Thursday, October 31, 2013

"Call Of Duty: Ghosts" Confirmed at 720p on the Xbox One, Upscaled to 1080p


Well, all the rumours surrounding the output resolution of the latest Call Of Duty game on the Xbox One were apparently true.  Yesterday, Mark Rubin (the Executive Producer at Infinity Ward) confirmed that "Ghosts" will not run natively at 1080p on Micosoft next-gen console, unlike it's PS4 counterpart.

The deception among COD and Xbox fans is huge. The PR people at Microsoft or Infinity Ward can say all they want (that the upscaling to 1080p on the X1 is powerful and brilliant, blah blah blah)... but in the end, here is a AAA title that does not launch at maximum resolution on the Xbox One.  And it actually does on the Playstation 4.  Please remember that the X1 is the most expensive console of the two...

Also, we have to take into account Microsoft's own words: they want the X1 to live and prosper at least as long as the Xbox 360 did.  So basically, we're looking at a 10 years lifespan.  But they can't get one of the most successful IP released at 1080p for launch.  To be fair, we heard from developers that the Xbox One architecture and it's developement tools are still young and need some fine-tuning, so there is still hope for future titles.

But let's just face the fact: the PS4 has a better GPU and this confirmation by Infinity Ward proves it.  Keep in mind that COD sells tons of copies, and as a launch title, can sell tons of consoles.  The online experience might be somehow slightly better on Xbox Live, but as of writing these lines, we still haven't seen it by our selves.  So basically, gamers who are jumping on the next-gen band wagon along with this game as a first purchase will probably choose Sony's side.  And so far, they're right... unless full HD resolution is not that important for them.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Let's Unlock The Giant Xbox One In Vancouver!



Earlier today we reported that a giant Xbox One was being built in Vancouver, at the corner of Nelson & Seymour street.  We knew it was somehow related to the Microsoft's "#xboxonesource" advert and website, but now the mystery is (*ALMOST*) cleared up.

Xbox Live gamers can go ahead at http://www.xbox.com/en-ca/onesource and input their gamertags as a pledge.  The idea here is that when a certain amount (unknown at this time) of pledges will be submitted, the huge Xbox One case will, somehow, open up (or "unlock" as they say).  Additionally, when you submit your gamertag, you are automatically eligible to the "One Source Contest" (see details here).

Apparently, pledges can also be submitted "in real life" at the giant X1 location in Vancouver.

Now, the only things that's left to be revealed is...  WHAT'S IN THE BOX?!


Edit 1 : The Xbox One was unlocked on October 31 @ 5 PM (PDT)

A Giant Xbox One Is Being Built in Vancouver


Something is happening right now in Vancouver...  Something big.

While we don't have much clue about what is really going on (see Update #2 down below!), it's seems to be related to that "#XboxOneSource" trailer (see below).  So basically, something is going to be revealed today for us canadians...


Stay tuned for more!

Update 1: Apparently, the giant Xbox One is located at the corner of Nelson and Seymour.

Update 2: the Straight.com website has some interesting info regarding the giant Xbox One:
Xbox Canada representatives told the Straight that the massive Xbox One model will “unlock” when enough fans pledge their gamertag. 
Members of the Xbox community can pledge their gamertags in person at the giant Xbox One, online, or from the dashboard on their Xbox 360. Doing so also makes them eligible to win digital rewards. Prizes include Xbox One consoles and trips to Toronto for the Canadian launch of the new system.

What, exactly, will occur when the box unlocks is unknown. But you should expect it to be something special.
Source : http://www.straight.com/blogra/519261/xbox-one-has-landed-vancouver

Update 3: The mystery has been solved, see our follow-up here.

"Halo: Spartan Assault" Coming To Xbox One This December!


Halo fans around the world, rejoice! Although the next iteration of a "proper" Halo FPS game on your console is still months away (scheduled sometime in 2014), Microsoft and 343 Studios announced yesterday that "Halo: Spartan Assault" will be released on Xbox One and Xbox 360 this December (no specific release date is known at this point).

In case you didn't know,  "Halo: Spartan Assault" is a top-down third-person shooter that was released last July for Windows 8 and the Windows Phone platform.  The story line takes place between the events of Halo 3 and Halo 4. As of writing these lines, it has scored 71% on metacritic.com.

The console version of this title will feature a brand new online co-op mode and will also include a previously released expansion called "Operation Hydra".

Source: Gamespot.com

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Kinect Sports Rivals Preseason Will Be Available On Day One


Here is a very nice surprise by Microsoft and Rare!  Yesterday, they both announced that a free trial of the upcoming "Kinect Sports Rivals" will be available to download on launch day (November 22nd 2013), named "Kinect Sports Rivals Preseason".

This free demo will let Xbox One gamers get in touch with one of the most anticipated Kinect-based game.  Basically, gamers will be able to get their hands on the wake racing activity, one of the six activities planned for the full version of the game to be released in March 2014.


"Kinect Sports Rivals" has been demoed all around the world in the last few months and many believed that delaying this game would hurt the new console's sales figure. In fact, the Xbox One comes bundled with the new Kinect 2 sensor and no other game seems to be using this new technology as much as Kinect Sports at this point. Microsoft has since responded to those critics by saying that the Kinect sensor is so much integrated with the OS itself (for voice commands) that it's already an innovative technology available at a bargain price. Nevertheless, a game that uses this peripheral at its full potential on launch day was mandatory, and this announcement definitely confirms it.

The full version of "Kinect Sports Rivals" will feature a total of 6 activities: bowling, climbing, soccer, target shooting, tennis and wake racing.

Source: www.polygon.com

Monday, October 28, 2013

Microsoft Newest Video: "Meet Xbox One"


Yesterday Microsoft released a brand new video to show a bit more of the Xbox One UI and multitasking capabilities, titled "Meet Xbox One".


Although this video doesn't bring any new information to hardcore fans, it clearly shows a lot of the possibilities that this next-gen console has to offer.  For example, using Kinect voice commands to switch between games, TV and apps looks really smooth and easy.

Our only complaints at this point are regarding the use of Titanfall's footage in this demo.  First off, why do Microsoft keeps showing footage from a game that will not be available at launch?  Also, there is that confusing moment about switching from a multiplayer game to a TV channel...  It does raise interesting questions: what happens to the multiplayer game, does it keep running in the background?  Or are you disconnected and when switching back you'll be in the game's lobby?

Other than that, it's good to see Microsoft pushing more information about the console's capabilities to the general public.  This video shows a lot, let's just hope more people watch & learn from it!

Source: http://www.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-one/meet-xbox-one

Friday, October 25, 2013

Xbox One's Latest Commercial : "Invitation"

We are now less than a month away from the big launch of the Xbox One (November 22nd 2013).  And finally, a solid commercial has just been released by Microsoft, titled "Invitation".  Here it is:


Awesome, isn't it?  Now, let's just hope that it gets showed a lot (on TV and social networks) to get the general public interested about the Xbox One's release.  We truly believe that there is still a lot of work to be done by Microsoft in this area, as we are really close to the Launch Day.

The positive side of this commercial is that it does show a glimpse of some of the most anticipated games (Titanfall - unfortunately postponed to march 2014, FIFA 14, Ryse: Son Of Rome, Forza 5 and Dead Rising 3), as well as the Kinect voice control capabilities - and a short bit of the Skype integration into the X1 OS.  We believe that this is the way to go and a pretty good start, but footage or integration of "Battlefield 4" (or even "Call Of Duty: Ghosts") elements could have pushed the interest a bit more.  Also, not mentioning that the console can be used as a Blu-Ray player, in our opinion, is a slightly missed opportunity to appeal a wider audience.

If you enjoyed this commercial as much as we did, here is the interesting "Making Of" video.  It's definitely worth watching!


Friday, October 18, 2013

"Ryse : Son of Rome" New Trailer is AMAZING!


"Ryse: Son of Rome" is getting lot of attention today as a new trailer has recently hit the web (yesterday, actually).  Have a look for yourself, and see below for our comments:


First off, let's just say that beside being a really nice technological demo, we've never been very excited about this game.  We felt that the fighting system, despite being highly entertaining and visually appealing, was going to make this game dull and repetitive after 20 minutes.  Now, let's scratch all of that.

This trailer now shows a game that has a real solid story line and a ton of details surrounding the characters.  On top of that, the visual effects are beyond impressive...  Did you see that helmet's hairs moving as the soldier puts a knee's down around the 0m22s mark?  We all know that CGI in cut-scenes have come a long way since the first Halo on the original Xbox, but this is simply beautiful.  Also, look at the different sets where the action is taking place... this is going to be so much fun!

We recently heard that Crytek had to scale down the resolution of this game from 1080p to 900p due to "efficiency"...  But you know what, we really don't care at this point.  What is shown in this trailer is gorgeous.  And we can't wait to get our hands on this exciting title!

Source: http://www.gamespot.com/articles/the-softer-side-of-ryse-son-of-rome/1100-6415472/

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Xbox One Demo Days scheduled at Future Shop and Best Buy!


Finally, the big retailers are starting to demo the new Xbox One console in their stores! Yesterday, Future Shop and Best Buy released a list of stores that will allow the public to get their hands on the Xbox One.  The event has been called "Xbox One Demo Days".

The Future Shop list of participating stores and dates is here.

The Best Buy list of participating stores and dates is here.

There hasn't been any other information surrounding these events, but it is highly probable that Forza 5, Ryse: Son of Rome and perhaps Killer Instinct will be playable.   This is only speculation, but so far these three titles are the ones that have been demoed in previous events around the world.

Sadly, as we are writing these lines, the Atlantic provinces seems to have been ignored.  Sorry 'bout that folks.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Major Nelson Reveals the New Friends App

Yesterday  Larry Hryb (aka Major Nelson) from Microsoft revealed the new "Friends" app for the Xbox One in a short but informative video.



Basically, this video is a walk-through of this new app that allows you to see who's on your friend's list and who's following you.  One of the things that is worth mentioning is how great the avatars looks!  Now let's just hope that we will be able to choose an avatar from a large collection.

The video also shows the ability to "snap" your friend's activity list on the right-hand side of your screen.  This is brilliant and I can't wait to use this feature myself!

But in the end, the most impressive thing showed in this video is definitely how the menus were fast and fluid. This is a great improvement over the Xbox 360 UI in general.

As a side note, please note that on the Xbox One users will be able to have up to 1000 friends and an unlimited number of followers.

Source: http://majornelson.com/2013/10/14/new-friends-app-and-multiplayer-features-for-xbox-live-on-xbox-one/