Thursday, 17 January, 2019

'Mad Box' is an upcoming (and totally not vaporware) gaming console

A New Game Console Is On The Way To Compete With Xbox And PlayStation Project Cars Developer Slightly Mad Studios is Questionably Creating a New Console Called the ‘Mad Box’
Sherri Watson | 04 January, 2019, 00:07

When it comes to games on the console, Bell wrote, "We think exclusives are "exclusionary" but given that we'll be shipping a cross platform engine to all developers it will be their choice". Bell also says that "old and new" software will be present on the machine, which makes it sound rather like a Steam Box, if you ask us. It's not much to go on, but the spectre of another high-powered next-generation console to compete with the PS5 or Xbox Two is enough to get some attention. With the aim of supporting 4K, 60fps-per-eye VR and the support for a wide array of PC peripherals.

Bell explained a little more to Variety, including clarifying that the VR will be 120fps.

We'll have to wait to see more about what the Mad Box will actually entail when more specific details are given but as of now, the project seems quite ambitious. If accurate, this would match the top 120 Hz capability of PlayStation VR, and be beyond the 90 Hz of the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift.

Sadly, Bell has not been forthcoming on technical details, including internal hardware, project launch date, and pricing - though if he's serious about hitting 120 frames per second for high-quality virtual reality in a compact console-like form factor, the pricing will be considerably above the competition.

Could the Mad Box happen?

For developers, Bell says that Slightly Mad Studios won't be shelling out for exclusivity incentives since it's the company's belief that exclusives are exclusionary, but hopes that the availability of that entirely (but unnamed) free cross-platform engine mentioned before will encourage developers to consider bringing their games to the Mad Box. To be fair, many things seem far fetched until they arrive, as the first Xbox likely seemed when it released to take on the Sony PlayStation.

Even more excitingly for gamers, Bell also noted that the Mad Box "will support most major VR headsets and those upcoming and the specs will be equivalent to a "very fast PC 2 years from now".

Ian Bell refers to the Mad Box as "beyond next-gen".