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Elite Won't Replace Premium or Core Skus

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the get-thee-behind-me dept.

158

As the day has progressed, more information about the 'Elite' has become available. GamesIndustry.biz is reporting that the other two 360 skus will still be available. The Elite is not replacing either of them. Interestingly, there's no word on a price drop for them either. Major Nelson's most recent podcast has several interviews and details about the new offering, which you may find informative. There's more analysis available, if you find that interesting: CVG wonders aloud who is going to buy this thing, while a Wedbush Morgan analyst mentioned to GamesIndustry.biz that he thinks this validates the PS3 strategy. "'It appears to me that Microsoft sees the writing on the wall - Blu-ray is going to win the format wars ... Ultimately, Microsoft will likely offer a Blu-ray drive with the 360 Elite, and I think consumers will be able to select based solely upon other drivers.' Pachter also believes that although the Xbox 360 Elite will register with early adopters of hi-def content, the current 20GB model will still be sufficient for many consumers."

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158 comments

If I don't care about HDMI... (2, Insightful)

AbsoluteXyro (1048620) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519385)

What is to stop me from buying a Core 360 and a 120GB HDD? If you don't care about HDMI, where's the value in the Elite SKU?

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (4, Funny)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519429)

What is to stop me from buying a Core 360 and a 120GB HDD? If you don't care about HDMI, where's the value in the Elite SKU?

The core doesn't have a headset, and comes with composite cables, not the composite/component of the premium & elite. That and... it's black. Once you go black, you never go back.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519561)

That and... it's black. Once you go black, you never go back.


Always bet on black.</Snipes>

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

krakelohm (830589) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519609)

Darker the meat... sweeter the treat baby.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519913)

The older the berry, the sweeter the juice.

Fool, it's 'The blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice.'

Yeah, we'll she blacker than a motherfarker too.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (2, Funny)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519701)

where's the value in the Elite SKU?

If you believe in yourself, stay in drugs, drink your sku, and don't do milk, you'll go somewhere.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

MarkAyen (726688) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519443)

If you don't care about HDMI (or paying separately for the larger drive), then there is effectively no advantage to buying the Elite SKU.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (2)

tourvil (103765) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519809)

What is to stop me from buying a Core 360 and a 120GB HDD? If you don't care about HDMI, where's the value in the Elite SKU?

The 120GB HDD is being sold separately for $180. Core + HDD = $300 + $180 = $480, the same price as the elite. Why would you not buy the elite if you wanted a new 360 with the 120GB HDD?

So for everyone wondering why the hell MS is pricing the 120GB HDD accessory so high, there's why. They don't want people just picking up a core and upgrading them for cheaper than the elite.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

AbsoluteXyro (1048620) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520195)

Whoops! For some reason I thought the 120GB HDD was priced at $120. Thanks for clearing that up. The Elite SKU makes more sense, then.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

antek9 (305362) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521667)

No, it doesn't. When was the last time you bought a 120 Gig HDD for 180$, external or not? Like, 2004? It's political pricing, of course.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

BagOBones (574735) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521949)

360 uses laptop size 2.5" drives. I believe the LOWEST price in USD I have seen is $109 for a bare OEM drive, tack on the cost of the enclosure, transfer cable and software update to support transferring files and it adds up.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520575)

If the core units costs 299 and the 120 gig hard drive costs 179, then the total cost of that configuration will be 478, or $1 cheaper than the elite unit.

In other words, nothing is stopping you except common sense. for an extra $1, you get: a wireless controller rather than a wired controller, a headset, hdmi output, a 1 month subscription to xbox live(gold) (which I believe doesn't come with the core set) and an hdmi cable.

Frankly, there's a lot more value to be had in the elite if you are not already an owner.

Re:If I don't care about HDMI... (1)

GeorgeMcBay (106610) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521879)

Buying a core ($300) and the 120 gb HD ($180) is about the same price as an Elite, give or take 10 dollars. But if you buy the core and the HD, not only will you not get HDMI, you won't get a wireless controller (you'll get a wired one), a voice chat headset for Xbox Live, an ethernet cable (no big whoop, I guess) or component cables (the Core only comes with an old school composite RCA cable, not the dual composite/component that the Premium and Elite have).

So the Elite is really a better option for the vast majority of people if they are choosing between core + HDD and Elite, though the reason for this is because the stand-alone HDD is overpriced.

What the fuck is with SKU? It's a product. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519445)

Is everyone suddenly a merchandiser or something? I'll replace your sku.

Re:What the fuck is with SKU? It's a product. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519845)

Sku you!

Re:What the fuck is with SKU? It's a product. (4, Funny)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521495)

Death by sku-sku!

its a SKU ... (1)

Programmer_In_Traini (566499) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519893)

...just not a common term for it.

http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&q=define%3A+sku& btnG=Google+Search&meta= [google.ca]

and if you look in the results ...

A uniquely identifiable line within a product range. A particular product may have many different variation s eg 20 percent extra free, price marked etc. each of these variation would be a unique SKU.
www.applause.hu/terms_e.htm

but i will agree that SKU is generally used to refer to the code of the product, not the product itself.

Re:its a SKU ... (4, Informative)

badasscat (563442) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520495)

...just not a common term for it.

SKU stands for "stock keeping unit". It has an actual meaning and proper use, but it's always struck me as ludicrous to use it outside of a store stockroom.

When I was in high school (and this was 20 years ago now), I worked as a stockboy in an electronics store. We used "SKU" the way it was intended, just as stockboys probably still do now. Every product has a "SKU number" used like a UPC code to track stock counts, and that eventually got shorthanded to refer to the product itself. (Note that I'm not contradicting you, just adding a little more info.)

It's always annoyed me when I see this in regular life, just like I see games now referred to as "IP's". In most cases, it's a vain attempt at looking "hip", as if you're cool enough to throw around industry-speak. Usually, though, the true origins of such terms come from marketdroids, lawyers, or worse.

There's no reason even for an analyst to use the term "SKU". They're not tracking stock. It actually would make somewhat more sense to use UPC as a generic term meaning "product model". I think terms like this are always annoying, though, and would much prefer it if everybody could just settle on plain English outside of their work environment. Why do all of our casual conversations have to include so much meaningless industry jargon?

"Model" is a perfectly fine word to use. #7 definition at dictionary.com: "a style or design of a particular product". There's no reason to repurpose industry acronyms when we have perfectly meaningful English words already. Unless you REALLY don't have time to utter that extra syllable.

Re:its a SKU ... (1)

dctoastman (995251) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520967)

I think in this context it could be warranted because they are saying that the new Elite package will sit on the shelves alongside the Core and Premium with an entirely new UPC/SKU rather than replacing the Premium or Core.

Re:What the fuck is with SKU? It's a product. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519903)

It's worse than that, the SKU is the identifier, not the product. So unless they were going to use consoles to replace the ids in their databases (how do they fit anyway?), the article isn't going to tell us anything new.

Re:What the fuck is with SKU? It's a product. (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519921)

It's still not as bad as calling every musician an "artist" in the post-Napster world.

I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519447)

470 dollars for the 360 itself
100 dollars for WiFi
200 dollars for the HD-DVD addon
50 dollars a year to play games online - 250 dollars over five years

There are no hardware changes other than the addition of the HDMI digital connection - so all of the existing hardware defects will exist with this model. The move to 65nm has been delayed to later this year. So you sure as hell better pay for an extended warranty.

And that is not including all the little things like chargers that Microsoft is nickel and diming Xbox owners with.

You are looking at spending ~820-1020 on this system over five years. WTF are they smoking up in Redmond?

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (5, Funny)

phorm (591458) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519613)

WTF are they smoking up in Redmond?

At first it seemed to be dope due to the green color. At closer inspect, though, it turns out that it's dollar bills...

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1)

MeanderingMind (884641) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519641)

I don't know what they're smoking, but I want to stay away from whatever it is.

The price comparisons of the 360 and PS3 just got a lot more complicated, and not in Microsoft's favor. The new SKU is arguably less functional than the closely priced $500 PS3.

I'm sure the idea looked good on paper, but ultimately I can only see this as hurting Microsoft's position.

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1)

GrayCalx (597428) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519875)

I'm not sure I see how this could hurt their position. They still have two other versions that are significantly (meh) lower than the PS3. This is just an option for those who... I don't know, like the color black (actually I think it would be for those who for some reason or another need the HDMI output) but still the upgrades are kind of silly.

I definitely agree that this elite is not really worth the price, but they still have the other models available, so I don't see how this could hurt them, per-say.

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1)

CaseM (746707) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519991)

This hurts them mostly because the perception of a price difference has changed. Most people who buy a game console aren't people like us who read spec sheets, weigh technical differences of various minutia and then argue about them ad nauseum - they just go to the local big box store and look at the sticker price. This new SKU tarnishes one of if not the biggest of Microsoft's strengths this generation: price.

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1)

Southphillyman (1064260) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520491)

THIS IS POWERFUL POSTING BABY. *clapping* lol, as a potential PS3 buyer I'm hoping M$ keeps doing stupid stuff like this. Blu ray is already winning the format wars

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521395)

So you want a game system that costs just as much as a game-capable PC, has games that cost twice more than PC games, plays protected movies that you can not enjoy on the go and requires you to buy a separate PC and/or PVR? We should boycott both Microsoft and Sony until they come up with a better format. Nintendo may be more acceptable, since its much cheaper than a PC and has a technically unique controller, but they are being assholes by using an idiotic name in the US to please Chinese and artificially limiting supply and forcing hapless families to pay twice the price online.

I Honestly Can't Believe your CRAP!!! (0, Flamebait)

Maximegalon (1003655) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521931)

I have no interest in either format that offers little value over DVD, and has less restrictions. I want to PLAY GAMES and view media off my PC about (300 gig). So let's do the REAL math. $600 PS3 $310 PS3 notebook drive to match/hold my existing desktop PC media (and I have to reencode and copy/duplicate the media) $40 HDMI cable to match resolution of the given cable of 360 $0 For the great PS3 "online service" for the few online games the PS3 has $400 Premium 360 $40 WAP and wired router, lets me put 4 devices on a wireless network easily $200 For XBOX Live for 5 years when bought in yearly amounts (just shop a little) $10 USB multi-reader card to match PS3's Hmmm, I have $300 extra to burn. Perhaps for that HDDVD drive and a couple of movies. Also, the 360 has infinitely better online support and a lot better games (more games in 1080p, more online games, more exclusives i.e. dead rising, lost planet, gears of war, Halo 3, Lumines, viva pinata, star trek legacy, chromehounds) Oh, I could even write my own game for the 360 if I wanted too. Face it, the PS3 sucks for anything other than a BlueRay player, an expensive UNIX box or running folding @home.

Re:I Honestly Can't Believe This Is Real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18521971)

My house is wired, I don't want to pay for wireless, when I can be smart and use my existing infrastructure. You being a loser without a wired house shouldn't affect the price of MY 360.

I don't want HD DVD, or Blu-ray. For a number of reasons, not the least of which, I'll eventually build a NAS array of maybe a few TB, for not too much money comparitively speaking, and with some shade of media computing something, be it myth or vista coupled with the 360, and perhaps FiOS, how long am I going to want to deal with disc's? The early versions of either standing a good chance of more incompatability down the road anyway. Right now, that's for rappers and Tony Hawk. Who knows maybe the DRM queens will come to their senses in later revivsions as well. And 13 months of xbox live costs 39.99 at Circuit City.

But xbox live silver doesn't suck, just for being able to download the demos. Some of them are almost free games unto themselves.

PS3 Advantage (4, Insightful)

tb3 (313150) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519493)

But the PS3 advantage (if they can establish a price point and sell enough of the damn things) is that the Blu-Ray drive is standard. That means that the larger capacity can be used for game data. No matter what optional drives Microsoft ships for the 360, game designers will always be hobbled by the constraint of the DVD as the lowest common denominator.
If the PS3 survives its games will end up looking a lot more impressive than 360 games of the same vintage.

Re:PS3 Advantage (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519619)

"If the PS3 survives its games will end up looking a lot more impressive than 360 games of the same vintage."

Now that is funny.

The PS3 just had the greatest console launch in history in Europe.

The PS3 is selling at a faster rate in the US.

People are asking who do they have to kill to get into the Home beta.

Every single developer who supported the 115+ million selling PS2 is making games for the PS3.

Sony's first party developer lineup is stronger than both Nintendo and Microsoft combined - there are over 150 first party games alone in development.

Even PC developers are looking to the PS3 for their games as the pc game market continues to die.

The PS3 has turned out to be the most reliable console ever made.

Yeah, if the PS3 'survives'...

Oh wait. You are referring to how Sony had to divert manufacturing capacity in last month from the US to Europe for the launch and there were low NPD numbers...

Re:PS3 Advantage (2, Insightful)

toolie (22684) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519667)

I was wondering where you went. Whats the url to sign up for PS3 astroturfing and how well does it pay?

Re:PS3 Advantage (4, Interesting)

644bd346996 (1012333) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520391)

If the PS3 survives its games will end up looking a lot more impressive than 360 games of the same vintage.
Now that is funny.
The PS3 just had the greatest console launch in history in Europe.
No, the PS3 just had the best European launch of a console. That is not the same as "the best launch in history" with an implied comma and then "in Europe."

The PS3 is selling at a faster rate in the US.
That statement is meaningless. Faster than what? Faster than in Europe or Japan? Faster than the Wii?

People are asking who do they have to kill to get into the Home beta.
Only people at least as demented as you. And presumably as young or younger than you.

Every single developer who supported the 115+ million selling PS2 is making games for the PS3.
That is not saying much. What matters is how many games they are making for the PS3, and how many are exclusive to the PS3, as compared with the development scene for the 360 and to a lesser extent, the Wii.

Sony's first party developer lineup is stronger than both Nintendo and Microsoft combined - there are over 150 first party games alone in development.
Finally, some good (though uncited) information. But still, I have to wonder how many of those games will make it to the market, and how many are at all original. And you failed to provide any data about Microsoft and Nintendo to back up your claim that the are not being as prolific game developers.

Even PC developers are looking to the PS3 for their games as the pc game market continues to die.
That sure seems to be a totally baseless claim. In fact, I think it is probably totally wrong. First of all, not many developers would go through the trouble of porting a game from the PS3 to a platform that is dying faster. Second, the PC gaming market is not dying. Third, the portion of the PC gaming market that is composed of PS3 ports is, and always will be, very small.

The PS3 has turned out to be the most reliable console ever made.
By what measure? Sure, it seems to have gotten much less press about it's problems than the 360, but that doesn't make it the gold standard. Certainly the hardware can't be all that reliable, given the extreme complexity compared to the other consoles on the market. For example, the Cell processor in the PS3 has an SPU disabled because they can't produce the whole processor at mature yields. And the PS3 has not been on the market long enough to compare with, say, the GameCube. Also, with the exception of the wrist strap issue arising from improper but foreseeable usage, I expect the Wii to be the most reliable of the consoles, given the simplicity of its hardware and the fact that it is mostly already proven.

Yeah, if the PS3 'survives'...
The PS3 is by no means destined to come out on top or even in second. No games for any of the three platforms are out yet that were developed after feedback from the launch titles. And they still have been on the market for less than a year. For a product with an expected lifetime of at least five years, this is way too early to be making judgments with that level of confidence.

Oh wait. You are referring to how Sony had to divert manufacturing capacity in last month from the US to Europe for the launch and there were low NPD numbers...
It has been well documented that the PS3 has been in excess supply in many of the biggest markets in the US. With or without the European launch, Sony needed to divert production capacity away from the US. And I have yet to see any evidence that that diversion has caused any shortages in the US.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

Neo_piper (798916) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520999)

The PS3 just had the greatest console launch in history in Europe.

The PS3 is selling at a faster rate in the US.
Just my little bit of anecdotal evidence to the contrary
In my little University town in Iowa, Best Buy, Wallmart, K Mart, Target, and the various non big box stores all have PS3s in stock...
Now here is the kicker... They are all the same ones from the shipment back in the beginning of February.
I took my digital camera and took some pictures of them showing the dust accumulate, they literally haven't moved in over 6 weeks
By the way there is not a Wii to be had in this town...

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

whodunnit (238223) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519647)

The medium the game comes on will not effect the quality of the game. True, they might have to make the game span more than one disk to fit the same amount of content. But that does not in any way mean the game will be of lower visual quality than the PS3 version.

Multipule disk games happened all the time on the PSOne and other older systems, and since dvds are so cheap to produce it's not going to overly effect the bottom line.

Repeated disc swapping (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519871)

The medium the game comes on will not effect the quality of the game. True, they might have to make the game span more than one disk to fit the same amount of content.
Swapping discs whenever you cross back and forth over a zone boundary is not fun and reduces the interaction quality of the game even if not the visual quality. What do you suggest to prevent this?

Re:Repeated disc swapping (1)

BeansBaxter (918704) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519989)

You could use the hard drive to cache the content better. Or reduce the game content to less than 9G. Are there actually any multi dvd console games at this point? I understand higher res textures for PS3 / Xbox 360 will impact the size needed but has it even happened where more than one dvd was needed?

Re:Repeated disc swapping (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521881)

You could use the hard drive to cache the content better.
I thought having to "install" games was what the consoles were specifically intended to get away from.

Or reduce the game content to less than 9G.
Good luck retraining all your artists to work on procedural [wikipedia.org] tools. Good luck covering up the extra CPU-bound loading time that decompressing procedural content will incur without making an experience that looks like "installing".

Re:Repeated disc swapping (1)

crabbz (986605) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520141)

Easy! The Elite should have included a DVD changer so you can stick all the discs in and let it switch around as needed. That would show those blu-ray goons.

Re:Repeated disc swapping= Advantage 360 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18521697)

If you use your PS3 to play games and to play movies, you are going to find yourself swapping disc a lot more than a 360 which to date has only ONE FMV heavy game where you have to swap discs once every several hours. With the HD-DVD add-on (or a standalone player), I can keep my favorite game in the box and ready to go at a moments notice and don't have to swap everytime I want to watch a movie (which may take more than one sitting for a feature filled disc). So with the 360 setup, you swap LESS and you don't wear out the most fragile (and expensive in the case of the PS3) part of your game console- the optical drive mechanism. Thank you for pointing out the superiority of the options that Microsoft gives you and the inferiority and inflexibility that Sony forces on the user (who probably doesn't even own an HD set).

Re:Repeated disc swapping= Advantage 360 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521817)

With the HD-DVD add-on (or a standalone player), I can keep my favorite game in the box and ready to go at a moments notice and don't have to swap everytime I want to watch a movie (which may take more than one sitting for a feature filled disc).
Are there any Xbox 360 games that have the potential to be The Only Game I Play in the same manner as World of Warcraft for PCs? If you are playing Gears of War and you want to check up on your Piñata Crossing [wikipedia.org] garden, you still have to swap game discs.

Re:PS3 Advantage (3, Interesting)

BeansBaxter (918704) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519907)

I find it very interesting that in this generation people are concerned about needing more than a dual layer dvd to store game content. I don't work in the industry but I have to think that filling 9Gigs of data is a pretty impressive and expensive feet. I imagine development costs will be much higher for a game that requires that amount of space. Packaging it on one really expensive new Blu Ray disk or multiple easy to press DVD's is probably the least of the worries.

Re:PS3 Advantage (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520053)

"Packaging it on one really expensive new Blu Ray disk or multiple easy to press DVD's is probably the least of the worries."

BluRay disk prices for developers are a few cents more vs DVDs. BluRay disks are much cheaper than multiple DVDs. Publishers and developers HATE multi-disc titles. Needlessly eats into profits - take a million selling game multiply the cost of a second DVD(or even worse third) and you are throwing away a huge chunk of profits.

GameCube games last gen for the most part had developers just chopping out features or music and audio to fit on the smaller GC discs.

The 360 actually has LESS space than the Xbox did last gen and developers have already bumped up against the ~8 gigs of storage space. There are four to seven or so more years to go in this generation. Just think of how small a CD or two CDs are today for a game.

As storage space increases so does the cost of generating content go down at a fairly similar rate. Computers get faster, memory gets larger so the size of models and worlds that artists can generate get larger and the tools for working with larger art continues to improve.

MS if fucked on the storage front. There is no other way to put it.

Re:PS3 Advantage (3, Funny)

feepness (543479) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520465)

I don't work in the industry but I have to think that filling 9Gigs of data is a pretty impressive and expensive feet.

Also, 640K ought to be enough for everybody.

Re:PS3 Advantage (5, Informative)

kinglink (195330) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519749)

I work in a company that does open world games (and good ones actually). I have to tell you the "hobbling" isn't true. The 512 megs of ram that we have on the system is a bigger issue than anything that has to do with the media we are working on.

Blu-ray sounds great but what do you need to fill it with. As it is the amount of money we pay to get the game shipped now is a lot. Cost is what's stopping us from making bigger or more diverse games, rather then size of the media again.

The people who are hurt the most by this are the JRPG companies who just explode with FMVs, blue dragon is a 3 dvd game, other then them I've heard no complaints about the size of the media. Hell, The only reasons they are filling up Blu-rays are they are using "stupid" tricks like uncompressed audio for Metal gear solid. I just have a simple question. Now that both systems are out, and we already have seen that the 360's dvd has a higher read speed then the ps3's blu-ray device (overall blu-ray SHOULD be faster, but in these two actual system the 360's drive is faster). Why are you using larger files sizes rather then using the "extra" power of the ps3 to uncompress these files? The simple answer is no, the ps3 isn't that powerful (Insomniac today claims you have 8 cores? funny we only have access to 6 cores).

In the end blu-ray isn't going to be the answer. Sony's system has some good marks, but blu-ray isn't necessary, and the Cell processor is doing more to hurt the developer than it is helping it.

If anything the 360 developer's biggest problem has nothing to do with DVDs, it's due to the fact that the Hard drive is non standard and we can't guarantee using that for caching, but that's a relatively minor complaint in the long run.

Re:PS3 Advantage (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520167)

You sound like you come from a typical shitty pc developer like Bethesda.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520445)

You sound like you're the AC troll who always tells people they don't know how to code just because they disagree that the PS3 is the second coming of Christ.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

644bd346996 (1012333) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520493)

First of all, a PC game developer would be used to having effectively unlimited storage space to work with, and thus would be most affected by the limitations of the DVD medium. But the GPP's point about disc capacity is valid. The largest single player game I have played was Myst 4, which came on two DVDs, and it was a pre-rendered game. Its sequel was rendered in realtime, and even though was a longer game, it fit on three CDs. If you fanboys are to believed, the 360/PS3 would never need to resort to pre-rendered graphics. When a console game has a soundtrack big enough to fill the better part of a DVD, let me know.

You sound like a typical AC troll (1)

yoyhed (651244) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521813)

You sound like you come from a typical shitty pc developer like Bethesda.
Yes, because Bethesda is totally known for making shitty [gamerankings.com] games [gamerankings.com] .

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520873)

Drive speed complaints are over played. The standardized HD completely negates any rational arguement about drivespeed. Even a direct comparrison of drive speeds shows a fairly slight difference. Also, disc space is a marginal advantage for the ps3. Built in blu-ray play back is a better advantage.

The ps3 is a expensive machine. For my money it was worth it. At some price point I'm sure it would be worthwhile for most gamers. I only hope it survives to hit that price point.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

kinglink (195330) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521179)

If we are going to consider the HD an alternative to the drive, then you're installing games and drive speed is still part of an issue (not as big though). Play Tony Hawk Pro Skater 8 on the 360, it's a great game, however every time you take the disc out and put it back in you have a decently long 2-3 minute load time that's unskipable the first time you play it after that point, that's fine the first time but annoying every time you want to take a quick trip, the way they do it is a movie. I believe this is gone if you didn't have a HD hooked up.

Still you're talking about a wait for the players. I'm all for utilizing the HD, but if I'm going to need to wait 5-15 minutes when I put Oblivion into my PS3, I'm going to get a little annoyed verses the 360 where there's a mandatory situation where you are only allowed 2 minutes of non interactive load times.

Btw, the standardized hard drive assuming we're going to be using it gives an even less important for drive size, why not compress your files and install them the first time you're player runs the game?

I do admit the standardized hard drive is a major feature. However my post is more about the fact that the blu-ray is an unnecessary feature for this generation. It's a 200 dollar addition to the game system and an attempt to get blu-ray into as many homes as possible to claim a "win" on the format war (personally neither format wins, an upscaled DVD is good enough on a 50 inch tv for me, and I don't have to rebuy my dvds and movies). If instead they put out a 400 dollar Ps3 with out blu-ray and then claimed some games will likely require the blu-ray add on it would have worked out better, but as a whole I can't say the blu-ray is a "win" for the consumers or developers, but it's a "win" for Sony and that's why it's included.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

j.a.mcguire (551738) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521553)

It might be a games console but it's as much an entertainment centre as well these days, therefore blue ray is a requirement since most future high definition movie formats will be available in it.

It's good for the consumer, not only the developer.

360 games will be better than PS3 for 2yrs (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18521805)

(1) They both have 512MB, but the OS on the PS3 permanently takes a much bigger slice of that, something like 128MB?? vs 32MB used permanently by the OS on the 360.
(2) The 360 has symmetric multiprocessors--3 dual-core PPC chips that use the same memory heirarchy, caches etc. That's 6 in-order execution pipes. Compare that to the PS3 which has *one* general processor pipe and *7* (not 8) SPUs which are basically DSPs. One of those SPUs is permanently reserved to the OS so you only get to use 6 of them. The SPUs have a stupendously tiny amount of RAM each (128 KB or something?) so you have to shuffle data back and forth from the main RAM with DMA in order to get anything done. That transfer can be fast but its still often a bottleneck.
(3) The 360 is pretty flexible about letting you use any of your 480MB as graphics memory or for non-graphics stuff. The PS3 requires a fixed division. This combined with the OS memory usage means that when porting 360 games to the PS3, we usually divide all our texture sizes by 2.
(4) The 360 has 48 unified pixel/vertex pipes. If you game heavily uses vertex shaders, more of the pipes will be doing vertexes at any one time, and if it heavily uses pixel shaders, more of them will be doing that--but you can easily get near-100% utilization of the hardware. The PS3 has classic dedicated pipes (I don't know how many) so you still have to balance that usage like you have to on PC video cards.
(5) The Microsoft devkits are not perfect, but they are really good -- much better than Nintendo's and 1000x better than Sony's.

The combination of these things means the Xbox360 is MUCH easier to program for, MUCH easier to port existing console or PC graphics engines to, and in general easier for developers to extract the power from.

I predict it will be at least 2 years before we see PS3 games that rival the best Xbox360 games in graphical quality and performance.

Re:PS3 Advantage (2, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | more than 6 years ago | (#18522075)

The people who are hurt the most by this are the JRPG companies who just explode with FMVs, blue dragon is a 3 dvd game, other then them I've heard no complaints about the size of the media. Hell, The only reasons they are filling up Blu-rays are they are using "stupid" tricks like uncompressed audio for Metal gear solid.

No, there are plenty of other reasons. Localization for example - being able to offer the same game in multiple locales from the same disk. Something which is very important in the EU, or even when considering US / JP titles. Aside from that extra capacity means more content, levels, or if you prefer just the ability to duplicate data to lessen seek times and ensure it loads faster.

Simply put, companies don't have to use that extra capacity, but neither is there some barrier blocking their path when they get close to DVD-9's limits. Which many games already manage to get close to.

I just have a simple question. Now that both systems are out, and we already have seen that the 360's dvd has a higher read speed then the ps3's blu-ray device (overall blu-ray SHOULD be faster, but in these two actual system the 360's drive is faster).

So says you. Most other people appear to think that Blu-Ray has a slight edge but both systems are mostly comparable.

Why are you using larger files sizes rather then using the "extra" power of the ps3 to uncompress these files? The simple answer is no, the ps3 isn't that powerful (Insomniac today claims you have 8 cores? funny we only have access to 6 cores).

Insomniac did not say that. It said "The PS3's eight parallel CPUs (one primary "PPU" and seven Cell processors) give it potentially far more computing power than the three parallel CPUs in the Xbox 360". What is incorrect about that statement?

As for compression, compression only gets you so far. Sure you could zip everything up or make textures and sound more lossy. Lots of games probably do it already simply because it may work out slightly faster than reading uncompressed from disk. But there comes a point where with all the compression in the world you still have more content than you can fit on the disk. What do you do then? Do you cut levels, or textures, or models, go multi-disk or expect people to do sizable downloads to get the content?

In the end blu-ray isn't going to be the answer. Sony's system has some good marks, but blu-ray isn't necessary, and the Cell processor is doing more to hurt the developer than it is helping it.

There is nothing particularly hard about programming the Cell. Any software engineer worth their salt (i.e. the kind responsible for writing game engines, optimized code etc.), should be able to master it easily enough and the people doing periphery stuff like menu systems shouldn't have to care. SPU programming is little removed from multi-threading and most of the principles can be carried over to it.

Re:PS3 Advantage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520191)

Except that the storage capacity of Blu-Ray has yet to be anything but an artifical advantage for games.

So far PS3 developers are using it to either:
a) Put all localizations on the same disc to cut on manufacturing costs
b) Put a ton of pre-rendered high def cutscenes on the disc
c) Duplicate data for faster loading times because the PS3's disc read speed is poor (Oblivion)

No PS3 game has come close to the 9GB DVD limit in terms of actual game content and I suspect that's not going to change anytime soon. You'd be talking about a huge amount real game content to go over 9GBs. It already takes 3-4 years do develop a game with "as little" content as something like Gears of War. The development time of a game these days that uses over 9GB of conent would exceed the lifespan of the console.

If you like pre-rendered cutscenes then yeah the 360 is at a disadvantage, if actually like playing games, then the DVD storage capacity is never going to be an issue.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

Southphillyman (1064260) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520557)

Uh the new Splinter Cell game was able to include new playable characters and TWO addition stages because of blu ray capacity. Don't deny facts baby.

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

valathax (916966) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521515)

Splinter Cell on the Xbox 360 is 6.15 GB, two additional maps and one extra playable character does not consume over 2 gigabytes. In addition Ubi has made no mention of there being a size constraint on the Xbox 360 as the reason for the additional content on the PS3.

http://splintercell.us.ubi.com/newspost.php?news_i d=4905 [ubi.com]

Re:PS3 Advantage (1)

yoyhed (651244) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521853)

Yes, because I'm sure a couple extra models and levels (probably using mostly the same textures as the rest of the game) absolutely could not fit in 9 gigs.

Disappointed (2, Interesting)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519509)

Disappointed that this is a worse value than the PS3. I have a 360. I gave one to my brother and to my sister; I was thinking about handing mine off to my mom and getting the Elite, but it almost isn't worth it.

I guess I'm just repeating the normal mantra: needs the HD-DVD built in and Wireless built in. Right now it's 480+200+100. I find the price of the little wireless device most eggregious even now and wonder why there are not third party devices out there that can do the wireless.

Re:Disappointed (2, Insightful)

clontzman (325677) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519743)

Just to play Devil's advocate (this is /., after all), but seeing as you've given away one Xbox and may be on the verge of giving away a second one, you should probably be glad they're not bundling in HD-DVD, because then you'd have bought three HD-DVD drives instead of one or none. In your case, you can buy one HD-DVD drive and keep it if you decide to upgrade to the Elite or the Elite 2 on down the road. Same deal with the WiFi adapter... even though I think they should probably include it, it's a benefit for those who are upgrading to the Elite that they don't because you're not unnecessarily paying for it again if you have the add-on already.

I don't totally disagree with what you're saying, but just another perspective.

Re:Disappointed (1)

bilbravo (763359) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519911)

I'll do the same to you... why buy an Xbox360 Elite if you already have an Xbox360? Chances are if HDMI and the larger hard drive means that much to you, you can sell that wireless adapter along with the old(er) xbox360 and get some/most of your money back from it. Not including the wireless on the Elite was for the same reason MS didn't include it on the others... people will pay $100 for it.

Re:Disappointed (1)

clontzman (325677) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520427)

Frankly, unless HDMI is a deal-maker for you, I'm not sure why you would. I was responding to the GP's post, though, and he was considering giving away a second 360 in order to buy an Elite. In his case, not having to re-buy HD-DVD drives and WiFi adapters is potentially a good thing. I like my Premium and have no real desire to buy an Elite (though the HDD space would eventually be nice).

Of course, you're right about the WiFi being external primarily because people will pay for it. That said, it's only marginally more expensive than a third-party wireless bridge [newegg.com] , so clearly everyone's keeping prices for this sort of add-on artificially high.

Re:Disappointed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520101)

"I find the price of the little wireless device most eggregious even now and wonder why there are not third party devices out there that can do the wireless."

Well, actually, there are third party alternatives that can do the wireless, although maybe not as well. Like this [amazon.com] which isn't exactly any cheaper anyway. Or if you want cheaper, there's this [amazon.com] although it's outdated, it should still work fine.

Re:Disappointed (4, Funny)

goodenoughnickname (874664) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520281)

I gave one to my brother and to my sister; I was thinking about handing mine off to my mom
I hope I'm related to you somehow.

Agreed! (1)

thecalster (1081075) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519541)

I agree with the comment that was quoted. Microsoft would have done a lot better making this Elite edition use either blu-ray or use the HD Drive. Allow it to play HDdvds or Blu-rays would have been reason to buying the elite edition. Even though they do have the HD drive you can install, but not everyone wants to go to the hastle to install extra stuff.

Why? (4, Insightful)

MeanderingMind (884641) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519543)

Why did Microsoft do this?

Releasing a console with built-in HD-DVD would be interesting. Though there are potential reasons to avoid this.

1) Price being too close to the PS3, in some ways validating it.
2) No guarantee of success and thus subsidizing of the HD-DVD drive.

But that said, decided not to include an HD-DVD drive pratically makes the whole thing a wash. Without the HD-DVD drive, all we have is a more expensive premium console that has a larger hard drive, HDMI hookups, and is black.

Without any truly tangible benefit, it shrinks the extremely important price difference between the consoles. My points 1 and 2 above apply in almost the exact same way.

1) Price too close the the PS3, in some ways validating it.
2) Lack of backing of HD-DVD can be seen as implying a lack of confidence in the medium.

The whole thing seems ill-conceived. If they didn't want to release a console with an built-in HD-DVD drive, they could have simply upgraded live and announced a new, larger hard drive alone and perhaps a black case mod for the first 1000 buyers. A whole new SKU for this is a ridiculous waste of resources, while at the same time killing several key talking points for the 360.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18519781)

> Without any truly tangible benefit, it shrinks the extremely important price difference between the consoles.

The price difference was only important in fanboy eyes. Gamers have always bought the console that had the games they want to play on it. Always have, always will. A 100 or 200 dollar price difference means nothing for a product you will be using for five or more years. No gamers would trade a 100 bucks to give up an entire console generation's exclusive games they want to play.

The lack of a matching black HD-DVD drive is a big FU to the handful of 360 owners who spend 200 dollars on their drives. There really isn't a clearer signal from Microsoft that they are walking away from the loser in the BluRay vs HD-DVD war.

Re:Why? (2, Insightful)

MeanderingMind (884641) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519935)

No gamers would trade a 100 bucks to give up an entire console generation's exclusive games they want to play.


When I was 10 I did just that. I bought a Sega Genesis because it meant I could get two games right off the bat instead of just one.

Would I do that now? No, but I still was a gamer then and only had allowance money to work with, $100 was a big deal.

Not to mention that a higher price and another SKU only serve to alienate the non-gamers and casuals further. :/

Re:Why? (1)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519849)

Agreed entirely. Theres nothing wrong with the elite as a machine. HDMI and a larger drive is good. Not including an HD-DVD is fine too since nobody really cares about these formats. This just isn't the right way to position it and this wasn't the right time to launch it.

Microsoft has the upper hand for the time being with its large game library and installed base, and after being out for close to a year and a half its probably gotten cheaper to make. If they were smart they would have dropped the price of both the core and the premium by $50 each and launched this thing at $400. If thats too much of financial hit for them then they should have waited 6 months and done it then.

All they've done is reduce the desirability of the premium, and weaken the perceived price advantage over the PS3.

Re:Why? (1)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520231)

2) Lack of backing of HD-DVD can be seen as implying a lack of confidence in the medium.
I think this is the single most important element of the post. If Microsoft aren't giving a thumbs up to HD-DVD that means they think Blu-Ray is going to be the big format. They're saying, whether intentionally or not, that Sony's technology is going to be the 'standard', and Sony's PS3 is the cheapest way to get a Blu-Ray player. By not including an HD-DVD reader Microsoft might have seriously screwed up an otherwise shiny console generation for themselves.

Re:Why? (4, Insightful)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520563)

Actually the why is pretty simple.

From an article I originally posted here:http://vgecon.blogspot.com/2007/03/purpose-of -xbox-360-elite.html [blogspot.com] .

The answer is that the Xbox 360 Elite is aimed at people who are willing to pay $479 for an Xbox 360. That may seem a little too simplistic, so I'll explain. One basic rule of economics is that a product's price is partially determined by how much the consumer values it. However, every individual has their own concept of what the product is worth. Ideally a manufacturer would want to sell to every customer at exactly what they're willing to pay, as long as it's higher than the cost of producing the product. Unfortunately this is just not practical in the real world, especially with a large volume product. Just because someone is willing to pay a certain amount doesn't mean that they won't pay less if they can. People would find out that you're selling the product to others for less and demand that price even if they would have been willing to pay more.

There are two alternatives to this. First, you could set a single price; but this is a gamble. If you price too high you will lose sales to people who valued the product less. If you price too low, you lose profit margins from people who would have been willing to pay more. The other alternative is to still set your product at multiple price points but vary each version slightly. An excellent example of a company that uses this tactic is Starbucks. A regular coffee at Starbucks is only around $1.60; but a double foam mocha latte... whatever can cost you upwards of $4.00. In truth, both products cost Starbucks approximately the same amount of money to make. Price sensitive customers will choose the regular coffee, and people who are willing to pay more may spring for the more extravagant drink.

This is what Microsoft is doing with the Xbox 360. Sure, the Premium costs Microsoft more to make than the Core, and the Elite costs them more then the Premium; but it's less than most people think. Microsoft may still be losing money on the Core, but they're probably breaking even on the Premium at this point. At $479, the Elite might even turn a small profit.

Some people have pointed out that the new price tag erases Microsoft's price advantage over the $500 PS3. From a marketing perspective, it may seem that way. From an economics perspective though, things are still very different. The key point is that Microsoft is going to be ready for a price cut far sooner than Sony will be. Before the Elite, a price cut would have meant that they would have to sacrifice any profits from people who were still willing to pay top dollar for a system. A new high end model allows them to maintain their position in the $400 range, while extending their market by dropping the low end of their price range.

I am no marketing expert, so I can't really say what the effects will be there. Economically though, this is a smart move by Microsoft.

Re:Why? (1)

linux_geek_germany (1079711) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521433)

Sounds good and similar to the strategy that Apple is deploying IMO. First price the products at a very high price that only a small fraction of the consumers will pay and gradually lower it to somewhat above average prices over the long run. Thus they extract as much money from the market as possible (or at least more than by entering the market at a lower price directly). This simplifying explanation probably ignores the fact that some people will choose from an alternative if the wanted product is overpriced for too long but as Microsoft is still offering standard versions for less money this should not be a problem at all.

Blu-Ray (5, Insightful)

*weasel (174362) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519547)

It appears to me that Microsoft sees the writing on the wall - Blu-ray is going to win the format wars

It appears to me that Microsoft is acknowledging the format wars are stillborn. Their support for HD-DVD was just about defusing the PS3 anyway, not defeating Blu-Ray. MS already has their license fees secured, regardless of how the little-plastic disc formats fare.

The media victory Microsoft is after, is digital delivery.

Re:Blu-Ray (1)

bumchick (201482) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520543)

MS already has their license fees secured
What license fees do you mean?

Re:Blu-Ray (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520629)

The media victory Microsoft is after, is digital delivery.


What makes you think they want to do that much work?

They're after the DRM and that's it. They want to get a check every time somebody buys content. They don't want to actually incur any real costs. Do you have any idea what it would do to their margins if they actually had to stay in the content delivery business? Let some other poor fool do that. They just want to get in your wallet with zero additional effort.

That's why there will never be a Microsoft product on top of my television, even if they manage to come out with a substantial number of XBox games I'm even remotely interested in.

Prices (5, Insightful)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519643)

Prices are funny. Microsoft is obviously milking every dime they can get out of gamers who buy a system before they drop the prices. While there is no sign of that happening, you can pretty much count on any PS3 price drop to be matched by a 360 price drop of equal or greater value.

That "validation" of the PS3 strategy by way of price is a bit misleading, though. Sony equates the PS3 to fine equipment whose price indicates its value. But it's a genuinely expensive device to make. What the PS3 price points have proven to the people who figure out the prices of consoles is that consoles have been too cheap and the market could sustain them at higher prices than previously thought.

Other very expensive consoles have gone down in flames for home use... but the median price for the majority of consoles at the market at any given time has been a $200 - $250 sweet spot. The only thing that Microsoft and Sony have done is show that the sweet spot can be coaxed higher.

What I don't understand is why Microsoft isn't playing a price war yet. They've got the biggest userbase for this generation, most established games (excluding Wii's ability to play Gamecube games), and they're turning a profit on current consoles sold. Sony's machine costs $800 and putting pressure on them to lower a price point could hasten any future demise... if it's in the cards.

My only stab at trying to understand is that Microsoft eventually wants to buy the Sony gaming division, but I'll be the first to suggest that's an outrageous claim. Hmmm...

Re:Prices (1)

GeckoX (259575) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520045)

What I don't understand is why Microsoft isn't playing a price war yet. They've got the biggest userbase for this generation, most established games (excluding Wii's ability to play Gamecube games), and they're turning a profit on current consoles sold. Sony's machine costs $800 and putting pressure on them to lower a price point could hasten any future demise... if it's in the cards.


And conveniently not mentioning the PS3's ability to play PS2 and PS1 games.

At the immediate moment, the 360 does have more native games than the other, you are correct, but they lose completely on the total library, they're last place. AND there are more games in the pipes for the PS3 than there are for the 360 last time I checked. It seems very likely, as it's already happening, that just about everything that comes out on the 360 will come out on the PS3 as well, but not vice versa. Just a thought.

Re:Prices (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520297)

I'll concede I forgot to mention PS2 and PS1 games. I also forgot the 360 plays some XBox games. :P

The PS2 definitely had more show stopping quality games than Gamecube and is a great asset to the PS3's playable library... PROVIDED that the recently crippled backwards compatibility gets continually less crippled with time. On that same token, I certainly want to see much better backwards compatibility on the 360 at a much faster pace.

AFAIK, Wii's Gamecube backwards compatibility does not exist in a software emulation layer, which is probably why I've already eliminated from my mind the 360 AND the PS3 BC.

But I'll take issue that "just about everything that comes out on the 360 will come out on the PS3 as well, but not vice versa" when the unshakeable list of exclusive titles already has the first defector, Devil May Cry. I won't humor rumors that Final Fantasy is going that way, though, but rumors are rumors and sometimes that grain of salt one should take rumors with is completely necessary.

The only system that's going to get true exclusives that can't be ported without major retooling of the games themselves is the Wii. PS3/360? Ah, not so much.

Re:Prices (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520713)

I don't think Microsoft's margins are as good as you think they are. If they're turning a profit on any consoles at this point, it's probably only the Premium and it's probably still rather slim. For the time being there's not much reason for them to lower the prices as the $499 PS3 is virtually impossible to find and there is still a rather large price gulf between the Xbox 360 and the $599 PS3. My guess is that they will implement a price cut either A) after they sell through the black Elites, B)when they move to 65nm chips, or C)when the PS3 does. Most likely it will be either A or B and I would place it either immediately before the holidays or sometime next spring. Of course this is all supposition on my part, but I think it would have been foolish, from a business perspective, for Microsoft to cut prices now.

Elite looks like a bad deal (1)

maynard (3337) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519705)

I have both a 20GB 360 and a 60GB PS3. When I compare price vs. features between both units, it's now starting to look like the PS3 wins out. Especially if one believes that Blu-Ray is going to win the HD format war. MS has made a pricing mistake, and I think the market will give them a good thrashing as a result.

Re:Elite looks like a bad deal (1)

Babbster (107076) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519933)

There's one significant problem with all the comments that Microsoft is making a mistake with their pricing compared to the PS3: They can drop the prices anytime if they believe it's necessary. If they're currently losing money per console (I haven't seen recent estimates), they're losing far less than Sony is right now, which means they have pricing flexibility. They could drop the whole lineup from $480/400/300 to $400/300/200 and probably still be losing less per console than Sony.

To my way of thinking, this just means that now is the wrong time to buy either a 360 or PS3, going perhaps with a Wii to hold them over until Q4 - I think it's a given that 360 prices will drop before the end of the year.

Re:Elite looks like a bad deal (1)

maynard (3337) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520097)

Yeah. I mean, which unit to buy (if any) is entirely up to you and your personal finances. Right now the 360 has a dramatic gaming advantage over the PS3, but that should change within a year or so. I bought the PS3 to play Blu-Ray movies. The only game I have for it is Resistance, and compared to Gears of War... well, let's just say I'm more impressed by Gears than by Resistance.

As for your point on pricing flexibility, that's spot on. Microsoft has cut out an HD optical drive yet prices the unit $20 below the 20GB PS3 with blu-ray. Of course they have more pricing flexibility. And they're also closer to migrating to 65nm (I believe), which should reduce component costs too.

BTW: If you're happy with that Wii, I'd wait it out too. There will be plenty of fine games on your platform down the road.

 

Re:Elite looks like a bad deal (1)

Retric (704075) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520345)

Sony might be losing more money per PS3 but they also have more to gain from it. IMO they are more than willing to kill off the PS3 if it wins them the next format war.

Anyway, PS2 sold 100+million units, lasted for 6 years and is still selling faster than the 360 and ps3 put together. If you assume the 360 will last as long as the Xbox and the PS3 will last as long as the PS2 then your price per year is the same but Sony's loss per unit can be much higher and sill break even.

PS: It's still a little early to tell but IMO the PS3 is in a much better position. It has better graphics capabilities than the 360, its disk's hold more data and it's still selling reasonably well. Because the PS3 has better base hardware the 360 is going to need to start the next cycle even sooner or play second fiddle for 4+ years.

Re:Elite looks like a bad deal (1)

Babbster (107076) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520833)

PS: It's still a little early to tell but IMO the PS3 is in a much better position. It has better graphics capabilities than the 360, its disk's hold more data and it's still selling reasonably well. Because the PS3 has better base hardware the 360 is going to need to start the next cycle even sooner or play second fiddle for 4+ years.

All but the disc space argument could have been made for the Xbox over the PS2. It's entirely about the games and PS3 is far, far behind in that area with every chance that games formerly exclusive to Sony's platform(s) will be made multiplatform. Unless something really magical happens by the end of this year, the PS3 may end up in a hole it can't dig its way out of. Sony could win one war (Blu-ray) at the cost of losing another (console gaming).

My problem with upgrading to the Elite... (1)

CaseM (746707) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519873)

Upgrading to the Elite is problematic for me, even if I were so inclined, because my wife likes to play the XBLA games on her own account and I don't want to rebuy them all. Has Microsoft anticipated this and will they make games fully authorized after I upgrade? I don't want to be forced to connect to XBL and under my account just to play my XBL games. If they want me to consider upgrading then they should plan to offer assistance to people in my situation. I'll warrant there are plenty of people like me out there.

Re:My problem with upgrading to the Elite... (1)

powerlord (28156) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520785)

Yeah ... there are people who already do what you want. ... they're using Sony's PSN, it supports this sort of functionality.

It appears to me that..... (2, Insightful)

Chazmyrr (145612) | more than 6 years ago | (#18519885)

someone at Microsoft is smoking crack. They get the edge over Sony and then they step on their crank with this crap.

The pricing virtually eliminates premium sales. No one is going to pay $400 for the premium w/ 20GB instead of $480 for the elite w/ 120GB when the 120GB drive is sold separately for $200. Now there's actually a choice for the consumer at the $500 price point. Do I buy the 360 with the larger hard drive or buy the 20GB PS3 and have a Blu-Ray player?

Leave it to Microsoft to make the $600 PS3 look like a good deal. $480 + $100 WiFi + $200 HD-DVD = $780.

Re:It appears to me that..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520461)

Once you add in four controllers and a jewel-encrusted gold chalice, the price advantage completely disappears!

Re:It appears to me that..... (1)

linux_geek_germany (1079711) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521523)

they are just extracting the maximum money from the customers that are willing to pay (cf. Apple) and will lower the prices afterwards to meet the mass market.

Does it really matter? (4, Insightful)

FrozenFOXX (1048276) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520423)

I think that most people are missing the point. For the general population who's interested in obtaining a game system who cares? The comparing value versus price between PS3 and 360 is only valid if you're looking at doing everything BUT gaming.

I mean really, you can tell me for instance that the PS3 will do everything from clean my laundry to wash my car but at the end of the day it doesn't have my Gears of War. It doesn't have my Crackdown. There's no Forza Motorsport. There's no XBLA. To top it off it's also a lot cheaper for me to get to play a large library (and ever-growing...just check out upcoming releases like The Darkness, Bioshock, and others) of great games that look spectacular with a superb online system. Can I play Blu-Ray movies? No, but then, did I really want to buy a game system to play movies?

It's part of the same reason the Wii is selling. It's cheap, it plays good games, and nobody gives a fuck if it can't wipe your butt for you, too. So what does this new 360 do? Who does it cater to? People that feel they have to have the "extra shiny" version of a console to feel superior to other people. The other people are those interested in the Marketplace for downloading things which means there isn't a value comparison with the PS3 since the PS3 doesn't have access to the Marketplace...the very source of content the interested users wanted in the first place. The rest of us just get the Premium and rock on because it lets us play our games which is what WE wanted in the first place.

There will be a true features/price comparison between the 360 and PS3 when the PS3 has a large library of awesome games (and for the cross-platform ones like DMC4, VF5, and others it's going to need to be worth coughing up several hundred dollars for a better experience or we're still going to get them on the cheaper system that gives the same or better experience) that make it worthwhile to have for playing games.

Anyone seriously interested in a media server has probably already gotten an Apple product or some other personal computer solution since they tend to be better at it overall. This is all for show and to cater to an elitist (though not necessarily "elite") portion of the interested 360 population, not to the rest of us who buy game systems for playing games.

Re:Does it really matter? (2)

Southphillyman (1064260) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520693)

This rant might actually mean something is M$ entire strategy wasn't to become an all encompassing media experience.

Why not a dual drive (1)

metarox (883747) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520473)

Hell, I'd release one with a dual drive able to read both formats and be done with it!

So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18520571)

What I really want to know and can't find info anywhere:

- Are there any significant revisions to the internal hardware that would make the machine itself more efficient?
- Does it run cooler?
- Is it more quiet?

There was an article 2 weeks back that went over the component reduction of the 3 Playstation consoles as time went on. Just curious if the Xbox 360 Elite received something similar from its manufacturer.

Here's my take on the reasoning for it (2, Interesting)

Xest (935314) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520637)

MS wants to get the new iteration of their 360 hardware out the door that is, the cooler, quieter and cheaper to produce iteration.

Whilst cheaper to produce however, MS will still initially make a loss until they're shipping en-masse. Therefore, I'd say MS is releasing the elite with the new hardware iteration as a method to ship said new hardware without taking as high a monetary loss. Essentially, what this means is that they're using the elite as a tool to bring down cost of production of the new hardware iteration, so that 6months down the line, they can start building the premium version with the new hardware so cheap that they can announce a massive price drop on the core and premium.

Whilst the Elite may indeed look like an idiotic short term decision, if this is their plan then by the end of the year you could see MS shifting the 360 perhaps even as cheap as the Wii is currently. This is something Sony wont be able to compete with any time soon, they've already shafted backwards compatibility in the name of reducing production costs for the European release of the PS3, by xmas 2007 year I'd be suprised if the PS3 had dropped at all, but again, I bet the 360 is selling for current Wii prices. As an aside, I'd guess the Wii will be cheaper again by then, Nintendo is shifting so many units and never made a loss per-unit in the first place so a price cut would be an easy hit for them by xmas 2007.

I don't know US prices off by heart, but my prediction for xmas 2007 console prices in the UK is something like:
Wii - £149.99
360 Core - £169.99 (or possibly even written off altogether)
360 Premium - £199.99
PS3 60gb - £399.99

Re:Here's my take on the reasoning for it (1)

Southphillyman (1064260) | more than 6 years ago | (#18520771)

Uh the Elite is neither quieter or cooler. This has been covered already. Please research before you waste time writing 3 paragraph responses.

Re:Here's my take on the reasoning for it (1)

valathax (916966) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521651)

Actually it isn't known yet if there have been any process changes in the elite edition. While an MS marketing rep has made comments about the inclusion of a process shrink the wording used was vague and non-definative.

http://gizmodo.com/gadgets/home-entertainment/xbox -360-elite-interview-with-microsofts-albert-penell o-247635.php [gizmodo.com]

CAn we stop having posts (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 6 years ago | (#18521601)

like this one that presumes everyone already knows what its about just because its apparently a microsoft product?
Its just like presuming that all computer software runs under MS windows.
I have no clue what an elite is even after reading the post.

I second that (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 6 years ago | (#18522039)

This one was pretty pathetic. The first mention of the actual product's name that the story is about is in the 12th of 13 lines in the blurb. I read all the way to the end before I knew what the title or article was even about, and I still don't know what it all means. Of course, Zonk apparently knows plenty about this, as he put up two articles on the subject today. Maybe an update to the previous article or a new article that didn't show up on the front page was in order instead of a brand-new, totally incomprehensible one right there, up front.

Also, as to those people saying that "sku" == "product," you're wrong. SKU stands for stock keeping unit, and according to Wikipedia they are assigned at the merchant level. Use real words when you are writing journalism, if not solely for the sake of appearing to be fluent in the language you are being paid to write in.

why wonder,why fight ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#18521929)

make-it custom, leave consumer choice between HD-DVD or Blu-Ray thing is, how the games will come on support ? in the end i think consumer is the one who's gonna lose, blue-ray is already shipped on ps3, but blu-ray disk are more expensive to produce, hd-dvd's are cheaper to make, but lesser pieces over to play them, so tough choice there...

anyway hdmi port + 120 hdd does not imply 160 dollar expenses MS should at least improvise some wifi over that

well, anyway i don't play so much around, good think there is a choice of products but i still miss those 25 dollar games from back in the days...

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