First off, there's going to be two flavours of Xbox 360:
Xbox 360 - £279.99
This will contain:
•Xbox 360 console
•20GB detachable hard drive
•Wireless Xbox Live headset
•High-definition AV cables
•Xbox 360 Media Remote Control (limited time)
•Xbox Live Silver membership (more on Live further down)
Xbox 360 Core Pack - 209.99
•Xbox 360 console
•Xbox Live Silver membership
•Standard AV cables
You'll need the HDD to play Xbox games though, so unless you're not bothered at all by this, the Standard pack would be the way to go, in my opinion.
There will also be two levels of Xbox Live. Silver and Gold.
Silver allows user to download extra content including new levels, weapons, game demos, community-created content through Xbox Live Marketplace.
Gold be the same as Silver but with the added feature of being able to play online against others.
Players will be able to personalise Live with their own snapshot from the camera, engage in video messaging conversations, online tournaments and ladders, play with celebrities and join sponsored tournaments. What's more, the first month of the Gold "premium" service will be free, and various free showcase weekends should follow.
Games seem to have a RRP of 49.99, but e-tailers are already listing them as 44.99 and some even at 39.99 - suffice to say it won't take long until they're down the the 35 mark or less. Microsoft hasn't announced a launch date yet, and so there are no specific launch titles. This isn't help by MS announcing a launch window - titles that will be out within 90 days of console launch.
They have however said ""So much is going to happen in the next couple of months. My view is simple: You need to make sure that you have the key genres covered at launch. Take care of sports, racing, action adventure, fantasy, first-person shooters. I think there are check marks that need to go in boxes to make sure that gamers have games they are looking for in a particular genre. We're still tracking 24 to 40 Xbox 360 games for release before the end of the calendar year. I think you'll see that all the titles we got excited about at E3 are still firmly in that launch window [90 days from the release of the Xbox 360]."
Titles doing the rounds at the moment include:
•Project Gotham Racing 360
•Ghost Recon 3
•Call of Duty 2
•Kameo - Elements of Power
•Need for Spped: Most Wanted
•Perfect Dark Zero
•Dead or Alive 4
If you've got a question about Xbox 360 - stick it in here, and then we can keep this thread as a sort of FAQ as and when the answers are found out, if that makes sense?
Edit - (Thanks to Rumpadodosnitzle for this):
Xbox Live info - If you have XBOX Live for XBOX 1, then from now on, you have XBOX Live Gold. Old XBOX Live = New XBOX Live Gold Same things - online play, and whatnot.
Silver is the new package which JUST lets you download new levels for games, look at scoreboards, chat perhaps...that sort of stuff...but NO playing online... So its fairly safe to assume XBOX Live Gold = £40 a year, and we know XBOX Live Silver is free....
We also know the one account is switchable between 360 and 1, and people on the 360 with a 1 game, can even play people on the 1 console with the same game. So if you allready have XBOX Live on XBOX 1, your set up allready with a gold account.
Edit - (Thanks to Game for this):
For those of you that have been wondering, just a quick word. Oblivion does NOT REQUIRE a hard drive to work on Xbox 360. It will work on every Xbox 360. We would recommend you get one if you have the means, but it is in no way a requirement. - The Elder Scrolls Forums
Edit - Prices of official accessories:
•Faceplates - £14.99
•Controller (wired) - £24.99
•Component HD-AV Cable - £19.99
•Hard Drive (20GB) - £69.99
•Memory Unit (64MB) - £22.99
•Wireless Controller - £32.99
•Play & Charge Kit (recharges Wireless Controller during play) - £14.99
•Rechargeable battery pack - £9.99
•Wireless Networking Adapter - £59.99
•Headset - £14.99
•Universal Media Remote - £19.99
•SCART AV Cable - £17.99
•VGA HD-AV Cable - £19.99
Edit - (Thanks to Famitsu! for this):
•The first batch of 279.99 units (launch) have chrome dvd trays instead of standard white.
•The HD on the 279.99 units is preloaded with at least one mini game and around 1.5 hours of content like game trailers, movie trailers, music samplers etc.
Edit - Information on GamesIndustry.biz:
The console can be switched on and off wirelessly using the Media Remote control or the wireless game controller.
You will definitely need a hard disk to play Xbox 1 games.
Wherever you are - whether it's a game, film or piece of music - you can pull up the Guide (remember it from GDC?), which is a bit like a universal Start Menu, that allows you to look for friends, adjust playback and options, and even sort through people you've played against recently - listing them by reputation or what-have-you.
The pages of the Xbox 360 user interface are called "blades".
The Live blade is the default if you have a Live account, and shows you your gamer-card including a selected image (or photograph), your gamertag, the number of games you've played, your Gamerscore (more on that in a second), your achievements and your reputation.
More on Gamerscore - each Xbox 360 game gives out certain points based on accomplishments, and as well as being able to view a list of your individual achievements ("Finished level 10," etc) you are also given a total based on this. Xbox 1 games will not contribute to these stats.
The Game blade allows you to manage stuff like save-games, as well as accessing demos and trailers (standard and high-definition versions).
The System blade offers greater control over your individual settings. You can specify, for example, that you prefer to invert the right analogue stick camera control and this will then be picked up on in any game you play.
Likewise, the System blade allows greater control over family settings. Microsoft thinks this is very important, Satchell said, and will therefore allow all manner of controls at a system or individual profile level. You can choose to allow specific people or the whole system access to certain games, DVDs (based on ratings - apparently "99 per cent" of DVDs now supply that information direct to the console), and areas of Live. Online, you can opt to ban certain friends, voice messaging, video messaging (if the camera is available), downloadables or just control online play.
If you yank the hard disk off the top of the Xbox 360 when it's in the middle of doing something, it will not corrupt it beyond repair or damage the File Allocation Table or anything like that - the hard disk uses a "transaction model" so that if you interrupt a transfer the data simply isn't present and the space is presumably reallocated when you next save data to it.
The "ring of light" around the power button highlights which wireless controller is being used, highlighting player one's activity in the top-left quadrant. When the console is laid on its side, it senses this and starts using the top-left quadrant as you see it with the console laid flat. What's more, the ring of light motif is spread throughout the Xbox 360 interface, so you can see which player pulled up the "Guide" page as you're watching a film or playing a game and, in the words of Satchell, "slap him".
Cross-platform development between Windows and Xbox is being actively pursued - in the future, Microsoft hopes that people will be able to play games against each other using either platform.
On the issue of cooling - Satchell said he thought the system had three fans (he said he wasn't sure but thought it was three, so we'd open to correction on that one), and we couldn't hear them at all as he spoke. When you play a DVD, it powers down to just one fan. It's "a lot" better than the "wind tunnel" alpha kits, he said.
Transferring your Xbox Live account to Xbox 360 will be part of the initial set-up procedure when you first plug in your console, and existing users have "Gold" membership.
People buying the Xbox 360 GBP 279.99 package - the higher-end one - get a 30-day free trial of Gold membership on Xbox Live. Actual pricing has yet to be announced - although some would beg to differ.
Your "reputation" stat is based on your activities online. Rather like an eBay rating, people who have encountered you can rate you positively or negatively, and this is reflected in your reputation.
Xbox Live will allow you to play in various Zones - there will be causal, pro, family, and underground (where "anything goes") and perhaps more - and these will allow you to go for whatever kind of experience you like.
Marketplace is also accessible through the Live blade. As you know, this is where you can download premium content and, in the future, content created by users and sold to other users via a micro-payment system. Marketplace does not require you to insert individual game discs to see content available for those games.
DVDs can be played even if you don't have the remote control, unlike Xbox 1.
DVDs will play back in progressive-scan, with the Xbox 360 up-sampling to prog-scan in the case of DVDs that don't support it.
When ripping music to the hard drive, album information is now stored on the HDD, with a huge amount there by default and more available from an online source - presumably something like CDDB, which will be familiar to people who rip their own CDs already.
The Jeff Minter-created visualisation tool for music accepts input from all control pads and the video camera, allowing you to create various effects on-screen.
iPods are detected by default, as are PSPs, and by our watch it took about 2 or 3 seconds for the Xbox 360 to notice they were there. With an iPod plugged in you can play music direct through the Dashboard software, with visualisations, or you can play a slideshow of photographs.
For now, you can play music and access photographs on the PSP, but you can't do video yet. That may happen, but Satchell joked that Sony wasn't exactly giving them a helping hand there.
Interestingly, you can actually have that slideshow draw photographs from another external device, so - as in our demo - you could play music from an iPod while using a slideshow of photos from a PlayStation Portable simultaneously.
All of these devices will be supported by default, and any firmware updates that are necessary - Microsoft is hoping for very few - can be made available via Live.
You can also plug in a laptop or PC (or not plug it in - if you're using wireless networking) and play content direct from that. This is through Windows Media Player Extender, the software for which is pre-installed on the Xbox 360. In our example, Satchell first streamed a high-definition Project Gotham Racing 3 trailer, and then drew upon a high-definition recording of Star Wars: Episode II apparently captured on his home TV.
RGB video output will only be possible if you purchase the GBP 17.99 cable separately - regardless of whether you paid GBP 209.99 or GBP 279.99 for your Xbox 360 console.
Video cables from Xbox 1 will not work with Xbox 360.
The wireless networking adapter plugs into the USB 2.0 port on the back of the console and is "like a small pack of cigarettes" in terms of size.
The camera is a separate peripheral that will plug into one of the USB 2.0 slots and will be released next year - date TBC.
While the Media Remote will be bundled with Xbox 360's GBP 279.99 offering, this will apparently only be for a limited time based on available units. We'll get more details on that when we can.
You can plug in a keyboard but this is for text input only - including in massively-multiplayer games. You can't use it to play games and that was a design choice.
If a third-party peripheral manufacturer or publisher wanted to let more than four players play on one game, Microsoft would be happy to help them create a peripheral to do that.
Microsoft also plans to have kiosks available - presumably in game stores and other public locations - where you can download content. Whether this will be to the detachable hard disk itself or a memory card is a detail that wasn't clarified.
Xbox Live GOLD Pricing
No need to register with credit card. And it will be payable monthly, three monthly or anually:
one month (6.99 Euro, GBP 4.99), three months (19.99 Euro, GBP 14.99) or 12 months (59.99 Euro, GBP 39.99).
Full story on Games Industry [URL]one month (6.99 Euro, GBP 4.99), three months (19.99 Euro, GBP 14.99) or 12 months (59.99 Euro, GBP 39.99). [/URL]
A long wait awaits me on the 1st for their midnight opening
It's only when this starts to change that manufacturers may start to take notice.
On my friends modded box you can surf the net, watch mpegs, use media center, winamp, pretty much any application available on a PC. It's great.
Why do they insist in being so stubborn. I know they've changed it for the 360, but having to use a remote to get it to play DVDs?? That's nothing but shameless money grabbing and makes a mockery of their supposed market leading status.
It's all about money and it's pathetic. I may be very tempted to buy a modded 360, the only thing putting me off is whether or not you can use Live on it.
It won't even hold movies, only trailers. WOOHOO
Still, we'll have to wait and see.
The 'need a HDD to play Xbox games' thing is because the emulator will be stored on the HDD. This will allow the Xbox discs to be read and executed properly.