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UK-based Toys R Us and Amazon stores have been told by Sony to stop taking pre-orders of the PlayStation 4 in case they run out of consoles on launch day. In the coming weeks, some retailers are expecting Microsoft to make a similar move.
There has been one good thing coming out of this, in that Toys R Us accidentally posting an availability date of the PS4 of December 13 and for the Xbox One, November 29. Are you in the UK? Have you tried to pre-order a PS4 in the last couple of days to no avail? Let us know in the comments!
The Xbox One was meant to arrive in 21 markets when it launches later this year, but the Redmond-based OS giant has now said in order to meet the huge demand for the Xbox One, it'll need to cut the amount of countries the console launches in from 21, to 13.
The eight remaining markets will see the Xbox One launch in 2014, with the following countries missing out, for now: Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden and Switzerland. The 13 countries to receive the Xbox One this year are: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States and New Zealand.
All Microsoft has said about the launch date for the eight countries in 2014, is that it will launch "as soon as possible next year." Those who have pre-ordered the Xbox One in the countries where it won't be launching this year will have Microsoft giving consumers a free game, not bad I guess.
Microsoft has come out and confirmed something its calling the Season Pass Guarantee. Microsoft's Season Pass Guarantee offers consumers the ability to have their season passes purchased on the Xbox 360 carry over to the Xbox One, as long as you own the same game for both consoles.
Microsoft has partnered up with Activision, Electronic Arts and Ubisoft, who will offer exclusive content for season pass holders on both systems for games like Call of Duty: Ghosts and Battlefield 4. Microsoft seem to be doing quite a lot in the run up to the Xbox One launch, but is it enough to make you buy one?
Mario Kart 7 is undisputedly one of Nintendo's best-selling games of all time, and with such a massive fan base Nintendo has decided to launch a new Mario Kart 7 Facebook application which will allow fans to post and share about their latest Mario Kart races.
Unlike other console game based Facebook apps, Nintendo will hold weekly races to compete in as well as time trial leaderboards to compete against. Additionally there will be chat facilities via the community page. And to keep the non-gamer spam down users must enter their Mii name into the application which automatically link your Facebook profile allow you to start tracking your time for sharing your results within special events.
The closer we get to the launch of the Xbox One, the more we're finding about the next-gen console from Microsoft. The internal architecture of the Xbox One is built to detect if it is overheating, and will self-regulate its power.
The report is directly from Xbox's general manager of console development, Leo del Castillo, during an interview with Gizmodo. del Castillo said that this will help minimize detrimental shut-downs caused by overheating. He continued: "One thing that we have more flexibility with the architecture of the Xbox One, is that we can dial back the power of the box considerably."
del Castillo went on to add: "We had a little less flexibility with the 360. And so basically, if we couldn't dissipate the heat, there wasn't a whole lot of leverage we could pull to keep the heat from being generated, so we had a limited amount of time before it just shut down. Xbox One can actually dial it back to a lower power state, so low in fact that it can in a mode that uses virtually no air flow."
It looks like Sony is preparing a 12GB flash-based PlayStation 3 for the United States market that would be made available as soon as August 18. Canadian retailer Future Shop had the console listed on their website, but have removed it.
The listing showed the 12GB PS3 as available, with Engadget following it up with a photo taken at a US-based K-Mart, which had a warning on it stating to not sell the units until August 18. The 12GB PS3 shouldn't surprise anyone, as Sony unveiled it at the Tokyo Game Show press conference in September last year.
The 12GB flash-based model was a subset of its Super Slim PS3 that also debuted at the show. The 12GB flash-based PS3 has enjoyed the European and Hong Kong markets for now, but it looks like it might enjoy the United States in the near future. Sony pushed the 12GB model as a "family-friendly" unit, where they offered a standalone 250GB HDD accessory.
Microsoft has been scrambling these last couple of weeks, trying everything they can to do last minute tweaks to its next-gen Xbox One console to better compete against Sony's PlayStation 4.
Another change that has been announced today, saw Xbox chief product officer, Marc Whitten, revealing that Kinect will no longer be required in order for the Xbox One to work. He says: "Like online, the console will still function if Kinect isn't plugged in, although you won't be able to use any feature or experience that explicitly uses the sensor."
I have referred to the Xbox One's Kinect sensor as an NSA device, so it looks like the company is listening to people and have removed the requirement of an always-on camera pointing at for your console to work. What's more interesting is the fact that this could lead Microsoft to selling an Xbox One without the Kinect sensor, which might drop it down to the $399 price tag that the PS4 is going for.
Nintendo's Wii U isn't selling well for starters, but how could it get worse for the Japanese company? Well, GameIndustry is reporting that Nintendo is selling their Wii U at a loss, still, nine month after it has launched.
The Japanese company stated in 2012 that they would initially take a loss for a few months on Wii U sales, but as manufacturing efficiencies and lower component prices would close that gap in cost for Nintendo. But, the company still haven't turned a profit from Wii U sales, and it looks like it will only get worse as time goes on because Sony and Microsoft are both just a couple of months away from launching their next-gen consoles.
It seems like every time Microsoft releases unpopular information about its upcoming Xbox One console, Sony answers back with the opposite information about their next-gen console. Shortly after word dropped that the Xbox One would not allow recording or streaming of gameplay without an Xbox Live Gold subscription, Shuhei Yoshida, president of Sony World Wide Studios confirmed that the PS4 would be able to record and stream videos without a PlayStation Plus account.
The response came on Twitter after a fan asked Yoshida if the PS4 would require a subscription to the company\'s premium feature service for the PlayStation. Yoshida responded with a \"No.\" If that\'s not enough for some, Yoshida confirmed this to two other Twitter users. With little tidbits like this happening every week, it is really easy to imagine that Sony has an internal document with a list of positive things that no one is supposed to mention until Microsoft says the opposite about the Xbox.
If you think that the Xbox One is going to be chocked full of awesomesauce, you're most certainly right, that is unless you do not have a subscription to Xbox Live Gold. Microsoft has confirmed that features like SmartMatch, Skype, the built in TV Guide, and the game recording DVR will all be locked down if you're not an Xbox Live Gold member.
This news comes hot on the heels of an earlier announcement that confirmed the next-gen console will only record game-play video in 720p and not at the full 1080p resolution all of its games will be played at. It seems like the hits never stop coming for the Xbox One, but that does not stop people flocking to stores en masse to pre-order theirs. In other news, Microsoft released an unboxing video of the retail version of the Xbox One one earlier today and you can watch it here.