Rumblings and rumors

The internet is buzzing this morning with reports that a witness saw next generation development hardware from Microsoft at EA.  Essentially, the source is claiming to have seen kits that contain the hardware equivalent for Microsoft’s next console, the successor to the 360.  Additional rumors state that Microsoft is gunning for a 2012 holiday release, putting it in direct competition with Nintendo’s new console.  So what does this mean for E3?  Hit the jump for my thoughts.

First, Microsoft doesn’t tend to unveil consoles at E3.  The original Xbox was unveiled at GDC, and the 360 was shown during a broadcast on MTV (ooh, so hip!).  Most likely we’ll get a confirmation that they are working on a new console, to which should be obvious.  Most likely they’ve been working on a new console for awhile, so no one freak out.  What this does mean is that perhaps we’ll see a technical demo during the Microsoft conference, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

That being said, if Microsoft were to come out of the gate at E3 with a brand new console to demo, it would take some steam out of Nintendo’s announcement.  Even if the new system wasn’t playable, people would already be curious about how the experience would stack up against the “Cafe” (or whatever Nintendo will be calling it on the floor).  It would definitely start putting pressure on the remaining holdout of this generation (Sony), since it appears that this next round of hardware will be targeting the core audience once again.

So, what’s everyone’s prediction?  New Xbox unveiled during E3, or is it just your standard early development talk?

  • Maul

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they did have an announcement or a tech demo, just to try to punch Nintendo in the nads, but I don’t know if I’m ready for another line of consoles. I know, a holiday 2012 release would put us at 7 years since the last launch, when the usual lifespan is 5… but remember back when Sony and Microsoft said this generation was supposed to last 10 years?

    Are we already done with these 2? Have we milked every ounce of possibility out of the system? I’m really curious where these guys plan on going next, because I don’t think they can just go ‘bigger’ and use that to sell a product. I think its going to have to be something more than just a graphical upgrade.

  • Eric Robbins

    Keep in mind, the ten years was a support cycle, not the lifetime of the console as the dominant system for each company. Kind of like how Sony supported the PS2 for several years into the PS3′s life.

  • Maul

    Ah yes, that is true and a good point.

  • Don Jaime

    Well here’s my thoughts.

    I think Nintendo did a great job of distracting their competitors with motion controls while they *might*, and that’s a mighty strong might, have something truly great in the works. Drag your ass til they jump on the bandwagon and drop a big share of their dough with gimmicks. Then hit ‘em with their pants down. Sorry boys, but these Joneses you’re trying to keep up with actually have some talent.

    You gotta think, Nintendo is manned by innovators. Yeah, those people want to get paid too, but they seem to have fun doing it and want their customers to do the same. Sony and Microsoft on the other hand are manned by empty suits and chairmen of the boards. While I am a retired Nintendo fanboy (think SNES vs. Genesis days), I can still recognize superior ingenuity. I only own a handful of games for the Wii, and would have only owned a few Gamecube games had I ever bought one (which the Wii kinda helped with), but I haven’t seen a whole lot of anything I haven’t seen before with the other companies.

    I was kinda pissed the day Microsoft decided I needed an avatar. I laughed at Kinect and whatever light-up teledildonics Sony had pushed. I knew it the moment I saw it, “Nintendo has got you fuckers by the balls and you’re runnin’.” You’re jumping to keep up with a trend that’s on the downslope. You fuckers are so blinded by profit margins and are so out of touch with your customer base that the only thing you can do in a recession is play follow the leader.

    I personally think this is just Microsoft blowing smoke to stay relevant. And you can bet there’s gonna be plenty of flaccid hardware failure if they prematurely ejaculate their release.