Project Cars studio to build "most powerful console ever"

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"What is the Mad Box?" he continued. It's literally "Mad"... You want 4k, you want VR at 60FPS? He further explained that Slightly Mad Studios thinks "the industry is a little too much of a monopoly or a micro oligopoly", and The Mad Box aims to bring some healthy competition to the console race, which for years has pretty much exclusively been a three-way battle between Microsoft's Xbox, Sony's PlayStation, and Nintendo's hardware. As well as making a well-received sequel, the United Kingdom firm has built up quite a fanbase around its racing property and is now eyeing a rather more taxing challenge - a move into the world of video game hardware. You want a full engine for free to develop your games on it?

Most games are cross-platform nowadays anyway, and the few games which are exclusive play a large part in console purchase decisions. On Twitter, Bell claimed the console will offer 4K and VR at 60 frames per second (FPS).

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Bell said the console will support VR headsets such as Oculus and HTC Vive, existing PC peripherals, fight sticks, and racing wheels.

For those that missed the initial reveal, the founder of Slightly Mad Dog Studios tweeted out a simple "The Mad Box is coming".

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Could the Mad Box happen?

As the studio behind racing sims Project CARS and Need For Speed: Shift, without previous hardware releases to its name, the announcement seems slightly out of nowhere. Bell also stated that the console would be priced "competitive with upcoming console prices", suggesting it'll be in line with the cost of a presumed incoming PS5 or Xbox Two, or whatever they end up being called. Not to mention many widely-used engines are cross-platform, so that perk isn't huge to developers either.

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Reactions on Ian Bell's Twitter have varied from excitement, to bemusement, to outright dismissal. With little confirmed, and the exact scope of next-gen consoles still uncertain, it sounds like little more than hype - though we'd happily be proven wrong.