With a lot already known about the new PS4, people have been speculating as to what Microsoft has up their sleeve. Microsoft Analyst Paul Thurrot has shed some light on those speculations. The console will be revealed on May 21st at an upcoming Microsoft event. The console is expected to launch in November (just in time for parents to snatch one up for a Christmas present) and there will be two pricing options available. The first is a flat out purchase no strings attached $500 console. It’s suggested that there will also be a $300 subscription supported price most likely to Xbox Live. Another rumor flying around is that there will be a new Xbox 360 console out later this year that you’ll be able to grab for a measly $99. I’ve been wanting to switch from Gran Turismo to Forza but all I have is a PS3 and don’t have any real desire to buy all new hardware to try out a game. For $99 I might be persuaded to make the jump.
Any other console gamers itching to get the details on Microsoft’s next Xbox?
Sony has been a part of several class-action lawsuits due to the PS3 (usually on the receiving end) due to things like removing Linux support as well as other things. I’m sure they’ve gotten tired of it and in as sleezy of a way to deal with it as any have decided that in the latest mandatory PS3 update if you agree to it you also agree to not participate in any class-action lawsuits against them.
“ANY DISPUTE RESOLUTION PROCEEDINGS, WHETHER IN ARBITRATION OR COURT, WILL BE CONDUCTED ONLY ON AN INDIVIDUAL BASIS AND NOT IN A CLASS OR REPRESENTATIVE ACTION OR AS A NAMED OR UNNAMED MEMBER IN A CLASS, CONSOLIDATED, REPRESENTATIVE OR PRIVATE ATTORNEY GENERAL LEGAL ACTION, UNLESS BOTH YOU AND THE SONY ENTITY WITH WHICH YOU HAVE A DISPUTE SPECIFICALLY AGREE TO DO SO IN WRITING FOLLOWING INITIATION OF THE ARBITRATION. THIS PROVISION DOES NOT PRECLUDE YOUR PARTICIPATION AS A MEMBER IN A CLASS ACTION FILED ON OR BEFORE AUGUST 20, 2011.”
The only way to opt out of this is by writing a letter by hand and mailing it to them explicitly saying that you want to opt out. There’s no checkbox that’s already checked that you can uncheck to not partake in this part of the agreement because, well they want to make it a pain in your ass not to fight it. And the kicker? If you don’t agree to the terms of this latest update then you’re no longer allowed to play any online games.
I know it’s easy to say Sony is being a capital douche in doing this, but in reality you’d be stupid not to if you were a large company since the Supreme Court recently bolstered the ability of businesses to channel customer and employee complaints into arbitration, ruling that companies can block people from pressing those claims as a group in contracts.
Forza has been the go-to racing sim for the XBox for a while now. While PS3 fans have their Gran Turismo 5 to taunt the Microsoft players with, Xbox gamers will soon have Forza 4 which is set to be Turn 10 Studios’ biggest game yet. Forzamotorsport.net has a good interview with Turn 10 creative director Dan Greenawalt. In this interview he explains some of the new features of Forza like manufacturer specific levels, called “affinity levels”. In this system, if you race in a BMW, you gain BMW-specific XP. You can buy and sell multiple BMWs without changing your BMW XP. Your BMW XP is only changed by the miles you race in BMWs.
One big discussion point of the interview is Forza’s disappointment of not being able to secure the rights to include Porsche in their game. Forza 3 had 35 different models of Porsches and this installment was set to have even more. The Porsche license has been available only through a sub-licensing deal with EA. EA doesn’t want to share their pie with anyone else now and isn’t allowing Turn 10 to feature some of the best road-going cars out there in their game this go-round.
“While we respect EA’s need to run their business as they see fit, we’ve regularly collaborated in the past and hope we can find our way back to that approach. Forza had the exclusive license for all Ferrari cars, for example, on the Xbox and PC platforms. But at the end of the day, we’ve always found that we just weren’t willing to block other racing games from having Ferraris outright, as we believed that this would do nothing but hurt the racing ecosystem.”
Read the whole interview here.