Xbox head Phil Spencer says more Xbox consoles are in the works

In a recent interview with Yahoo! Finance, Xbox head Phil Spencer stated that Microsoft is planning to release more gaming consoles following the upcoming launch of the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. This news may be surprising for some as the gaming industry appears to be on the brink of transitioning to an all-digital, cloud-based future.

Indeed, Spencer confirmed that Microsoft is still planning to develop dedicated gaming hardware, at least in the short term, even though the way the world plays games is rapidly changing with cloud-bases services like Xbox Cloud Gaming, Google Stadia, and Amazon Luna.

“In terms of future hardware, absolutely I think we’re going to see more console hardware down the road,” Spencer stated, “Just like in video, just like in music, it’s not that streaming has cut off device innovation. I think we’ll continue to see that, and that’s absolutely what we’re planning for.”

It may be that Microsoft has wisely become more timid in pushing the transition to an all-digital future, after some of their previous previous plans in this regard were not well received. During the launch period of the Xbox One in 2013, Microsoft received heavy backlash over their push for an always online requirement for the Xbox platform. As such, it seems they make have learned their lesson this time around.

The Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S consoles will cost $499 and $299 USD, respectively, and are both set to release on November 10th, 2020.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War PS4 Alpha Sets Record

It’s official – the Black Ops Cold War Alpha on PS4 set a new record for the CoD series. According to a recent announcement via the official Call of Duty Twitter account, the Black Ops Cold War Alpha was the most downloaded PS4 alpha or beta in Call of Duty history.

This is a surprising accomplishment considering the alpha was announced on only a few days notice. Regardless, the Black Ops Cold War alpha performing so well on the PlayStation platform is a good sign for both the beta and the full launch of the game that will include Xbox and PC. The game now seems poised for a solid sales performance, and its cross-generational ability will only add to it’s success.

Those who missed out on the alpha will have another chance to play before release when the upcoming beta kicks off on October 8th. As for the official release date, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is set to drop on November 13th for PC, PS4, Xbox One, PS5, and Xbox Series X.

Sony confirms no free PS5 upgrade for PS4 Spider-Man owners

It appears Sony has once again shot themselves in the foot. At the recent PlayStation 5 showcase, Sony showed off a little more of what players have to look forward to with Spider-Man: Miles Morales. While fans reacted positively to the new gameplay footage, upon completion of the event is where things took a turn for the worse.

After the event, while Sony announced that the standalone adventure is coming to both PS4 and PS5, they also mentioned that the original Spider-Man will be getting a PS5 remaster with enhanced graphical features. The only problem is that in order to get this upgraded version, you’ll have to buy the $70 Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Edition – no matter what!

This means that even PS4 owners who upgraded to PS5 and previously owned the original Spider-Man for PS4 will have to spend $70 to receive the next-gen enhanced remaster of the game. A statement direct from Sony further confirms the remaster won’t be sold as a standalone.

“There are no plans currently to offer Marvel’s-Spider-Man: Remastered as a standalone,” the statement reads. “Players with a copy of Marvel’s Spider-Man for PS4 can purchase Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Edition to experience Marvel’s Spider-Man: Remastered on PS5. Marvel’s Spider-Man for PS4 also will be backwards compatible on PS5.”

Just to put things into perspective, owners of the original Spider-Man will be able to play their PS4 copy on PS5, but it will not have any graphical enhancements at all. This strategy is in stark contrast to how Microsoft is handling cross-generation upgrades for their first-party titles. For those who upgrade to Xbox Series S/X, next-gen upgrades will be free – a strategy that Microsoft is referring to as Smart Delivery. With Smart Delivery, players will not have to worry about upgrading their games.

For Xbox owners, it seems that good news is never in short supply these days, as Smart Delivery is not limited to first-party titles. Among third-party titles whose publishers are also choosing not to charge for next-gen upgrades are Cyberpunk 2077, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and even The Witcher 3, a title from 2015.

Spider-Man: Miles Morales will launch for PlayStation 5 on November 12th.

Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond release date announced

Respawn Entertainment has confirmed its VR-exclusive WW2 shooter Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond will be launching December 11th on both Oculus and Steam with OpenVR support.

Announced last year, Above and Beyond will be the first entry for the Medal of Honor series in eight years, following the 2012 entry of Medal of Honor: Warfighter. The latest entry, being a AAA VR first-person shooter, is one of the most highly anticipated games for 2020. The story will cast players into the role of a combat engineer who was recently recruited into an American espionage organisation, the Office of Strategic Services.

Despite being an Oculus-funded title, Respawn has confirmed that Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond will be available on Steam as well as the Oculus Store when it launches December 11th. An Oculus representative provided further comment on Reddit in regards to a previous concern for the title, “No, the Steam version of MOH will not require a Facebook login. This also means that Steam users and Rift users can not send each other direct invites, but they can find each other in public matchmaking.”

PlayStation 5 price and release date announced

The wait is finally over as Sony has officially announced the pricing and release date for the PlayStation 5. The announcement came earlier today during the highly anticipated PlayStation 5 Showcase event.

Per the announcement, the price for PlayStation 5 will begin at $399 / £359 for the digital edition, and $499 / £449 for the full edition. Also, both consoles will arrive on November 12th in the US, Japan, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea, and November 19th in all other territories.

Unfortunately, there was no official announcement on when preorders would begin, but shortly after the event the official PlayStation Twitter account stated that pre-orders will be available starting as early as tomorrow at select retailers — they did not clarify which retailers.

There have been recent rumors that Sony was experiencing production limitations for the upcoming console launch and as a result were forced to cut their production plans by millions of units. Considering this, along with the fact that Sony previously announced a preorder program that requires individuals to enter their PSN ID, it seems to be a strong possibility that only a limited number of units will be available at launch.

PS5 launch reduced by millions of consoles

With rumors circulating for months now about production limitations for the upcoming PlayStation 5 launch, it now seems that there may be even less consoles available than previously thought, as sources indicate that Sony has cut production plans by 4 million units.

According to Bloomberg, sources familiar with affairs at Sony have announced that the company has cut PS5 unit production for the fiscal year from about 15 million units to 11 million. It seems that the reason for this reduction comes from an actual problem with producing the custom chips designed for the console.

More details are expected soon with the PS5 Showcase event on Wednesday, September 16th. Many fans are expecting PlayStation to finally announce the PS5 price as well as when they can expect to pre-order it.

Cryptic videos tease a Battlefield 6 announcement coming soon

It seems that DICE and Electronic Arts are preparing for a major announcement for the Battlefield series after some cryptic teaser videos have appeared online. Since 2015, EA has released a new game from Swedish developer DICE every fall, alternating between the Star Wars Battlefront and Battlefield series. At present, it seems that 2020 will be the year to end this pattern with the latest installment for the Battlefield series apparently running longer than the usual schedule for development.

A few recent teases from the Battlefield Twitter account now suggest that fans of the series may not have to wait much longer and that a Battlefield 6 announcement may be happening soon.

The first teaser was last week when Battlefield YouTuber JackFrags uploaded a video that was mostly about Battlefield 5, but ending with the camera zooming in on a pocket watch. Adding more intrigue, Niklas Astrand of DICE acknowledged the ending and responded, “tick tick tick…” This subtle hint seems to suggest that a Battlefield 6 announcement is coming soon.

In addition, a mysterious Twitter account recently appeared online with only a single tweet that is a cryptic video featuring a numerical code that was recently tweeted by a DICE developer. The video also includes music that was discovered by fans to be radio chatter from Battlefield 3 played backwards.

If a Battlefield 6 announcement does happen soon, fans still should not expect the game to launch until late 2021. As for where the announcement could take place, one possibility is the PS5 Showcase event on Wednesday, September 16th. No matter when it does happen, it seems safe to say that it should be sooner than later.

Preorder a gold-plated PlayStation 5 for $10,000

A third-party UK retailer is now taking preorders for the previously-announced gold-plated PlayStation 5. According to the website, the price is set at £7999 for the 18K rose-gold version and £8099 for the 24K gold version. In case you’re wondering, this is around $10,500 USD. If that price tag is a little too far out of reach for you, perhaps you may be interested in either a gold-plated PlayStation 5 controller for £649 or a headset for £399.

All preorders are now live. Preorder information for the standard PlayStation 5 has not been announced yet.

Microsoft is adding EA Play to Xbox Game Pass

In a blog post earlier today, Microsoft announced that they will soon be adding EA Play, formerly known as EA Access, to their subscription service known as Xbox Game Pass, for no extra cost. For those who may be unfamiliar, EA Play is also a subscription service run by a completely different publisher — Electronic Arts.

According to the announcement, the deal will begin “this holiday,” and will include both the PC version of Game Pass, which currently costs $4.99 per month, and Game Pass Ultimate, which is $14.99 per month. EA Play currently costs $4.99 per month on console and either $4.99 or $14.99 per month on PC, depending on how many games you wish to access.

Cyberpunk 2077 will have free next-gen upgrades for both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X

While some publishers are currently facing backlash for their decision to raise the price of their games by $10 USD for the upcoming PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, it may not be surprising to learn that CD Projekt Red won’t be raising the price of next-gen versions of Cyberpunk 2077.

During the recent CD Projekt Red investor briefing, executive Michal Nowakowski confirmed the consumer-friendly decision of the company.

“When it comes to USD, we launched our preorders at $60 USD and of course we’re going to keep that price for the consumers,” he said. “We’re not going to change it at the last minute to $70 USD. So just to confirm–these prices are out in the market anyway; you can check them on various sites: $59.99 USD and $69.99 EUR is what we’re going for.”