Product Concept: [Console] Drive!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Haltus Kain, Oct 26, 2014.

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  1. HaltusKain

    HaltusKain Well-Known Member

    In pondering what the Leviathan could be, my mind has arrived at a concept that is:

    1. Almost definitely NOT what the Leviathan is, and therefore not worthy to be included in that discussion, but

    2. Actually an interesting idea, which, if it's even possible, could do some crazy things to the gaming market.

    The Logic...
    Anywho, what is a gaming console? Well... it's a casing that holds a power supply unit, a processor, a motherboard, an optical drive, etc.

    What is a computer? Well... ^that.

    So, what's different about them? A specialized optical drive, and perhaps some unique ports for controllers... and... *headscratch* ...that's pretty much it, isn't it?

    I'm a proud member of the #PcMasterRace - haven't dabbled into consoles since the N64, and frankly, no regrets. Consoles are too expensive for me. That may sound like a weird thing for me to say, since a gaming computer will generally cost quite a bit more than a console; but the difference is, with a computer, you have a large initial purchase and then you're pretty much done. If it goes obsolete in a few years, all you have to do is upgrade a couple parts and it's back up to snuff. You can't do that with consoles. You can't 'upgrade' an Xbox to an Xbox 360; or that to an Xbox One, you just have to buy the complete package.

    So, for me, I built my computer toward the end of the original Xbox's reign, and haven't really messed with upgrading it since. I can't run modern games on it on "ultra" any more, but it's still a capable rig.

    Since putting it together, my brother has purchased all three of the Xboxes mentioned above.

    In other words, I've purchased on case, one motherboard, one disk drive, etc; and my brother has purchased 3 cases, 3 motherboards, 3 disk drives, etc. If he happened to be a Playstation fan as well, that'd be a whole other heap of components, all but the very most recent collecting dust in the closet.

    That seems silly to me!

    The Actual Idea...
    So let's bridge the gap! Y'know, encourage some interbreeding between the #PcMasterRace and the muggles! ;-)

    Take everything that's unique about a specific console, and replicate that as an internal drive to be installed into a computer!

    So, let's say Microsoft announces its next gen console: the Xbox π!! (I really hope they call it that! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:) ...anyway, it comes with your typical console shenanigans: a bunch of components you already own plus a fancy optical drive to read their new fancy disks, because for some reason we're still using disks... all for a whopping $500.00!!

    Meanwhile, Razer steps in and announces a new product: The Razer π Drive! which can read the fancy new disks, and comes with relevent drivers and software to launch the Xbox π interface, use the Xbox π controllers (or simulate them with mouse and keyboard!! :blush: ...or some other PC controller) ...for... what would a high-end optical drive + some software cost? $100.00?

    With that in your PC, you could then make use of the power supply and video card etc that you already own and play console games on your computer without having to buy a repeat of all the redundant components needed to make a console work! Not a PC version of the game, mind you, but the actual console versions. at about the same time, the Playstation 5 (6?) and the Nintendo WEEEEEEE! will be coming out, so pop out a $100 drive for each of them as well.

    Suddenly it's a lot more affordable to own all of the leading 'consoles', meaning that game sales are going to go up, meaning game production is going to be better funded, meaning we'll be seeing better games, and increased use of PC's for gaming, either directly or via console drives, which means the total number of people that would be considered "PC Gamers" will increase pretty drastically, meaning that the size of the target audience for the bulk of Razer's products will increase drastically, meaning Razer's sales will increase drastically, meaning they'll eventually be able to afford to buy companies like Microsoft, Apple, Google, etc., and not long after that, since the world and the militaries within will be pretty much fully dependent on Razer at that point, Razer can then surface as a political superpower uniting this world's people under one unified government soon revealed as being known as Leviathan, which we will fail not to speak of its greatness as it resonates across the continents! When he rises up, the mighty will be terrified and cower at his name! Nothing in the universe will be his equal - a creature without fear! #LEVIATHANCOMETH BIZNITCHES!!!!!

    What are we talking about again?
    ...oh yea, Console Drive!

    Anyway. initial versions would probably have to be aimed at high-end PC's, since most console games don't have options for things like graphics quality - it just assumes the console can handle it. If the 'Console Drive' concept catches on, game developers would probably start including those kind of settings even to console game in order to maximize profits, which would have the nice effect of opening it up to lower-end comps and increasing the demand for a Console Drive instead of a stand-alone console.

    With the line between console and PC getting thinner and thinner with each generation, this would make an excellent 'next step' in the gaming industry.

    ...aaand my usual spiel about not actually knowing squat about the technical end of things / whether or not this would even be possible or plausible but nonetheless getting a vision of an awesome final product that somehow managed to circumvent all the obstacles currently unknown to me. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
  2. TigerStripedDragon

    TigerStripedDragon Active Member

    It's a great concept, but the advantage/disadvantage consoles have over PC is that they're all the exact same spec meaning any game will run exactly the same on all machines.

    Say console makers are actually open to doing a standalone pluggable drive, it will give them a headache trying to keep the experience consistent across all platforms. Of course its very likely that some developers will opt to develop exclusively for the Drive instead of the console as it has room for better specs.

    I think a better option would be streaming. Sort of like the PS TV only one that can be plugged into your PC. That way dependency on PC hardware might not be so high and console players might actually be encouraged to get an affordable PC.
  3. kajira

    kajira Mother of Gaming

    I would imagine that if something like this were even possible then console game makers would still be making their games the exact same specs regardless. They wouldn't need to change a thing. It would be the console drive's job to read it and, if you own a PC that isn't up to snuff to what the game/drive requires, then you're the idiot for trying to use it. LOL
    (kind of like how our PC games have minimum / recommended requirements)

    Now, one reason I can't really see this catching on is because companies do things to make money ... and if thousands upon thousands of people buy a $100 drive, that's how many people who aren't buying the full package? I would suspect that there are enough willing to own both that they may not be willing to lose that portion of the market.
  4. Dunyas

    Dunyas Active Member

    What you are talking about is emulation, and I doubt Razer would ever get into it as it would burn a lot of bridges. No doubt lots of lawsuits would be involved. Add to that that such a product will always be buggy on multiple levels. That is why most commercial emulator in the past only supported certain games.

    I don't disagree with the main idea of merging CPs and consoles, but the real push needs to be to a more open OS on consoles, and Razer has already mentioned working with them in the past. They already made it public knowledge that they wouldn't be adverse to creating a Steam machine if demand was high enough. They also already have an Android TV based micro-console in the work according to their Google I/O annoucement.
  5. Dunyas

    Dunyas Active Member

    In your example you are emulating hardware as well as software. So it becomes a difficult question. Sony sued emulators in the past only to lose. But in that case, it was completely software and didn't breaking any form of DRM. Plus the political landscape has greatly changed (Apple has actually won similar cases in the last few years). It's not just hardware you have to copy either. A lot of software on the machine also goes into running a game that is considered proprietary. THat is what the Sony case was about. A company reverse engineered the BIOS of the PSX which allowed people to play their games on a Mac and were porting it to Windows.

    When you attach a device able to read a media format, you also open up the ease of duplicating that media. That is why we see such draconian DRM these days on PC. It's easy to pirate on PC. If you want to play a pirated game on your PC, you download it and install it. If you want to do that with a console game, you either have to emulate the console on your PC or have special hardware or software to bypass the built in DRM. This device you are talking about would have to bypass that DRM just to play the legit game. What would stop it from playing the pirated game as well?
    Haltus Kain likes this.
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