News Posts matching "Xbox Live"

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Microsoft Gifts Xbox Live Veterans 10th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox 360

Microsoft's Xbox Live service is turning 10 soon, and the company plans to celebrate it by gifting some of its most loyal members with a special edition Xbox 360 console, which features a refreshing new color scheme, and "A decade of entertainment" logo printed on its sides. There's no clarity on what one has to do to be able to receive one of these, but we'd imagine only the most loyal Xbox Live members, probably with active memberships dating back years, get the console. A Kotaku reader was surprised to find one of these packages at his doorstep. He never ordered it, never entered a giveaway, and isn't affiliated with the gaming industry. If you've been a long enough active member of the service which started in October 2002, there's finally reason your subscription billing address could come handy.

Source: Kotaku

Xbox 360 250 GB Sold for $99, Too

In May, Microsoft sent ripples down the gaming industry by launching a subsidized $99 Xbox 360 + Kinect bundle. The bundle included an Xbox 360 4 GB console, Kinect, and "Kinect Adventures." The company applied a similar subsidy plan to the 250 GB HDD-equipped variant of the console, priced at the same $99, but which lacks Kinect bundle. One can now get a 250 GB Xbox 360 + Kinect bundle for as low as $149. Under Microsoft's subsidy plans, full-featured consoles are sold at low prices, in exchange for customers subscribing to Xbox Live for at $15 per month for two years.

Source: The Verge

SEGA's Nights Coming to the PC

Sega is continuing to reach into its back catalog, and fans are loving it. The latest HD remaster from the house of Sonic is the Saturn classic, Nights into Dreams. The digital re-release will be available on Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, and Windows PC this fall. The updated version adds widescreen HD graphics, as well as support for leaderboards, trophies, and achievements. The original game will be available to play in "Saturn Mode," just in case you're not fond of the sharper graphics and textures.

Microsoft Prepares a $99 Xbox 360 + Kinect Bundle, But There's a Catch

An Xbox 360 with Kinect bundle for the price of a new PlayStation 2 is simply too good to be true, but it's real, at least partially. Microsoft is adopting a new sales model for its Xbox 360 which will let customers pay just US $99 for the console (Xbox 360 4GB with Kinect), but put them on a 2 year subscription plan that costs $15 a month. The subscription would give customers Xbox Live Gold membership, and some additional streaming content from cable or sports package providers. On top of this, customers will also get a 2 year warranty cover for the console and its accessories.

With this bundle, Xbox is looking to compete with the likes of Apple TV and Roku. Why them? Because according to Microsoft, Xbox 360 is used more for content consumption than gaming. Just like with contract-bound cellphones, there is a fee for early opt-out of the subscription's 2 year period. Let's punch some numbers: Microsoft is giving you an otherwise $299 product for $99, with $15 per month over 2 years (that's $360 worth subscription). At the end of two years, you end up spending $459. In comparison, with the $299 bundle and the cheapest Xbox Live Gold option, you would be spending $420 by the end of two years. So while there is a small catch, you get to take home a nice game console with Kinect for cheap. Choose with your wallets.

Source: The Verge

Xbox 360 Kinect Dons the Union Jack

To celebrate the 2012 Summer Olympics hosted by London, Microsoft came up with a new limited edition variant of its Xbox 360 Kinect game console, which dons the Union Jack. Officially, it is called the Xbox 360 Special Edition 4 GB Kinect Celebration Pack. The pack includes an Xbox 360 4 GB console, a Kinect sensor, a wireless controller, and two games: Kinect Adventures and Kinect Sports. It also includes a 3-month subscription of Xbox Live Gold. The bundle will be priced at £249.99 (US $405.8).

Source: Slashgear

Microsoft To Launch $100 Xbox Lite Before Moving to Durango

Shortly before launching its next-generation game console (codenamed "Durango"), Microsoft is said to be working on a new product (SKU, rather), called Xbox Lite. This new console will cost as little as $100. According to a source, Xbox Lite will be ARM-based, and scheduled for "late 2013 which does Arcade-style games & all the current & future media apps with Kinect (with near-mode)." What makes the rumor plausible is that ARM chips advancing faster than ever, and so is the ecosystem of casual games on Xbox Live Arcade, which don't have very high graphical detail (and hence, aren't resource-heavy). Many of these casual games, along with Kinect-enabled games, could make up the ecosystem around Xbox Lite.

Source: BGR

Durango Out in 2013, Lacks Optical Drive: Report

Microsoft's next-generation Xbox game console, codenamed "Durango", will arrive in 2013. More importantly, it is said to completely lack an optical disc drive. The lack of a disc drive could mark a milestone in the evolution of console game distribution. Microsoft already has a high-volume digital distribution platform in Xbox Live, its significance in a post-disc console era will only increase.

This is not to say that Microsoft will completely do away with physical media, an interchangeable NAND flash-based media could also take shape, seeing how prices of NAND flash-storage has come drastically down over the past couple of years. It would be a going back to solid-state game cartridges, for home consoles. Some portable consoles use solid-state media even today.Source: Mail Online

All White Xbox 360 Kinect Starts Shipping

Microsoft started shipping a special-edition white Xbox 360 4 GB Kinect, which is a return to the console's original colors, but on its new chassis design. The bundle includes a white colored Kinect, and white colored controllers that aren't completely lifted from the classic Xbox 360 design (the back side is white instead of gray). The bundle also includes copies of Kinect Adventures and Kinect Sports, and a 3-month subscription to Xbox Live Gold. The bundle is priced at US $299.99.

Source: Major Nelson

Modern Warfare 3 Sets Record for Biggest Entertainment Launch

Shattering its own day-one sales records, Activision Publishing, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, announced that its highly-anticipated Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 has become the biggest entertainment launch ever with an estimated sell-through of more than $400 million and more than 6.5 million units in North America and the United Kingdom alone in the first 24 hours of its release, according to Charttrack and retail customer sell-through information.

This marks the third consecutive year that the Call of Duty franchise has set day one launch records across all forms of entertainment, something no other entertainment franchise in any medium has ever accomplished. Last year, in North America and the United Kingdom , Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops had estimated day-one sell-through of $360 million and in 2009, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, set day-one records with estimated sell through of $310 million, according to Charttrack and retail customer sell-through information.

On November 8, 2011, millions of fans attended more than 13,000 midnight openings at retail stores worldwide. According to Microsoft, after just two days, the number of gamers playing simultaneously on Xbox Live set a new peak concurrency record.

Valve Announces Counter Strike: Global Offensive (CS: GO)

Valve, creators of best-selling game franchises (such as Counter-Strike, Half-Life, Left 4 Dead, Portal, and Team Fortress) and leading technologies (such as Steam and Source), today announced Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS: GO).

Targeted for release via Playstation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, and Steam (for PC and Mac) in early 2012, CS: GO will expand upon the team-based action gameplay that it pioneered when it was launched exactly 12 years ago (CS beta 1, August 1999).

Sharkoon Announces Lightweight high-end, 3D Sound Headset for PS3, Xbox 360 & PC

CompuExpert, a division of Digital Interactive Systems Corp., today announced the Sharkoon X-Tactic SR will begin shipping August 16 in North America, and will be available exclusively from Amazon.com. The latest in the award-winning line of specially designed gaming headsets delivers the ultimate in multi-directional audio performance for maximum immersion and combat advantage, yet is incredibly lightweight for continued comfort over long hours of gameplay. Experience a whole new world of crushing explosions, screaming commands and powerful game sound output through the Sound Control Unit (SCU) with the new 3D Sound Expander.

The X-Tatic SR features Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Pro Logic II and Dolby Headphone, creating completely new sound dimensions that allow players to hear enemies approach from any direction. In addition, the SCU offers one additional connection for a second headset with 3.5mm jack, so two can enjoy excellent surround sound.

Sharkoon Announces Pair of Stereo Headsets for Game Consoles

At gamescom, Sharkoon presents two new gaming headsets: With their platform independent surround sound headset and bestselling "X-Tatic Digital," the accessory specialist introduces two new additional stereo models which are specifically designed for use on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 gaming consoles.

The Sharkoon X-Tatic SX has a white headband, white ear cups and a light green design application to not only match the Xbox 360, but also provide direct microphone access to the Xbox console and support VoIP voice communications for the online service Xbox Live. The microphone connects through the integrated cable controller of the headset with the enclosed chat cable (3.5 - 2.5mm stereo jack) which then directly plugs into the Xbox game pad. The headset is powered through the console's USB port. Another adapter cable is provided (3.5 stereo jack into 2 x Cinch) to connect with the stereo sound of the Xbox, it is simply attached from the AV Multi Out cable of the console to the audio input of the TV device. The headset cable offers USB connection and a stereo input 3.5mm microphone plug, in which the X-Tatic SX can also be used on the PC.

Microsoft Set to Release $99 60GB Xbox Live Starter Pack Next Week

The title pretty much says it all, next week Microsoft will start selling a Starter Pack for all Xbox 360 Arcade console fan that have never gone past the casual offline gaming. The pack includes everything you need to jump into Xbox LIVE with the Xbox 360: a spacious 60GB Hard Drive, Headset, 3-month LIVE Gold subscription, and Ethernet cable. The Xbox Live 60GB starter pack can be pre-ordered now from GameStop for $99.99, with an expected U.S. ship date of November 4th. (Ed. note: The same kit should be available on or before Nov. 21st in Europe for 79€)


Source: Xbox360 Fanboy

Microsoft Details New Xbox 360 and Xbox LIVE Service Improvements, Enables HDD Play

Based on the feedback received from the beginning of the Xbox LIVE entertainment dashboard, Microsoft said today it will be enhancing the service soon with a new update. Among the new features that will be included, one deserves special attention. Called "play from hard drive" it will allow Xbox 360 owners to copy their games from the game disc to their hard drive and also start the game from there for faster load times. The game disc is still required for piracy reasons though, but it won't be spinning after the game is started. A quick look at some of the other features you might find interesting follows below.

Microsoft Bashes British Gamer from Xbox Live for Registering with his Real Name

This story comes to prove what can happen if your name does not fit the standards. Last night, a British gamer was banned from the Xbox Live network, for registering with the RichardGaywood gamertag. From Microsoft's point of view nick names that violate the XBL policies are being removed immediately. You can't have a sexual term in you name. Yes, but what if the guy's last name is indeed Gaywood. His real full name is Richard Michael Gaywood. Do we have to change our real names so we can register and get permitted to access what we have paid for.


Source: Kotaku

Microsoft Strips Xbox Live Gamertags of Confirmed Cheaters

Xbox Live director of programming Larry "Major Nelson" Hyrb wrote on his blog today, that the Xbox Live Gamertags of confirmed cheaters have been corrected. He explained what his team is doing to the accounts of the most serious offenders:
  • Resetting the entire Gamerscore for an account to zero
  • The account will be unable to regain all previously obtained achievements and Gamerscore, however, the players will have the ability to gain future Achievements by earning them fairly, like the majority of the Xbox LIVE community does.
  • The account will be clearly labeled as a cheater for the community to view on xbox.com. In dash, the personal view of the gamercard will be labeled as well.
"Xbox Live remains committed to keeping the service free of cheating in order to maintain a fair and level playing field for everyone," Hyrb wrote. To find out more about Gamerscore corrections read the FAQ on Xbox.com.Source: Xbox Live's Major Nelson

Free Arcade Games On Xbox Live Coming Soon

In a landmark announcement during the keynote address at the annual Game Developers Conference (GDC), Microsoft Corp. promised to soon allow Xbox LIVE members to play, rate and share community-created games. As the first in the industry to pioneer high-speed online gaming and high-definition games, Xbox 360 once again broke new ground by introducing a new, open distribution service for games created by the community and soon playable by its 10 million Xbox LIVE members. Community-created games on Xbox LIVE will quickly double the size of the Xbox 360 game library. By the end of 2008, Xbox 360 owners will have access to more than 1,000 games, making it the largest, most creatively diverse library across all next-generation platforms.

Microsoft Details Undertow as Free XBLA Title

Microsoft has announced the details of the free Xbox Live Arcade game that was promised by Xbox Live general manager Marc Whitten in response to the service's recent online troubles. Coming as a compensation to all the frustration caused, Microsoft will offer Chair Entertainment's arcade shooter Undertow for free to all Xbox Live members from 2AM PST on Wedenesday, January 23 until 11:59PM PST on Sunday, January 27. Otherwise, Undertow is normally available worldwide for 800 Microsoft Points. "If you have already purchased the game, you can contact support and they will take care of you," wrote Xbox Live programming director Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb.

Source: Shacknews, GamerScore Blog

GoldenEye Almost Came to Xbox Live

N64 fans will remember GoldEye as being an instant classic, and many gamers have been calling for Nintendo or Microsoft to release it on the Virtual Console and Xbox Live Arcade respectively, which had always seemed unlikely. However, Rare has recently revealed that the game was within two months of being released on Xbox Live. According to the game’s original developer, the port had been in development for several months, and would be identical to the original other than that it would feature an online multiplayer mode and several characters would have to be removed due to licensing issues. Unfortunately, just as it was nearing completion, Microsoft and Nintendo couldn’t agree on the financial side of things – apparently whether Nintendo would receive a one-off payment or a cut of the revenues.Source: 1UP.com

Microsoft to Deliver BT Vision Content via Xbox 360

Microsoft Corp. and telecommunications leader BT announced they are bringing together the next-generation TV service BT Vision with Microsoft’s Xbox 360 games and entertainment system. All BT broadband customers will have the unique opportunity to receive the best in high-definition gaming, television and movies through an Xbox 360 console, in a powerful, all-in-one entertainment experience. BT Vision, which is powered by the Microsoft Mediaroom Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) platform, plans to make this first-of-its-kind device and service offering available to customers in the middle of 2008. The announcement was made during the keynote address by Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates and Microsoft President Robbie Bach of the Entertainment & Devices Division at 2008 International CES on Jan. 6.

Xbox LIVE Marketplace Adds HD Content from ABC, MGM and Disney Channel

As part of Bill Gates' CES keynote speech, Robbie Bach, Microsoft's president, Entertainment & Devices Division, announced that TV programs from ABC Television and Disney Channel will be added to Xbox LIVE programming available to Xbox 360s in the States. In addition to the American television additions, MGM will bring its library of movies to the mix. Later this month, all US Xbox LIVE members will begin to have access to certain TV shows and movies from the ABC Television Network, ABC Family, ABC News, Disney Channel and Toon Disney as part of an agreement with Disney-ABC Television Group. More than 500 hours of content, in both standard definition and high definition when available, will be offered including "Lost" and "Grey’s Anatomy." On the MGM side of things, such titles available as part of the deal will include "Rocky," "Terminator," and "Silence of the Lambs". United Artists, an MGM sister company, will also make select films available on demand.Source: Pocket-lint

Microsoft Sued Over Xbox Outage

It was a matter of time since someone decide to take his chance in court over the last Xbox LIVE service issues. Microsoft now faces a lawsuit over recent problems with its Xbox Live online gaming service. Three Texas residents filed a lawsuit Friday on behalf of themselves and others who have had trouble connecting to Xbox Live in recent weeks. The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Houston, claims Microsoft's outages represent a breach of contract and negligent misrepresentation for which the software maker is liable. The suit doesn't claim specific damages, but notes the amount is in excess of $5 million. In the suit, the plaintiffs allege that Microsoft should have known strong holiday sales would tax its servers. "Microsoft knew the increase in subscriptions would increase game-play on its servers, yet failed to provide adequate access and service to Xbox Live and its subscribers."Source: CNET News

Xbox Live Users to Receive Free Arcade Game

Following a number of connectivity issues with the Xbox Live service over the Christmas period, Microsoft is to offer all its subscribers globally a free Xbox Live Arcade game as a "token of appreciation." The announcement was made by Xbox Live's general manager Marc Whitten on the Major Nelson blog, who explained that while the service was never completely offline, the team was "disappointed in our performance." The statement went on to explain that the issues were caused by the "largest sign-up of new members to Xbox Live" in the service's five year history, and while the game is not offered as compensation for the problems, it's instead being billed as a "thank you for your loyalty during this holiday period." Details on the offer will be made available in the coming weeks, and at this point it's not clear if users will be offered a free choice of game, or whether a specific title or selection of titles will be pinpointed by Microsoft.Source: GamesIndustry.biz

Microsoft to Compensate Xbox LIVE Members for the Network Issues

Members who paid for Gold accounts may receive compensations for the holidays Xbox LIVE downtime. While nothing has been officially announced, a Microsoft rep said "...we will definitely be doing something for our Gold members that weren’t able to get online over the last week." Microsoft still hasn't completely resolved the issue, but company's Larry Hryb reassured that "As people have noticed, we have made good progress. We have a bit more work to do, but we’re doing much better now. I know some of you still may be having issues, and we’re working on those."Source: The Bitbag, Shacknews
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