Microsoft Wants Xbox to be Upgradable Like a PC

WeepingAngels

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Dango said:
I feel like that's a watering down of what Phil Spencer is saying. It lacks context.

The context, and what I think is more impactful, is that Microsoft are trying to create a shared software environment between Xbox and PC. That's a move that I think is frankly, great for both. That's the goal, and iterations of Xbox hardware is only a means to that.

I think what they're doing is great, just extremely hard to market.
What will be the cost of that? Mandatory Windows Updates? Restrictions on what software you can have installed?
 

Arnoxthe1

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Great, let's just sell PC's entirely and start including hardware requirements too.

Or maybe you guys should start looking at adding split-screen support for your ****ing first-party games at least and LAN support for your consoles and actually, you know, start acting like the Xbox One is a console instead of a glorified heavily restricted PC.
 

MatParker116

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votemarvel said:
Bob_McMillan said:
When you can build a PC that will out-perform both Sony and Microsoft's boxes for around $600

Holy shit, a PC that's 250 bucks more expensive than consoles outperforms them? NO WAY?!
I've just put together a PC with similar spec to a Xbox One Elite for the exact same price, ?400 here in the UK. That includes the Windows license as well.

Brief specs. FX-6300, 4GB RAM, GTX760, 1tb SSHD. Windows 10.

Now I confess that the RAM is less but my goal was to buy new. Had I gone second hand I likely could have shaved a few more pounds off and gotten it up to 8GB of RAM.

My point is however that if you are a smart buyer then you can buy a pretty decent gaming PC for around the same price as a current gen console. Price isn't the barrier that it once was.

To my eyes it simply comes down to the effort people want to take in order to play their games, and yes I am willing to hold my hands up and admit that PC gaming does take that bit more effort.

Yet that gap closes in each generation of consoles. Where once you popped in your game and played on a console, you now have to install and wait for the patches. You can do your office work on a console by using their web browsers to access online office suites (such as those at OneDrive.com).

Consoles are already a hair's breadth from becoming a PC. I can honestly see this as being the last generation where that line exists.

Edit: Why does the forum keep changing the pound symbol to a question mark?
You can get a 1 for ?260, there's also the future proofing argument. This won't happen this generation and considering consoles are more popular than ever there's another generation coming.
 

the.chad

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Definitely see the merit in what he is saying, but this is something that would be waaaay down the line (is the way I read it).

As others have already said, biggest benefit I see with the console gamers of the world is they don't need to worry about system specs and know anything they buy FOR their machine will run, unless it's made by Ubisoft =p

Then again, how many times have you read people complain how the consoles are holding back progress as developers are building for inferior hardware. If they could make "clip in/slide out" GPU and easily accessible expandable RAM that could be cool. Anything more complicated I would see getting too techincal and you may as well buy a PC. But then it would make the above point moot...

Maybe a tiered upgrade system? That could be easy enough to understand...
 

Creator002

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Pyrian said:
You might look upon it as a weakness, but standardization is one of the few upsides consoles really have going for them.
That's true. I've never had as much trouble with my Xbox One or 360 as I've had trying to get games to run smoothly on my PC. The Amazing Spider-Man won't run higher than medium without crashing despite having a computer powerful enough to run Fallout 4 on Ultra with little issue.
 

Dead Metal

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I always liked the idea of expansion packs to consoles, like with what Nintendo did with the memory expansion for the N64, and the Megadrive components (which were sadly mishandled). These things don't need to be there from the start, just have them show up two years into the console's life just to boost it a bit more, and label the new games accordingly.
Have an expansion slot or two on the console body for more ram, an extra GPU or such so that games can improve. Make the part cost like $100 max and it would be OK. That way we can get a bit more life out of our consoles and PC games wouldn't have to suffer too much.
But they would have to be standardized first party parts, no sense in making it a 3rd party accessible thing and have everyone make their own thing with vastly different specs, then you'd just ruin the console.

But I suspect he's not talking about that or a traditional console per say, seeing how Microsoft is working on unifying its platforms and works towards eventually having one version of Windows that works on phones, tablets, PCs etc, and XBox being used for Windows music and games sections - I think what he's talking about isn't really a like what I described. I think he's talking about turning XBox into the games platform for Windows, so instead of it being a console, it would just be Windows PC specifically for gaming. Similar to the failed Steam Machines. Just that it would be branded as XBox and have a regular platform refresh every now and then.
 

lionsprey

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this guy is pretty stupid. the reason i bought a console recently (a wii u, im not buying those glorified old pcs that MS and Sony are selling.) is that its easy. you want to know what my concerns were when i bought a wii u? its hard drive space and what games would be included. thats it. and when i buy a game i know the console is going to run it at the highest graphical settings. i don't need to learn anything about how a wii u works or what parts to get to get the most power out of my money.
its simple, its easy and that's what i want. let all the people that RAGEEE when a game is below 120 fps stick to PC, im happy with my easy game console that lets me play with my friends. and im sure im not the only one that feels this way
 

Sampler

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Maybe we have him wrong. Look at PC, you can play a game on the top end gpu, mid range and cheap. The game plays on all three, but looks shinier on the better, so there's room for a modular console.

You still have the console "it's an xbox game, it'll work on my xbox" but then you get to put the GPU slot in card that you can afford and you play the game with how it looks on your card, maybe a new DX comes out with better lighting and water rendering, swap out you GPU and away you go, or not and play the same game with slightly shitter graphics.

You want 4k at 120fps? You buy the top end GPU, CPU and RAM slot ins, you're ok with 720p at 30fps? Get the cheapest, play the same game.

Out of this some very interesting things happen, you lower the price point of the initial console, people can buy the basic one and then upgrade as they can afford but still consuming the games library from day one (the profitable bit), you undercut the competition for the basic model and therefore have a larger market to attract developers. Those same developers will be making a PC port[footnote]because Win10 universal apps, tighter ecosystem blahblahblah[/footnote] so scaling games to GPU/CPU requirements will already be in the engine.

You can also see what people are prepared to spend money on, really putting an end to the 30fps argument for developers. Presuming the xbox reports back to Live with the device configuration.

If you want to, I suppose you could even introduce a number system - this game is xbox 322 (lvl 3 GPU, 2 CPU, 2 RAM), not that hard for customers if you package up the modules in such a simple way, not that many developers I suppose would want to put a lower limit on a game as that would narrow the market available, but technically it's possible, most likely you'll just see scaling as mentioned above, but it brings in options.
 

Mad World

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I knew that this would happen. There is an obvious downside to not being able to upgrade hardware, but there is also an upside. With consoles, you know that everyone whom you're playing against has the exact same specs. This also makes developing games simpler.

Like someone said, we already have this: it's called a P.C. I just do not seeing this as being a positive thing for consoles. People like consoles because they're simple. Personally, I greatly prefer P.C. But, I can see why some gravitate toward consoles.

Anyway, let the upgrades stay with P.C.
 

Strazdas

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no wonder Phil is a steam gamer, he wants to make Xbox into a pre-built PC with restricted software, just like Apple.

Pyrian said:
You might look upon it as a weakness, but standardization is one of the few upsides consoles really have going for them.
Its no longer beneficial, though, since everything is coded on same instruction sets and APIs as it is for PCs, so the coding to hardware and standartized instruction sets for CPUs that was beneficial in previuos generations no longer apply.

Bob_McMillan said:
Holy shit, a PC thats 250 bucks more expensive than consoles outperforms them? NO WAY?!
Where did you find Xbomx One for 350 bucks? All i saw in stores were ~450.



Braedan said:
Microsoft already has a system with upgradable hardware like the PC. It's called the PC. What the fuck is the point of an upgradable console?
Microsoft does not own PC, so they cannot control it. Control is the point. Just look how much extra costs controlled enviroments add to users. All of that is profit for the controllers.


MatParker116 said:
You can get a 1 for ?260, there's also the future proofing argument. This won't happen this generation and considering consoles are more popular than ever there's another generation coming.
What? where the hell did you find a new Xbox One for 260?

Also there is no future proofing argument. well, there is one, but its based on false premise. The hardware of consoles isnt going to magically get better, so no, all games that run on consoles will run on same hardware PCs as well. Or should i say Tablets, since consoles use Tablet APUs from AMD this generation.

Also the consoles are not more popular then ever. their market share is shrinking. the raw numbers are irrelevant because they do not account for vastly increased player base since last generation. the market share is far more important. and that one shows shrinking of only one type of game devices - consoles.

Creator002 said:
That's true. I've never had as much trouble with my Xbox One or 360 as I've had trying to get games to run smoothly on my PC. The Amazing Spider-Man won't run higher than medium without crashing despite having a computer powerful enough to run Fallout 4 on Ultra with little issue.
1. The Amazing Spider-Man is a horribly designed game by developers that should not be allowed to write a single line of code for the rest of their life. It is nowhere near a representative experience of PC gaming.

2. Fallout 4 uses a game engine from 1997, of course you can run it on Ultra, a toaster can. Which is not to say that your PC is bad, its just that fallout 4 isnt a benchmark game. Try Witcher 3 or Just Cause 3 for that.
 

Bob_McMillan

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Bob_McMillan said:
Holy shit, a PC thats 250 bucks more expensive than consoles outperforms them? NO WAY?!
Where did you find Xbomx One for 350 bucks? All i saw in stores were ~450.
Is $350 not the standard price of an Xbone these days? All I'm sure of is that the PS4 is $350 too.
 

Magmarock

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All part of Microsoft grand plan to kill console gaming with a Windows 10 shaped dagger to the head. They've wanted to bring Windows 10 to the lounge for years now. This is how they will do it.
 

Magmarock

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Braedan said:
Microsoft already has a system with upgradable hardware like the PC. It's called the PC. What the fuck is the point of an upgradable console?

They just want to be able to be the ones selling the hardware. You add hardware upgrades to an Xbox, and it turns into a locked PC with no control input choice, and missing features.
The point is to have a PC, but we'll call it a console and make it look like a console. *Wink*
 

CaitSeith

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Unless they include the hardware pieces in bundle with the games that require it (like the Nintendo 64 games used to do), this is bound for "Wii U-level" of failure.
 

CaitSeith

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Sampler said:
snip...
...you lower the price point of the initial console...
...snip
Bwahahahaha! I wouldn't count on that. If something this gaming gen has proved is that if the members of the industry can deliver incomplete/subpar products without lowering the price accordingly, and get away with it; they will.

Besides, I doubt Microsoft will allow cheaper third party hardware options. They like to be a monopoly.