In terms of instantly switching between games and the system's other functions like live TV and movies, as detailed during Microsoft's presser, the page confirms the Xbox One lets you suspend games "right where you left off, so you can resume instantly." Think how the Vita works when you exit and suspend a game to use the system's other available functions. Except not with a Vita, but with a shiny new Xbox.
The answer said the Xbox One "does not have to be always connected, but Xbox One does require a connection to the Internet."
Developers are able to use Microsoft's Azure cloud computing service with Xbox One – this could potentially shift certain computations to the cloud and require players to be online, even for single-player runs, Wired reports.
For pre-owned games, the Xbox One is designed "to enable customers to trade in and resell games," Microsoft said in the same Q&A post, promising more details later.
All games can be installed to the Xbox One's 500GB hard drive, removing the need for a disc entirely after the initial load-up, Microsoft tells Wired. If a second account wants to play that game the player will be asked to pay a fee and install the game on his own console. Whether this is a mandatory installation for every game, Microsoft says, "On the new Xbox, all game discs are installed to the HDD to play."
EA Sports' next-generation Ignite Engine was on display at the Xbox One reveal event at Microsoft's Redmond campus today. We have four trailers that demonstrate the engine's capabilities, three of which can be found after the break.
EA Sports Executive Vice President Andrew Wilson told attendees of the Xbox One event that the Ignite Engine will perform "four times more calculations per second" than the publisher's current offerings. Wilson said the engine will allow for 3D crowds and dynamic sidelines.
EA will launch four sports games for the console within 12 months, namely FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, EA Sports UFC and NBA Live 14. Each game will be powered by the Ignite Engine.
The next Xbox is about to be unveiled in Microsoft's Redmond campus, and Joystiq will be there to scrutinize and document the whole presentation. It starts at 1PM EDT (10AM PDT, 6PM GMT), so get your glib reactionary .gifs ready before then.
Once the event starts, we'll switch this post over to liveblog mode and unleash the flood of quotes, observations and ill-advised jokes about computer chips. (Note: The presence of chips in the new Xbox is a rumor until Microsoft says otherwise.)
After the break, we've assembled a chart comparing the two consoles and their various components. The two machines are surprisingly similar, with both using an eight core CPU, the same amount of RAM, and both containing a combo Blu-Ray and DVD drive. But there are some major differences, too: Microsoft has created its own chip for the Xbox One, and the PlayStation 4 controller contains that share button and the clickable touchpad. Prices for both units haven't been announced yet, but both will be available later on this year.
The incompatibility is due to the fact that the Xbox One runs on x86 processor architecture, whereas the Xbox 360 ran on PowerPC. This fundamental difference in hardware architecture prevents the Xbox One from natively running Xbox 360 games, regardless of how powerful the thing may be.
"We care very much about the investment people have made in Xbox 360 and will continue to support it with a pipeline of new games and new apps well into the future," a Microsoft representative told Engadget. Part of that investment will transfer, however: Your Xbox Live Gamerscore.
Earlier this year, Sony also announced that its PlayStation 4 will make the jump to a processor built on the x86 platform.
"The next generation of consoles will reinvigorate our industry and make it possible for us to deliver incredible new entertainment to gamers," said Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot. "Our teams are using the innovations in connectivity, immersion and social gaming included in Xbox One to create original and memorable next-gen gaming experiences."
Microsoft's new system will allow – and possibly require – games to be installed to the console's 500GB hard drive, which locks a piece of software to an account, the report states. Once installed, players do not require a disc to boot the software. If a game is used with a second account, that owner will be given the option to pay a fee and install the experience on their own console, Microsoft told Wired. Whether "account" means an entirely new console or another Xbox Live account on the same console, is unclear.
Though Microsoft wouldn't get into specifics as to how this decision affects the used game market, the decision calls into doubt the viability of rental services such as GameFly and RedBox, and used game markets from major retailers such as GameStop, Amazon and BestBuy, with the Xbox One.
Wired's feature says that Xbox One's always-on internet connection rumors were not unfounded, but not as draconian as gamers feared. Developers will have the option to create games that use Microsoft's Azure cloud computing service, which Wired postulates could be done to offload certain computing tasks in the cloud rather than processing them on the console. In this instance, the Xbox One would require a connection to the internet – even during single-player experiences.
Microsoft says this is not a requirement for developers that wish to create offline experiences; however, Microsoft's Marc Whitten told Wired they "hope" developers utilize the tools. The Xbox One's sometimes needs to be on connection could evolve, throughout the generation, as an always-on machine.
Update: In a post answering "top questions" about the Xbox One, the official Microsoft page notes the system "does not have to be always connected, but Xbox One does require a connection to the Internet." Additionally Microsoft notes that in the case of pre-owned software, the Xbox one is designed "to enable customers to trade in and resell games. We'll have more details to share later." The Q&A makes no mention of the fees confirmed by Microsoft to Wired.
Update 2: The Q&A post from Microsoft's official page appears to have been removed, we are investigating.
Our pals Alexander and Ludwig are in Redmond right now for the Xbox reveal event. They've totally stood next to the Xbox One and, having taken the less selfish path of lording it over the rest of the staff, decided to snap a few pictures for all you lovely folks. Check out Microsoft's next-generation console, the Xbox One, in our gallery below!
"If you look at Call of Duty in general, you're on the high-tech, super-powered forces. You're America, you're strong, you're Britain, Germany," Rubin told Joystiq at a recent press event in Los Angeles. "It just felt like, what if we could reverse those roles a bit, what if we had America as the underdog and not the superpower? What if we had some other countries as the big superpower and we're fighting against this more technologically superior force. And so that is really where we got: now we've got this technologically superior super force, they devastate the western world, the US, with a weapon of mass destruction of some kind - I'm not going to go into that, it will come later, and what we did is we had that event start the game, but the story picks up ten to fifteen years later and you as a soldier grew up in this new changed world."
That soldier will be a focal point for the game, Rubin said, and won't contribute to the fractured, multi-perspective narratives for which the series has drawn ire in the past. "It's not like before where you have these multiple sides and trot around. You're pretty much the same person throughout."
You'll also be accompanied by a Navy SEAL dog (not to be confused with a Moreau-style seal-dog), which can sniff out dangers and aid the team in several ways as a companion AI of sorts. As you might expect from a production of Ghosts' caliber, Infinity Ward did full motion capture on a retired SEAL dog.
Activision announced that it will continue to release timed-exclusive Call of Duty content for Xbox platforms with this year's launch of Call of Duty: Ghosts.
Microsoft hosted the worldwide premiere of Call of Duty: Ghosts at today's Xbox One reveal event. Currently, downloadable Call of Duty content is exclusive to the Xbox 360 for one month before it launches for other platforms. Microsoft and Activision's exclusivity agreement will continue with this year's launch of the Xbox One version of Call of Duty: Ghosts.
The latest Call of Duty, dubbed Ghosts, has drafted Syriana and Traffic writer Stephen Gaghan to provide its fiction.
Games don't get more Hollywood than Call of Duty, and Activision has shown little hesitance in acquiring composers and writers from the silver screen to aid in its ever bigger and brasher efforts. Gaghan's work on Traffic, a dour crime drama, and political thriller Syriana made him a standout candidate for Ghosts. The game follows the remainder of the US military in a world scarred by a weapon of mass destruction.
According to developer Infinity Ward, Gaghan didn't swoop in and drop off a script – he requested an office, and worked from one amidst the game's single-player team all throughout the game's production. That's a sterling gesture, but I asked Call of Duty: Ghosts executive producer Mark Rubin to explain why Gaghan was deemed suitable to write for players, not viewers.
"Basically, we looked at his work – he's a great writer, no doubt about it and that's fine, there are probably lots of great writers out there," Rubin said. "So what we did is we actually got the chance to talk to him a long time before we decided to go forward with it. And we realized he was getting it. We've had writers before, and they know how to write, but they don't understand the game aspect of it.
"And I feel like with Gaghan, he really understood what we were trying to do. He asked more questions than try to sell himself, and that was, I think, a really big selling point. He was asking how things work and how we do things, and was really interested in how we craft the story, not from a writing standpoint but from the visuals and gameplay. He was really asking more questions. Although he was a gamer – he knew it from that side – he didn't know it from the dev side. He really was asking a lot of questions about the dev side, he really wanted to know more. I think that interest in what we were doing is really what drove us to him."
Spielberg appeared in a short video at today's announcement, where he said he was excited to be involved with "the heroes, worlds, and wonders that Halo will take us to."
The Xbox One will receive at least 15 exclusive games in the system's first year, Microsoft announced at today's next-gen Xbox reveal event. Of the 15 games, eight of them will be brand-new franchises.
At the event, EA's Andrew Wilson revealed that four EA Sports games in the FIFA, Madden, EA Sports UFC and NBA Live series will launch with the Xbox One, though none were named as exclusive to the system. Remedy announced Quantum Break at the event as well.
Quantum Break is a new game from Remedy, developer of the Alan Wake series, coming to the Xbox One, Microsoft Studios head Phil Spencer said.
The Quantum Break tagline is, "Time is the fire in which we burn." The teaser video opens with a live-action family preparing to leave their house, and a little girl with some sort of special power. The game footage shows a ship as it crashes into a large bridge – and then time stops and reverses.
"The actions you take and the choices you make shape your experience as the story unfolds," Spencer said.
Update: Don't believe us? Check out the trailer for yourself.
Microsoft has announced Forza Motorsport 5, set for an exclusive release on the newly revealed Xbox One. A short trailer shown at today's Xbox reveal event featured branded cars and car parts racing around some nicely rendered real world locations.
The game will be developed as usual by Turn 10 Studios, and available at launch (which Microsoft says will be later on this year) for the new console.
Update: Trailer added!
At its Xbox One reveal event today, Microsoft announced that it plans on having over 300,000 servers powering the console's expanded Xbox Live service.
The server bump represents a significant increase over the 15,000 servers that power Xbox Live currently. Player content will be saved via cloud storage, equipping players with a "dedicated game DVR" to capture live gameplay moments for future playback.
The Xbox One's overhauled Achievements system is "dynamic and changing," and boasts "more ways to earn, more frequent updates and the ability to share wins with friends." Video capture will play a role in the way players earn and display Achievements with the Xbox One. Hardcore Achievement hunters won't need to worry about their Gamerscores, either, as all Gamerscore points earned in Xbox 360 titles will carry over to the Xbox One.
Microsoft also revealed that the Xbox One's multiplayer matchmaking allows for "bigger matches with more players" and "living and persistent worlds." In addition, Xbox Live's asynchronous capabilities will allow players search for multiplayer matches while browsing the web, watching movies, or listening to music on the Xbox One.
Fully armed and operational.
Fully armed and operational.
Fully armed and operational.
Fully armed and operational.
What's In A Name
'You know what? We're Blacklist, let's try to build on it.'— Splinter Cell: Blacklist Producer Sébastien Ebacher on evolving Spies vs. Mercs multiplayer.
The Joystiq Podcast
Latest episode: Friday, May 17th, 2013