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Microsoft and the Xbox One. Thoughts?


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#1 snowmanZOMG   Members   -  Reputation: 891

Posted 21 May 2013 - 02:36 PM

I started a thread a few months back after Sony's reveal of the PS4, which you can find at http://www.gamedev.net/topic/639144-sony-and-the-ps4-im-impressed-your-thoughts/.  Some people participated and put in their two cents in that thread about Sony.

 

How about one for Microsoft now that we've seen a glimpse of their next machine?

 

Me personally, I'm a little disappointed.  They showed some cool looking features if you're someone who watches broadcast television, but I don't have a TV subscription any more, so it seems irrelevant to me...  The fact that they didn't get to games until maybe 30 minutes into the presentation was a little worrying.

 

At the end, I'm very underwhelmed.  I'm hoping they have something in store for E3, but my gut feeling is they won't really have much more to win me over.  Currently, Sony seems much more appealing to me as someone who plays games and want to develop games.

 

Other opinions?



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#2 Nypyren   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4499

Posted 21 May 2013 - 02:46 PM

Microsoft has had botched marketing and PR for all of its recent products, whether they're any good or not.  They have no idea who their demographic is or how they should target their marketing.  Sometimes they emphasize things that only a small portion of their users care about.  Other times they omit any useful information.

 

I personally am going to hold off on forming an opinion until I've actually used one.



#3 evolutional   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1069

Posted 21 May 2013 - 02:50 PM

I originally bought my PS3 because I thought it'd be a media hub, even though I owned a 360 already. I sold my PS3 because I preferred games on the 360 and found that I barely used the PS3 at all. Then Xbox added media apps, Xbox Video and Xbox Music. Now I watch most of my TV on it, I watch all my movies on it, stream music through it and still use it as a primary gaming device. So, for me, Xbox One is ideal and I'm looking forward to it.



#4 tstrimple   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 1724

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:01 PM

Clearly games will be important to the platform, but they are not a distinguishing feature. Every gaming console should be able to do that well (except the Wii :) ). I think they were just trying to highlight the differences. I'm interested in whether their favorites library that showed all of the TV shows integrates with Hulu, Netflix and Amazon. I would love to have a single interface for favoriting and searching movies and tv shows. 



#5 Chad Smith   Members   -  Reputation: 1139

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:01 PM

While I certainly use my 360 a lot more to watch TV Episodes (Hulu Plus Mostly, don't have a subscription to a cable company) and movies than I use it to play any game, I do think they could have spent a bit more time on the technology in games.  In my honest opinion the Xbox One Game Trailers didn't look much different that the same game trailers we saw when the 360 was announced.



#6 evolutional   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1069

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:27 PM

Bear in mind that E3 isn't far off, that's when the games are likely to take a lead. 15 Xbox One exclusives in year 1 (with around half being new franchises) sounds good to me.



#7 Promit   Moderators   -  Reputation: 7341

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:29 PM

One word: fail.

Microsoft hates that most people see the Xbox as a game console. But guess what? It's a damn game console and I want to play games with it. I spent 28 minutes of presentation listening to idiots prattle about live TV and Skype. Do not care. Don't have or want cable TV. If they're not going to focus on games, I'm simply going to move on to someone who is *cough*.

As for E3 being the big games reveal, we'll see. Sounds like a BS excuse to me.

Edited by Promit, 21 May 2013 - 03:29 PM.


#8 Ravyne   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 7802

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:42 PM

It appears from what we know that the PS4 has a bit of an edge in terms of graphics/compute power, and its probably going to be favored by spec-monkeys, but the XBox One is close enough in terms of hardware capability that the system software, XBox Live / Cloud infrastructure, and general integration with Windows PC / Windows service ecosystem could very easliy close the appeal gap for most people.

 

We got some specs and numbers to compare -- The Xbox One has 768 graphics compute units vs. 896 (+ 256 for compute only) in the PS4, both are DX11.1+ feature set, 8GB DDR3 + 32MB ESRAM vs 8GB GDDR5, and both are now confirmed to use 8 "jaguar" CPU cores from AMD. Much ado has been made about the DDR3 vs GDDR5 issue, but I think its mostly a wash -- GDDR5 has higher bandwidth, but it also has higher latency -- game devs have gotten pretty good at optimizing their memory layout in a way that would favor bandwidth over latency, but its not always possible or practical, and it always contorts the classical Object-Oriented worldview that most programmers think in, especially those who aren't gamedevs or involved in HPC work. If your problem makes you jump around a lot in memory, or you just want to write your software in the classical OOP fashion (as opposed to DOD), then the XBox One is probably going to penalize you less than the PS4.

 

In general, the PS4 is clearly tuned for games first, while the XBox one is a more balanced approach that makes concessions in order to facilitate non-game apps and likely to bring costs down.

 

My prediction is that the PS4 is going to come in around $100 more expensive than XBox One, even with the new Kinect bundled in. Due to the nature of GDDR5 chips, and Sony's late change from 4 to 8 GB they've got to have a more complex motherboard (more chips (16 per console), more electrical signals), more manufacturing expense, and they're forced to use the largest capacity chips that anyone makes, and which aren't in common use on graphics cards. Combined with an even larger SOC than is in the Xbox One, Sony faces a very real threat of supply chain issues either due to yield difficulties with their SOC or with the GDDR5 supplier being able to meet their demand.

 

To make an over-used car analogy, the PS4 is like an F1 racecar, while the XBox One is more like a high performance sports car. The former is purpose-built to excel at exactly one thing, while the latter is something that's a daily driver and still no slouch at the racetrack.



#9 snowmanZOMG   Members   -  Reputation: 891

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:54 PM

Where are you getting this information from?  I haven't seen any hard technical specs anywhere, just "leaked" documents.



#10 Ravyne   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 7802

Posted 21 May 2013 - 03:55 PM

One word: fail.

I spent 28 minutes of presentation listening to idiots prattle about live TV and Skype. Do not care. Don't have or want cable TV.

 

Well, keep in mind that everything they showed with cable TV will likely work just the same with Video on Demand, Netflix, Hulu, HBO-Go, or whatever other non-cable subscription services you might have. In fact, a better way to look at it is that they're extending all the goodness they've already started with those services to your cable TV subscription, not the other way around.

 

And we can all have our personal preferences (and I'm with you not caring about cable TV), but the clear fact is that most people *are* spending more time on their 360s and PS3s watching Netflix and the like than they are playing games. Maybe not you, maybe not me, but the mass market is.

 

If the broader appeal (and hopefully a lower price-point) of the XBox One gives them a significant lead out of the gate (Say Microsoft moves 2x the units this Holiday season as Sony does, or has a 500k-1m lead by end of next year), it won't much matter the technical differences between the two. Sony's exclusives will use the extra hardware on their box, but cross-platform titles will look nearly identical and utilize the extra power for little more than eye-candy. Only if Sony can manage to beat Microsoft off the starting line will their extra hardware gain them advantage in cross-platform games.

 

However, like you I am concerned with the lack of concentration on games so far, from both parties.


Edited by Ravyne, 21 May 2013 - 04:03 PM.


#11 Ravyne   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 7802

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:01 PM

Where are you getting this information from?  I haven't seen any hard technical specs anywhere, just "leaked" documents.

 

Microsoft had a slide confirming general specs today, Engadget (IIRC) had a further interview with Xbox Architects that I gathered some additional hard numbers from. They've confirmed the number of execution resources (8 independent CPU cores, 768 graphics compute units) but not clock speeds. The announcement also confirmed 8GB ram and 32MB ESRAM. They align to the leaked document, so I'm assuming the rest of the data from those is valid as well, but clock speeds especially could be subject to change.

 

Sony was pretty transparent about their specs when they announced PS4.



#12 MrMaker   Members   -  Reputation: 128

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:07 PM

Better have a xna type replacement to develop on for xbox one. Or ps4 have a public sdk for us to work on. I will buy whatever console that offers this.

#13 joew   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3676

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:16 PM

To me this is a pretty bad marketing / scheduling fail. I mean honestly who is going to want to show their game at the XBox reveal and then be "the game we already saw a few weeks ago" at E3 and get less coverage than all their peers during that week? Also everyone is crunching E3 video footage and it's usually down to the wire... who wants to do that three weeks earlier? I think that's why they were only able to show the usual sports launch titles and then Call of Duty because it would be covered up and down all E3 week anyway due to branding.



#14 joew   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3676

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:17 PM

Better have a xna type replacement to develop on for xbox one. Or ps4 have a public sdk for us to work on. I will buy whatever console that offers this.

Pretty sure you'll be buying a 360 wink.png



#15 jms bc   Members   -  Reputation: 439

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:19 PM

Better have a xna type replacement to develop on for xbox one. Or ps4 have a public sdk for us to work on. I will buy whatever console that offers this

 

Same here. I bought my first XBox (of 3) about an hour after I downloaded Game Studio.


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#16 blueshogun96   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1050

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:25 PM

The name alone is likely to cause some confusion.  I watched the debut live at Microsoft, and I'm not impressed personally as nothing really stands out IMO.

 

What about backwards compatibility with titles and arcade games?  Will they just be abandoned?  What about indie development support?  I heard that Microsoft hasn't been treating their indies too well lately.  Just asking because I didn't get to see the entire thing, just the uninteresting stuff by EA and Activision.


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#17 tstrimple   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 1724

Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:49 PM

One word: fail.

I spent 28 minutes of presentation listening to idiots prattle about live TV and Skype. Do not care. Don't have or want cable TV.

 

Well, keep in mind that everything they showed with cable TV will likely work just the same with Video on Demand, Netflix, Hulu, HBO-Go, or whatever other non-cable subscription services you might have. In fact, a better way to look at it is that they're extending all the goodness they've already started with those services to your cable TV subscription, not the other way around.

 

Hopefully with better integration. We cut ties to the "cable" company months ago and apart from Game of Thrones, haven't missed a thing. Between Hulu, Netflix and Amazon we have pretty much everything we want covered. Just need HBO to get their act together and let me pay for their services without having to get a cable subscription.



#18 phantom   Moderators   -  Reputation: 7399

Posted 21 May 2013 - 05:08 PM

Better have a xna type replacement to develop on for xbox one.

The kernel is going to be the Windows 8 kernel.
Same as the OS.
Same as the phone.
Same as the tablet.

All of those have developer schemes in place; I'm willing to bet the Xbox will have one very much like it as well based on the same tools and tech.

#19 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 31068

Posted 21 May 2013 - 05:08 PM

They named it 'Xbox One'? What?

#20 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 22242

Posted 21 May 2013 - 05:18 PM

The Xbox One has 768 graphics compute units vs. 896 (+ 256 for compute only) in the PS4, both are DX11.1+ feature set, 8GB DDR3 + 32MB ESRAM vs 8GB GDDR5, and both are now confirmed to use 8 "jaguar" CPU cores from AMD.

And in the process, they re-affirmed that this generation is a two-company race.  That's for those few who mistakenly believed the Wii-U was still in the competition.

 

It will be even easier to develop cross-platform titles between the two than it was the PS3.

 

 

Going off the released specs, I don't see very much of anything that seriously differentiates the two platforms. They have very similar compute power, nearly identical processors, and are not that different from high end off-the-shelf PCs apart from their operating system.

 

That means my life will be a whole lot simpler for the next console generation.  Thanks!


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