Is Microsoft releasing a new console next year? That's the word according to 1Up's Sam Kennedy (Mister Kennedy!!!). According to his sources, not only will Project Natal will be released as an add-on for the Xbox 360, it will also be an integral part of a new Xbox system.
"Microsoft will not only release Natal as an add-on for the Xbox 360, it will come standard with the next Xbox console. Yes, there will be a new Xbox console next fall.
However, the new console won't just be an Xbox 360 with a camera, though -- we've heard it will be considered a new platform and carry a new name (Xbox Natal?). It's not clear what sort of upgrades we might see, but some have suggested it will be an slight upgrade of the current Xbox 360 technology. Current Xbox 360 games would be playable on it, but future games would be able to take advantage of the added muscle."
Kennedy has been covering games for an awfully long time and has outstanding sources, but the whole thing seems off to me. Microsoft is doing well with the Xbox 360 and it seems way too soon to confuse and splinter the market by introducing a new product. Increasing the momentum, or maintaining it at the very least, of the Xbox 360 seems like the smarter thing to do, especially with a strong first-party lineup and a price drop coming from Sony within the year. It just doesn't make sense to muck with customers and developers with a new product when the current one hasn't even peaked.
What do you think of the possibility of a new Xbox coming out next year? Would you buy it? Or are you content with the Xbox 360? Wouldn't you prefer that Microsoft put a full effort behind the 360? Or are you itching for something exciting and new (like the Love Boat)?