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Microsoft's Xbox 360 is a mighty machine; even today the Xbox One is far eclipsed by the functionality, games library, and general UI setup of its yesteryear predecessor. Today the Xbox 360 celebrates its tenth birthday, signalling that the console's lifecycle is starting to wind down, but the system will forever remain one of Microsoft's crowning achievements.
Originally released on November 22, 2005, the Xbox 360 propelled console gaming forward to new heights. I've shared thousands upon thousands of hours with my Xbox 360, and regard it as one of the most momentous gaming systems in my gaming history. I still remember how magical it was playing Oblivion for the first time, taking in the enchanting scenery of Cyrodiil--this was the first time that I really felt like "next-gen" gaming was here.
The Xbox 360 still has one of the best games libraries in gaming; it's so good, in fact, that Microsoft has brought it over to the Xbox One via backwards compatibility. It's rather strange to think about how Microsoft got so many things right with the Xbox 360, and so many things wrong with the Xbox One. The system has served for an entire generation of gaming, spawning a huge assortment of memorable exclusives and amazing experiences that we might never see again.
A well-constructed post on Reddit by user 'serfbufo' has so far earned them three lots of Reddit gold and major support from the /r/gaming community. The topic at hand is a botched PlayStation network refund due to an account hand and unauthorized payments.
Serfbufo says that they have been in discussion with Sony over the past three months, something that began due to $499.1 of unauthorized charges being issued to a debit card. After being promised money back by Sony representatives at multiple occasions, in the end Sony has delivered only $230 in total back to this disgruntled user.
This hack has seen serfbufo contact Sony through live chat, phone calls and emails alike, with another claim being launched as you read this. There's no saying whether the full funds will be ever sent back, but it's obvious that this user is jumping through every hoop they can in order to win back what is rightfully theirs.
The appalling loss of life following this weekend's terrorist attacks in France have led many to question how such an attack can be co-ordinated in a time of unparalleled access to communications by security organisations and authorities across the world. According to news reports, the PlayStation Network might have played a role in allowing the ISIS followers to discuss their plans.
Authorities have reportedly taken PS4 consoles away as evidence in investigations to the weekend's attacks, which took the lives of 129 people. With over 20 million units sold worldwide, the system is apparently lacking in security monitoring by both Sony Computer Entertainment and authorities. With the precedent set by the Edward Snowden revelations which showed that security organisations such as the NSA and CIA embedded themselves into MMORPG's such as World of Warcraft to breakup virtual terrorist meetings in the past, it looks like the XBLA and Sony messaging systems are about to get a huge crack down in future.
The current-gen consoles suck. There, it's out of the way. They are vastly underpowered, with gamers seemingly happy with 720p-ish graphics and 30FPS-ish frame rates. Well, it looks like the next-gen consoles will solve that.
Rumor has it AMD will once again be providing the APUs for the next-gen consoles, expected in 2018. These consoles will have at least 5x the performance per watt of the current generation, so we should expect at least 1080p 60FPS at a bare minimum, and more like 4K 60FPS. AMD is hoping to provide their next-gen APUs to Microsoft and Sony by 2018, so we should expect next-gen consoles to be teased sometime in 2017.
AMD is also shifting considerable focus into VR, where we can expect the next-gen consoles to be based around virtual reality. By then, PC gamers would've enjoyed the first, and most likely successive generations of Oculus Rift and HTC Vive (as well as many more), and with the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive requiring higher than 2560x1440 at 90FPS, next-gen consoles are going to need some serious GPU horsepower to drive high resolutions with sustained high frame rates.
Black Friday is almost here, and that means a ton of insane tech deals will start rolling in. Best Buy has just unveiled its Black Friday ad revealing some pretty substantial savings on game consoles, TV's and tablets. But one deal combines the best of both worlds with a games console and HDTV bundle.
This particular Best Buy doorbuster bundle consists of a 40-inch 1080p Samsung HDTV with a Xbox One console for just $500. With a price like this we can't expect the Xbox One to come with a good game, but at least you'll get the Lego: The Movie video game. Even still the bundle is pretty impressive, even if the Xbox One system isn't. There's only one bit of bad news: it's a store-only doorbuster, so you'll probably have to wait in line for 10 or so hours to get it.
Best Buy also has you covered if you're looking to expand your new Xbox One's games library with some substantial video games savings. You can pick up hit Xbox One titles like Grand Theft Auto V, Assassin's Creed: Syndicate and Forza 6 for just $34.99. Other savings include games like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and The Elder Scrolls Online for just $24.99.
Playing Xbox 360 games on Microsoft's Xbox One console has been a hugely requested feature since the console released in 2013. Now Microsoft is making good on their promise by releasing the full list of the first 104 Xbox 360 games that have made the cut. Sadly it looks like a good portion of popular favorites are absent--most notably Red Dead Redemption and Call of Duty: Black Ops.
Backward compatibility is here, but it's not coming with the huge bang we all expected. Sure Microsoft is going to release it on November 12 with the advertised "over 100 Xbox 360 games", but I must say that the list is pretty underwhelming. But don't worry, Xbox fans: Microsoft affirms that this is just the beginning of backwards compatibility, and "more titles will be revealed starting December". That seems to be a big trend with Microsoft and the Xbox brand, always telling us great things are coming later on.
Anyway, let's take a quick scan of the games. There's a ton of Xbox LIVE Arcade titles on here with games like Sonic the Hedgehog 1-3, Super Meat Boy, Metal Slug 3, Perfect Dark, Doom II and Ikaruga. Then there's the gimmicky Kinect games that probably don't interest much of anybody. The main AAA games include old gems like Mass Effect, Mirror's Edge, Borderlands, Just Cause 2, Assassin's Creed II, Rainbow Six Vegas 1 & 2, and Fallout 3...which no one will likely play with Fallout 4 releasing tomorrow. But hey, when Halo: Reach becomes playable, maybe we'll finally have a good Halo game on the Xbox One?
The holidays are just around the corner, and that means huge Black Friday savings. If you're in the market to pick up Sony's PlayStation 4 console you'll be able to grab a console and a free game for just $299.
Some retailers like Sam's Club are actually starting holiday sales as early as next week, offering up great savings across the board. Sam's has a great deal on a PS4 bundle with a free game for just $299, shaving off a clean $50 off the console's recent permanent price drop.
The deal was spotted on the Cheap Ass Gamer forums by an actual Sam's Club employee. The poster also notes that the free game is likely the one included with the PS4 bundles, meaning you probably won't be able to pick a free game off the shelf. Sony offers a number of console bundles including Batman Arkham Knight, The Last of Us: Remastered, Destiny: The Taken King, and the Uncharted: Nathan Drake Collection bundle.
If you've been waiting for a great deal on an Xbox One, Amazon is currently offering the Microsoft 2015 Holiday bundle, where you get the 1TB Xbox One and four games for $400.
On top of the 1TB Xbox One console, the four games in question are Gears of War: Ultimate Edition and Rare Replay. In the bundle, you'll receive a download code for Ori and the Blind Forest, as well as another free game of your choice - except for Halo 5: Guardians or Assassin's Creed: Syndicate.
Amazon Prime members get an additional $5 discount, knocking the price down to $395. If you want to get the Kinect bundle, you can do that too. The 500GB Xbox One bundle includes the Kinect, with digital copies of Dance Central Spotlight, Kinect Sports Rivals, and Zoo Tycoon.
This deal runs up until 11:59pm PT on Saturday, October 31.
Sony's PlayStation 4 has traditionally dominated console sales charts over Microsoft's Xbox One and Nintendo's beleaguered Wii U, and that trend shows no signs of slowing. At Paris Games Week 2015, a Sony exec let slip that the PS4 still reigns supreme in terms of global consumer adoption and has overshot the 25 million sales milestone by a margin.
"I don't think there's a better time to buy into PlayStation - PS4 particularly. Our installed base now is well over 25 million," said Sony exec Michael Denny in an interview with Games Industry Biz. "That gives us a massive community of gamers, supported by a lot of new community features. We've got great games out there, more coming through. We're looking forward to 2016, it's an exciting time."
Interestingly enough, VG Chartz notes the PlayStation 4 has sold 25.45 million units worldwide, but Sony probably has more specifically updated sales data on-hand. In light of the stalwart sales, the Japanese console-maker bumped its fiscal year PS4 projections from 16 million units to 16.5 million units sold.
The current generation consoles are so underpowered it's not funny, where Microsoft and Sony feel fine offering gamers 720p-900p gaming and calling it "next-gen". Well, it's not. The current generation consoles are powered by an APU that isn't up to scratch, especially in this era of 4K TVs and 4K gaming.
Well, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has come out firing on Twitter saying that Microsoft and the Xbox team are "100% committed to making it [the Xbox One] our best console generation ever". But someone asked him about the next-gen Xbox, to which Spencer teased: "I fully expect there will be [a next-gen Xbox]".
Personally, I think the next-gen Xbox needs to nail 1080p 60FPS at an absolute bare minimum. We're going to be fully wrapped in the world of VR gaming by then here on PC, so even 1080p 60FPS isn't enough for next-gen gaming. In reality, we need 4K 60FPS+ in order to keep up with VR - of which I'm sure Microsoft is working on Xbox VR, which has been teased before. That will require 2560x1440 at 90FPS+, which is absolutely impossible for the Xbox One right now.