The console wars (remember them?) are set to heat up in 2017.
It’s hard to tell which consoles are going to be able to trade blows with Sony’s PlayStation 4 Pro and the PlayStation VR headset in 2017, but there are two consoles being released which might just be up to the task.
Microsoft’s intimidating sounding Xbox Project Scorpio and the Nintendo Switch both have expected release dates this year but we can expect to see the Switch much earlier. Nintendo will be holding an event where it will announce details about the Switch such as how much damage it will do to your pocket around mid-January, and we can expect to see it on shelves at some point in March.
Microsoft has said that we can expect to see the Xbox Scorpio at some point in late 2017. Early signs suggest it looks like the perfect console for more hardcore gamers who don’t want to delve into computer gaming for whatever reason.
Microsoft has said the Xbox Scorpio will quite possibly be the most powerful console that has been released to date, with Xbox Chief Phil Spencer even dubbed it a “premium console”, it will feature native 4K resolution, VR, a slimmer body than its fat predecessor the Xbox One, an internal power supply, backwards compatibility, and 4K Ultra HD for video streaming services such as Netflix. Let’s just see if Microsoft can deliver all those features and keep the $400 price tag. If so, it may just be time to go out and buy a 4K TV if you haven’t already.
“When we designed Scorpio we really thought about this balanced rig that could come together at a price-point. Like, I want Scorpio to be at a console price-point, I’m not trying to go and compete with a high-end rig. And because we’re building one spec, we’re able to look at the balance between all the components and make sure that it’s something we really hit that matters to consumers and gamers.” Said Spencer in an interview with nzgamer.com.
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Nintendo Switch targets a different audience than the “premium” Xbox Scorpio. Switch is a sort of hybrid gaming system; it has a docking station that allows it to be connected to your TV or monitor, or you can take the controller apart and connect to the device itself for on the go gaming (picture an iPad with joysticks).
But the rather lackluster processor and graphics card might barely be able to support 1080P gaming and might not even be able to handle the current generation of games. In the trailer that Nintendo released in October of 2016 (see below) it shows off exclusive titles such as Mario Kart and Zelda, but also showed a game I wasn’t ever expecting to see on a Nintendo game system, especially after the terrible performance of the Wii-U: Skyrim.
One reviewer thinks we may see something of a pricing war this year.
“There’s more than just a console war riding on this. UWP needs to be a huge success to keep windows relevant and relied on. So, there’s a good chance Microsoft may go to match the PS Pro on price and really push all of Windows features into the home, outperforming and out functioning the PS4 Pro by a wide margin. The concern is that Sony and Nintendo don’t or can’t fight back, and it becomes that feared one horse race that we don’t need!” said windowscentral.com user nekowhizz on the Xbox Scorpio.
Below: First Look at Nintendo Switch