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According to sources close to Japanese retailer Hermitage Akibara, retailers and distributors across the world will be gearing up for a 10 May 2014 launch for the Haswell refresh processors and LGA1150 motherboards packing the 9-series chipset. Intel has not officially announced any launch dates for their new family of processors, however they are planning to launch them at a later date this year, with the X99 socket LGA2011-3 platform launching in 2H 2014, packing DDR4 support for the first time for consumer applications. The 9-series chipsets will add support for M.2 solid state drives, Intel Boot Guard for UEFI and full SATA 6GB/s support on most motherboards.

Source: Hermitage Akibara (via Techpowerup)


Step right up all you Microsoft faithful, and feast your ocular peepers on today’s fantabulous next-gen Xbox rumours! Are you sick to death of always having to purchase another pack of MS Points in those ludicrous fixed denominations just so you can make use of your remaining balance, which always happens to be just short of the actual amount you need? Are you tired of feeling ripped-off by virtual currencies designed to get you to spend more than you actually intended? Well then this shiny new next-gen Xbox rumour is just for you!

According to sources close to the next Xbox, Microsoft will be dropping MS Points in favour of actual currency. Note that this isn’t the first time that this rumour has cropped up, despite it being quashed a few days later. It’s probable that Xbox LIVE will do what Windows 8 does: default to local currency but still accept MS Points as a payment method.

Further rumours suggest that Microsoft is readying a new Forza title to launch alongside the next-gen Xbox. Considering how current generation Forza titles look practically photo-realistic already, it’ll be interesting to see what a next-gen version looks like. We’re going to call it Super-High-Definition-Real-Life-Graphcs 2.0.

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Whew, we haven’t had a next Xbox rumour for at least two days. I bet you were beginning to worry that Microsoft had just canned their entire console business or something. Good thing we’ve got three new rumours to remind us that there’s this thing called a next-gen Xbox that seems to be getting everyone and their dog up in arms about permanent connectivity, lack of backwards compatibility and the fact that a deluxe edition with built-in dishwasher still hasn’t been revealed.

First up we’ve got a new rumour about something called the “Xbox Mini”. According to information obtained by website VGLeaks, the Xbox Mini is a small version of the current Xbox 360 but it doesn’t have an optical drive. This is supposed to be Microsoft’s answer to Apple TV. The Xbox Mini is allegedly a standalone device that will include a suite of media streaming options for your TV. It’ll also be able to access Xbox LIVE, which means you’ll be able to play downloadable games (XBLA and Games on Demand titles) on the Xbox Mini. Apparently your previous digital purchases will be available to re-download at no cost.

That’s not all: apparently the Xbox Mini will be able to connect to the next-gen Xbox in order to provide backwards compatibility. With the Xbox Mini plugged into your next-gen Xbox, you’ll be able to play your disc-based Xbox 360 games in your next-gen Xbox’s optical drive. This paints a rather different picture when compared to previous rumours that suggested no backwards compatibility at all.

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What, it’s been at least five days since we posted a next-gen console rumour? Better fix that!

This time around Kotaku is citing a source who has “access to development hardware” and is somebody who they consider “an unusual but surprisingly well-informed source.” Apparently this source (called SuperDaE) has managed to get hold of the overview documents for the next Xbox console – those are the documents that are ordinarily given to game developers so they know what hardware features they’ll be able to make use of. Obviously, much of that stuff is about the console’s specs, but other bits of interesting information have cropped up, such as the fact that the next Xbox won’t function unless Kinect s plugged in. Yikes.

If the mass of recent rumours are true, it sounds like Microsoft is forcing the next generation of Kinect onto everyone who picks up the next Xbox console. Apparently this next-gen Kinect has been vastly improved so hopefully they’ve been able to get around the requirement of having a massive lounge in order for Kinect to actually function properly.

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I’m in two minds about posting this; I can practically feel my Naivety Skill levelling up by the second just for hoping this might be a glimpse of the long dormant final chapter of Half-Life 2. A website that goes by the name of ValveTime (I’m guessing they take years to post new content then? I kid.) has posted a gallery of supposedly leaked concept art for Episode 3.

The gallery has also been shared via Facebook and it mainly focuses on various concept sketches of Alyx Vance. That being said, there are a couple of other NPC sketches as well as some scenes of a helicopter crash with what could be Gordon and Alyx looking out at a Combine building.

ValveTime claims that these are legit, but they’re pointing towards “an anonymous visitor to the site from an unknown source” so don’t get too excited. Hit the jump to see for yourself.

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