A next-gen console that forces you to install the video games you want to play, can play multiple games at once and only works when you install one of the most hated peripherals of all time. Apparently, the next Xbox will have a 500 GB hard drive for all the stuff you’ll need to install.
Sounds crazy, right? It sounds like it can’t possibly be true.
But the guys over at Kotaku say it is true. They say that they have a source who is currently in possession of the next Xbox, currently code-named Durango and widely expected to be officially named Xbox 720, and that all of the above information is completely legitimate.
When you spin it differently, it doesn’t sound quite as crazy. A console that can play multiple games at once makes sense if it has a Wii U-like tablet accessory. It makes even more sense when you think about things in the context of apps and multitasking. Microsoft wants the new Xbox to be the center of your living room, so it has to be able to seamlessly switch between games, Netflix, YouTube, Twitter and whatever other apps users will have access to.
Installing games isn’t too crazy either — in today’s DLC-rich world, there’s already a lot of that going on. Anyone who thinks physical discs aren’t on the way out is living under a rock.
The hated peripheral that must be present in order to play is, of course, the Kinect. It’s fair to say Kinect wasn’t the runaway success that Microsoft wanted it to be on the Xbox 360, but Kotaku’s source says that the next version of the sensor array add-on will be much improved — and it won’t be an add-on, but will ship as part of the console.
As far as graphics are concerned, it sounds like they will be a focus for Microsoft (even after the recent rumor that Sony considers playability much more important than graphics on the PS4). Kotaku’s source said this about the graphics on the next-gen Xbox:
“[It's] like going from playing Halo 2 on an original Xbox to playing Crysis on a powerful PC.”
So, who is this mysterious source? Kotaku says that he goes by the handle SuperDaE and he’s the same person who made a splash last year when he tried to sell a Durango dev kit on eBay:
SuperDaE also brought Kotaku some less exciting rumors. The controller for the next Xbox is said to be a natural evolution of the current Xbox 360 controller and in no way a revolutionary step. This shouldn’t come as a big surprise, as the current controller is very well liked.
So, when we will find out whether these rumors are true or false? PlayStation is rumored to be showing the world the PlayStation 4 next week, so it won’t be long. E3 in June is probably a guarantee, but there’s a good chance Microsoft will announce a pre-E3 event in the coming days or weeks.