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This is a discussion on Game Tech News within the Electronics forums, part of the Non-Related Discussion category; When Nintendo’s Switch first launched, it wasn’t immediately clear if the console would post strong initial sales and then fade ...

      
   
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    Nintendoís Refusal to Allow Saved Game Backups is Driving Switch Hacking



    When Nintendo’s Switch first launched, it wasn’t immediately clear if the console would post strong initial sales and then fade away, like the Wii U did, or if this would be the system to put Nintendo back on the gaming map. It’s now obvious that the Switch’s early surge was no outlier; the console has already moved over 5 million units and has outsold the PS4 and Xbox One in North America four times in the past six months, according to NPD Group. Clearly, Nintendo’s early issues with its JoyCon controllers or reports that the Switch could warp in certain circumstances have had no impact on the console’s popularity.

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    Star Wars: The Last Jedi Hints At Answers The Force Awakens Didnít Deliver



    Star Wars: The Force Awakens was a major blockbuster last year, but the film ultimately raised more questions than it answered. We don’t yet know why Luke’s Jedi academy was destroyed, why he later went into self-imposed, exile on Ahch-To, why his nephew Kylo Ren fell to the Dark Side, why Han and Leia were estranged, or the history of the new Emperor stand-in, Supreme Leader Snoke. A new trailer for Episode VIII dropped last night, and while it doesn’t answer all of these questions, it provides some major hints. Also, everyone is going nuts for Chewbacca’s new side-kick, called a Porg.

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    Most Gamers Hate Buying Loot Boxes



    Over the last few years, we’ve seen an increasing number of games locking desirable content behind the digital operant conditioning chambers known as “loot boxes.” The basics of how loot boxes work are common to all games that use them. Players are presented with the opportunity to spend real money, in exchange for an in-game box containing one or more items.

    From here, the particulars vary. In some games, the boxes are random rewards you unlock with keys you bought with real dollars. Sometimes the boxes are free, but the keys to open them cost money. Some games also offer the opportunity to earn keys and chests by advancing through the title in the traditional fashion, or by completing in-game objectives, while others don’t. In some cases, the items you find inside the chest can have a direct impact on how well you perform in-game, while others are strictly cosmetic and don’t affect gameplay at all.

    The other thing loot box games have in common? They’re really starting to piss off the players that encounter them.
    It’s not hard to see why. Over the past decade, we’ve seen a steady shift towards new monetization strategies. They initially sold for small amounts of money or were strictly cosmetic in nature. When mobile games took off, those frequently offered the option to purchase an in-game currency with real-world money, with said currency being used to bypass game levels, quickly finish buildings with ridiculously long build times, and to purchase powerful weapons and armor. AAA games adopted some of these features, but they mostly debuted in games that had gone free-to-play. The AAA games that did sell items while charging an up-front fee typically either stuck to cosmetic changes, or offered players enough opportunities to earn the relevant currency that the items in question were always something you could earn within a reasonable period of time.

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    The Best PS4 and PS4 Pro Accessories



    Four years in, and there are tens of millions of PlayStation 4s in the wild. Whether you’re using an original model, PS4 Slim, or PS4 Pro, there are likely aspects of your experience that could use some improvement. Want to shorten a particularly long load time? Maybe you’d like to stream gameplay to your bedroom. Heck, you might just be willing to drop a couple hundred bucks on a full-fledged VR setup.

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    How Microsoft Built Xbox 360, Xbox Compatibility Into the Xbox One



    The Xbox One and PS4 have broadly similar features, but there’s a few areas where Microsoft has beaten Sony: Backwards compatibility with the Xbox 360 and steaming games from an Xbox One to a local PC. But while we’ve known Microsoft was adding backwards compatibility since E3 2015, we haven’t seen much of how that process happened, until now.

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    Unloved, Unlamented, Microsoft Finally Kills Kinect



    When Microsoft first launched Project Natal — later known as Kinect — it declared that the device would usher in a bold new world of gaming where our bodies would be controllers. Today, the last vestiges of that dream have finally died.

    According to Fastcodesign, Microsoft has finally ceased manufacturing the camera after selling more than 35 million of them over the past seven years. Retailers may still have some in stock, but the company won’t be building any more. It’s a little odd to think about, but Kinect may well be the best-selling gaming peripheral that had virtually no long-term impact on gaming. Kinect had an impact in non-gaming research and versions of its sensor are integrated into HoloLens, but the hardware never really caught on. Microsoft’s attempts to patent some decidedly Big Brother functionality right as the Snowden leaks hit was cataclysmically bad branding.

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    13 OG Xbox Games Now Playable on Xbox One, Xbox 360 Games Enhanced For Xbox One X



    Yesterday, we talked about the Xbox One’s backwards compatibility mode and how developers inside the company had spent years putting the feature together. Today, we’re talking about the 13 original Xbox games you can now play, along with some enhancements to existing Xbox 360 games that are now available.

    Our sister site, IGN, has more details, but Knights of the Old Republic is a particularly good showcase for these improvements. If you’ve never played KOTOR, it’s considered one of the greatest Star Wars games ever made. While it feels primitive in some respects — the UI was clearly designed for much lower monitor resolutions — the plot and characters hold up very well today.

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    The Best Xbox One and Xbox One X Accessories



    In spite of a rough start, the current executive team at Microsoft has done a commendable job turning the Xbox One into a respectable platform. With incredible games like Forza Motorsport 7 and Cuphead, and the upcoming release of the Xbox One X (Buy on Amazon for $499.99), this has been a particularly strong year for Redmond. And with the release of new hardware, and the ever-sinking price of the existing units, there are bound to be loads of new users jumping on the Xbox One bandwagon this holiday season.

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    Nintendo: Switch Will Beat Wii U Lifetime Sales in Just 1 Year



    Nintendo released an update to its yearly earnings forecast today, substantially increasing the amount of profit it expects to earn through the end of its fiscal year (Nintendo’s fiscal year ends in March, not on December 31).

    The Switch has had a dynamite year, outselling the PS4 and Xbox One at multiple points since its debut, and that trend is only set to increase. Nintendo has boosted Switch manufacturing and could beat the Wii U’s entire lifetime sales in just one year.

    Nintendo now expects to earn $1.06 billion in profits for its full fiscal year, compared with roughly 576 million in its earlier forecasts, Reuters reports (via Geek.com). Switch shipment figures have been raised from 10 million to 14 million, which puts the console on track to crush the Wii U’s five-year run of 13.56 million units. Thus far, the Switch is thought to have sold a bit more than half its 14 million target, with 7.63 million units shipped as of September 30.

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    Why You Should Buy or Upgrade to an Xbox One X



    Microsoft’s Xbox One X drops on Tuesday and it’s easily the strongest console ever built. Its GPU sports higher clocks and additional cores, its CPU is clocked a full 1.3x faster than the old Xbox One, and its unified GDDR5 memory offers vastly more bandwidth (and a much simpler memory architecture) than the Xbox One’s 32MB of cache + quad-channel DDR3 memory design.

    Hardware design, however, isn’t the entire story. Because the Xbox One X (Buy on Amazon) maintains full backwards compatibility with the Xbox One, it’s on developers to deliver optimized titles with better experiences that justify the new system’s $500 price tag.



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