How long until Blizzard launches its own console?

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by Laa-Yosh, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. Laa-Yosh

    Laa-Yosh I can has custom title?
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    Yeah I've started this train of thought with the premise that the new Battle.net is already a new and closed proprietary gaming platform... I just want to discuss the idea of taking it to the next step and building a client-side* hardware platform to complement it.

    * B.net obviously means that they have their own server-side hardware infrastructure for it... Try to google videos from Blizzcon to see what tools they have to monitor WoW servers around the world. This thing is probably bigger then the entire network system for ATMs!
     
  2. V3

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    Their best bet is to get Battle.net on the consoles, but With MS Live and Sony PSN, that's kind of hard.

    The only scenario I see them doing a console is if PC gaming really died. That is WOW subscriptions fell, SC2 and D3 weren't selling as they expected and Intel wasn't onboard any consoles.
     
  3. Silent_Buddha

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    Heh, sorry random flights of whimsy.

    But everytime I hear Apple + Home Console, I can't help thinking...

    An iConsole priced at 750 USD with great styling. And rabid but miniscule userbase that buys every single thing released for it.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  4. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    Maybe they will go the Zeebo route & allow using the AT&T 3G network to get their games? They could support a iPhone dock or just swap out the iPhone's SIM card. The iPhone could even be used as a controller. There is potential there, but probably only makes sense after they have fleshed out the mobile games platform first.

    Tommy McClain
     
  5. Laa-Yosh

    Laa-Yosh I can has custom title?
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    Apple doesn't have the software part covered. It takes games to sell consoles and they have no internal developers. There aren't any left to buy either, even if they were willing to risk that much money.
     
  6. Jack_Tripper

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    Well, if it was for WoW - the hardware components would be fairly cheap - you'd just need to throw gobs and gobs of memory at it (less if you could reduce the O/S overhead. The GPU side of things would be relativley inexpensive - throw in a keyboard and mouse - and I think you could easily do this in a SFF case...hmmm.

    Limitations

    Need for lots of HDD space - a given, WoW's not particularly small...and each expansion and 1gb+ patch seems to get more and more re-goddamn-diculous; looking longer term...you'd probalby need a terrabyte of HDD space for Wow + 2 YEARS worth of expansions...then throw SC2 or D3 at it...I think that may be conservative

    You'd loose people by the boat load if you made them use WoW voice chat - everyone uses Vent or the equivalent because the in-game voice option is just such a pile. I'd be really suprised if they'd let you install other software on their little box...though they could just buy Ventrillo i suppose

    But that brings up add-ons...one of the bigger draws to playing WoW is it's user-interface customizability - I have serious doubts (and if I were Blizzard, reservations) about allowing third party addons on my little "solid-state platform" that was supposed to be unified...especially when those little addons get raging amounts of use (both in the public...and memory consumption)

    Blizzard just tends to disagree...and flat out lag behind when it comes to certain add-ons - and the damn game would be unenjoyable without some of them. Look at Outfitter, for example....how long did it take Blizzard to implememnt a quick way of changing gear-sets ...4 years? For classes that constantly change gear (which is what...like 20-things) 10 times an a half hour....stuff like that would get real old quick...again, necessitating 3rd party add-ons

    The other big thing that you'd like to see is the implementation of a higher end experiencing...but that comes with higher-end hardware requirements...and that could get absurdly expensive on the hardware side. Even at modest resolutions....like 16*10 - you're looking at a little rough and tumble box that can put out the game at the highest resolutions and settings - and that's without turning on just friggin' insane system hogs like high-quality shadows.... If we're talking about a console here, we're looking at people wanting to play this on HDTV's? So trying those settings at 19*10 again leads me to belive that the hardware would just be too darned expensive.

    And you'd have to do a lot of work on the core interface to make it scale with TV resolutions - the text size thing alone...floating text bars (and TV refresh rates) is enough to make me want to cower in a corner.

    Just food for thought!

    :)

    Jack
     
  7. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Hey, there's a point. What sort of prices would MS charge for a compeiting console?! Can you get WoW on Linux?
     
  8. TheD

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    Only via WINE.
    It runs fine (but a bit slow).
     
  9. rekator

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    Run very well on OS X…One of the first to use threaded Open GL on OS X…
    But we all known Apple didn't licensed OS X…
    If blizzard want they probably can go for a WoW Linux, but from now the business is to small…
     
  10. LunchBox

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    Well with Blizzard's track record, by the time they're done polishing their game system for launch, they would've fallen behind the technological race by about 10 years. :)
     
  11. Jack_Tripper

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    That didn't hurt them with WoW...hell, it gets a year behind every year it's out

    :p

    Jack
     
  12. Chris123234

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    This thread is all some sort of elaborate joke and at the end OP is gonna say "J/k", right?
     
  13. Laa-Yosh

    Laa-Yosh I can has custom title?
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    No, I'm just thinking out loud ;)

    And the answer to the question could obviously be 'they won't launch anything because it's not worth it'...
     
  14. V3

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    What about AMD and Intel launching their own console ? Say AMD cut out both MS and Nintendo and decided to have their own console for larger piece of the pie and Intel follow soon after, wouldn't that be interesting. Both companies have competitive advantage. They can partner with the like of Blizzard or Valve to provide network support and content distribution.
     
  15. Shifty Geezer

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    Before anyone proposes yet another Company X or Y, can I please request that reason why they'd want to launch a console are given?! It's a lot of expense and effort, and isn't particularly profitable in the long run unless you get lucky. Nintendo have only lasted this long to land the success of Wii because of first party software. Why on earth would Intel, AMD, nVidia, or anyone else want this market? The reason Sony and MS are in it are to secure media sales as much as anything - it's all about a platform for the software and content.
     
  16. rekator

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    And AMD, Nvidia or Intel can gain probably more on "only" supply console maker.
    The fact that Sony and MS are in to secure media sales is right, but IMHO I think they lost their time and money with targeting living-room or chambers…
    They probably better use to target pockets…:wink:
    They're go now for this, but is probably a very hard battle for them to be in the first place…
     
  17. Nano

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    No thanks =/

    There are more likely contenders already in consumer electronics, even then, they're highly unlikley to go head to head with MS, Sony and Nintendo, simple because its not viable (cost, time, support) or wise to saturate the market any further.
     
  18. Silent_Buddha

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    Well, MS is doing relatively well with X360 with regards to online media distribution. I think their more conservative approach to it has served them well thus far. I'm not sure how well it will do them in the 2nd half of it's lifespan (2010-2015) however. I guess it depends on whether BluRay can finally catch on, or if consumers increasingly go to online distribution. Which brings us to...

    PS3 on the other hand has been a bit mediocre so far with regards to the game console part. It did however help to cement BluRay as the winner of the HD physical media formats. Uptake of BluRay is still pretty slow though, and I doubt it will overtake DVD anytime soon. Although I expect that to accerlate once it hits the 99 USD price point with movies selling for 9.99-19.99 USD regularly. I do think the PS3 has a better chance for the 2nd half of it's lifespan if BluRay does finally take off.

    Still, that said, for the console market I think it's still up in the air which one will do better as media entertainment hub. IMO - X360 is currently executing better on that front. Netflix was a big step forward in that direction. Add in social networking. PS3 has a bit of an advantage with traditional physical media however.

    Anyway, all that is going a bit off track...

    I just don't see another player seriously entering the mainstream consumer console market. It's a difficult market to be profitable in. There's 3 REALLY strong competitors already. The price of entry is pretty steep. And you have to find someway to persuade companies to develope for your platform when they're already possibly developing for 4 platforms (PS3, PC, X360 and Wii).

    I just don't see another console player entering the race unless one of the current ones exit.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  19. V3

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    There is no reason AMD or Intel wouldn't want the share of the pie of media sales. It's only a matter of time before they want in too. Why would they want to be only processor provider when they can make MS, Sony and Nintendo their third parties.
     
  20. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    I'm sure every company would like to be in on the action, but most can't, and they have the sense to stay out. A company would need to create a box, system software, development software, secure content allies in the form of games and media, and then compete with established brands. It's an insane undertaking! It makes sense for Sony as they are a media and CE company, who already spanned all the aspects save for game creation. The cost to them to get started, especially before the download media aspect where costs were much lower as you didn't have to worry about securing media, was a considered risk with a good chances at phenominal long-term returns. For MS, the option to get involved was far less attractive, and they had sense to try and stay away from hardware, but they couldn't get their software onto the existing consoles, so decided even though it cost a hell of a lot, they'd go for it, and because they're Microsoft they could actually afford the insane investment of multiple billions.

    Intel/AMD would be starting with some chips. Okay, so they'd be close to creating a hardware platform and they could probably get it cheap. Now what about development tools, games, online services, media connections and global distribution rights (think how long Sony has taken landing these things!), and branding?! Huge and expensive undertakings in the face of stiff, established competition. You'd need to be remarkably optimistic to see a good opportunity here. :D
     
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