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The development kits for Microsoft's next game console - being popularly called Xbox 720 - were shipped to developers in March, according to a report by Sillegamer, after the company's Developer's Conference in London, on 28 February. One of the primary reasons for calling for a conference, it is now believed, was to brief European representatives on the next-gen console, something which was later confirmed by a senior technical artist at game developers Crytek. Further meetings were then held, for American developers, at the Game Developers' Conference in San Francisco, after which the development kits were shipped.
The Xbox 720, according to the report, will pack a "monster" 16-core IBM PowerPC CPU along with a GPU equivalent to AMD's Randeon HD 7000-series graphic cards and a Blu-ray drive.
Meanwhile another report, by VG247, has emerged revealing details Microsoft has made available to certain partners. Apparently, the console will have two GPUs. The structures of the GPUs will not be as they normally are in PCs, where the two chips take turns to draw lines of the same objects. Instead, the Xbox 720 chips will, it is belived, be able to work independently, drawing different items simultaneously.
Furthermore, according to a report by Xbox 360, Level artist Mark Ziemak from developer CD ProjektRED, has been quoted stating the Xbox 720 will not be much different from Xbox 360, when asked if the arrival of a new Xbox would drastically alter CD Projekt's multiplatform plans.
"I guess once you get the experience with consoles, with Xbox 360, then we are hoping that this experience in the future will help us in the developing games for a next gen. If next gen is around the corner pretty soon, then we are hoping the experience that we got at this moment will actually help us in creating the games for other consoles. I don't think they'll be so much different. I hope they won't be so much different that we have to totally change our control and stuff like that," said Mark Ziemak, a Level artist from developers CD ProjektRed, in a report by Xbox 360.
The next Xbox, according to a Techradar report which quoted Microsoft blogger "M S Nerd", is expected to be code named "Loop". The source also said the console would be "far smaller, cheaper and Kinect-focused". There are other reports, such as this from Develop-Online, which claimed the console would be named "Durango", after tweets from Sean Tracy, a technical designer for Crytek, which read: "Enjoying the Durango developers summit in London. So far, great swag and interesting talks." He has since deleted the tweet.
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