Hey RPSers! I have had three cups of tea, EXCESSIVE amounts of sugar and have bags of energy for news today: and here is the first story I have to report. Xi3 have announced that their apparently "uniquely shaped, grapefruit-size" PISTON, a system optimized for games on high-def television monitors, will be available for preorder at SXSW until the final day at 11:59 p.m. CST on March 17th.
The so-called "Steam box" console - which is a third party effort and certainly not Valve's own Steam box, which is yet to be revealed - will be available to SXSWers for $100 off the actual, ludicrous $999.99 price.
The press release gives more explanation on why they've decided to open early: “Given the amount of awards, media attention and gamer interest the PISTON Console has generated since it was unveiled at CES 2013 in January, we’ve become seriously concerned that we will not be able to meet the demand for PISTON Consoles this year,” said Jason A. Sullivan, founder, president and CEO of Xi3 Corporation. “That’s why we have decided to begin accepting pre-orders on our PISTON Console, beginning today with the start of the SXSW Gaming Expo. Gaming Expo attendees will also get the benefit of being the first to see the PISTON Console in action.”
Jason also added that he thinks the console will give us the best of both PC and console worlds, making it an ideal Thing for us to Own. The console will have 8GB of RAM and a 3.2Ghz Quad Core (R464) processor, as well as a range of SSDs available, and lot of ports for plugging things into it. Quite how this compared to the next set of consoles isn't clear, but it is at least similar.
I'm sort of disappointed the thing doesn't actually look like a grapefruit and have all mad leaves on it. I really want it to smell a bit citrusy too.