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Sony Nintendo PlayStation (Games) XBox (Games) Games

Next-Gen Console Wars Will Soon Begin In Earnest 284

When the Wii U was released at the end of last year, Nintendo got a head-start on the long-awaited new generation of video game consoles. Now, Sony has announced a press conference for February 20th that is expected to unveil the PlayStation 4, codenamed 'Orbis.' This will precede the announcement of the Xbox 360's successor, codenamed 'Durango,' but that too will likely be announced by E3 in June. Specs for development kits of both systems have leaked widely. The two systems both use 8-core AMD chips clocked around 1.6 GHz. Durango has 8GB of DDR3 RAM, while Orbis has 4GB of GDDR5 RAM, though Sony is trying to push that up to 8GB for the console's final spec. Reports also suggest Sony is tinkering with its controller design, going so far as to add a "Share" button to let people exchange screenshots and recordings. Developers indicate the systems are very close in power, though Sony's system currently has an edge. With the upcoming announcement of the PS4, the big-three console makers will kick off a new round of direct competition. They'll maneuver to one-up each other with the most powerful hardware and the slickest software. However, they'll also hope the release of three major consoles in rapid succession will help to anchor a part of the games industry that no longer enjoys the dominance it once did, thanks to threats from mobile.
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Next-Gen Console Wars Will Soon Begin In Earnest

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  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Saturday February 02, 2013 @01:40PM (#42771953)

    Somewhere, a Nintendo exec is opening a bottle of Jack Daniels to pour a toast to the one year they had a current gen console.

    But seriously, any word on the optical drives for the new consoles? I imagine Sony will stick to a blu-ray drive (I just hope they lose the bluetooth remote and include an IR sensor this time). But will MS swallow their pride and go bluray (widely viewed as a Sony technology), or develop some proprietary optical drive, or use some sort of SSD-type technology--or take the REALLY bold, and risky, step of going download only? I think they would be better off swallowing their pride and going blu-ray myself. But, then again, I say that as someone who has a lot of blu-ray movies and who would really like one console to watch all my stuff instead of several.

  • by bigstrat2003 ( 1058574 ) on Saturday February 02, 2013 @01:47PM (#42771991)

    Somewhere, a Nintendo exec is opening a bottle of Jack Daniels to pour a toast to the one year they had a current gen console.

    If you define "generation" by technological capabilities, then yes. If you use the actual definition, then they have had a current gen console for years, and Sony and Microsoft are now joining the next gen that Nintendo started back in November.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 02, 2013 @01:56PM (#42772063)

    yea innovation like new supermario world zelda quest 387

  • by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Saturday February 02, 2013 @02:14PM (#42772177) Journal

    The Android concolelets, like the Ouya, could be about to upend the whole thing. It's just one more consequence of the "good enough" being embraced by both gamers and the industry. Nintendo was in this space before, and they'll definitely have to compete with Ouya, Gamestick and the sea of nameless Chinese manufacturers of Android mini PCs. The heavy games, those that needs tons of storage, CPU and GPU power will still be around, of course, not everyone who bought an Xbox was playing those. Problem (for MS and Sony) is, there's a new kid in town who wants to eat up some of that (the heavy gamer) marketshare: Valve.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 02, 2013 @02:15PM (#42772187)

    They've been a generation behind for years.

  • Re: 1.6 ghz? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by realityimpaired ( 1668397 ) on Saturday February 02, 2013 @02:36PM (#42772301)

    No but at the same time, A given chip with a higher clock speed WILL out perform the same chipset at a lower clockspeed.

    Depends on the kinds of operations you're throwing at it. If it's simple integer math, then yes, every single time. If it's more complicated floating point math, then it'll depend on how efficiently it's implemented in the instruction set (which is why a 2.8GHz i3 will smoke a 5GHz P4 on almost every benchmark). If it's very large array math (such as most graphics computations and AI), then it'll depend on how parallel your code is and how many threads you can execute simultaneously. You can take a modern Intel chipset, and clock an i7 at the same speed as an i3: for some types of operations they'll score exactly the same on benchmarks, and for others the i7 will score about 4x better (twice the cores, and hyperthreading enabled = 4x the threads).

    There's a reason that NVidia and AMD are competing on stream processors more than they are clock speed: modern graphics processing is embarrassingly parallel, and performance scales linearly with number of processors, while you see diminishing returns with clock speed.

    As for gaming, and why they will have gone with a lower clock speed... very little in modern games is actually dependent on having a high clock speed. Almost everything that games do is dependent on graphics, which is a completely different problem, which leaves things like AI and object tracking, both of which benefit more from parallelization than they do an increased clock speed. They also need to worry about EnergyStar certification, and a consumer base that is increasingly aware of the power consumption of their electronic devices. Money is not infinite for their consumers, and they get better economy throwing a manycore low speed processor at it than they would throwing a high speed processor with a low core count.

  • by Latentius ( 2557506 ) on Saturday February 02, 2013 @03:20PM (#42772633)

    While the number of games alone certainly does seem to support your point, there are a few things to keep in mind. One, would be how different are these games from one another (in any way you care to compare games)? Another, you have to keep in mind the lifespan of these games. Yes, there are 18 Super Mario games, but they're also spread out over 30 years, which isn't all that different from 9 CoD games over 10 years. It's just that the Nintendo series have been around for longer. Given a few more decades, the other game developers are sure to milk their franchises for all they're worth.

    Though, I hardly see how this is even really relevant. New people are continually being introduced to gaming, and even of those who've been gamers for decades, if a particular series continues to be fun to play, who cares if there are 20 previous games in the series?

  • Re:and the winner (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 02, 2013 @03:21PM (#42772639)

    Why would that determine the winner? Nobody outside of Slashdot gave a shit last time around.

  • A "Share" button? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AmazingRuss ( 555076 ) on Saturday February 02, 2013 @04:11PM (#42772923)

    Oh FFS. That reeks of cluelessness and desperation.

    Sony, sure enough.

IN MY OPINION anyone interested in improving himself should not rule out becoming pure energy. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988.