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Today marks the last bundle in Microsoft's second Xbox One anniversary celebration, and it looks like they've saved the best for last. Now gamers will have the traditionally meaty Fallout franchise to chew through with their new consoles.
The new Fallout Xbox bundle comes with the new 1TB Xbox One console that doubles the stock 500GB storage, a download key for Fallout 4, another download key for Fallout 3 which will be playable thanks to the Xbox One's incoming backward compatibility update, an Xbox One controller fitted with the new 3.5mm headset jack, and a 14-day voucher for Xbox LIVE Gold.the road if you're an active gamer.
This bundle is scheduled to launch alongside Fallout 4's release on November 10, 2015. Since it has the expanded 1TB HDD the bundle will retail for $399 rather than the more comfortable $349, but that extra space will help you further down the road if you're an active gamer.
Yes, you read that right. RETRO VGS is a retro console vying for your Kickstarter backing and it's asking for a hefty $1,950,000 from users in total, made up mostly of $299 - $499 donation packages which earn you different levels of console goodness.
The main selling point of this console seems to be the cartridges themselves. Pandering to a retro and collectible audience, the Kickstarter bio talks about how cartridges are great for buying and trading, centering also around the constantly-felt issue of release-day patches and other issues felt by many gamers who are playing on newer consoles or computers. Striving to do away with patches all together, RETRO VGS tells games that all compatible titles "are tested thoroughly before release, just like they used to be."
While also promising to never release a DLC, it just doesn't seem quite right that a never-before-seen retro console is going to be able to drum up almost $2 million in funding over a 45 day period. In saying this, almost $66,000 has already been raised in five days, so maybe this will gain some more traction in coming weeks. However, at a rate of $66,000 every five days, a successful outcome is looking bleak.
Sony is preparing the 1TB PlayStation 4 for the United States and Canada, where it will be bundled with Call of Duty: Black Ops III. The US will have it priced at $450 while it will be CAD$550 in Canada.
Rewinding back to July, the 1TB PS4 launched in Europe without the Black Ops III artwork. But during E3, Sony and Activision announced a partnership for the PS4, calling Sony's console the "new home of Call of Duty". Now we know what being home to Call of Duty means, a special Black Ops III themed 1TB PS4.
Will you be buying the new 1TB PS4?
The Fire TV Gaming Edition only supports 4K video streaming and doesn't do 4K gaming--which isn't a surprise since it runs mobile games. Under the hood it packs 2GB of RAM, a MediaTek quad-core processor at 2GHz speeds for "75% more processing power than previous models" and a Power VR GX6250 GPU for grpahics. 8GB of onboard memory storage is included along with an equipped 32GB Micro SD card in the expandable memory slot. The hybrid gamebox can hit 4K video streaming at 30fps and 60fps in 1080p, but we're not sure if the latter resolution is for gaming or not.
Amazon boasts that the Fire TV Gaming Edition "has more games than Apple TV, Roku, or NVIDIA Shield" and every unit comes with a free copy of the amazing 8-bit platformer Shovel Knight and Capcom's DuckTales remake. The Fire TV microconsole can be connected to the internet via ethernet or MIMO Wi-Fi over 802.11a/b/g/n/ac networks. The set-top box also supports Bluetooth 4.1 and has the standard fare of ports consisting of HDMI out, DC power, ethernet, Micro SD and USB port in a compact 4.5in x 4.5in x 0.7in form factor.
The Xbox Platform Team has fabricated a "highly customized" version of Windows 10 to bring some dramatic changes to the Xbox One's architecture, allowing for a 50% speed boost, backward compatibility and DirectX 12 integration.
The New Xbox One Experience "NXOE" isn't just a simple UI overhaul. It's a complete evolution of the console's speed and responsiveness, and it's made possible with a new customized Windows 10 kernel called OneCore. "This isn't a small change in the front-end of the console or the UI, this is a massive change to the architecture, to the under-pinnings of the system," Xbox spokesman Larry Hryb said in the latest Major Nelson Radio podcast.
"NXOE brings massive change to the Xbox One," Xbox Director of Program Management Mike Ybarra said in the podcast. "We're bringing in Windows 10 and the whole Xbox One architecture will change Windows 10 is allowing us to bring a new level of speed and responsiveness to the Xbox One. Windows 10 on Xbox One is a highly customized version of the OS. It's called OneCore, and you can think of it as a kernel. It's a higly customized build of Windows 10 specifically built to optimize the things players do on the console, including playing games and other features."
"The Xbox One is literally a Windows device," says Microsoft's Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela, illustrating how Microsoft doesn't see a distinction between the Xbox One and other platforms like Windows-powered phones and PCs.
"A core power metric for us is Windows 10 devices. That's not PC statement.That will be phones, that will be tablets, that will be laptops, that will be desktops, that will be big surface hubs that will be Xboxes," Capossela said at this year's Citi Global Technology Conference. "Xboxes today run Windows and so every time we sell an Xbox we're actually creating a Windows active device that hopefully people love it; it's a gaming device in their living room. It is not a separate animal. It is literally a Windows device."
While the Redmond-based tech giant has a role for every Windows 10 device, the OS acts as a glue to connect and cement each platform to a unified scope. The seeds of Windows 10 kernal will be planted into the Xbox One in November as part of the console's major new update, opening up new functionality like extensive backward compatibility with Xbox 360 games, Cortana support, and up to "thousands" of Windows 10 apps in the future.
The Xbox One's new November update is pretty significant and isn't just about a faster UI. A huge library of backward compatible Xbox 360 games will be supported, and every single one of them will have the full range of functions afforded to Xbox One games.
Backward compatibility is one of the most-requested features in the current generation of consoles, and Microsoft has one-upped Sony by adding the feature to Xbox One consoles. Come November, all Xbox One owners will be able to play 100 different Xbox 360 games on their consoles, with "hundreds more" coming in the months ahead.
Rather than just adding the feature and calling it quits, Microsoft has gone lengths to make the transition from curent-gen to last-gen as smooth as possible. Users will be able to upload their saved Xbox 360 game data to the cloud and download it to the Xbox One to pick up where they left off. But the most impressive feature is that all 100 backward-compatible games will be treated just like Xbox One games with integrated DVR recording and customization via Upload Studio, screenshot snapping and sharing, and cross-platform streaming to Windows 10 PCs.
Microsoft has released new details on the major changes that are coming to the Xbox One, starting with backward compatibility and planting the seeds for Windows 10 integration.
When the update launches in November it will unlock backward compatibility for approximately 100 Xbox 360 games, and Xbox exec Mike Ybarra affirms that support will expand with "hundreds more in the months to come". The Xbox One's awkward Kinect-centric tile UI will be overhauled as well, bringing a new dashboard and quick-launch scheme that's entirely focused on speed. The framework for full Windows 10 support will likely be laid out, leading to Windows 10 apps and Cortana support, but so far Microsoft has been vague on the details, saying that the UI is "powered by Windows 10" and that it "integrating the speed of Windows 10" to make loading times up to 50% faster.
There's speculation that Windows 10 could give the console access to "thousands of apps" that will bridge PC and Xbox One. But Xbox division head Phil Spencer has said in the past that gamers "won't see Excel on the Xbox One", and that Microsoft will implement Windows 10 apps "where they make the most sense".
Google introduced YouTube Gaming last week, a new Twitch-like streaming service that Sony is putting into the new firmware update for the PlayStation 4.
The v3.0 firmware for the PS4 will not only include YouTube Gaming support but it will increase the cloud storage that PS4 owners have from the crappy 1GB they have now, to a more decent 10GB. The v3.0 PS4 firmware will also include the ability to livestream your PS4 gaming to YouTube Gaming, much like the built-in Twitch streaming that the PS4 is already capable of.
The new firmware will allow the usual screenshot sharing, but you can now blast video clips to Twitter too - albeit, they're limited to 10-second videos. Boo. There's also a new feature arriving, where you can ask your friends if you can watch them play with a new "Request to Watch" feature that is coming soon.
Official Xbox boss Phil Spencer has shut down the rumors that the Xbox One console will be getting a slimmer SKU this October.
Rumor has it that Microsoft is set to announce the Xbox One's new hardware refresh, the Xbox One Mini, alongside the Surface Pro 4 and Lumia 940/940 XL in October. But according to Xbox's own Phil Spencer the speculation is all for naught; in a recent Twitter exchange, Spencer confirmed the news is "not real".
The reports claim that the Xbox One Mini will be 1/3 the size of the current VCR-sized behemoth, with the extra space allocated thanks to the carved out Blu-ray disc drive. This would effectively make the slim console a digital-only system, and the SKU would be marketed at a lower price point.