Microsoft’s Phil Spencer announces more hardware innovations will be coming to Xbox 360 in the next few years in today’s news roundup. Also, NPD shows gaming is in decline, Lego Indiana Jones does a Little Big Planet, and Swedish metal band Opeth confirm Saints row for the PSP!
Project Natal The First In Several Hardware Innovations
Phil Spencer announced Microsoft have several planned hardware innovations that could potentially rule out the possibility of a next-generation Xbox 360, Project Natal being just one of these. “It's not about trying to sell consumers a new piece of hardware at the wrong time, it's about evolving the platform continuously” according to Spencer, using hardware related items to do this. Speculation has pointed towards a new peripheral in the works, but nothing can be confirmed until Microsoft feels ready. [OXM]
Lego Indiana Jones To Get Level Creation Tools
Little Big Planet was praised for its in-depth level creation, and the variety in level design it offered players. The ability to construct levels however you want seems to be appealing, as Lego Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues has included level creation tools this time around.
Allowing two players to create levels simultaneously through co-op play, it should be relatively straight forward, the complexity of level design being a point of criticism of Little Big Planet. Lego Indiana Jones will be swinging in shops this November. [Joystiq]
Future of Gaming In Decline
NPD has revealed June showed much better software and hardware sales in comparison to a rather weak May. May showed an overall decrease in console sales, and only four titles sold more than 200,000 units. In June the DS showed easily the biggest increase in hardware terms, selling 133,000 more systems in June than May, with sale totals twice the amount of the next biggest selling console, the Wii.
The PS3 had its best month sales wise since March, selling 164,700 systems. Despite these positive sales, comparing sales to last year shows a rather bleak future. NPD analyst Anita Frazier wrote “the video games industry realized a significant decline when compared to June 2008, the fourth consecutive month of year-over-year declines”, adding “this level of decline is certainly going to cause some pain and reflection in the industry”. Sales are now more affected on a monthly basis, with big games now having a much bigger effect on console sales, Prototype and UFC an example of this in June. [1UP]
Metal Band Opeth Confirm Saints Row PSP
Progressive metal band Opeth has announced on their website the PSP will be getting Saints Row, before anyone in the gaming world even had a clue. Scandinavian metal bands are unlikely to be your first choice for the latest gaming news, but in this case you should probably take their word.
Posting on their website “We may not like playing video games all that much but we do like it when our music is featured on them! Makes us a bit proud even when it's a game as big as Saints Row for the PSP”, going on to confirm a release date of March 2010. [Kotaku]