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Microsoft Announces Xbox Series X Games Showcase Event

After Sony has showcased Unreal Engine 5 capabilities on the new PlayStation 5 console, there was a counterpart event missing from Microsoft. However, Microsoft has announced today that the company will host a live stream event on July 23rd. That is the date when Microsoft will host the event on YouTube and Twitch. Starting at 9 am PT time, the company will showcase the capabilities of the new Xbox Series X console. Possibly, Microsoft will show ray tracing and all the latest technology advancements with AMD's RDNA2 graphics card found inside the new console. What we can expect in terms of games is Halo Infinite and maybe new Forza and Gears of War games. Either way, we have to wait and find out on July 23rd.

ASUS ROG Announces Strix Electro Punk Edition Gaming Peripherals

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced the release of new Electro Punk peripherals with a striking black-and-pink color scheme. First introduced in April, the Electro Punk colors can now be found on the ROG Strix Go 2.4 gaming headset, ROG Strix Scope TKL gaming keyboard, ROG Strix Impact II gaming mouse and other gaming and lifestyle accessories.

ROG Strix Go 2.4 Electro Punk is a USB-C 2.4 GHz wireless headset that enables stable, lag-free audio on smart devices, PC, Sony PlayStation, Microsoft Xbox or Nintendo Switch (in Handheld mode). The Electro Punk edition features pink piping in and around the headband, ear pads, and ROG logo to give it that a special touch, while the rest stays bold black to prevent stains. Strix Go 2.4 has a detachable boom mic powered by AI Noise-Canceling technology that intelligently eliminates unwanted background noise for clear voice communication for work or play.

Microsoft Rumored To Release Budget Xbox Series S Console

In a recent report by the Verge, Microsoft is reportedly planning a budget console to go along with the Xbox Series X known as the Xbox Series S. The Xbox Series S will be a successor to the popular Xbox One S, codenamed Lockhart it's set to feature the key next-generation improvements found in the Xbox Series X and provide them at a lower price point.

Sources say that the Xbox Series S will target 1080p 60FPS and 1440p 6̶0̶F̶P̶S̶ 30FPS gaming performance, this will be achieved with roughly 1/3rd of the GPU power at 4 TeraFLOPs, and 10 GB of GDDR6 RAM. The Xbox Series S console is rumored to share the same 7 nm AMD Zen 2 SoC a̶t̶ ̶a̶ ̶l̶o̶w̶e̶r̶ ̶c̶l̶o̶c̶k̶ and the same ultra-fast PCIe 4.0 SSD. The console may not feature a disc drive like the Xbox One S All Digital Edition. Microsoft is yet to publicly say anything about the console, so take these rumors with a grain of salt.

Update Jun 30th: Sources tell Eurogamer that Microsoft is planning to unveil the console at an event in August.

Activision Announces Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time

Bandicoots get ready fur it, Crash is moving 4-ward into 2020 with a brand-new game that's built from the ground up and "It's About Time." No, literally! Activision Blizzard, Inc., and developer Toys for Bob, are giving fans the true sequel to the original trilogy with Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time. Our lovingly absurd marsupials are back and putting a fresh spin, jump and wump on conflicts of cosmic proportions, discovering expansive new worlds, unexpected allies, larger-than-life boss battles and powerful new Quantum Masks that must be united to restore order to the multiverse. Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time will be available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 4 Pro, Xbox One and Xbox One X on October 2, 2020. Pre-orders are available now.
Bandicoot 4: Its About Time Bandicoot 4: Its About Time Bandicoot 4: Its About Time

Microsoft Project xCloud Servers to be Powered by Xbox Series X SoC

Microsoft is preparing to launch a competitive product to Google's Stadia and Amazon's Project Tempo, which are both game streaming services. To Microsoft's advantage, the company has experience in building gaming systems and using cloud technology to integrate them. While both Google and Amazon are cloud providers and have the infrastructure to implement game streaming services, Microsoft has its Xbox division, which has been in the gaming industry for a long time. Despite already owning the infrastructure, Microsoft wants to use the hardware from its Xbox consoles as a base of the upcoming game streaming service called Project xCloud.

According to sources of Tom Warren, senior editor at Verge, Microsoft will be re-using the Xbox SoCs found in their consoles. According to the source, in the beginning, Microsoft is going to use Xbox One S blades to power its game streaming service. After that, the company will upgrade its servers with more powerful Xbox Series X SoC. As a reminder, the Xbox Series X SoC has 8 Ryzen CPU cores based on "Zen 2" µarch, RDNA 2 GPU capable of delivering 12 TFLOPs, 16 GB of GDDR6 memory and a mighty fast SSD. This will be enough to satisfy game streaming service demands and power all of the AAA titles users will be playing once it is available.
Xbox Series X SoC

Apex Legends Coming to Steam and Nintendo Switch with Cross-Play

During Electronic Arts Play 2020 event, Respawn, the maker of popular battle royale Apex legends, has announced that Apex Legends is getting cross-play support. Not only that, but Respawn is now launching Apex Legends on Steam and Nintendo Switch platforms so the cross-play can be bigger than ever. Now, players that use either PC (Steam or EA Origin), Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, can be brought together and play against each other. However, Respawn didn't just announce the cross-play support. Along with it, they have announced a new seasonal event called the "Lost Treasures Collection". In this event, players get a new game mode called "Armed and Dangerous Evolved". This game mode allows for new player abilities and resurrection of knocked out players. You can find more about it in the video below.
Apex Legends Lost Treasures Collection Event Apex Legends Lost Treasures Collection Event

JBL Announces the Quantum Range of Headsets

When it comes to competitive gaming, sound is survival - and JBL knows great sound. Today, the company announced the launch of first-ever JBL headset range in India designed exclusively for gamers, featuring the JBL QuantumSOUND Signature. The JBL Quantum Range delivers immersive audio quality and pinpoint accuracy to provide a true competitive advantage. From the thrill of tracking enemies in FPS games, to engaging in epic MOBA battles, the JBL Quantum Range amplifies victories with a sound experience that transforms each headset into a crown for the everyday champion.

The launch follows an exciting announcement of the JBL's association with lifestyle power brand and gaming organization "100 Thieves" bringing on board some of the top competitive global gamers in the industry. The exciting new range will cater to a burgeoning gaming industry in the country. The online gaming segment was estimated to be a $1.1 billion opportunity by 2021, according to a Google-KPMG report in 2017, which is now expected to increase at much faster pace. With one of the world's largest youth population, India is poised to become one of the world's leading markets in the gaming sector.

Bang & Olufsen and Xbox Partner up to Deliver Highend Audio Proposition for Gaming

The purpose of this new collaboration is to create a new audio proposition to cater for the high-end segment within gaming by leveraging on Bang & Olufsen's core capabilities of sound, design and craft. This will include "Designed for Xbox" functionalities, which will ensure seamless connectivity and an enhanced user experience. Vice President and Head of Product Management at Bang & Olufsen, Christoffer Poulsen is excited about the new collaboration and the long-term commercial potential for Bang & Olufsen.

Xbox Digital Direct Set To Replace Redemption Codes In Console Game Bundles

Xbox Digital Direct is a new program that allows you to instantly redeem any games, subscriptions, and exclusive content bundled with your Xbox during the setup process. When setting up a new console the content and offers attached to the console will appear, ready to be added to your Microsoft account. The content can also be redeemed after the fact via the the accounts setting page under 'Included with this Xbox' along with 'My games & apps' under 'Full Library'. This will be a welcome change to new Xbox users who can avoid the hassle of code entering, but was likely implemented to stop code reselling.

Scorn Xbox Series X Trailer Was Actually Running On RTX 2080 Ti GPU

In a recent interview with wccftech, Ebb Software's Game Director Ljubomir Peklar explained why the Scorn trailer for Xbox Series X was labeled as 'in-engine footage representative of expected Xbox Series X visual quality'. Ljubomir Peklar revealed that the trailer was actually run on a high-end system featuring an RTX 2080 Ti paired with a Ryzen processor. The game is set to target 4K 60 FPS with high graphical fidelity on Xbox Series X but a 2070 Super with a mixture of settings is adequate to run the game at 4K 60 FPS on PC.

Xbox Series X to Support "Thousands of Games at Launch" Thanks to Backwards Compatibility

Microsoft today announced that when it launches sometime in Holiday 2020, the Xbox Series X next-generation entertainment system will support "thousands of games" at launch. This is thanks to the console retaining compatibility with all older Xbox generation, not just the Xbox One, but also the Xbox 360 and the very fist Xbox. This is thanks to translation layers that let you play the older games on the latest hardware. In some cases, the Xbox Series X can add HDR, and turn up frame-rates to 120 FPS on some of the older games. The Xbox Series X will have several Microsoft Studios exclusives at launch, with the company reporting that all its 15 studios are busy developing exclusives. Several games launched in the past few years for the Xbox One X could receive content upgrades to the Xbox Series X to leverage its hardware.

Xbox Game Pass Late May Game Changes Announced

Xbox Game Pass for PC and Xbox will receive some new big-name games in the coming days, besides the games released earlier this month such as Red Dead Redemption 2 and Final Fantasy 9. The biggest title set to join the program is Minecraft Dungeons a new dungeon crawler spinoff game from Microsoft's Mojang Studios. Minecraft Dungeons will be available through Xbox Game Pass on PC and Xbox from tomorrow the 26th of May.

The classic Alan Wake has been added to the platform for both PC and Xbox users along with the return of Cities Skylines. Golf with your friends was also added earlier this month for Xbox. Finally PC users will also receive Plebby Quest: The Crusades later this month.

Original Xbox & Windows NT 3.5 Source Code Leaks Online

According to The Verge, source code for the original Xbox and Windows NT 3.5 has leaked online. The leak reportedly contains the kernel for the original Xbox OS, build environments, testing emulators, and internal development documents. This leak may help further emulation efforts for the original Xbox which as of now can only play ~40 of the over 900 games released for the console. This isn't the first time Microsoft has suffered a source code leak, with partial Windows 2000 and NT 4 source code leaking back in 2004 but given the age of the software this is unlikely to be of much significance. A Microsoft spokesperson told The Verge that "We're aware of these reports and are investigating".

Codemasters Reveals DIRT 5 for PC, Xbox, Playstation & Stadia

As revealed during Microsoft's Inside Xbox show, Codemasters is delighted to announce DIRT 5, launching from October 2020 on Xbox Series X, PlayStation 5, Windows PC (via Steam) and the current generation of Xbox and PlayStation consoles. A Google Stadia version will be released in early 2021. Whilst respecting the heritage and retaining the DNA of the franchise, DIRT 5 writes a new chapter in the legacy of DIRT - bolder and braver than ever before. DIRT 5 is more than relentless rallying, more than suspension-shaking jumps, more than hairpins and handbrakes. Join an energised world of off-road racing, and be part of a vibe that delivers big on epic action, pure expression, and unbridled style.

Microsoft Announces List of Over 140 Publishers & Studios Working on Xbox Series X Games

In the latest episode of Inside Xbox, Microsoft showed off trailers for several new games including Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, and Dirt 5. Alongside the new game trailers, Microsoft also published a list of over 140 publishers and studios all working on games for the new console. Big names such as 2K Games, Activision, Bethesda, Bungie, Electronic Arts, SEGA, Square Enix, and Ubisoft are all present along with countless smaller publishers and studios. The full list of publishers and studios can be found below.

Microsoft Announces Xbox Game Pass May Game Changes

Microsoft has recently announced all the game arrivals and departures coming to Xbox Game Pass for PC & Xbox this month. PC gamers are receiving Halo 2 Anniversary, Final Fantasy IX, Streets of Rage 4, and Endless Legend while console gamers are getting Red Dead Redemption 2, DayZ, Final Fantasy IX, Streets of Rage 4, and Fractured Minds.

The over 10 million subscribers' strong service will also lose several games this May 15th for both PC and Xbox. PC users will lose Imperator: Rome, Rise of the Tomb Raider, The Banner Saga, West of Loathing and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus while console users will lose Grand Theft Auto V, Black Desert, Doom, Lego Ninjago Movie Video Game, Mega Man Legacy Collection 2, Metal Gear Survive, The Banner Saga, Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus.

AMD Ramps Up Custom SoC Production for Next-Generation Consoles

Both Sony and Microsoft are expected to soon launch their next-generation consoles, which are highly anticipated among console gamers as they will bring some of the latest advancements in graphics, like ray tracing. The current situation in the world is that everything is slowed down due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Companies across the world have mostly slowed down their production lines due to the less demand, however, AMD has done exactly the opposite for their custom SoC customers. In wake of expected high demand, AMD has ramped up its production lines so it can supply Sony and Microsoft for their next-generation consoles—PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. This is an encouraging sign that the demand is going to be strong - and that AMD is up to the task of delivering.
AMD custom SoC

Xbox Game Pass Surpasses 10 Million Subscribers

During Microsoft's Q3 2020FY Earnings call, it was confirmed that Xbox Live was seeing record levels of engagement with over 90 million monthly users. On top of this, Microsoft announced that Xbox Game Pass had surpassed 10 million subscribers for the video game subscription service. Xbox Game Pass is available for Xbox One and PC giving users access to a library with hundreds of games including many large recent games such as Gears Tactics, Halo Master Chief Collection, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider. This makes Xbox Game Pass the largest game subscription service far outnumbering EA Access and Origin Access. Microsoft also noted that interest in Project xCloud the experimental game streaming service was high with "hundreds of thousands" of active users.

NVIDIA GeForce Now Loses More Publishers, Xbox Game Studios and WB Games Wave Goodbye

NVIDIA's GeForce Now game streaming service has been a bit of a hit and miss lately, with some of the bigger publishers like Activision-Blizzard, Bethesda, and 2K games revoking availability of their digital game libraries on NVIDIA's service. Possible reasons for those events were unknown and the platform did suffer from it. Some speculations were that the publishers were going to switch their preferred online streaming service platform or build their own. So far it is still a mystery. However, it seems like there is no end to the pain, as some very big publishers decided to revoke their digital libraries as well.

Big names like Microsoft Xbox Game Studios, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Codemasters, and Klei Entertainment have all decided to stop offering their games on the GeForce Now game streaming platform. This is very much a major disappointment and another big setback to the platform, as now you can not play any of the titles from these publishers. Titles from the games series like Halo, Gears of War, Forza, Dirt Rally, Batman and many more, are now not available. It remains to be seen if these publishers announce a move to another streaming service, so we have to wait.
NVIDIA GeForce Now

Microsoft Reveals Limited Edition Cyberpunk 2077-Themed Xbox One X Console

Microsoft has pulled the curtains on a limited edition Xbox One X console, which will feature a customized color scheme to go in hand with the highly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077. Inspired by the cyberpunk aesthetic and neon lights of Night City, the new Xbox One X console sports a mainly gunmetal gray and yellow color scheme. The console also features a blue LED status light, glow-in-the dark decals, laser etchings to the chassis, and customized panels. The controller has also seen a change in coloring and decals, and is customized according to the in-game color scheme that best characterizes the iconic Johnny Silverhand, aka Keanu Reeves in-game.
Xbox One X Cyberpunk Xbox One X Cyberpunk Package

Crysis Remastered is Confirmed

We have previously reported on the possibility of release of the new Crysis game in the form of a remaster of an older game, meaning that developers from EA and Crytek took an exiting game and updated its engine to support a few of the modern and graphics accessories like ray tracing and 4K textures. However, it seems that that report wasn't just a rumor and Crytek/EA collaboration is indeed reading a new Crysis Remastered game. The official Crysis website was showing a picture of the remastered game along with platforms it will be supported on. When going to a Cookie Policy part of the website, one could easily see a part of the website meant to showcase the Crysis Remastered game. It was taken down just a few moments ago, however, thanks to the Twitter user Metalfy (@Metalfy4) there is a video showing how easy it was to get to the website.

Showcasing the game, the website was showing that the game is going to be supported on a number of platforms like the regular PC, PS4, Xbox One, and perhaps the most interesting one - the Nintendo Switch. One person on r/Crysis found the following quote on the website: "From the makers of Far Cry, Hunt: Showdown and CRYENGINE, Crysis offers the first-person shooter fans the best-looking, evolved, and innovative gameplay, enabling players to adapt in real-time to survive. Crysis Remastered brings new graphic features, high-quality textures, and the CRYENGINE's native hardware- and API-agnostic ray tracing solution for PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and - for the very first time - Nintendo Switch." Seeing this, it will be interesting to see how the Crytek plans to pull off the Nintendo Switch port, being that it has relatively weak hardware. Nonetheless, question remains which version of Crysis game will be remastered and when the game will actually launch.
Crysis Remastered CryTek Engine 5.6 CryTek Engine 5.6

Crysis Remastered Could be Coming Soon

The Crysis Twitter account today once again became active, after almost four years of inactivity, to post a two-worded tweet - "RECEIVING DATA". The tweet is an indication of something happening and the current industry rumors are pointing to a nonother then a remaster of the beloved title. Yes, we are talking about a remaster of one of the Crysis games, possibly the last entry added in 2013 - the Crysis 3. Originally developed by a German developer Crytek and published by Electronic Arts, the game is powered by CryEngine. The game is being worked on by both teams of EA and Crytek, however, the possible launch of the game is determined by EA, as it has rights to the game still. During the Q2 earnings call, EA's CEO mentioned that they are working delivering "some exciting remasters of fan favorites" for the fiscal year of 2021, so we can expect the game in a timeframe close to us.

It seems like the popular question "but can it run Crysis?" will gain traction again, as the game will likely be a real treat for the eyes. Implementing Crytek's latest CryEngine 5.6, it will feature all the latest bells and whistles of computer graphics. That means that Ray Tracing and support for 4K textures are going to be present. Meant for next-generation hardware of PCs and consoles like PS5 and Xbox Series X, the remastered Crysis game would need a powerful system to run on, however, judging by rumors of next-generation hardware it should be enough to power it without a problem. To see more about CryEngine 5.6, please check out the video below.
Crysis 3

Microsoft Announces new Widgets for Xbox Game Bar on PC

As part of the Inside Xbox event which was held yesterday, Microsoft revealed the addition of several new third party widgets for the Xbox Game Bar from the likes of Razer, XSplit and Intel. Several more companies are also in talks with Microsoft to add apps to Xbox Game Bar, this follows the successful release of a Spotify integration earlier.

Since we introduced Xbox Game Bar, we've continually evolved it in partnership with you: our community. From simple video capture, to quick access to audio settings, to seamless listening with Spotify, to providing an FPS counter, we've kept PC Gamers at the center of everything we do. This philosophy is the driving force behind the updates we're announcing today.

Project xCloud Preview Set to Expand Into Western Europe

Microsoft's Project xCloud was first launched as a preview in October 2019 for a limited number of countries. Microsoft has now expanded the preview to Western Europe as announced by Atherine Gluckstein, GM & Head of Product for Project xCloud in a recent press release.

Bringing the Project xCloud preview to gamers across Western Europe is a top priority for us. We know gaming is an important way for people to remain connected, particularly during these times of social distancing, but we also recognize how internet bandwidth has been impacted with strain on regional networks as large volumes of people responsibly stay home and go online.
xCloud

OWC Unveils the Newest Iteration of its Wildly Popular Mercury Elite Pro External Storage Solution

OWC a leading zero emissions Mac and PC technology company and one of the world's most respected providers of hard drives, SSDs, Mac & PC docking solutions and performance upgrade kits, today announced the latest edition of its legendary Mercury Elite Pro external storage system for Mac, PC, Linux machines, Smart TVs, and PS4 and Xbox consoles. The 3.5-inch USB 3.2 5 Gb/s hard drive system is a modern day workhorse, delivering real-world performance up to 283 MB/s and capacities up to 16 TB to keep pace with the demands of everything from video editing projects, critical business data, and irreplaceable personal content to expanding PS4/Xbox One game storage and enjoying music/video content via a Smart TV.

The Essential External Storage Solution for Everyone
The Mercury Elite Pro kicked off OWC's rich, storied history of storage solution innovations nearly 20 years ago, and it has successfully stood the test of time by continuing to offer an incomparable blend of performance, quality, and value in a single HDD storage solution.
OWC Mercury Elite Pro OWC Mercury Elite Pro
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