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From 360 Slim Rumours to EA's Old Tricks - News Roundup 18th March 2010

Jonathan Lester
Command & Conquer, DRM, EA, Microsoft, News, Sony, Xbox 360 Slim

Microsoft Developing Xbox 360 Slim?

From 360 Slim Rumours to EA's Old Tricks - News Roundup 18th March 2010

Some interesting leaked photos of what appears to be a condensed Xbox 360 motherboard  have wormed their way onto the internet. Spotted by Kotaku, these pictures claim to blow the lid off a radical redesign of the existing Xbox 360 motherboard that combines the CPU and GPU into a single chip. The subsequent decrease in size would allow for a much... slimmer console.

However, these pictures were discovered on a Chinese message board with no way of verifying their authenticity (and no official confirmation). This is still very much a rumour, folks- so take this news with a massive pinch of salt. However, the PS3 Slim was revealed in a similar series of leaked message board photos, and analysts predicted that Natal would launch with a console redesign (and price crash) when it was first announced. Watch this space.

Sony Launch Public Ideas Blog

From 360 Slim Rumours to EA's Old Tricks - News Roundup 18th March 2010

Sony have launched an ideas submission portal that provides fans with a forum for suggesting ways of improving Playstation products. Whilst the European site isn't up and running yet, the American blog still allows British players with a registered PSN ID to get involved! A voting scheme should allow the great ideas to stand out from the crowd.

Whether Sony will actually listen to anything we say isn't exactly clear, but it's always great to see a company take an interest in its fans... or just give them a place to vent.

[Playstation.blog Share]

C&C 4 Requires Constant Internet Connection

From 360 Slim Rumours to EA's Old Tricks - News Roundup 18th March 2010

Yesterday, EA and DICE removed the controversial SecuROM DRM from Steam versions of Bad Company 2; and we were quick to praise them for their seemingly benevolent actions. However, I set myself up for irony when I posted the fateful phrase:

"There once was a time where EA was considered to be a putrid force of pure evil. What’s going on?!"

I hate it when I'm right. Turns out that yesterday's relaxation of DRM protocol was almost certainly just a publicity stunt to soften the blow of today's announcement: Command & Conquer 4 has Ubisoft-style DRM. The final chapter in the Tiberium Saga requires a constant internet connection to be maintained, and immediately kicks the player out of their own game if the connection fails for any reason. Even in singleplayer.

This style of DRM is causing Ubisoft massive publicity damage as well as making them a prime target for hackers and crackers. By following the same path, EA is more than likely to encounter similar wrath... except that they're used to it. [Gamesindustry.biz]

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