Microsoft’s ‘Project Scorpio’ is unveiled to the world and we have to dream no longer. A seriesof pieces co-written by Eurogamer and Digital Foundry have listed the full specs for the next-gen monster console, Inside each system will be a CPU featuring eight custom x86 cores, clocked at 2.3 GHz, a custom GPU with 40 customized compute units clocked at 1172MHz — an “unprecedently high clock speed for a console,” Eurogamer writes — and 12GB of GDDR5 RAM. Players will also have 1TB, 2.5-inch hard drive to play around with, and a 4K UHD Blu-ray drive.
Well, the two outlets saw a Forza Motorsport demo running at native 4K and 60 frames per second. That doesn’t mean every game will run this way — or consistently — but it’s an encouraging indicator of the console’s power. “True” 4K gaming is tricky, and the PS4 Pro isn’t capable of pulling it off. If Microsoft can deliver that level of performance across a range of software, including first and third-party offerings, it would be a huge differentiator from Sony.
The articles revealed a few other interesting facts. The new Xbox will have an internal power supply like the Xbox One S. It will also support Dolby Atmos and a proprietary format called HRTF, developed by the Microsoft Hololens team. That’s notable because Project Scorpio will also support VR headsets, however to date Microsoft has refrained from explaining exactly how that will work. The final design, Microsoft promises, will be shown at E3 this June.
The selling point is quite simple: this, Company says it will be the “most powerful console ever,” eclipsing the current Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro. The reveal was so early, however, that Microsoft was inadequate to show the hardware or any gameplay footage. Attendees had to make do with a collection of developer endorsements, filled with hip words like “innovation” and “no boundaries.”
Project Scorpio is a big move by Microsoft to catch up with the PlayStation 4. Xbox One sales, from what we can tell, have been decent — exciting, even — but they are in no comparison to the numbers posted by Sony. Microsoft will be hoping that a better home console will be sufficient to galvanize interest in the Xbox brand. Success will connect on game support.
There’s no word on pricing, although Digital Foundry and Eurogamer are guessing it’ll be around $499.