On May 21, The Console Wars Begin In Earnest

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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On May 21, The Console Wars Begin In Earnest

The big day is in readiness, folks, and with just a few days left to April, we now know when the next Xbox will be making its grand appearance. But before the big day arrives, it's worth taking a quick look at the variety of points that probably should be tackled before we start hearing about the next system.

Naturally, there will be points that want for official confirmation left, right and center. While certainly we will be eager to hear about the final spec loadout, seeing just what the next Xbox will have under the hood, there's quite a bit more.

First off, what is this thing's name? We've heard plain old "Xbox", some are still batting around "Xbox 720", there's an outside chance of it being maybe the "Xbox 360 2", although that may just be the kind of thing that came to me in a vision following one donut too many. Either way, the name is still somewhat up in the air.

Second, the issue of used games. This is something that really needs to be settled, and settled soon. This particular issue has kept a lot of gamers up at night, and no one's exactly sure yet--snarky tweets aside--if the issue of always-on consoles is going to follow the next version of the Xbox into the future.

Third, the issue of backward compatibility is still somewhat up in the air. While some reports have emerged saying that there's no way that old Xbox 360 games will play on the new Xbox version, that's still no substitute for an official announcement.

From there, of course, we wonder what titles will be had at launch, how much the system will cost, and so on; given that E3 will follow just a couple weeks later, there likely won't be too much showing up about new games at the special event. But this is likely to be where the whole thing begins, and where the PlayStation 4 and the new Xbox can be fully compared for the first time, and proper assessments can be made in terms of figuring out just where the next generation of gaming will go. Will Sony be ready to keep the game rental market going? Will Microsoft blow its big lead from the Xbox 360 generation? Will Nintendo manage to get its game roster together and salvage the Wii U?

This should be an extremely big event, no matter how you slice it, and should produce a staggering array of questions for Microsoft to answer. Hopefully those answers will be of the kind that gamers are hoping to hear. The console wars are about to heat up in earnest, and with them, bring a lot more action that just what's on the screen.
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