Rumor Killers: Oct. 10

Is the Red Ring of Death Finally a Thing of the Past?

If you’ve owned an Xbox 360, chances are you’ve been on the phone with customer support trying to get a coffin for your now-dead console. While some models fail due to DVD drives breaking down or graphics cards going kabloey, the most common cause of premature Xbox death is the dreaded general hardware failure, aka the Red Ring of Death. If reports are to be believed however, Microsoft has now fixed the issue once and for all.

Word on the street is that earlier this summer Microsoft began quietly shipping Xboxes featuring the Jasper chipset, which is smaller and runs cooler than its older brothers. Conventional wisdom holds that Microsoft’s previous chipsets were the primary cause of the dreaded RRoD. According to JoeyGadget, the new Jaspers are found in all 360s produced after June 6, 2008, falling in lot #8031 and up. Therefore, if you’re in the market for a new system, it would be good to check and see if you can get one that falls within those parameters.

Due to the fact that Microsoft never officially disclosed the reason behind the RRoD, the company has not commented on the release of the Jasper chipset. Therefore, we don’t know if these chips are also going into replacement and refurbished Xboxes, or if they are reserved solely for new models. What we do know is that these little beauties are out there, and hopefully that means you won’t have to see those horrid flashing red lights ever again. Now then, if only Microsoft could take care of all the other things that tend to break on their machine then we might finally have a little closure.

TGR Verdict: Rumor Confirmed

Is Kojima Working On an FPS?

Looks like Quartermann is at it again, this week claiming that Hideo Kojima, acclaimed creator and director of the Metal Gear Solid franchise, is looking to make a splash in the world of first-person shooters. Overly windy cutscenes breaking up your incessant slaughter of alien and/or monstrous foes confirmed.

Apparently, the meat behind this rumor is that Kojima has been recently spotted making some secretive visits to both Infinity Ward (Call of Duty 4) and Guerrilla Games (Killzone 2), presumably to get some tips on the finer points. Of course, he could just be visiting some friends and getting early looks at a couple big games because he’s Hideo freakin’ Kojima, but why assume that when the alternative is so much more fun?

Honestly though, the fact that he visited a couple developers who make FPS games does not substantiate enough evidence to prove he’s working on anything. Developers hang out with each other all the time, sharing tips and checking out each other’s projects, and who wouldn’t want to go chat with the folks responsible for a bona fide game of the year and a potential candidate for the same? We’ll move this one into the "likely" category if some new evidence emerges soon, but for now file this one under "sorry, but no."

TGR Verdict: Unlikely

Is Rogue Squadron Coming to the Wii?

One of the bright spots of both the Nintendo 64 and GameCube lineups was the Rogue Squadron series. The trilogy, set in the Star Wars universe and starring familiar faces like Biggs, Wedge, and a certain Luke fella you may have heard of, brought space combat home to your living room and provided a healthy does of Star Wars-fueled nostalgia. It seems like it may be time to strap in once again, as it looks like Nintendo will be bringing all three games back for one more go.

As the rumor goes, Nintendo is planning on remastering all three games and then releasing them as one giant compilation under the banner of their new Play on Wii experiment. With Nintendo already confirming Pikmin, the Metroid Prime series and more as games to appear on the service, the addition of the Rogue Squadron series seems like a ’can’t miss’ proposition.

Nintendo remains hush-hush thus far, so we’ll just have to sit tight and wait for any new info to leak out. Hopefully though, even the possibility of this series coming back for one last curtain call will encourage fanboys so much that they beset Reggie Fils-Aime, Shigeru Miyamoto and Mario himself with so many phone calls and emails that the company has no choice but to release it. In case you don’t have it, Mario’s email is peachlover@mushroomkingdom.com, or if that one doesn’t work try redoveralls@mariobrosplumbing.com.

TGR Verdict: Likely

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