Xbox Scorpio’s specs revealed . A true 4k Monster?

So the wait is finally over, Microsoft officially revealed Xbox Scorpio’s specs and they are impressive, BUT is it really a 4K unstoppable monster?

Everything from the CPU to Ram is a noticeable improvement over the PS4 Pro and defiantly a worthy upgrade from the Original Xbox One and the S model, although I expected the Ram to be pushed toward the 16 GB mark as its kinda standard with high-end games settings on the PC, never the less the on-board 12 GB is still better than 8, at least in theory.

So where exactly does the Xbox Scorpio shine?

For starters, most if not all of Microsoft’s first-party titles that are already out should run allot better on the Scorpio provided Microsoft is gonna update the games to do so. Looking better is another thing. Yes, Microsoft will update the resolution and what not but it takes time and work to adjust and update games assets which may result in compatibility issues.

Microsoft and most importantly 3rd parties will need to properly adjust their games to take advantage of the new hardware while maintaining compatibility with the base models. Games will not magically look and run better despite what fanboys would like you to believe, and some developers will take the easy way out either making the base version run like crap or vice versa. Optimization is the key here. Otherwise, will end up with bad ports aka PC Arkham Knight.

Another area where Scorpio will dominate is the multi platform games. Games that are released on both platforms will run better on Scorpio. So if Console power is your main priority (which it shouldn’t be) then Scorpio is the only way to go, at least for a while.

Now into the most hyped feature of the upcoming console. Both Microsoft and the fanboys claim that the Xbox Scorpio will deliver native 4k with 60 frames in most games which are both true and false. Yes, Microsoft teased Forza tech demo running at 60 frames in 4k but at what settings? What the fanboys fail to realize due to them simply not knowing any technical aspects of gaming is that almost any current Xbox One S or PS4 Pro game can be run at 4K 60 frames provided the graphical settings are lowered enough.

Sports games are easier to run when it comes to 60 frames. First party titles will also be highly optimized to take full advantage of the system but the majority of 3rd party heavy games will most likely not be running at 60 frames at high settings. I’m speaking from a realistic point of view. A lot of developers will not fully optimize their games due to laziness or technical difficulty.

The Xbox Scorpio is the next Generation console that is also backwards compatible with Xbox One and 360 despite Microsoft telling you otherwise. And with PS5 being in the shadows it remains to be seen how things turn out in the near future.

With everything aside, I’m excited to see what the Scorpio can offer in term of games and features despite me mostly gaming on the PC. I love the Xbox brand and wish it nothing but success.

I’m anticipating the price reveal as it’s critical that Microsoft doesn’t over price it for the average consumer rendering the machine useless to allot of budget gamers especially that the Switch is selling like hot cakes. Those were my honest thoughts on the console. Thank you for reading.

Note: This is a text version. For video version, check out my YouTube channel.

Microsoft has a second chance at Browser Wars

microsoft_edge_logoMicrosoft recently announced Edge, the new replacement for its legacy browser Internet Explorer. It’s not secret that IE has brought shame over Microsoft for its old and not so polished web browser mainly version 6, and although things has changed for the better in later updates the reputation haven’t.

All that is behind us as Microsoft reenter the browser wars with its new as the name suggest cutting Edge web browser. “Labeled as Gets things done” we can only assume that the new browser should make every day tasks little easier. Unfortunately we don’t have a final version so any speculations at this point are not 100% accurate as the browser is still in its early alpha/beta stage but judging from Microsoft bold statements things look promising.

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It is worth noting that Edge will be Windows 10 exclusive meaning no backwards compatibility with older Windows but Microsoft promised to keep support of IE little longer due to corporates  still using it.

Little late but better than never.

Why am I returning to Dropbox

dboxSo about a year ago I wrote a post about how excited was I to switch to Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage. I heavily used it for a month only to return to Dropbox. Here is why:

The upload order:

I mostly use the cloud as a fast backup and lately the only one. Now I know that this is a very bad practice I still tend to do it. any way, most of the photos uploaded came from camera upload from my iPhone; most of the photos were out of order placing them at the bottom or the top of the list.

I managed to do a quick work around but hated to redo it every time I was looking for a specific photo and the work around will sometimes stop working.

The fail rate:

I will be the first to admit; the rate is not high. Never the less, this created the problem above as photos will not upload in the correct way. The fails came from both the iPhone and my Windows PC.

Windows 8.1:

The final nail in the coffin: Once I made the upgrade to 8.1, Windows automatically set to download everything without an option to turn this off. No joke. I searched the internet for hours with the only work around is to login on the web interface and turn it off.

Even that was a headache as the control options were as confusing. I decided to unlink the PC from my account and delete everything. Big mistake, everything was deleted from the web as well despite me unlinking the PC. After all that I decided that enough is enough.

Not only did I made the jump to DropBox I also format my PC and reinstalled windows 8 which in turn made my gaming performance better and used less C space.

Now comes the good part, the things I enjoyed:

I admit, having a full latest version of Office complimentary really sweeten the deal. I will still use OneDrive along with Office Online for my main documents editing.

Final Note: I am not knocking off OneDrive off the cloud table, for many this is the perfect option and if you use Office like 90% of the world then OneDrive is a very good choice.

Like I said, for me cloud is about uploading and backing up my pictures so Dropbox is the perfect option despite having little share controls with the free version. The Paid one gets you 1 TB just like Google Drive and OneDrive so for me it made sense to switch back to something I love.

Now if Google Drive had the camera upload instead of jumping through Google+, I would have maybe change my mind?

Any way, both OneDrive and Dropbox are a serious cloud options for any one serious about backing up backing up their collection.

Simpsons skins are coming to Minecraft

simpsons_minecraftCredit: http://mashable.com/

I think we are starting to see how Microsoft will start benefiting from the huge Minecraft purchase and the first downloadable skins are here. For only $1.99 you will receive The Simpsons skin pack on Xbox One with Xbox 360 around feb. The rest of the platforms will surly follow although I am surprised this isn’t on the PC yet.

While this is in no way a big thing, I honestly like it as it gives some colors to an already great game. Lets just hope they wont overdo it.

Microsoft is working on a new VR Headset for Xbox One

Xbox_One_VR

VRFocus confirmed that Microsoft is working on a new Virtual Reality Headset for the Xbox One. Not surprising since this is a direct response to Sony’s  Project Morpheus and Oculus Rift.

What I don’t understand is; Why are Sony and Microsoft spending time and money on gimmicks? There will be a time for virtual reality and the matrix but it is not this day. Concentrate on fixing your consoles and optimize them. Fix the whole 1080p drama and help develop bugs free games. Time and energy is spent on failed so called future tech that no one will probibly care about, just like the Wii controller, just PS cam, just like Xbox kinect and so on.

I remember when the 3D craze was just getting started and they were selling us that the home 3D screen are the future only that no one cared and android smart TVs were flying off shelf instead.

When will the big boys realize that we just want proper games? This whole next gen future gadgets thing is getting out of hand. Gone are the days when I can simply insert the CD and start the game. Now we have to download 15GB+ day one patches and hope that games will be fixed later.

I am yet to find a reason to buy a next gen console as I can get everything on the PC for way cheaper and better. I find my self interested more in retro than the modern era consoles and crap like this only makes me want to stay in the past.

Nintendo on the other hand is trying to stay true to gaming but the horrible Wii U 3rd party support and the overpriced controller is killing them. Gaming companies should go back into making games fun to play and enjoyable instead on concentrating on crap no one is asking for.

Noe excuse me while I go look for food while browsing eBay for some real old school games. Out.

Forza Horizon 2 is coming to PC [Rumor]

forza_PC

Rumors can be a tricky business, they can be started by anyone and fade away even quicker but once in awhile turn true. This may be the case with Forza Horizon 2 rumored to be coming to Windows 7 and 8 soon. It all started with Amazon listing Sunset Overdrive and Forza Horizon, and although both were pulled later this can only mean one thing: The rummer is true.

Why would Amazon suddenly make a listing by itself? The above makes sense with Xbox One not selling as anticipating it makes sense for Microsoft to port these tittles to a growing platform, aka PC gaming. I been saying this for sometime; Forza on the PC will be great. Downloadable cars and tracks by the mod community along with other extras, whats not to like?

Some will argue that it may hurt Xbox One sales as the struggling system needs exclusive for which I can simple reply with: It wont matter. PC gaming is not directly competing with consoles. Back at the day SEGA used to release and port games to the PC despite having a console.

My only concern is how will they market it? Games for Windows Live is dead so the way I see it they can release it on Steam or Windows Store. Steam is by far the best and the biggest PC gaming online store there is so releasing the game on valve’s tool is the best thing for business. The problem is, Microsoft store will be competing with Steam and the achievements thing handled by  non Microsoft software could be a problem.

If only Microsoft made Games for Windows Live more stable, easy to use and overall consumer acceptable like Origin is trying, things would have changed for the better. Never the less its not too late, as they say: Better Late than Never.

I’m looking forward to playing this on my PC with improved graphics and community created content and hope it seals well so that Microsoft can then start porting Halo and Gears of War collection in 4K.

Xbox One bundle is now $349

xbox_one_saleFor those of you still waiting to jump on the next Gen -Technically this Gen- now is your chance. Microsoft now lowered the Xbox One’s price to $349 with free game(s) and that is an amazing offer.

You can even get two full games should you go with the assassins creed bundle. True both of them are also available on Xbox 360 but with such a low price and free games it is getting harder not to take advantage. and with the saving you just made, you can go ahead and get more games like the Evil Within or even preorder Mortal Kombat 9 or Batman Arkham Knight.

This price is as low as it can get so don’t expect anything lower in the short term. Now of course if your not interested in the next Gen yet you can care less but sooner or later you will need to reconsidre to continue playing new games. More and more developers are starting to develop games for next gen only with Dying Light being a fine example. You can also get some of the pre gen games like Rayman Legends with better resolution and shorter load time not to mention The Evil Within.

Another thing I would like to point out that apart from the assassins creed bundle you will be getting the latest AAA tittles such as Sunset Overdrive and the next COD so your scoring big games for free and if for any reason you don’t like them you can trade them for something else among your friends. Not a bad deal at all.

Xbox One had a slow start but make no mistake; a stable online services aka Xbox Live + Next Gen console is never a bad thing and as more and more developers starts jumping aboard the console will soon be over populated with AAA games.

Just a reminder: Offer ends January 3rd 2015.

Whats next for Gears of War?

Gears_of_War_logoGears of War is my favorite shooter and adventure of all time, followed by Resident Evil, there I said it! XBOX FANBOY EXPOSED! Any way, I enjoyed and still do the horde mode in Gears of War 3 and  play it online with friends and while the ending was disappointing and the whole queen and the live fuel thing made little to zero sense the game play and graphics made up for its short comings.

Now that the story is over and Microsoft bought the franchise, whats next? Well, Microsoft said very little about the future but unconfirmed reports say that the next gears is already in development. Seeing as how the story ended Microsoft should plan very carefully or this could become the next Resident Evil. Going forward with “But not all the monster died” is lazy but at the same time I don’t want it to be a prequel as I hate prequels more than stepping on a LEGO.

What can be done is make it both a sequel and a prequel at the same time. What do I mean? The first few missions show us the events before Emergency Day explaining how Marcus ended up in jail. Next we have missions set during ?Gears of War 1,2 and 3 but with different characters and stories. And finally missions after Gears of War 3. This in my opinion will satisfy most of the fans assuming they pull a great story.

I enjoyed Judgment especially the missions thing where the game jumps to another location after each mission as opposite to just walk forward in the same settings. Same thing can be applied to the new game with better horde and possible a new mode altogether. Speaking of horde mode, please add a great multiplayer. Gears of War is a rare game where story and multiplayer are both equally fun, something many games failed to capture.

I don’t know what the future will bring but I’m excited for the next Gears tittle, and lets not forget that it will most probably lead to more Xbox One seals something Microsoft desperately needs. The next Gen is here and this is the perfect time and game to take advantage of the technology. Cant wait.

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Xbox 360 release

GTASA

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is released on Xbox 360 for only $3.74 and that’s a good thing. Fans of GTA and retro nostalgia gamers can now revisit an updated version of the best PS2 GTA game.  I for one own the original Xbox version and I am yet to play it. The 360 version offers updated resolution and achievements so I might just give it a go considering the low price.

We are yet to hear any news on the PS3 port but I believe it will eventually come. Anyway, great news and hope to see more of old school games ported AND optimized with a great low price. I already am in the process of completing my Sega arcade collection Xbox 360 and looks like I will be adding this to my non Sega to buy list.

DirectX 12 coming to Windows 10

Unreal 4 Engine 4.4 Supports DirectX 12!

So as expected, the upcoming Windows 10 will have DX12. Technically, DX12 can make things better and smother on development side. Still not sure on the upgrade but things looking good on the gaming side. I’m waiting for more information and actual test before deciding on getting windows 10 but like I said, exiting PC gaming days are ahead of use if and only if developers started to use the full power of PC gaming instead of using the bench mark set by PS4 and Xbox One.

I’m currently building a new PC and thinking of going 64 now that 4GB is becoming standard and newer games may require more soon. Will update you all once actual testing takes place. Hoping that Microsoft starts taking PC gaming seriouse again.