[UPDATE 2] Sources have told Polygon that the Xbox One will not require gamers pay an activation fee to play used games, but will mandate regular checks to verify the authenticity of games.
Microsoft is also reportedly mulling over the idea of special "exemption codes" that could be provided to those in Internet-free scenarios, like active-duty soldiers.
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, Microsoft director of Xbox Live programming Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb provided a new statement on Xbox One and used games.
"The ability to trade in and resell games is important to gamers and to Xbox," he said. "Xbox One is designed to support the trade in and resale of games. Reports about our policies for trade in and resale are inaccurate and incomplete. We will disclose more information in the near future."
The original story follows below.
According to retail sources speaking with MCV, retailers will be able to charge whatever they want for secondhand Xbox One games, but Microsoft and publishers will receive a cut of every transaction.
The information leak comes after Microsoft reportedly briefed "key" partners on its plans for the secondhand market as it relates to the Xbox One, something
The system will reportedly work as such: consumers can trade in physical Xbox One game discs only at retailers that have agreed to Microsoft's terms and conditions and have integrated the company's cloud-enabled Azure preowned technology into their own.
The traded-in title is then registered on Microsoft's systems as having been resold, and the data files will be cleared from their Xbox One account. Such a system would explain Microsoft's position that the Xbox One must "
Retailers are then able to resell the used game at whatever price point they see fit. As part of this initiative, the publisher of the game will automatically receive a cut of the sale, along with Microsoft. The rest is revenue for the retailer.
It is unclear what this percentage will be, though Consoledeals.co.uk claims the portion paid to retailers will be 10 percent, well below the margins retailers have come to expect from secondhand games. This could negatively impact retailers like GameStop, which rely on the secondhand market for a healthy portion of their overall business.
During an earnings call yesterday, GameStop management
The site also suggests, based on information from a senior employee at "one of the UK's largest video game retailers," that the
"We know there is some confusion around used games on Xbox One and wanted to provide a bit of clarification on exactly what we've confirmed today," Microsoft said earlier this week. "While there have been many potential scenarios discussed, today we have only confirmed that we designed Xbox One to enable our customers to trade in and resell games at retail."
"Beyond that, we have not confirmed any specific scenarios."
Sony has also dodged questions regarding used games on the PlayStation 4. The company has
"It's a publisher decision," Sony said in February. "We are not talking about it. Sorry."
In addition to
A listing for "Bootcamp" appeared on the Korean Game Rating Board today (via GameFront) with Halo 3 mentioned in its product description, suggesting the project could be the
A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed with GameSpot that Bootcamp is something unrelated to the company's other Halo endeavors, but wouldn't go into further detail.
"What's Bootcamp? It is not related to our Xbox One efforts, or the Reclaimer Saga, but rather a project we're very enthusiastic about and will have more to say about in the near future," the company said.
As GameFront points out, Bootcamp is referenced in the title of Brian Reed's novel Halo: Fall of Reach: Boot Camp.
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, GameStop shares continued to fall. At press time, the retailer's stock value is down 13.36 percent to $31.19.
The original story follows below.
GameStop shares are sliding today after a
At press time, GameStop shares are down 6.75 percent to $33.61.
The company's stock value has dropped steadily since Tuesday, when
Under its current business model, GameStop nets 100 percent of the used game sale.
Microsoft's rumored plan would not likely kill the secondhand market, but only minimize its lucrative margins by giving a cut to publishers.
Sony has not been forthcoming regarding its plans for used games, either. The company--like Microsoft--has
"It's a publisher decision," Sony said in February. "We are not talking about it. Sorry."
Microsoft believes next-generation consoles will sell over 1 billion units and aims to elevate the long-running Xbox 360 to 100 million sold in the next five years.
Speaking with OXM, Microsoft senior vice president of Interactive Entertainment Business Yusuf Mehdi claimed the consoles' deep media opportunities will lead to record industry sales.
"Every generation, as you've probably heard, has grown approximately 30 percent," Mehdi said. "So this generation is about 300 million units. Most industry experts think the next generation will get upwards of about 400 million units. That's if it's a game console, over the next decade."
"We think you can go broader than a game console, that's our aim, and you can go from 400 million to potentially upwards of a billion units," he added. "That's how we're thinking of the Xbox opportunity as we go forward."
Speaking specifically about the Xbox 360, Mehdi said he is hopeful that the aging platform can reach 100 million units sold in the next five years. Sales currently stand at
"We believe over the next five years we can break a 100 million unit installed base," Medhi said. "That's something we're shooting for; it's not a financial plan as such, it's just rough numbers if you will. To sell another 25 million, half of those will probably come from replacements, but half will come from new buyers."
"And the way we'll break into those segments is by hitting new price points, getting new classes of entertainment to come with the Xbox, and breaking into new customer segments," he added. "So you'll see the Xbox 360 continue to exist, even as we launch the next generation Xbox One."
Microsoft Game Studios executive Phil Spencer said earlier this week that the Xbox 360 will be "
"I think the [Xbox 360] is going to be very vibrant for many years. In fact, we have a huge, I think it's huge, [Xbox 360] announcement for E3 that I keep wanting to talk about, but I can't," Spencer said. "I think it will surprise people. I loved what we did last year with Minecraft; bring Minecraft to the box; six million units later it's kind of a beast. I think there's a lot of life in the [Xbox 360] for years to come."
Nintendo's Wii U launched last year and has
A new report today claims the Xbox One has more features than Microsoft showed off during the system's announcement earlier this week. Polygon has heard from a source that the next-generation platform will be able to speak and has an option to allow friends to take over gameplay.
The source claimed that the Xbox One's integrated Kinect camera is capable of scanning a room and using its facial recognition software to detect foreign users. If Kinect detects someone it does not recognize, it then audibly asks this person to identify themselves. Once this is done, the Kinect saves the information to the console, according to the report.
This technology, should it be real, allows the Xbox One to work in much the same way as the Siri artificial intelligence found on Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch products. Voice technology may not be available for the Xbox One launch, the source said, noting it could be added via a post-launch patch "within the first few months."
Today's report tallies with a
Polygon also reports today that players will reportedly be able to Skype a friend and allow them to take over gameplay. This feature is reportedly being designed as a means to assist players who get stuck in a section of a game and want help.
In the scenario reported on by Polygon, once the second player assumed control of the game, the first player could watch the game unfold. This remote play can be ended at any time, the report claims. It is not clear if both players must own the game in question, how long remote play can last, or which player would receive achievements for tasks completed.
The PlayStation 4 boasts a similar feature. Powered by Gaikai, the technology allows players to ask a friend to take over their game. Sony has yet to give more specific details on how exactly this will work.
Microsoft has again reached out to users to warn them that all sign-up pages claiming to offer Xbox One testing are illegitimate and should be avoided.
"All sign-up pages for testing #XboxOne are fake, "Xbox Live operations architect Eric Neustadter said on Twitter. "Do not give them your information - it's a scam."
Gamers will be able to try out the Xbox One when it
The Xbox 360 has not been a runaway success in Japan, but that doesn't mean Microsoft is shying away from the region with its all-new Xbox One next-generation platform.
"We're committed to Japan," Microsoft president of Interactive Entertainment Business Don Mattrick told OXM during a roundtable discussion recently.
"We continue to build on our partnerships, we continue to build on our offerings for consumers inside of that space," he added.
Mattrick explained that Japan is an "important" market for Microsoft's gaming business and said the company's investment in the region will not slow down.
"We think it's an important market. And we'll continue building on the working investment that we've done over all these years," Mattrick said. "There'll be more news in appropriate ways [for each geographical region], including the content partners, all classes of content, what's been tweaked and what's the same as what we're rolling out in the US."
The Xbox One
Xbox One pricing will be "key" to the next-generation platform's success, Robert W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian said in a note to investors this week.
Microsoft shared numerous details for the Xbox One during its reveal event on Tuesday, but pricing for the system was not among them.
Sebastian said he believes Microsoft will subsidize the Xbox One, potentially through partnerships with media companies like Comcast, but did not provide a price point estimation.
Microsoft specifically name-dropped Comcast during its demonstration of how the Xbox One can stream live television this week. In addition, a
Not all agree that Microsoft will offer a subsidized Xbox One. Noted Windows blogger Paul Thurrott said earlier this week that
Microsoft currently offers a subsidized Xbox 360 through its official stores. Gamers can grab a system for
According to comments from GameStop management, the Xbox One will
SimCity developer Maxis has detailed the game's 4.0 update, expected to go live shortly.
The update adds the new Launch Park (available only for SimCity early adopters), as well as the Edgewater Bay region, and various tweaks and bug fixes.
With the update applied, SimCity players will be able to see their current server in the options menu and have "more detailed" rollover information on whether or not Sims received happiness from a park or from shopping. Previously, this information was generic, Maxis said.
SimCity launched in March and was beset by
The full SimCity 4.0 update details are below.
New: SimCity Launch Park, an exclusive new park just for our dedicated fans who were early adopters.
New: Region: Edgewater Bay. Seven city sites in one cluster around a beautiful bay with one great work site.
New: Your current server will now be shown in the options menu.
New: More detailed rollover information on buildings telling players if their Sims received happiness from a park or from shopping. Previous to this fix, this information was generic.
Re-Enabled Feature: Global Market prices now dynamically change during gameplay.
Re-Enabled Feature: Leaderboards will be active on EU West 3, Pacific 1 and Pacific 2 at the release. We will enable them on additional servers throughout the day.
Re-Enabled Feature: Region filters are now enabled on all SimCity servers. Players will be able to search for open games by Map Name, Sandbox Mode, and Abandoned Cities.
Rain Clouds: Fixed an issue where some cities would not have rain clouds to replenish their water table. If you had a city with this issue, you will start seeing clouds again within a game day.
Fire: Improved response time of fire trucks to fires. Improved the time it takes for a fire signal to reach a fire station.
Mission updates: Tuned Metals HQ and Community College missions. These were appearing too early, making them difficult to complete. They now appear later in a citys development.
Solar Farm Great Work: Reduced fire risk at the Solar Farm Great work. Local fire engines were spending too much time at the Solar Farm.
Messaging: Improved pre-requisite messaging for Trade Port, Casinos, Smelting Factory and Oil Refinery. It should be clearer on how to unlock these buildings.
Graphics: Fix for flickering low wealth buildings on NVIDIA graphics cards.
Education: Fix for an issue some cities experienced where commuting students did not return from a neighbors city. This was causing a problem where students would disappear from a city in some cases.
Tuning: Sims will lose a small amount of happiness if they dont have a place to shop. Cities without places to shop will see complaints and feel the effect of unhappy Sims. This will emphasize the importance of commercial zones.
Turtle Beach and Microsoft announced a new partnership this week that will see the headset maker become one of the first to create Microsoft-licensed headsets for the Xbox One.
Official products, pricing, and release information will be announced in the coming weeks, though Turtle Beach promised its technology will bring "advanced audio solutions" to gamers.
Turtle Beach currently offers a suite of headsets for the Xbox 360.
Microsoft has not announced any first-party Xbox One headsets, but said earlier this week that more details on accessories for the platform will be shared next month during the 2013 Electronic Entertainment Expo.
Microsoft's E3 2013 press briefing is slated for
The Xbox One is not only aimed at core gamers, though this group remains "incredibly important" for the next-generation platform, Microsoft has said.
Speaking with VentureBeat, Microsoft executive Phil Harrison said because the Xbox One is not only a game console, but also an "all-in-one" entertainment device, a new set of consumers are opened up to the system.
"By making it simple and instant and complete, it means we can get men, women, old, young to enjoy playing and interacting with the device. It's not just about core gamers; although, they are incredibly important to our future," Harrison said. "It's also about finding entry points for all members of the household."
Harrison explained that the barriers for entry are being knocked down with the Xbox One, due in part to the
"One of the things that I don't think we truly understand the significance of yet is automatic identity through Kinect. If your wife or your daughter or your son or yourself starts interacting with the machine, it instantly switches to their choice of content, their profile, their personalization, their recommendation," he said. "That alone, that simplicity, is going to dramatically increase the number of people who want to interact with Xbox One. "
In fact, Harrison said he believes the most impactful element of the Xbox One is that Kinect is included with every system, as opposed to being an optional peripheral, which is the case for the Xbox 360.
"That made it difficult for developers to invest against 20 percent of the installed base or whatever it was. Having it as 100 percent--thats a game-changer," Harrison said.
The Xbox One
Infinity Ward's Call of Duty: Ghosts will feature Kinect-enabled voice commands, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg has confirmed with VentureBeat.
The executive explained that the
Hirshberg said more information about Kinect integration for Call of Duty: Ghosts will be revealed at a later date, and made clear that Infinity Ward believes the technology will better the game.
"We've always made sure that we don't just use new technology for novelty's sake," Hirshberg said. "We always make sure that it makes the gameplay better. In this case, we think it will."
Also in the interview, Hirshberg commented on the
To achieve this vision, Hirshberg said it was decided early on that Call of Duty: Ghosts for current-generation platforms would be developed alongside the next-generation versions at Infinity Ward instead of being ported by an outside studio.
Microsoft has confirmed the official Xbox One box art design.
The company provided an image of the box art for Xbox One launch title Forza Motorsport 5 over Twitter and through the Turn 10 Studios Facebook page.
The box art matches up with the designs that
The Xbox One
Enslaved: Oddysey to the West and DmC: Devil May Cry developer Ninja Theory has partnered with Chillingo for a free-to-play iOS and Android game called Fightback, the companies announced today.
It is the United Kingdom studio's first mobile game and is described as an action game with a "striking '80s action movie vibe and a revolutionary touch-based combat system."
Yesterday, Ninja Theory said it would have "
Ninja Theory product manager Dominic Matthews explained that the mobile and tablet game market has become too prevalent to ignore.
"Mobile and tablet gaming is a phenomenon that we just couldn't ignore as a studio and we're very proud to be working with one of the industry's heavy-weights on bringing Fightback to market," Matthews said in a statement.
Fightback will launch this summer. The game will be playable next month during the 2013 Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles.
Bungie's all-new shooter Destiny may be released for the PC, though the developer is not ready to confirm anything just yet. Speaking with IGN, Bungie senior writer and community head Eric Osborne said developing for more platforms means more work, and Bungie is unwilling to develop for one platform at the expense of another.
"We haven't said yes, and we haven't said no," Osborne said. "The more platforms we take on, the more work it ultimately becomes, and what we don't want is to compromise the core experience on any platforms. We have a lot of people who play on PCs. We have a lot of appetite to build that experience. We haven't announced it yet, but we're looking forward to talking more about that kind of stuff in the future."
A PC version of Destiny
Destiny will be a multiplatform game, launching on next-generation platforms like the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, as well as current-generation systems including the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Asked if save files will be transferable across platforms, Osborne said currently there are "complexities" that must be resolved to make it possible.
"For us, [platforms] are purely agnostic," Osborne said. "Any data on our back-end servers and services, like Bungie.net, are ours. We control it, we can do a bunch of fun stuff on that side. So for us, we want to absolutely do the right things for players. But there are some complexities we have to solve that are outside our control. But we're absolutely pushing to solve some of those things. We don't have anything to announce, but hopefully in the future we will."
A full-page advertisement has appeared in the United Kingdom's Metro newspaper this morning, which states that the PlayStation 4 will see a UK launch later in 2013.
"Now is the time," states the advertisement. "The world's greatest players are going to entertain, create, and amaze on the ultimate stage. This year a new generation will push boundaries of play and share in moments of wonder. This year players will become legends."
Sony had yet to formally date the PlayStation 4 for a 2013 launch outside of North America, though US retailer
The PlayStation 4 was officially
Microsoft earlier this week
Both games will be coming to Steam individually, with support for Steam's Big Picture mode and Steam Workshop for user-created levels. Additional levels for the PC versions of the game are also promised.
The original Joe Danger launched in 2010 as a PlayStation 3 exclusive, only to find its way to Xbox Live Arcade. The 2012 follow-up Joe Danger: The Movie is currently available on the PS3 and 360.
"Actually, PC is Joe Dangers spiritual home," said Hello Games boss Sean Murray. "I coded my first ever PC engine when we started making the original Joe Danger back in 2009, because we couldn't get hold of console devkits. So it's incredibly exciting to be finally able to release it."
"We have a rule that whenever we put our games onto a new platform we have to add something. We can't just do a quick and dirty port," added Murray.
"We have some more surprises to announce for the PC editions of Joe Danger as we lock them down."
Codemasters has announced a single £125,000 special edition of
The Grid 2: Mono Edition will be available for only one customer in the UK and is being sold at Game.
Alongside the included British-made BAC Mono, which comes customised with a Grid 2 livery, the customer gets their own racing suit, boots, gloves, and Bell racing helmet. A day at the BAC factory is also thrown in, along with a PlayStation 3 console. A copy of Grid 2 on the PlayStation 3 is also included.
The road legal supercar is made from carbon fibre with a 2.3 litre, 280bhp four-cylinder engine that can go from 0-60mph in 2.8 seconds.
Codemasters says it has submitted the Grid 2: Mono Edition for inclusion in the Guinness World Records as the world's most expensive special edition.
Grid 2 will be released for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on May 31 in the UK.
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, Microsoft confirmed with GameSpot that Xbox Live has not been hacked.
"Xbox Live has not been hacked," a company representative said. "Microsoft can confirm that there has been no breach to the security of our Xbox Live service."
The original story follows below
A hacker going by the name Reckz0r today claimed to have cracked Xbox Live, exposing confidential information for around 47 million users.
In a note posted on Pastebin, the hacker claimed to have "brutally owned" Xbox Live a few days ago, but decided to publish the data today.
Writing on Twitter, Reckz0r said Microsoft stores its passwords in a plaintext format. This person described the
A Microsoft representative has told GameSpot to expect comment from the company shortly.
The hacking claims come just two days after
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, an Electronic Arts representative issued a statement to GameSpot on the matter.
"We appreciate fan enthusiasm for Mirrors Edge, especially fans throughout the retail channel. This is not official EA material. We have nothing to announce at this time," the representative said.
The original story follows below
Amazon's German arm has posted a product listing (via NeoGAF) for Mirror's Edge 2, suggesting a sequel to DICE's 2008's first-person free-running game may soon be announced.
The listing indicates Mirror's Edge 2 will be available for the Xbox 360, though no other details are available.
An EA representative was not immediately available to comment.
A year after the launch of the original Mirror's Edge in 2008, EA said that the project was
Most recently, a