Video game website Eurogamer followed up claims from an anonymous person that a Microsoft development kit had been obtained, and would be listed on eBay. Now confirmed to be true, Eurogamer has reported on what the development kit is housing.
Finally, we get firm leaks on what Microsoft is giving developers ahead of the (likely) announcement of the next-generation Xbox at E3 2013
Development kits for the next-generation Xbox have been rumored to be in the hands of developers, but there’s been no photos or confirmed specifications. Now, Eurogamer has contacted – someone – with a development kit and reported on what’s inside.
The original leak, unconfirmed, had photos of a black box claimed to be the development kit for Durango. Obviously that could have been a mockup, but when a respected video game website such as Eurogamer reports on the news then it wouldn’t have been published without significant research.
Apparently development kits were sent to studios in February 2012, and use Intel CPUs and a unspecified Nvidia graphics card. The leaker claims the console is using 8GB of memory, though Eurogamer added other sources have suggested 12GB of RAM, and it’s 64-bit memory.
An eight-core CPU is being aimed at, for release, but Eurogamer couldn’t back up the claims with information from its sources. The 64-bit nature has been confirmed by a source though, apparently familiar with the developer summit where a Crytek representative tweeted the Durango name. The source also said the DirectX 11 PC engine can be ported to 64-bit, therefore running issue-free on Durango.
Supporting The PC Crowd
The leaker, with the development kit, showed a picture of the coding environment for authenticity. Again, Eurogamer spoke to developers and none seemed to think it’s bogus. The coding environment is built around X86 CPU architecture.
Eurogamer made an amusing point in the report: consoles have been blamed for the decline in console gaming, but the hardware – in Durango, at least – could be based off PC internals. It seems developing custom hardware and bringing a high specifications requirement isn’t cost effective.
Sony used the same approach in the PlayStation Vita, and managed to build hardware competitive with current HD consoles for a sub-$300 price. Microsoft’s console will probably be more expensive, but hopefully not by much.