Rumor Killers: October 3

Has Sony leaked the PS4 specs?

Every time Sony starts talking about the PS3 (or PSP for that matter), the conversation eventually turns to the 10 year lifecycle they keep promising for the system, guaranteeing that your hundreds of dollars were well spent and that you won’t get burned by having to buy a new console in the near future. But if current reports are to be believed, Sony may have to eat their words very soon.

Word on the street is that Sony has recently floated preliminary specs of a new console to publishers and developers in order to solicit feedback. The unit, as planned now, would feature the Cell processor once again, but with "double" the power and reduced manufacturing costs. The target date for this myserious new console? 2011.

We’ve been hearing grumblings that they next round of consoles are only a few years off, but so far the manufacturers have chosen to keep mum about their secret projects. However, the original source for this story (translated from Japanese so somewhat hard to read) is incredibly thorough, leading us to believe that there might be something to this after all. So while Sony may indeed intend to give the PS3 a lifespan of 10 years, it would appear it’s going to have to share at least half of its time on the earth with its new brother, the PS4.

TGR Verdict: Rumor Very Likely

Will the Next Dead Rising Game be Episodic?

With the advent of broadband-connected, always on consoles we’re seeing the living room boxes make tiny steps toward the episodic gaming structure that is so prevalent in the PC gaming market. Sam & Max, Strong Bad, Penny Arcade and Siren: Blood Curse have all gotten the bite-sized downloadable treatment, and if rumor is to be believed, so too will Dead Rising.

That’s right, the zombie-themed slasher that took the Xbox 360 by storm and is now working its way onto the Wii will most definitely have a sequel, and the UK edition of the Official Playstation Magazine seems to think that the game will be coming in small bites, rather than one large, corpse-smelling chunk. No source is given for this story, but that’s pretty much par for the course with these magazine types, they just publish it in the rumors section and leave us wondering.

Right now, it’s too early to say anything for certain, but the idea of Dead Rising going the episodic route doesn’t really strike us as a good move for the franchise. Since the first game was rigidly timed with the story neatly fitting on a single disc, it seems odd to abandon that format in favor of a more risky episodic approach. While we won’t say that such a big change for the series is impossible, we’re going to wear our skeptical hats a bit longer on this one.

TGR Verdict: Rumor Unlikely

Does WipEout HD Hate Popular Kids?
We’re all familiar with video game bugs and glitches that cause a crash. Sometimes it’s due to a bad line of code that made it past QA, sometimes it’s something else entirely that no one had even thought to look for, but this might be the first time in history a game has crashed on anyone deemed too popular.

Not long after WipEout HD was launched, users began frantically posting on the Sony message boards saying that the game would continually crash or freeze. Early speculation pointed to issues with the users’ hard drives or system update status, but it was soon determined that those things weren’t the culprit. Rather, it turns out that the game stops working for anyone who has too many friends.

After some testing, it’s been determined that for whatever reason, anyone with over 50 PSN friends is subject to the bug which will cause the game to crash or freeze incessantly. Sony has acknowledged that something is awry, and a message greeting any user trying to join online races promises that a solution is incoming, and that everyone will be informed once a patch has been prepared.

It’s funny, cultural stigmas say that gamers are largely the unpopular kids without many friends, and yet now those who buck the stereotype are being punished by the very thing they love most. Looks like only super-nerds need apply to play WipEout HD, all those with a social life may as well keep on moving.

TGR Verdict: Rumor Confirmed

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