicks in, and switches the hardware blocks off again. Intel is telling sites like Anandtech to use carefully crafted benchmark software designed to avoid the consequences of thermal throttling. Obviously the mains powered Haswell chips don't have this problem, only the ultra low power mobile ones.

3) GPU performance. Intel's integrated graphics are a very bad joke, and getting worse. Intel has been pushing an 'embedded memory' solution for high end notebooks using Haswell (although sites like Anandtech purposely mislead their readers into thinking this chip was an enhanced part for the desktop). The so-called GT3e ('e' for embedded) Haswell is unthinkably expensive, and would be used in high-end gaming notebooks that would ordinarily employ state-of-the-art Nvidia or AMD discrete GPUs (which also come with their own dedicated memory sub-systems). So Intel honestly thinks that there exists rich mentally retarded gamers who would choose a mega-expensive laptop with Intel graphics over one with ATI/Nvidia.

Intel's GPU drivers are the worst the industry has ever seen. The GPUs themselves are atrocious, slow, and need the CPU to emulate missing functionality. Intel's master plan is to discontinue proper support of discrete GPU cards from AMD/Nvidia, to FORCE its customers to use Intel's integrated GPUs in the near future.

Intel is actually banking on old school high-end graphics from AMD/Nvidia fading away in the market, to be replaced with the 'new school' integrated GPU systems mostly found in ARM SoC devices today. Intel thinks this puts them back on a level playing field, where they can better compete against ARM, PowerVR, and Nvidia's Tegra line, but in reality each of these new designs are already light-years ahead of Intel too.

The new console are all using the wonder-core from AMD, Jaguar. AMD has finally regained a clear technical advantage over Intel, with an insanely well-balanced low power part running the best integrated GPU the world has yet seen. Better again is the fact that AMD now has the option to build high end GPUs with integrated CPUs, allowing the ultra-fast memory bus of the high end graphics card to also feed the CPUs. Intel's designs, on the other hand, use ultra-slow 128-bit CPU memory buses, choking the integrated GPU.

Imagine if your next graphics card from AMD was also a 4/8 core full blown PC! 8 GB of insanely fast GDDR3 memory feeding a 512-bit bus. Do you realise how much faster this one-board design would be compared to any computer based on an intel CPU?

Intel has announced an end to new chipset designs for the desktop. That ultra-slow 128 bit memory bus (actually 2x64) is the best you are ever going to get from Intel.

Re:Intel are the massive losers (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#42772855)

You are aware that AMD's current CPUs are bigger, hotter and slower than Intel's, right? I'd guess AMD gave them a better deal because they need the money.

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