As The Gaming Wars Rage...

may 31, 2006

...The Idiot Generals Start Speaking... Microsoft Xbox UK boss Neil Thompson and Europe boss Chris Lewis came out swinging in an interview. They blamed Sony for "forcing" Blu-Ray onto consumers and tried really hard to make Sony look bad: From a movie playback point of view. "Sony are now making people pay an extra few hundred pounds for a Blu-Ray DVD drive which we don't know is going to be the standard in the next-generation DVD formats. This is the company that brought out Betamax – we don't quite know where they're going to go with this," says Thompson. Is this guy blind or shortsighted? Microsoft put a cheap DVD drive into the Xbox 360. Sure, that's good for gamers because it lowers the cost of an already expensive machine. Microsoft is coming out with a HD-DVD add-on for watching movies only. But, do I really care about any next-gen console playing movies? No. Consoles playing movies has always been a suck-ass affair. The built-in players lack features and often don't play movies as well as stand-alone video units.  So, having a add-on HD-DVD drive or a Blu-Ray drive for movie playback? Doesn't matter for me. I'll end up with a high-end stand-alone unit anyways. What does matter is that Microsoft's cheap DVD drive only offers developers and publishers 8.5GB per disk. Sony's inclusion of the Blu-Ray drive allows for developers and publishers to get 25GB on a single-layer disc or 50GB on a dual-layer disc. Who the hell cares about the movie playback aspect when the games can have: Higher quality sound, higher resolution textures, higher polygon count models, and better in-game movies? Hey, Neil Thompson: Are you seeing where Sony is going with the Blu-Ray drive yet? Wake up.