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Microsoft reveals Xbox 360 HD-DVD release info, new titles at X06

Microsoft reveals Xbox 360 HD-DVD release info, new titles at X06

At the company's X06 conference in Barcelona, Spain, Microsoft provided worldwide-release details for the Xbox 360's external HD-DVD drive. The drive will be available for $200 in the United States when it comes out in mid-November, with Peter Jackson's King Kong on HD-DVD and the Xbox 360 Universal Media Remote. The player will also launch in the U.K., France, and Germany around the same time, for 130 pounds and 200 euros, respectively. Other territories will follow in 2007. According to Joystiq, the HD-DVD drive will be compatible with both the Premium and Core models of the system. Coupled with the price of the system, HD-DVD movies on the 360 will set you back $500 or $600--roughly the same price as Toshiba's entry-level HD-DVD players. You get the added benefit of a high-quality gaming console, but it lacks the all-important HDMI cable. Few HDTVs accept 1080p via component, and the ominious threat of component image constraint is looming, so a few movie studios could ruin the HD-DVD fun for Xbox 360 owners.

Should you suddenly find your HD-DVDs downconverted, at least there'll be plenty of great titles to enjoy on your 360. Here are the biggest gaming announcements of X06:

  • The big announcement at the press conference was Halo Wars, a real-time strategy title set in the Halo universe. This is in addition to mysterious franchise-related content in development by Halo film director Peter Jackson.
  • The grandfather of first-person shooters will be on Xbox Live Arcade, and much sooner than anyone expected. The original Doom will be available today for 800 Microsoft Points, with a few bonuses, including four player co-op and death match via Xbox Live.
  • A few titles were announced to have varying levels of Xbox 360 exclusivity. Bioshock will be exclusive to 360 and Windows during its spring launch, and Grand Theft Auto IV will have "epic" episodes available for download within months of the game's October 2007 release. First- and second-party titles announced at the conference, including Project Gotham Racing 4 and Banjo-Kazooie, are obviously also sticking with the 360. But the next iteration of Splinter Cell from UbiSoft, after the upcoming Double Agent, will be, too.
  • Source: GameSpot