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Xbox & PC – „Let our powers combine”

OPINION – Microsoft finally realized something that console manufacturers should have recognized much earlier in my opinion. Nowadays it’s common to see a console that already has lower specs than a PC even before it launches. This is why the Redmond-based company wants to have a different strategy.

 

Maybe the Xbox 360 was the last console that made the games look better on consoles than on an average PC. Also the PlayStation 3 with its Cell processor. Today, the roles are reversed. Even a 400-dollar, low-budget PC can provide graphics and quality as high as a current-gen console in a multiplatform title. The framerate can also be better than on a PS4 or X1. However, if this said game isn’t optimized for PC, which can be quite common, then it’s not our fault but instead the developers’ (or those who ported the game to the computer). Remember last year’s farce with Mortal Kombat X and Batman Arkham Knight. MKX isn’t even supported on the PC anymore, so Mortal Kombat XL (the game with the two Kombat Packs) isn’t even available on PC, just on PS4 and X1

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UWA!

No, I do not mean the Japanese „wow”, but instead, the Universal Windows Application. This is Microsoft‘s plan to make games run both on PC and Xbox One, putting both platforms under one roof. This idea was announced by none other than Xbox-boss Phil Spencer. Therefore, we can’t even call this fake information. What does this UWA-plan mean?

Well, UWAs would bring backward compatibility similar to PCs, allowing us to run older games on our Xbox One in the future. Let’s say you like the old SCUMM-engine games on PC. You can somewhat easily just get them to run on your brand new computer. (maybe you’ll need DOSBox, though) You’d like to play say, Day of the Tentacle before the remastered version releases. You can do it. However, on the Xbox One, it’s impossible to put a classic Xbox disc in and play. Sure, there’s some Xbox 360-compatibility, but that is not the point I’m trying to make.

Spencer says UWAs will allow an easy way to walk between PCs, consoles, tablets, and smartphones. It would still be weird to see Halo run on our phone, though!

We expected Microsoft to do something like this, as it’s been a while since they said that Windows 10 will get a Xbox app.

Spencer a GeekWire előadásán beszélt az Xbox One és a PlayStation 4 közötti versengésről.

🙂

Why is it a good thing that the Xbox is „PC-ing”? First off, the hardware isn’t going to be fixed. Microsoft can upgrade the hardware and – hopefully – release newer „consoles” at the same price, making the upgrade sensible every 1-1.5 years. However, the term console generation would cease to exist. From when would we call the new Microsoft product part of the next generation? After one upgrade? Two upgrades? Can we even call the new Xbox a console? We could only think about this; answers are nowhere near to be seen here.

The other positive thing is the obvious backward compatibility. However, multiplatform titles need to be developed as UWA-s in that case. This would have potential: both the PS4 and the X1 have x86 architectures, and we use x64 on PC, as it’s common to have more than 4 gigs of RAM in our computers. But wait… UWAs would put Microsoft into a monopoly status as PlayStation would be forced to run UWAs for its multiplatform titles. Unless… Sony teams up with another company to follow Microsoft. (For this move, Sony would need a company that manufactures both motherboards and graphics cards – CPU would be probably AMD-based. But then again, GPUs are both AMDs in recent consoles…)

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🙁

The backside of it is one question: what the heck is going to happen with older consoles then? Should we keep selling the older consoles to buy the updated ones? Are we forced to throw out multiple hundred dollars every few years? Many people have consoles as they couldn’t afford or cannot be bothered always to upgrade the computer to have games run normally. Microsoft would set a trap for themselves with this step. Sony would get a chance to rule even more, but the situation would be even more inside-out. Nintendo is not competing against Sony with their consoles and they released the Wii U a year before the PS4 and X1. The NX would also be out earlier than the next-gen hardware. The PlayStation 4 will be in a vacuum if the Xbox starts to go down the PC route. Sony would be alone. That would not pull the best out of the Japanese company. In the 90s, Nintendo and SEGA always tried to compete directly against each other and thus, they kept providing the best they had. Then Sony and Microsoft entered the market changing everything.

And again, where would we draw the line of the next console generation? Would we even get to see the tenth generation?

…also, this might be a little farfetched, but what if this ends up as another 1983?

Mi a fene lesz a régebbi konzolokkal?

😐

I don’t know how „PC-ing” will change the future of consoles, but because of Microsoft, I’m afraid of a few things, like a required internet connection. Windows 10 doesn’t seem that safe to me, and this idea is similarly risky. The constant upgrading must have a reason for the PR speech.

Let’s wait until this starts up – I would not decide too early. It might be good. It might be bad.

-V-

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