Rumour: Next Generation Xbox Set For A Late 2012 Release

Rumour: Next Generation Xbox Set For A Late 2012 Release

The next generation Xbox rumour mill has been grinding incessantly for the last couple of weeks, but now Edge is reporting that Ubisoft Montreal is hard at work on ‘target boxes’ for the launch of the Xbox 360’s successor. Apparently the console is expected to launch at retail in Christmas 2012.

Ubisoft is known for heavily supporting all newly released hardware, and the original Assassin’s Creed began development on ‘target boxes’, so it seems completely reasonable that the Montreal team would be working on something for launch right now — it’s the projected 2012 release date that’s interesting here.

With Nintendo launching the Wii U next year, and Sony reportedly working on the next PlayStation, it looks as though we’re slowly heading into the next generation of consoles a little sooner than initially expected. It would be my own guess, however, that the next Xbox will be announced next year, but most likely slip into 2013. Although I have been wrong about these things before!

Next generation to arrive in 2012 [Edge]


  • Oh boy here we go again. Next they will be saying that the new Xbox will have a blu-ray disc drive.

    While there have been some good exclusives in this console generation, I personally will remember the current generation as the one of the rampant sloppy ports.

    For my own defence, I have all three current generation consoles and a PC so I do not pick a favourite platform. I instead have a preference to the Adventure and RPG genres.

  • I doubt the new Xbox is coming out next year simply because Halo 4 is coming out on the 360 during the holiday season next year. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for Microsoft to release their biggest exclusive on one system and then come out and release a new system almost straight after.

    I guess they could be planning on making Halo 4 a release title for the new Xbox and also releasing it on the 360 but that would doesn’t make too much sense either because people would be far more likely to just get the game on 360 then pick up the new Xbox to play it. It would also put a big fracture in the multiplayer community unless the new Xbox and the 360 could play together over Xbox Live. I don’t know if such a thing would be possible. I guess it might be but I don’t know too much about that sort of thing.

      • Ah yeah – the old Twilight Princess fiasco.

        I actually have both versions as I knew the Gamecube version is the original. The Wii version is a port.

    • Well that’s what Nintendo did with Twilight Princess, but the technological leap between the GC and the Wii was next to nothing, so it’s probably less likely in Microsoft’s case.

      • Yes and no – the Wii is technologically as powerful as an original Xbox apparently.

        The only differences being no HD output (I’m sure the original Xbox was capable for 720p with the correct cabling) and the lack of a hard drive.

        • The original Xbox was only a little more powerful hardware-wise than the Gamecube. The Wii is a big jump on the GC, so it’s got quite an edge on the original Xbox.

          The only platform that was significantly behind in that gen was the PS2, because it was originally competing with the Dreamcast.

      • The difference though is that the new directx stuff (which is what the consoles use) should allow backward compatibility pretty easily. It’s mostly about what is in the shaders, and disabling some shader features on start up for directX 9 and having all of them eneabled for directX 11. And I remember microsoft going on about their new console being forward compatible, so I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if they use DVD, and that a lot of the games you buy for the xbox3, you can play on your 360. So halo 4 on 360, next xbox, using the same disc, wouldn’t come as a shock to me, and the quality standards for both consoles will be near enough the maximum the consoles can handle.

    • Perhaps we should re-listen to the announcement of Halo 4, what if they didn’t say 360, what if they said exlusive on the xbox?

      Halo 4 as a launch title for the next Xbox, I’m in!

      • I think just in the last week or two it has been re-confirmed as a 360 title, having said that Nintendo did it once with Twilight Princess.

  • This is in line with another commenter on the AC:Revelations story that said the next AC would be next-gen.

    I hope it’s not the case. I will not be buying a new system for a good few years yet.

    • It could explain Ubisoft’s statement of putting assassins creed franchise on hiatus for 2 years after the next one. So that they can launch it on the next gen consoles.

    • It could explain Ubisoft’s statement of putting assassins creed franchise on hiatus for 2 years after the next one.
      So that they can launch it on the next gen consoles.

  • Ive never been an early adopter of hardware when it comes to consoles. I usually wait for a price point of around $400 before i pick up and consoles. Im happy with my current console but in saying that, I can see it aging for sure.

    • Yeah, I never buy new consoles at launch, but not for financial reasons. Well, except for PS3 where the $999 pricetag was a pretty huge financial reason to not buy it 😛 But it’s more due to the fact that there’s never a decent range of must-have games at launch and the fact that launch hardware is nearly always shonky.

      Plus there are usually still some good games coming out on the old consoles when the new one comes out so it’s not like there’s nothing to play anymore. Hell, if the new XBox/PS launch for xmas next year, that’ll be right about the time that Skyrim GOTY is coming out, in which case I’ll probably be looking to upgrade sometime around xmas 2013.

  • Halo 4 was already confirmed for Q4 2012 on XBox 360.

    Why would you ship your platforms biggest killer-app on 360 instead of Xbox Next in the same time frame? Having Halo 4 as an exclusive title for Xbox Next would be far wiser, but the opposite has been announced so I don’t expect an new Xbox next year.

    • You can’t just blindly believe anything a company puts out in press release. Corporate propaganda to hide the real agenda is rife these days.

      Who ever said Halo 4 can;t be on the Xbox Next and backwards compatible for 360 too? That would be a killer move and Sony provide backwards compatibility all the time.

        • I don’t see why it wouldn’t happen.

          360 is by and large backwards compatible.
          I would think the profiles will carry over… although you may have to do it through xbox live on pc, but still.
          I’d like to believe it will be possible to play online against people with 360’s… but maybe only for 360 titles that are backwards compatible…

          • Porting of your Gamertag to thew new console shouldn’t be a problem at all. If you recall they announced this year that one of the major upgrades coming to XBL was a cloud based sign-in procedure. Pretty soon even with current Xbox 360 consoles you will be able to go onto any Xbox and sign in with your Gamertag with just an internet connection.

  • Now the console fanboy wars will begin again just when everyone was getting along. Hopefully rational readers will comment as well and stop the nonsensical arguing.

    • 720 sux. Dreamcast 5 iz betta. 720 only comes in black. DC comes in five colours. 720 has no games. DC has super powerstone 20 FTW!! My dad buys me games. 720 is for the losers. Sega DC 5 is for the win!! Looossers!’ – sorry I briefly regressed into a fanboy – Apologies.

    • Porting of your Gamertag to thew new console shouldn’t be a problem at all. If you recall they announced this year that one of the major upgrades coming to XBL was a cloud based sign-in procedure. Pretty soon even with current Xbox 360 consoles you will be able to go onto any Xbox and sign in with your Gamertag with just an internet connection.

  • Personally my guess is a backwards compatible Halo 4 for 360 and Xbox Next.

    If it’s a modified Reach engine and been in development for years already as it has there is no reason Xbox can’t have the best of both worlds here.

    They’d be crazy not to solidify the Xbox next with a Halo launch title. They’d also be crazy not to support the existing Xbox owners too. However Kinect would simply plug-in to the Xbox next so new console and old console don;t waste their money.

    The opportunity to be innovative here and get a win win for current and next gen Xbox is right there…question is have they had the foresight?

  • Hopefully, Xbox720 has an SSD option. And I actually reckon its a good idea to get the early adoption phase over and done with while the 360 is current – wouldnt want to lose the crowd. And also Im used to paying $800 or less for the latest consoles, and consoles have never been cheaper at launch than this generation. $650 for Xbox360 at launch was pretty surprising considering the original PlayStation was about $799 in Oz when it first launched! Also, does anyone remember the Xbox360 S launch? All I can say to Australian game writers is get your seats at the E3 Microsoft conference as soon as possible – you might get a free one…

  • As I said above, I reckon Halo 4 won’t even be an Xbox 360 game… I reckon MS will release Halo 4 as a launch title on the Xbox Next.

    The only thing we’ve seen on Halo 4 is a pre-rendered announcement trailer, no gameplay footage. Wouldn’t it make perfect marketting sense for MS to use the Halo series as the selling point for their next console?… I know I’d buy it.

    • This. Also, from some of the articles I read on it, they only said it was coming out Q4 next year, I don’t think they said anything about it coming out for Xbox 360.

  • Yeah, although I still think mid to late 2013 is a more realistic release date it doesn’t surprise me (much) that it could be as early Xmas 2012 if Halo 4 is a launch title for it.

    Better start saving my pennies. Let’s guess price points shall we? I say $850 AUD for the premium version that actually works, $600 for the bitch version that nobody wants.

  • I’d love to see them move away from optical discs altogether and go with a proprietary USB Flash Drive process similar to the way you can record game saves now. The drives are already fast, allow for bluray size content (and more) and we could move to smaller packaging (less resources). We may still need the optical drive for backward compatibility and media playback ?? As long as they don’t bring out a console that is download only and always needs to be connected to the internet.

    • Optical discs are cheaper to manufacture than flash memory. If all you’re doing is installing to the system’s HDD and streaming select media from the optical discs, you’ll get the advantage of a lower cost distribution media and still retain adequate performance at the cost of 5+ minutes of data installing at the first run.

      The issue with the XBox360 is that it didn’t have a HDD built-in as standard, so game developers could not assume that every user that purchases their game will have a HDD for install data.

      Given the trend with internet connectivity and access methods, I would not be surprised to see digital distribution being given more attention to with the ‘next’ generation.

      • I still imagine they’ll have to move to a larger capacity media device, and after the way HD-DVD collapsed I don’t see them risking a technology that won’t get widespread exposure.

  • Well, whenever it is actually released in the US it’ll be another 6 months or so before we get it here (unless you import one, but that’s not my thing).

    • For a moment I thought you were full of shit but then I actually looked up release dates… you’re right, a November release date next year the earliest we’d see it based on the last generation would be March 2013.

      If that’s the case, unless Halo 4 is on both consoles with improved visuals, I think Halo 4 will be a 360 game.

      Although maybe MS will change the trend and do a global console launch, given the popularity of the 360 it would surely be well within the realm of possibility, and they’ve probably been working on it for 4 years under strict confidentiality with developers.

  • It will be a 4 year old PC, running Win 8 slimmed down with a bluray drive. Win 8 is compatible with mobile tech so the tablets, smart phones and Console games will get developed for one OS and sold at Xbox live market.
    Or they will just do MORE POWER MORE POWER UGGG and achieve nothing.

  • End of 2012 would be an incredibly strategic move as it would effectively kneecap Nintendo. Wii U is scheduled for around about the same time and it’s supposedly roughly on par with if not slightly ahead of the 360/PS3 in power. Launching a brand new high-end system do completely skittles Nintendo’s plan to be on par with everyone else, and it’s early enough that Sony wouldn’t be able to respond for a fair amount of time, once again giving Microsoft a first-mover advantage.

    As for Halo 4, if they could have it on a new system at launch, it would be an amazing incentive to upgrade. The franchise has lost some of its luster and it’s not as huge as some of the FPS stuff that has come along later, but it’s still a big deal. It’s been announced for 360 but there’s nothing stopping them making it available for a new system as well. Most games next generation are going to be multiplatform anyway, and the PS3 and 360 install bases are both large enough that they’ll continue to get games back-ported from newer systems for several years, not unlike the long tail you saw with releases for the PS2. I’d think there’s a good chance that the hardware itself would be fairly similar to the 360, so that existing toolchains etc can continue to be used and development is easy – most likely you’d target the newer system and backport down to 360.

    Ubisoft meanwhile have a very regular release cadence for their Assassin’s Creed games now. An end of 2012 release for a new system would put them in a great position to have a strong franchise across even more platforms that previously (360, PS3, PC, Wii U, 360 +1) plus AC3 will effectively be a new start with a new central protagonist and everything, so it’s perfectly positioned for debut on new hardware.

  • I know people are expecting / hoping for blue-ray but I think its much more likely that Microsoft will continue to pursue HD streaming and perhaps their own proprietary Discs for game content.

  • This is interesting if it’s true. It’ll mean that Microsoft are potentially seeing Nintendo as a threat which would be an interesting change of attitude.

    If it does turn out to be true, we’ll need to see how Sony responds.

  • Microsoft will steal Nintendos thunder at E3 next year! Console to launch Holiday 2012!! Both xbox’s so far have released in November in North America. Would be good if they did a worldwide launch but unlikely. 2013 launch for Aussies I’m guessing.

  • This is an interesting quote, too: “We can also reveal that one major Sony-owned studio has now ceased PlayStation 3 development, its entire focus having shifted to the console’s successor. The studio is also said to have been involved in the development process of the graphics technology adopted by Sony’s new hardware.”

    Anybody want to speculate on who that would be? My money would probably be on Guerilla – Killzone 3 launched early this year, so that’d give them a couple of years to get their next game up and running on the PS4 for a 2013 launch. Being right out on the cutting edge of current generation console graphics might also fit in with their being involved in the development of the next gen graphics technology. The most likely other candidate would probably be Polyphony or maybe Naughty Dog, but I’m pretty sure they’re both still working on DLC for GT5 / Uncharted 3 so their “entire focus” wouldn’t have shifted just yet. I’m guessing Sony would probably want to get another PS3 game (probably God of War 4) out of Santa Monica before they moved across to PS4.

    • I’m going to say either Naughty Dog or Polyphony.

      GT5 shipped a while ago, and with Uncharted out the door Naughty Dog would be looking to PS4 launch titles.
      DLC for both games could be handed off to other studios, the way Bungie did with Sabre Interactive.

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